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City Council Meeting Minutes--May 11, 2020

MINUTES OF THE REGULAR MEETING OF THE STAUNTON CITY COUNCIL, HELD IN THE PUBLIC WORKS BUILDING, 914 NORTH EASTON ST., STAUNTON, ILLINOIS ON MONDAY, MAY 11, 2020

I. CALL TO ORDER:

Mayor Craig Neuhaus called the Staunton City Council Meeting to order at 7:00 P.M. on Monday, May 11, 2020

II. PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE:

Mayor Craig Neuhaus led the Pledge Allegiance to the Flag.

III. ROLL CALL:

City Clerk Stiegemeier called roll with the following persons:

ATTENDING: Aldermen Rick Johnson and Ailee Taylor, Mayor Craig Neuhaus, City Clerk Dennis Stiegemeier and Public Works Director Mike Kuethe.

ELECTRONIC ATTENDANCE: Aldermen Maria Bodner, Brooke Wallace, Randy Hanks, Ryan Machota, Chad Plenske, Jeff Scanzoni, City Treasurer Cindy Pirok, City Attorney Phil Lading and Police Chief Jeff Doerr.

The Open Meetings Act requires that a quorum of members of the public body by physically present at the meeting location and allows for limited circumstances in which remote access is acceptable. However, Executive Order 2020-07, issued by Governor Pritzker on March 16, 2020, suspends the in-person presence requirements at this time, due to the COVID-19 Virus outbreak, and eliminates the limitation on remote access at this time.

IV. CONSENT AGENDA

Johnson moved, seconded by Taylor to approve Consent Agenda with the following items:

Minutes

Regular Meeting – 04/27/2020

Collector’s Report

Staunton Police Department (Finger Printing)--$10.00

Madison Communications (Franchise Fee)--$3,862.61

Staunton Super 8 Motel (Hotel/Motel Tax)--$1,734.24

State of Illinois (Sales Tax)--$47,592.73

Applications

None

Monthly Reports

Distributed by Bookkeeper

Claims

April 30, 2020

May 11, 2020

Business Licenses Issued

None

Roll Call Vote

AYES: Wallace, Johnson, Hanks, Machota, Plenske, Taylor, Scanzoni, Bodner.

NAYS: None.

ABSENT: None.

Motion declared carried.

V. GUESTS

Pearl Essence business owner Vicki Renner submitted a letter which she had asked to be read at the City Council meeting regarding businesses opening up in Staunton. A copy of the entire letter is attached to the meeting minutes

VI. CORRESPONDENCE

Received a letter of resignation from part time police dispatcher Brian Kosowski, dated May 4, 2020

VII. TREASURER’S REPORT

Nothing to report.

VIII. CITY CLERK’S REPORT

City Hall Office will be closed on Monday, May 25, 2020 for the Memorial Day Holiday. All public works employees, except one water treatment plant employee, will be off that day as well.

Due to the Memorial Day Holiday, the next regularly scheduled meeting of the City

Council will be on Tuesday, May 26, 2020 at 7:00 P.M.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the VFW Post #1241 will not be hosting their annual Memorial Day ceremonies in the City of Staunton.

IX. COMMITTEE REPORTS

PUBLIC HEALTH & SAFETY -

Motion by Taylor, seconded by Johnson to pay Invoice #255282 to Leads Online for Total Track Investigation System Service Package in the amount of $1,335.00. This is for service dates May 1, 2020 through April 30, 2021. At Roll Call Vote – Ayes: Johnson, Hanks, Machota, Plenske, Taylor, Scanzoni, Bodner, Wallace. Nayes: None. Absent: None. Motion carried.

PARK & CIVIC IMPROVEMENT –

Nothing to report.

FINANCE–

Motion by Taylor, seconded by Hanks to pay Invoice #866 to Ink Forge, LLC for boat stickers in the amount of $1,020.00. This is for 1,500 boat/trailer stickers and will last several years. At Roll Call Vote – Ayes: Hanks, Machota, Plenske, Taylor, Scanzoni, Bodner, Wallace, Johnson. Nayes: None. Absent: None. Motion carried.

