August 16, 2022

1. Call to Order

Mayor Barnett 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. He explained the protocol for the meeting and the guidelines to submit public comment.

2. Roll Call

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

Council Attendance (Not Present): Commissioner Hosé

Non-Voting: Village Manager Dave Fieldman, Village Attorney Enza Petrarca, and Village Clerk Rosa Berardi

3.  Minutes of Council Meetings

MIN 2022-9537 -  A. Minutes: Village Council Meeting Minutes - August 9, 2022

Summary: Village Council Meeting Minutes -August 9, 2022

MOTION: To adopt the meeting minutes of the August 9, 2022 meeting, as presented.

RESULT: Motion carried unanimously by voice vote.

MOTIONED TO APPROVE: Commissioner Walus

SECONDED BY: Commissioner Sadowski-Fugitt

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


4. Public Hearings

PUB 2022-9503  -  A. Public Hearing: Special Service Area #12 at 6000 - 6014 Fairview Avenue, Fairview Ridge  Subdivision

Mayor Barnett called the public hearing to order at 7:03 p.m.

Mayor Barnett explained that the Public Hearing was to consider the formation of Special Service Area #12 in the Fairview Ridge Subdivision and the levying of taxes.  He said the notice of hearing was published in the Daily Herald newspaper on July 29. 2022 and was a part of the proceedings.  Mayor Barnett also summarized the procedure for the public hearing.

Community Development Director, Stan Popovich, explained the public hearing was for Special Service Area #12, on the west side of Fairview Avenue.  He said it was a single lot proposed to be divided into seven lots for stormwater retention.  Mr. Popovich stated that the Home Owners Association (HOA) was responsible for maintaining the storm water detention system, but the SSA was put in place in case the HOA defaulted.

Mayor Barnett clarified there was not a plan to levy taxes unless there was a situation that would cause them to step in and do maintenance.  Mr. Popovich echoed that statement.

Mayor Barnett adjourned the Public Hearing at 7:06 p.m.

PUB 2022-9504  -  B. Public Hearing: Special Service Area #13 at 7135 Dunham Road, the Kapovich Subdivision

Mayor Barnett called the public hearing to order at 7:06 p.m.

Mayor Barnett explained the second Public Hearing was to consider the formation of Special Service Area #13 in the Kapovich Subdivision and the levying of taxes.  He stated the notice of hearing was published in the Daily Herald Newspaper on July 29, 2022, and the certification of publication was made part of the proceedings.  Mayor Barnett summarized the procedure for the Public Hearing.

Community Development Director, Stan Popovich, explained the Public Hearing concerned Special Service Area #13, located on the east side of Dunham Road.  He said the property was a single lot, approved to be a subdivision consisting of six lots and a lot for a stormwater management system.  He again stated that the HOA was responsible to maintain the stormwater detention systems.  This SSA was also put into place in case the HOA defaulted.

Mayor Barnett adjourned the Public Hearing at 7:08 p.m. 

5. Consent Agenda

COR 2022-9539  -  A. Claims Ordinance: No. 6469, Payroll - July 29, 2022

Summary: No. 6469, Payroll - July 29, 2022

BIL 2022-9540  -  B. Bills Payable: No. 6682 - August 16, 2022

Summary: No. 6682 - August 16, 2022

MIN 2022-9575  -  C. Minutes: Note Receipt of Boards and Commissions Meeting Minutes  Summary: Note Receipt of Boards and Commissions Meeting Minutes: Fire Pension Board, 2-17-22; Historic  Preservation and Design Review Board, 3-16-22; Plan Commission, 6-6-22.

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

RESULT: Motion carried unanimously by voice vote.

MOTIONED TO APPROVE: Commissioner Walus

SECONDED BY: Commissioner Sadowski-Fugitt

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


6.  Active Agenda

ORD 2022-9546  -  A. Ordinance: Authorizing a Special Use for 621 Ogden Avenue to Permit A Drive-Through ORDINANCE 5941

Summary: This ordinance authorizes a special use for 621 Ogden Avenue to permit a drive-through.


MOTIONED TO APPROVE: Commissioner Walus

SECONDED BY: Commissioner Sadowski-Fugitt

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


RES 2022-9562  -  B. Resolution: Approve a Three-Year Extension and Amendment to the Agreement with Allied    Waste Services of North America, LLC for Solid Waste Removal Services Road RESOLUTION 2022-67

Summary: This resolution approves an extension and amendment to the three-year contract for solid waste removal.


