City Considered For ApartmentsDecember 18, 2017
At their December meeting, Mayor Steve Swanson told the council that the city has been approached by a developer from the Cottage Hill Development Company who is interested in constructing an apartment building for elderly residents. The mayor said he showed the representative a few possible locations around the city. The developer said Prophetstown is one of the finalists for consideration of the project along with Galesburg. The details will not be known until the company gets financing approved, but it was suggested that the building would be one or two stories and contain approximately 10 units.
Mike Mudge of Rock River Energy proposed to the Council that they pass a resolution that would allow the city to join with other small towns and townships when negotiating electrical aggregation costs. Recently the Village of Lyndon used the service to set its electrical rates. Rock River does the negotiating and then sets up a teleconference with the municipalities involved to discuss the negotiated prices. The city currently uses Rock River Energy to negotiated prices for power used for streetlights and the water and sewer operations. The Council will take the request under advisement.
Alderman Daryl Drennen said he had been asked by several citizens about the possible increase in water fees. The mayor said that the percentage of increase cannot be determined until the engineering firm for the new water plant gathers information on costs. Swanson thought the increase would be 3 to 5% on the water portion of the city services bills. No decision was made
Council agreed to purchase lighted school zone signs to be placed in front of the Prophetstown Elementary and the PLT Middle School at a cost of approximately $8,500. The city had previously received $5,000 from the Moore Foundation to use toward the purchase. Signs will be on timers and active only during school hours. The purchase was approved.
The Council unanimously approved the 2017-2018 property tax levy.
Christmas bonuses for city employees were raised to $150 for full-time employees and $75 for part-time employees.
It was announced that Asplundh Tree Service has received a grant from ComEd to remove ash trees, dead or alive, that are close to power lines and are located between city sidewalks and the street. Residents are encouraged to contact their Council representatives if they have trees that meet criteria for removal.
Saying “I’ve never been an advocate for the city getting into the real estate business,” Mayor Swanson went on to say he would like the Council to consider purchasing one of the vacant buildings on Main street. Swanson said several businesses have inquired about the space, but have been deterred by high rent. He said the city would be able to give a business a reasonable payment and still cover the city’s cost. He mentioned that the city’s purchase of the building where Hartig Drug is located has worked out very well. No action was taken.
Tara Pyse, Executive Director of Prophetstown Main Street, told the Council that there would be some changes made to the way the annual Lighted Christmas Parade is lined up next year, that will allow fewer streets to be closed.
The next scheduled Council meeting is Tuesday, January 9 at 7:00 p.m.