Motion by Taylor, seconded by Bodner, to accept low bid from Greentrac, LLC and award the project, subject to Contract document execution by the Contractor for demolition and debris removal of the following Main Street buildings: 125 E. Main, 125B E. Main, 127 E. Main, 129 E. Main, 200 E. Main, 202 E. Main and 208 E. Main, with the bid amount being $91,550.00. Attorney Lading has prepared the Contract and it has been sent on to the Contractor. At Roll Call – Ayes: Machota, Plenske, Taylor, Scanzoni, Bodner, Wallace, Hanks. Nayes: Johnson. Absent: None. Motion carried 7 Ayes; 1 Naye.

WATER-

Nothing to report.

STREET / SEWER

Nothing to report.

PUBLIC GROUNDS-

Nothing to report.

TOURISM –

Nothing to report.

PERSONNEL –

Nothing to report.

ANNEXATION –

Nothing to report.

SPECIAL COMMITTEES –

Nothing to report.

JUDICIARY—

Prior to the next four motions being made for re-appointments, a discussion was held

regarding holding a meeting to complete performance reviews on the employees.

A performance review sheet had been prepared last year, but was never voted on to

accept the document and no further action had been taken to implement the reviews.

After the discussion, the following motions were made.

Motion by Wallace, seconded by Plenske to table Resolution #2020-14 Re-

Appointing Jeff Doerr As Chief Of Police For The City Of Staunton, Illinois. At Roll

Call Vote – Ayes: Wallace, Hanks, Plenske. Nayes: Bodner, Johnson, Machota,

Scanzoni. Abstain: Taylor. Absent: None. Motion failed with 3 Aye votes and 4

Naye votes.

Chief Doerr

Prior to this motion a question was posed “What about the Chief?” Alderman Johnson stated he thought the Chief was doing an excellent job especially considering over the past few years having been under staffed and the countless personal hours he has sacrificed including Holidays, weekends and family events to ensure the City of Staunton had police coverage.

Motion by Taylor, seconded by Johnson to approve Resolution #2020-14 Re-Appointing Jeff Doerr As Chief Of Police For The City Of Staunton, Illinois. At Roll Call Vote – Ayes: Taylor, Scanzoni, Bodner, Wallace, Johnson, Hanks, Machota, Plenske. Nayes: None. Absent: None. Motion carried.

Motion by Wallace, seconded by Plenske to tabe Resolution #2020-15 Re-Appointing Dennis Stiegemeier As City Collector For The City Of Staunton, Illinois. At Roll Call Vote – Ayes: Wallace, Hanks, Plenske. Nayes: Bodner, Johnson, Machota, Scanzoni. Abstain: Taylor. Absent: None. Motion failed with 3 Aye votes and 4 Naye votes.

Motion by Taylor, seconded by Bodner to approve Resolution #2020-15 Re-Appointing Dennis Stiegemeier As City Collector For The City Of Staunton, Illinois. At Roll Call Vote – Ayes: Bodner, Wallace, Johnson, Hanks, Machota, Plenske, Taylor, Scanzoni. Nayes: None. Absent: None. Motion carried.

Motion by Wallace, seconded by Hanks, to table Resolution #2020-16 Re-Appointing Philip J. Lading As City Attorney For The City Of Staunton, Illinois. Concerns were expressed with costs incurred with the law firm and they were too expensive for the City of Staunton. At Roll Call Vote – Ayes: Wallace, Hanks, Plenske. Nayes: Bodner, Johnson, Machota, Scanzoni. Abstain: Taylor. Absent: None. Motion failed with 3 Aye votes and 4 Naye votes.

Phil Ladding

In response to concerns regarding the costs of Phoenix Sandberg’s representing the City of Staunton through Phillip Ladding’s appointment, Alderman Johnson commented on this issue pointing out the issue has been discussed on numerous occasions over the past several years including during meetings for the 2020/2021 budget. Johnsons stated opinion is that the City as a whole has benefited more than once by having the firm of Sandberg Phoenix representing the City’s interests. On one occasion a Sexual Discrimination lawsuit filed with the EEOC against the City was passed on to an expert in this field by Sandberg Phoenix. The result was having the case dismissed without merit prior to any trial or hearing.

Johnson stated over the years several aldermen have brought up the issue of the cost associated with having Phoenix Sandberg on retainer for the City. He pointed out over the years there have been at least three studies into the actual costs per hour. He stated in the latest one it worked out to about $150 an hour or less, he could not remember the exact numbers without pulling it out of the archives, but feels the City is getting more than its dollars worth from the representation led by Phillip Ladding.