Mayor Barnett explained that this item was a big deal and would affect every resident of Downers Grove.  He said staff worked hard to put together a program with Republic Services and that they thought was a good value.  The Mayor said there were components of the contract they may wish were a little different, but overall, they felt that they landed at a good spot and are happy to go forward with it.


MOTIONED TO APPROVE: Commissioner Walus

SECONDED BY: Commissioner Sadowski-Fugitt

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


7. First Reading

ORD 2022-9573  -  A. Ordinance: Authorizing the Extension of a Special Use to Permit a Multi-Tenant Retail  Building with Drive-Through at 931 and 935 Ogden Avenue to January 13, 2023

Community Development Director Stan Popovich used a PowerPoint presentation to present this item.
Mr. Popovich discussed the Special Use extension request for 931 and 935 Ogden Avenue.  He said the property received Village Council approval on July 13, 2021, for the construction of a multi-tenant commercial building with a request for drive-thru use.  He stated the petitioner was currently pursuing permits but had not been secured yet, so they requested a six-month extension to complete the permitting process.


Commissioner Kulovany stated he thought it was a common and reasonable request.
Commissioner Gilmartin asked if all of the developments that require a drive-thru require a special use permit.  Mr. Popovich answered yes.

8. Attorney's Report

Pursuant to Section 2.5 of the Downers Grove Municipal Code, Village Attorney Enza Petrarca presented the    following for  Council consideration:

  1.  An ordinance authorizing the extension of a special use to permit a multi-tenant retail building with drive-through  at 931 and 935 Ogden Avenue to January 13, 2023.

9. Public Comment

George Swimmer, resident and member of the DuPage Railroad Safety Council, discussed the differences between the Metra UP line and the BNSF lines.  He stated that said the Metra UP line was much safer than the BNSF line, because it had recognizable fencing and a warning system.  He further stated that he had taken his concerns to the Illinois Commerce Commission and had conversations with Metra and the BNFS line, but had not seen any results.  Mr. Swimmer asked that the Council make an effort to have a more protective operation in place for the Metra train system and distributed a copy of the Federal Railroad Administration report for the Council to review.

10. Mayor's Report

RES 2022-68 - A. Resolution: Appointing and Reappointing Members to Boards and Commissions RESOLUTION 2022-68

  • Environmental Concerns Commission: Reappoint Melissa Ellis, Lisa Dantoft, and Ken Kuchar to three-year terms expiring August 31, 2025.
  • Human Services Commission: Reappoint Paul Drabik and Mark Skerjan to three-year terms expiring August 31, 2025.
  • Liquor Commission: Reappoint Rob Johnson to a three-year term expiring August 31, 2025
  • Plan Commission: Reappoint Kal Patel, Matthew Dmytryszyn, Michael Mauer, and Michael Boyle to three-year terms expiring August 31, 2025.
  • Stormwater and Flood Plain Oversight Committee: Reappoint Kelly Borman and Joseph Iovenelli to three-year terms expiring August 31, 2025.
  • Transportation and Parking Commission: Reappoint Matthew Novak and Jeremy Shiliga to three-year terms expiring on August 31, 2025. Reappoint Timothy Carter, as Chair, to a three-year term expiring August 31, 2025.
  • Zoning Board of Appeals: Reappoint Jeanne Eberhardt to a three-year term expiring August 31, 2025.
  • Appoint Commissioner Chris Gilmartin as an Executive Board Member of the Economic Development Corporation.


Village Clerk Rosa Berardi read the following reappointments to Village Boards and Commissions:


Mayor Barnett explained he had been trying to pose a term limit to allow more opportunities for people to be    involved in their government.  The people that were reappointed were relatively new and had done a good job during    their first term. He said in September there would be new appointments made, allowing new members  to help in their community. 

Commissioner Kulovany stated that the members of the Plan Commission have a high learning curve. He further    stated that Plan Commission cases are typically complicated and the members need to understand zoning, so having   previous case experience serves Downers Grove well.  Commission Kulovany continued by stating that members    typically attended APA training and added that having the experienced members operating alongside new members   is worthwhile. 


