June 14, 2022


1. Call to Order

Commissioner Walus called to order the Village Council meeting at 7:00 p.m. and led those in the room in the Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag.  She explained the protocol for the meeting and the guidelines to submit public comment.

2. Roll Call

Council Attendance (Present):  Commissioner Walus, Commissioner Sadowski-Fugitt, Commissioner Kulovany, Commissioner Gilmartin, Commissioner Glover

Council Attendance (Electronic): Mayor Barnett

Council Attendance (Not Present): Commissioner Hosé

Non-Voting: Village Manager Dave Fieldman, Assistant Village Attorney Dawn Didier, and Village Clerk Rosa Berardi

MOT 2022-9481  -  A. Motion: Allowing for Electronic Participation for the June 14, 2022 Village Council meeting.

Summary: A motion to allow Mayor Barnett to participate in the June 14, 2022 Village Council meeting by phone.  

MOTION: To allow for electronic participation in the June 14, 2022 Village Council meeting, as presented.

RESULT: Motion carried unanimously by voice vote.

MOTIONED TO APPROVE: Commissioner Sadowski-Furgitt

SECONDED BY: Commissioner Gilmartin,

AYES: Commissioners Sadowski-Fugitt, Gilmartin, Glover, Kulovany, Walus, Mayor Barnett                                                          

NAYES: None

3.  Minutes of Council Meetings

MIN 2022-94670 -  A. Minutes: Village Council Meeting Minutes - June 07, 2022

Summary: Village Council Meeting Minutes - June 07, 2022

MOTION: To adopt the meeting minutes of the June 07, 2022 meeting, as presented.

RESULT: Motion carried unanimously by voice vote.

MOTIONED TO APPROVE: Commissioner Sadowski-Furgitt

SECONDED BY: Commissioner Gilmartin,

AYES: Commissioners Sadowski-Fugitt, Gilmartin, Glover, Kulovany, Walus, Mayor Barnett                                                         

NAYES: None

4. Consent Agenda

BIL 2022-9469  -  A. Bills Payable: No. 6668 - June 14, 2022

Summary: No. 6668 - June 14, 2022

MOTION: To adopt all items on the Consent Agenda, as presented

RESULT: Motion carried unanimously by voice vote.

MOTIONED TO APPROVE: Commissioner Sadowski-Furgitt

SECONDED BY: Commissioner Gilmartin,

AYES: Commissioners Sadowski-Fugitt, Gilmartin, Glover, Kulovany, Walus, Mayor Barnett                                                         

NAYES: None

5. Active Agenda

ORD 2022-9459  -  A. Ordinance: Proposing the Establishment of Special Service Area #12 in the Village of Downers Grove, Illinois, and Providing for a Public Hearing and Other Procedures in Connection Therewith    ORDINANCE 5932

Summary: This ordinance proposes the establishment of Special Service Area #12 in the Village of Downers Grove, Illinois, and provides for a public hearing and other procedures in connection therewith.

MOTION: To adopt AN ORDINANCE PROPOSING THE ESTBLISHMENT OF SPECIAL SERVICE AREA  #12 IN THE VILLAGE OF DOWNERS GROVE, ILLINOIS, AND PROVIDING FOR A PUBLIC HEARING  AND OTHER PROCEDURES IN CONNECTION THEREWITH, as presented ORDINANCE 5932

RESULT: Motion carried unanimously by Roll Call

MOTIONED TO APPROVE: Commissioner Sadowski-Furgitt

SECONDED BY: Commissioner Gilmartin,

AYES: Commissioners Sadowski-Fugitt, Gilmartin, Glover, Kulovany, Walus, Mayor Barnett                                                         

NAYES: None

 

ORD 2022-9464  -  B. Ordinance: Proposing the Establishment of Special Service Area #13 in the Village of Downers Grove, Illinois, and Providing for a Public Hearing and Other Procedures in Connection Therewith ORDINANCE 5933

Summary: This ordinance proposes the establishment of Special Service Area #13 in the Village of Downers Grove, Illinois, and provides for a public hearing and other procedures in connection therewith.