Motion by Taylor, seconded by Johnson to approve Resolution #2020-16 Re-Appointing Philip J. Lading As City Attorney For The City Of Staunton, Illinois. At Roll Call Vote – Ayes: Johnson, Machota, Taylor, Scanzoni, Bodner. Nayes: Wallace, Hanks, Plenske. Absent: None. Motion carried 5 Ayes and 3 Nayes.

Motion by Wallace, seconded by Hanks to table Resolution #2020-17 Re-Appointing Mike Kuethe As Director Of Public Works For The City Of Staunton, Illinois. At Roll Call Vote – Ayes: Wallace, Hanks, Plenske. Nayes: Bodner, Johnson, Machota, Scanzoni. Abstain: Taylor. Absent: None. Motion failed with 3 Aye votes and 4 Naye votes.

Mike Kuethe

Prior to this motion several aldermen expressed concerns regarding the appointment. As the discussion progressed, Alderman Johnson cited Roberts Rules of Order stating the issue is allowed to pass around the table twice before being put to a vote and called for the vote to proceed without delay.

Motion by Taylor, seconded by Johnson to approve Resolution #2020-17 Re-Appointing Mike Kuethe As Director Of Public Works For The City Of Staunton, Illinois. At Roll Call Vote – Ayes: Bodner, Johnson, Machota, Plenske, Taylor, Scanzoni. Nayes: Wallace, Hanks. Absent: None. Motion carried 6 Ayes and 2 Nayes.

Motion by Taylor, seconded by Wallace to approve Resolution #2020-18 Re-Appointing Gina Verticchio To The Position Of Zoning Hearing Officer For The City Of Staunton, Illinois. At Roll Call Vote – Ayes: Wallace, Johnson, Machota, Plenske, Taylor, Scanzoni, Bodner. Nayes: Hanks. Absent: None. Motion carried 7 Ayes and 1 Naye.

Motion by Taylor, seconded by Johnson to approve Resolution #2020-19 A Resolution Adopting An Amended Policy Providing For Economic Development Funding Assistance For The City Of Staunton’s Tax Increment Financing Districts And Approving The Amended Downtown TIF Grant Program Application Form. At Roll Call Vote – Ayes: Johnson, Hanks, Machota, Plenske, Taylor, Scanzoni, Bodner, Wallace. Nayes: None. Absent: None. Motion carried.

Motion by Taylor, seconded by Hanks to approve Resolution #2020-20 A Resolution Authorizing The Execution Of The Redevelopment Agreement With JK Redevelopment Properties, LLC. At Roll Call Vote – Ayes: Hanks, Machota, Plenske, Taylor, Scanzoni, Bodner, Wallace, Johnson. Nayes: None. Absent: None. Motion carried.

X. UNFINISHED BUSINESS—

Nothing to report.

XI. NEW BUSINESS-

A discussion was held regarding the Executive Order from Governor Pritzker and the State of Illinois concerning parks and businesses opening up. Currently, the order stands that only essential businesses can be open, and they are still required to maintain social distancing and masks are to be worn when inside stores that are allowed to be open. Walking, hiking and biking are allowed at parks. The Staunton Baseball/Softball League has decided to cancel their season, but the SWIBL has stated that as of now, they will begin to have practices on June 1, however, this is all susceptible to change. Decisions will also need to be made in the near future regarding events to be held in the City of Staunton.

Alderman Bodner has been contact by Staunton Public Library Director, asking to place a free Little Library in back of the library near the bike rack. The Little Library has been built by the MAC, and they have also volunteered to set it up for the Public Library. All Council Members felt it was a good idea, and the installation will be coordinated with Public Works Director Kuethe.

XII. EXECUTIVE SESSION—

No Executive Session was held.

XIII. MOTIONS FROM EXECUTIVE SESSION –

.

No motions were made from Executive Session.

XIV. ADJOURNMENT

With no further business to discuss, Councilmember Taylor seconded by Councilmember Bodner to adjourn at 8:11 P.M. All present voting aye, motion carried.

Prepared by:

Dennis K. Stiegemeier, City Clerk

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