MOTIONED TO APPROVE: Commissioner Walus

SECONDED BY: Commissioner Sadowski-Fugitt

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


11.  Council Member Reports

Commissioner Sadowski-Fugitt stated that even though there were only a few slots left for the Grove Foundation's annual golf outing on September 10th, there were also opportunities to donate or be a sponsor.
Commissioner Gilmartin asked the residents to be cognizant of kids walking to school when pulling out of driveways and coming up to intersections during school arrival and departure times.  He also wished all attending  District 99 schools good luck as they started the new school year.
Mayor Barnett suggested checking out the Grove Foundation's website.  He said the foundation has done a variety of work in the community, mostly with kids and centered on education. The Mayor stated that topics residents typically complain most to the Council about are stormwater and traffic. He said he wanted to stress what Commissioner Gilmartin said and also reminded everyone to be extra aware of their surroundings when driving as school starts.
 Mayor Barnett called for a five minute recess at 7:27 p.m. before reconvening in the Committee Room for the Manager's Report. He invited those in attendance to join.

12.  Manager's Report

The meeting was reconvened in the Committee Room.  Mayor Barnett introduced Village Manager Dave   
Manager Fieldman stated it was the third meeting of the Long Range Plan (LRP) update.  He reviewed the Priority Action Items (PAI) set by the Council in the summer of 2021 and said this was the opportunity to make changes to the items if the Council so desired.  Manager Fieldman requested that staff have the opportunity to review and discuss any changes the Council made to the items and report back at the following Village Council meeting on September 6th.  He said 9 of the 10 existing items were proceeding according to the work plan, with two of the largest items/projects being the Facilities Project, also known as the Civic Center Project, and the replacement of the ERP system.  He said four items were completed, five were in progress and on schedule, and one item was tabled by the Council in late 2021.  He stated that there was a report included in the agenda materials that provided more information on each of the items.  Manager Fieldman said the Council members were given a verbal overview of the projects on phone calls that took place the day before the meeting. He also shared a chart that showed the timeline of the PAI from mid-2021 through mid-2023.  He further stated that the Civic Center project and the ERP project would continue through 2024.   

Mayor Barnett explained this was a round table discussion and he wanted the Council to decide:

  1. If there were pieces of the current plan that they did not want to continue.
  2. If there were any priority action items that they wanted to add.