MOTION: To adopt AN ORDINANCE PROPOSING THE ESTBLISHMENT OF SPECIAL SERVICE AREA  #13 IN THE VILLAGE OF DOWNERS GROVE, ILLINOIS, AND PROVIDING FOR A PUBLIC HEARING  AND OTHER PROCEDURES IN CONNECTION THEREWITH, as presented ORDINANCE 5933 RESULT: Motion carried unanimously by Roll Call

MOTIONED TO APPROVE: Commissioner Sadowski-Furgitt

SECONDED BY: Commissioner Gilmartin,

AYES: Commissioners Sadowski-Fugitt, Gilmartin, Glover, Kulovany, Walus, Mayor Barnett 

NAYES: None

 

MOT 2022-9496  -  C. Motion: Direct Staff to Negotiate the Renewal of the Solid Waste Contract with Republic Services

Summary: This motion directs staff to negotiate the renewal of the Solid Waste Contract with Republic Services.

MOTION: To adopt a motion directing staff to negotiate the renewal of the Solid Waste Contract with  Republic Services, as presented

RESULT: Motion carried 4-2 by Roll Call  

MOTIONED TO APPROVE: Commissioner Gilmartin

SECONDED BY: Commissioner Glover

AYES: Commissioners Gilmartin, Glover, Walus Mayor Barnett

NAYES Commissioners Kulovany, Sadowski-Fugitt

Public Comment

David Rose, resident, spoke of disappointment in the Council's discussion regarding the solid waste contract at the 6/7/22 Village Council Meeting.  He also spoke of disappointment in the appointment of a member to the Economic Concerns Commission that has not met in some time.

Village Council Questions/Comments
 
Commissioner Gilmartin stated the motion was to work with Republic Services in ways to be better environmentally.  He said it was not the end of it and was interested to hear what Republic has to offer.  He said it did not limit them from looking for a different service provider if they don't find what Republic had to offer to be adequate.  He said the motion made at the night's meeting was to allow the staff to work with Republic Services.  He concluded by stating that Republic Services had a good reputation within the community.
 
Commissioner Walus stated that she echoed Commissioner Gilmartin's sentiments.
 
Commissioner Glover stated that he also echoed Commissioner Gilmartin's comments.  He also reiterated that Republic Services has met and exceeded the Village's expectations, so it's only fair to work with them first.  He also said that does not limit us to go out and get bids from other companies
 
Commissioner Sadowski-Fugitt said she would be voting no.  She added that she was concerned with the environmental sustainability side of it and was hoping the Village could go straight to RFP (Requests for Proposals), to hear more about any innovations that might have happened in the last 10 years.  She stated that's why she was voting no.
 
Commissioner Kulvany stated he would also be voting no.  He said after 30 years with one vendor he thought it would be a good opportunity to go out to bid to see what else is offered.  He said that this was the second public meeting regarding the solid waste contract and the public could have come to last week's meeting and commented.  He said if negotiations with Republic Services are successful there will be another meeting to approve the contract.  He concluded by stating if the Village goes out to RFP that would also be discussed at future public meetings where the public can comment.
 
Mayor Barnett said he would be voting yes.  He seconded most of what his colleagues stated.  He said meetings are videotaped and can be watched by anyone.  He said this was their second meeting on the topic and if staff felt good about a future contract with Republic Services, there would be another first reading and vote taken.  He said if negotiations did not go as planned than staff would go out for RFP.  Mayor Barnett said there were several
Council members that had significant interest in asking for significant input through the contract and the negotiation process regarding environmental improvements to our system and reducing overall waste.  He said the Council was focused on many of the things the residents and those focused on the environment would feel were important.  He said he was in support of the next step of the process.

6. First Reading

Village Manager Dave Fieldman introduced Scott Turmine, partner at Forvis, LLP to present item A.

Mr. Turmine thanked the Council and staff for allowing him and his team to conduct the audit.  He gave thanks to Village Finance Director, Robin Lahey and Assistant Director, Daiva Sheldon for their assistance with the audit.  He said during the audit they did not encounter any difficulties or disagreements.  He also said there were also journal entries that needed to be adjusted.  Mr. Turmine explained provided were five main deliverables as part of the audit including, the annual Comprehensive Financial Report, a report on the Downtown TIF, a report on the Ogden TIF,  a single audit report, and communication to the Village that summarizes the results of the audit.  He said each opinion on the audit were considered clean opinions, the best possible, and there were no instances of material weaknesses or significant deficiencies in internal controls.  He said the report included a management discussion and analysis section that provided a lot of narrative overview on the financial statements; it is a nice summary of what happened throughout the year.  He highlighted that within the Fund Financial Statements, it was important to note the position of the General Fund.  He said the fund balance was a good indicator of the health of the Village.  He said on 12/31/21, the unassigned amount in the General Fund was about $21.4M roughly 42% of the actual 2021 expenditures, which put the village at just over five months' worth of reserves.  He said there was a best practice recommendation from the Government Finance Officers Association that recommends no less than two months' worth of reserves.  He noted that with the ongoing COVID relief funding in 2021, a single audit requirement was triggered to look at federal grant program expenditures and that resulted in clean opinions. Mr. Turmine added that GASB had been very active with issuing new accounting pronouncements that affect governments and the Village was up to date on those.  No new standards had to be adopted in 2021, but there would be a new one coming in 2022 that would impact the way the Village accounts for leases.

Village Council Questions/Comments
 
Commissioner Walus thanked Mr. Turmine for his thorough presentation. 
 
Commissioner Kulovany said it was robust report. He congratulated the Finance team for their hard work year after year.  He thanked Mrs. Lahey, Deputy Village Manager Mike Baker and Village Manager Dave Fieldman make the hard things look easy.  He said that staff pays very close attention to running the Village in an honorable and financially sound way.  He said not every village is as blessed to have these results, especially through and coming out of a pandemic. 
 
Summary: An ordinance amending certain sections within Chapter 14 of the Municipal Code concerning motor vehicles and traffic including Sec 14.8;  Sec 14.36; Sec 14.37; Sec 14.50;  Sec 14.52.17; Sec 14.52.18;  Sec 14.52.20;  Sec 14.63;  Sec 14.63.1;  Sec 14.67;  Sec 14.71; Sec 14.79;  Sec 14.80;  Sec 14.80.1;  Sec 14.81;  Sec 14.85;  Sec 14.98;  Sec 14.99;  Sec 14.101.1; , Sec 14.101.4;  Sec 14.103.1;  Sec 14.103.3; , Sec 14.103.7; , Sec 14.105.08;  Sec 14.164.1
 
Andy Sikich, Public Works Director, presented Item B.  Mr. Sikich stated the proposed ordinance revisions were composed of several items, the recommendations of the Transportation and Parking Commission (TAP), the codification of temporary Village Manager approval, and some administrative updates.  The temporary Village Manager approvals included such items as a reduction in speed limits and all the way stops at Norfolk and Saratoga.  The Administrative Updates provide some consistency and format alphabetizing, correcting scrivener's errors and reflecting current field conditions.  He went through all of the TAP Commission's recommendations, which he stated were straight forward and in all cases the Commission agreed with staff recommendations. 
 
Village Council Questions/Comments
 
Commissioner Gilmartin asked aside from the one sign on Cross Street, was there anything else Mr. Sikich thought should be done to alert or warn truck drivers not to use Cross Street.
 
Mr. Sikich responded that they would add additional signage and would move the current sign up closer.
 
Commissioner Kulovany stated he thought all the proposed amendments made sense, especially those near schools.  They show the Village's commitment to keep things safe near our schools.

Summary: This motion authorizes staff to pursue traffic safety improvements on Main Street and Highland Avenue near Downers Grove North High School.