If there were any adjustments to the current items they wanted to make.  
Commissioner Sadowski-Fugitt asked that consideration be given to affordable housing when discussions of the sale of Village land takes place during the Civic Center Project.  She said there would be numerous benefits to the community and referenced a study that stated everyone did better when opposite ends of the socioeconomic spectrum interacted with each other. Commissioner Sadowski-Fugitt stated she had spoken to people that worked for employers in the Village or owned downtown businesses and many stated they couldn't afford to live in the Village because of the high cost to rent or to purchase a home.  She also spoke of having had conversations with people that are retired, have a fixed income, and struggle to keep up with the cost to rent within the Village.  Commissioner Sadowski-Fugitt said she knew this issue could not be tackled now, but wanted it to be kept in mind when the sale of Village property was discussed in the future.
Manager Fieldman stated that with the timeline of the sale of the land, it would be the next Village Council that will consider the type of request for proposal that would go out for that parcel.  That process is expected to start in May of 2023.
Commissioner Kulovany stated he wanted to consider an amendment to the Stormwater Ordinance to allow for tree perseveration.  He discussed the process developers would have to go through before clear-cutting a lot. He said this would piggyback onto the request Commissioner Sadowski-Fugitt made earlier in the year and the report that staff put together. Commissioner Kulovany said he was not sure if this would rise to a PAI level, since it had come to Council originally in 2005 and a lot of work had already been done on it since then.  Commissioner Kulovany said this would require applying a new approach to the work that had already been completed.
Commissioner Sadowski-Fugitt stated she agreed with Commissioner Kulovany.  She added that the aspect of public awareness would be a huge benefit to the Village, as she knew of situations where border trees could have been protected if there were a survey and proper planning.  Commissioner Saodwski-Fugitt also stated that on the Longfellow property some trees were saved because of a voluntary tree survey that was completed before the redevelopment started.  
Commissioner Gilmartin stated he also agreed and thought it was important.  He also said he was not sure if it should be a PAI since the work had already been done and it wouldn't take a long time to finish. He said border and boundary trees definitely should be more of a focus and that residents should have a voice in what happens to their boundary or border trees.
Commissioner Walus spoke about a situation where her neighbor lost trees that were behind their property and now had a clear view of a busy street.  She said because of that, she now understands the process that a developer needs to go through when it comes to new developments. She said she thought that staff had what was needed to make something happen with this topic.
Commissioner Glover disagreed.  He said they just talked about how expensive it was to live in the Village and if this was put into action, it would add more expenses for those looking to develop within the community.  He continued and said he was not a big fan of adding red tape to the process developers and people trying to invest in the community had to go through.  He said he would like to see more trees saved but suggested something along the lines of planting a new tree for every tree that was taken down.
Mayor Barnett expressed he wanted to add the item to the list of items to and get additional information on at the September meeting.  After that the Council could decide if the item should be put on the PAI list.
Commissioner Kulovany commented on Commissioner Sadowski-Fugitt's point about affordable housing.  He said this had been an issue in Downers Grove for some time.  He said he thought it would be worthwhile to have staff review the work that the Affordable Ad Hoc Committee did back in 2007. 
Mayor Barnett said the purpose of the meeting was to find topics that the Council wanted to work with over the next seven months.  He said it was an interesting subject, but he felt it was something he wanted to get into when there was talk about selling the parcel.
Commissioner Walus said that she thought Commissioner Sadowski-Fugitt mentioned it for the future.  Commissioner Sadowski-Fugitt concurred.
Commissioner Kulovany suggested the idea of moving Fleet Maintenance to a different location - perhaps to a regional type facility.  He suggested getting in contact with other units of government to see if they would be willing to combine locations.  He suggested utilizing space that is owned by the State between Finley and 355; at present, there are State police cars stored there.  Commissioner Kulovany said he thought a location like that would be better because residents would not be disturbed by noise nor would they have a view of the fleet maintenance garages.
Commissioner Gilmartin stated he was interested in visiting the concept of complete streets.  He said while he commended staff on their efforts to add components of complete streets on some projects, he believed they were behind in their efforts as a Village to move toward making the Village more accessible and pedestrian friendly.  He said he still felt as he did when bringing the topic up last year.  He said they had an obligation as a community to work toward that.  Commissioner Gilmartin said the Council had already shown support for environmentally conscious efforts which were demonstrated in the green-based initiatives incorporated in the Facilities Project.  He would like to further those efforts by building more non-motorized environmentally friendly components in the streets and sidewalks of the Village.  He defined complete streets as making things more traversable for non-motorized transportation. He contended that they had the opportunity to leverage outside consults, as they did with other projects, to take on some of the heavy lifting. He said one-third of the population in the Village did not drive and bicycle sales had gone up 20%.  Complete streets would connect those residents to various economic hubs within the Village.  Commissioner Gilmartin added that there were many advantages to making the Village a more walkable and bikeable town such as making it safer around schools and it would slow traffic down.  He said the Village has a tight grid system which would make it hard for staff and the Council to be able to visualize what components are needed.  He requested using outside resources to help provide some possibilities and then the Council would be able to decide from there.  