Manager Fieldman stated that Item C. involves authorizing staff to continue to pursue traffic safety improvements on    Main Street and Highland Avenue near Downers Grove North High School.  Manager Fieldman explained this has   been a multi-year effort and Mr. Sikich would provide additional details.

Mr. Sikich presented Item C.  He gave a history of the project, a summary of the draft preliminary design reports, a summary of the Public Information Meeting from May, and staff's request for Council direction to continue with the improvements and submit for approval.  He stated the improvements were initiated in the High School Pedestrian Safety Study, with a goal of improving pedestrian safety at both North and South High Schools.  He stated Sam Schwartz Consultants prepared the study and it was accepted by the Village Council in February of 2020.  He said several recommendations came from that study. Along Main Street, from Sherman to Franklin, the recommendation consisted of a reduction to one lane in each direction, protected left turn lanes, center refuge islands, curb extensions, enhanced lighting and traffic signal phasing modifications.  On Highland Avenue, between Lincoln and Grant, the recommendation was to construct chicanes.  He said subsequent to the study in 2020 staff proceeded with several of the recommendations on various trajectories and timelines with regard to the North High Main Street improvements.  He said the Village Council approved a contract with HR Green in September of 2021, which was for the preparation of a phase one engineering study. Mr. Sikich stated that in October 2021, HR Green performed updated traffic counts and prepared a traffic model and prepared a grant application for STP funding, which scored very well and on the approved funding list, and which would provide up to $1.47M of the estimated $2.1M of the construction cost.  He said the final decision should be made September; at this point it appears that funding will be received.  Mr. Sikich highlighted some key findings of the preliminary design report, which included a high number of vehicle and pedestrian crashes along Main Street, with 99 crashes in the past 5 years, including 8 involving pedestrians or bicyclists and one fatality.  He said most crashes were primarily attributed to left turn being made from inside travel lanes. He said currently the southbound lanes merge from two lanes to one at Franklin. It also found inefficient traffic signal programming due to lack of dedicated left turn lanes.  Mr. Sikich said the improvements that were going to be proposed were the change of one thru lane in each direction, with the addition of protected left turn lanes.  He said they were expecting the change would increase safety.  He said the travel times through the corridor would remain unchanged and the signals would be optimized to provide left turn arrow only when needed, dedicated bike lanes would be added between Grant and Franklin. He said the reduction in lanes would allow the bike lanes to be located within the existing road width without moving existing curves or removing parkway trees and would utilize curb extensions at Grant Street to shorten crossing distance for pedestrians and logical termination point for bike lanes.  Mr. Sikich showed the proposed intersection at Main and Grant and chicanes on Highland.  He said a Public Information Meeting was held on May 23 rd.  He said comments were collected by attendees and generally included diversion of traffic to surrounding streets, merge location proximity to Ogden Avenue, utilization of bike lanes, lighting, use of a temporary test case, and improvements on Highland Avenue.  He said HR Green analyzed the data and located the merge point south of Sherman Street.  Mr. Sikich stated options for the enhanced lighting could include enhanced LED beacon lighting at intersections.  He said staff requested Council direction to continue to pursue traffic safety improvements on Main Street and Highland Avenue near North High School. He stated after IDOT approved it, the Village would enter into a contract for final design, and the estimated start of construction would be in 2024.

Public Comment

Tom Schroeder, 4815 Forest, expressed concern with traffic that may use residential streets instead of Main Street. He stated he would like temporary measures taken to simulate the changes before actual changes are made, such as  Changing the timing of lights and the use of cones.

David Rose returned to the podium and expressed his concerns about protection for the new bike lanes.
 
Village Council Questions/Comments
 
Commissioner Kulovany asked Mr. Sikich to explain who HR Green and Sam Schwartz are and why the Village contracted them.
 
Mr. Sikich stated they were both transportation consultants.  He said Sam Schwartz was consulted to do the initial high school pedestrian safety study and HR Green was contracted for the preliminary design work, the portion that was being discussed.  
 
Commissioner Kulovany asked if there would be any benefit to those firms to falsify any data any of the modeling results.
 
Mr. Sikich answered no.
 
Commissioner Kulovany asked if he had a high confidence level in the data they supplied.
 
Mr. Sikich said he did.  He said the way the transportation world looked at those projects was to project higher traffic volumes in the future  and use use that for the basis of the design.
 
Commissioner Kulovany asked if they factored in growth and new developments.
 
Mr. Sikich answered yes.
 
Commissioner Sadowski-Fugitt stated she remembered the initial discussion with Sam Schwartz and they took a lot of the community comments and thoughtfulness to heart.  She said she was pretty confident in the plan and thought it was the right thing to do to ensure pedestrian safety of the high schools.  She said the concern was much more for the bike and pedestrian safety than it was for vehicles speeds.  She continued by stating the main focus was to make it a more walkable and bikeable space for the high school students. She said she felt very confident, based on the experts, and was in favor and looked forward to implementing it.

Commissioner Gilmartin stated the idea of using grant money to fund the project sounded like it would be covered.  He said the bike lanes were a critical piece to it and agreed the protection of the bike lanes needed to be addressed.  He said connecting the high school and downtown was a great first step.  He said he was concerned about the impact to the streets.  Commissioner Gilmartin asked if Fairview was one time four lanes and knocked down to three.
 
Manager Fieldman said they would do research on it.  He said there were significant improvements to section of Fairview in the late 90s, but would have to go back and check, but he thought it was a widening.
 
Commissioner Kulovany said it was a widening of two lanes to three, to add a turn lane.
 
Commissioner Gilmartin stated he was curious if there had been any application like this done in the Village to be able to understand what the impact would be.
 
Mr. Sikich said he was not aware of anything like that in the Village.
 
Commissioner Kulovany gave another example of the Fairview and Ogden intersection where there is a zipper merge, which is efficient and works smoothly.  He said he originally voiced concerns because it was a major arterial street and didn't understand how they would take four lanes to two lanes and where would cars go until he read the report.  He said the US Department of Transportation had studies of actual proof of improvements.  He said people would probably try other streets when they first see it, but would eventually notice things were moving well.  He said they had to rely on experts on this.  He said he attended the session at Downer's South and there was public input.  He said he would still keep an open mind, but after looking at the report and Federal Highway Administration reports, he would probably vote for it.  He said he was pleased the turn lane on Forest was not being removed.
 
Commissioner Glover asked if there was a way to limit Amazon trucks or vehicles stopping at houses from parking in bike lanes.
 
Mr. Sikich said he did not have an answer to that question. 
 
Mr. Fieldman stated that staff would look into it.
 
Commissioner Walus stated it was an incredibly in depth process.  She said she had some concerns about traffic that would typically be on Main moving to some of the residential streets.  She said she also was not entirely convinced on the chicanes being proposed on Highland.  She talked about taking away the seven parking spaces.   She said they received residential feedback that said they wanted those parking spaces kept.  She said if residents in that area wanted to weigh in, she wanted them to know their opinions would be taken into consideration.  Commissioner Walus mentioned the test run not being recommended by staff and asked if the test would be inaccurate.
 
Dave Fieldman stated it did not set up well to simulate all components because there were so many moving pieces.
 
Commissioner Kulovany said if they there were going to be studying the timing of lights, and he wanted to include northbound on Forest to eastbound on Franklin and making the northbound turn on Main Street in in the reverse.   northbound turn on Main Street.  He said he thought that was a good recommendation.  He said he would be in favor of that.   He also added that when he drove by Claremont, he noticed a car parked on top of the speed hump.

7.  Manager's Report

RES 2022-9479  -  A. Resolution: Accept the Comprehensive Annual Financial Report and Audit for the Fiscal    Year January 1, 2021 through December 31, 2021

Summary: This resolution accepts the Comprehensive Annual Financial Report and Audit for the fiscal year January 1, 2021 through December 31, 2021.