Commissioner Kulovany talked about the correlation between wide streets and speeding.  He said one way to help was by putting in bike lanes or sharrows.  He gave a few examples.  Commissioner Kulovany added that it would also be good for commuters to be able to ride their bikes to the train. 
Commissioner Sadowski-Fugitt said she was interested and wanted more information on how and what it would take timewise or to budget to hire a consultant that could provide data on the roads that could be utilized for the idea of complete streets. 
Commissioner Walus dittoed Commissioner Sadowski-Fugitt's comment.
Commissioner Kulovany also said he would like to see what Chicagoland suburban communities had adopted it.  The Council informed him that staff already had that information available.
Commissioner Sadowski-Fugitt urged the Council to take a look at semi-automatic weapons and high-capacity magazine restrictions like Naperville had done.  She stated that of the mass shootings that happened in the US between 1982 and July 2022, there were 87 that involved weapons that were obtained legally. She said when those weapons are used they resulted in far more deaths and injuries.  She continued by stating that the deadliest mass shooting incidents in the US always involved a semi-automatic assault weapon or high-capacity magazines, including the Highland Park shooting. Commissioner Sadowski-Fugitt expressed that if they could prevent even one mass shooting or stop one person from illegally obtaining a gun that would cause panic and bloodshed, it would be valuable and worth it.  Commissioner Sadowski-Fugitt stated there was no reason to continue to do nothing; mental illness existed all over the world. She said she did not want to restrict anyone's right to a firearm for the protection of their family or to go hunting but felt the Council had an obligation as elected officials to do something about high-powered weapons.  She said that as elected officials if they did not step up and take action, bloodshed and deaths were going to be on their hands.  She suggested prohibiting the sale of semi-assault rifles and high-capacity magazines in Downers Grove and potentially an ordinance stating that if the State ever put a law into effect allowing municipalities to ban the possession of these weapons, she would be interested in that as well. 
Commissioner Gilmartin said he supported the effort 100% and thanked Commissioner Sadowski-Fugitt for raising it.  He said they had an obligation to do something, and even though their reach as a village government was relatively limited, if they could prevent the sale of any semi-automatic weapons that could be used in one of those attacks, he was 100% behind it.  He said that he too would be behind backing any laws the State may put into effect banning those weapons.  Commissioner Gilmartin said it was an opportunity for the Village to demonstrate what they stood for.  He also gave a shout-out to Naperville for taking the first step as it has helped open the door for other municipalities to take a look at this.
Commissioner Walus said that she agreed with her colleagues.  She stated she had asked some police officers how they felt about the issue, and they said it was long overdue.  She thanked Commissioner Sadowski-Fugitt for bringing it forward.
Commissioner Kulovany asked if it would also encompass the FOID cards and regulations.  
Manager Fieldman said staff provided Council with information about the current state of Illinois FOID card regulations and revocation processes and the Police Department's role in assisting in certain cases and certain parts of revocation.  He said he hadn't heard of any proposed changes to the FOID card regulations; those changes were to take place per State law and the Council would not act on them.
Commissioner Gilmartin stated that when using the word revocation, he wanted to make it clear that the Council is not looking to touch the rights of private ownership.   The Commissioners concurred. 
Manager Fieldman recapped that the item brought forth was only related to the prohibition of the sale of semi-automatic weapons and large-scale capacity magazines - similar to Naperville's draft ordinance- and the potential to ban possession of those weapons when the State law allows for it.  The Commissioners concurred.
Commissioner Kulovany asked if there were any gun shops in town that sold those types of weapons.
Manager Fieldman said staff had to do more research, but he believed there was a retailer in town that sold primarily to law enforcement personnel.  He said staff would double check what they sell and to whom they sold.
Commissioner Glover stated that he supported Commissioner Gilmartin's complete streets idea and would like to see what was possible and work toward a long term vision.  He also spoke of video gaming, stating that since the item was tabled and a vote was never taken, it should be removed the PAI list.  He added that he would like to see information regarding gambling at fraternal organizations and questioned if the Village would come up with a plan to allow video gaming for those organizations just as the State had.
Manager Fieldman confirmed that the item of video gaming should actually remain on the list, but be listed as amended rather than tabled.  Commissioner Glover concurred.  
Manager Fieldman also recapped a phone call he had with Commissioner Glover where the Commissioner expressed he felt there would be an opportunity for the Village to capture additional revenue if the three fraternal organizations were allowed to operate video gaming under the State exemption.    
Commissioner Kulovany asked for confirmation that as of July 1st fraternal organizations were allowed to have video gaming per the Sate's exemption.  Attorney Petrarca said yes.  The Commissioner then asked if the Village was allowed to regulate and tax video gaming.  Attorney Petrarca said potentially. 
Manager Fieldman said that the conversation would not begin until after staff did the research as it relates to fraternal organizations. 
Commissioner Kulovany then said he supported the video gaming item as an amendment and not as a tabled item.
Commissioner Glover stated that a resident reached out about trying to open a business in the Fairview corridor which would potentially require them to make zoning changes.  He said it was a key focus area outlined in the Comprehensive Plan.
Manager Fieldman stated the area in the Comprehensive Plan was referred to as the Fairview sub-area plan.  Further stating that there were several recommendations in the Comp Plan that spoke about changing zoning and allowing for different land uses for redevelopment.  
Commissioner Glover said that he believed the area was currently zoned for light manufacturing, which he did not believe was relevant in today's economy.  He further stated that he believed the Village could spur redevelopment and investment in that area if the zoning were changed, as it was in the downtown district, and it could be used as an extension of the downtown area.

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