ORD 2022-9453  -  B. Ordinance: Amending Certain Sections Within Chapter 14 of the Municipal Code    Concerning Motor Vehicles and Traffic

MOT 2022-9500  -  C. Motion: Authorizing Staff to Pursue Traffic Safety Improvements on Main Street and    Highland Avenue Near Downers Grove North High School

REP 2022-9502  -  A. Report: FRSP Discussion: Design Development Plan

Deputy Village Manager Mike Baker presented the Manager's Report, which included the design development plan for the Facilities Replacement and Sustainability Project.  Mr. Baker stated he believed the development plans captured the direction given by the Village Council.  He said last November there were a number of objectives that the Council agreed to with regard to the building design, including using traditional materials such as brick, stone, and glass; allowing for environmentally sustainable features integrated into the design;  and a design that it is welcoming - that all people feel comfortable approaching and entering the building. He said this project was a shiny example of compliance with the Downtown Design Guidelines.  Mr. Baker stated that as the Zoning approval came through, there was an extensive review of how well the project complied with the design guidelines.  He said another important aspect of the project that was important and discussed over several meetings, was the environmentally sustainable features of the building and site.  Those features included strong water enhancements, green roof on 10% of roof areas, permeable papers installed on 100% of parking surfaces, bio swales, rain gardens, 80% of landscaped areas, water use reduction, efficient plumbing features, use of native plantings, and rainwater harvesting for irrigation systems.  He said there was an emphasis on increased energy performance and the use of renewable energy.  Mr. Baker stated they believed the Blackburn Civil Rights Plaza offered a unique public space with native plantings and landscaping, that included inviting informal meeting and gathering spaces.  He said the design team was still working on the unique place-making elements that would define the site and the Council could expect to see more details about those features in July.  Mr. Baker said the next steps for the project included approval of design development plans at the June 21st Village Council meeting, the final cost estimates to be presented at the July 5th meeting, with final action scheduled for the July 12th meeting  He stated if approved, the full project construction would begin on August 9th.  Mr. Baker thanked David Yandel, with FGM Architects; Nicole McElroy, with Leopardo Companies; Village Community Development Director Stan Popovich; Village Public Works Director Andy Sikich; Village Attorney Enza Petrarca; Assistant Village Attorney Dawn Didier, Finance and Director Robin Lahey and the rest of the Village staff for their help with the project.

Public Comment

David Rose returned to the podium and expressed disappointment in what he presumed was a lack of environmentally sustainable features going into the new facility.  He said he did not attribute waste reduction efforts to environmental sustainability.

Marge Earl, a former Council member, asked if they could go back to Betty Cheever's Council Chambers slide.  She expressed concerns about only having one door behind the Council dais

Sarah DiPasquale, 710 Maple Ave, asked about the landscaping that was requested and where the Village was at with discussions about it.

Mr. Baker responded that there was information in the Staff Report included in the meeting materials posted online.  He stated that staff met with Mrs. Pasquale and her neighbor to discuss buffering.  He said the proposal by the architect showed fencing higher in elevation, a line of evergreens that would grow to approximately 15 feet, and the addition of trees installed on the resident side of the fencing that could grow to a taller height.  He said the addition of the second layer of trees would require the use of easements. 

David Fieldman said with Council's direction to look into enhancing the landscape buffer, staff would sketch up some ideas for next week's meeting.  Manager Fieldman received the direction to do so.

Village Council Questions/Comments

Commissioner Kulovany stated one of the challenges was the significant incline in the lots.  He said if the residents would allow the use of the easements, there were a lot of plants that could be planted that grow rapidly.  He gave examples of Arborvitae, White Pines, and Douglas Fir that look really nice. Commissioner Kulovany also gave an example of an expansion at Compass Church and what was provided as buffering for the neighbors that backed to the property.  He also mentioned the Village cannot sacrifice square footage of the parking lot because there must be enough space for fire engines to be able to make a complete turn.  Commissioner Kulovany said he would be in favor of that kind of approach.

Sarah Pasquale stated they would be open to assessing their properties in order to have the arborvitae, the fence, and additional pine trees.  She also asked about whether the lights were still under review.

Mr. Baker responded yes. 

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