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Where the Rails Cross the River



From the Desk of the Mayor

 September 15, 2017

 Our last City Council meeting was an interesting one….

 About six weeks ago, one of the two Fourth Ward Aldermen notified me by email that she was resigning from the Council. After repeated requests that she submit the required official Letter of Resignation, from which we didn’t receive a response, we had to move forward with the action of a Council vote to dismiss her due to “abandonment of an elected position”. The next step is for me to find a qualified candidate from the Fourth Ward that would be willing to fulfill the rest of her term and then present that person to the Council in hopes of obtaining the concurrence of the Council. If you know of anyone, please let me know; I hope to have an appointee by our next Council Meeting on September 25th.

 At the same Council Meeting, I made the surprising announcement that our City Fire Chief, Mike Denzer, was resigning due to family and work obligations. I only learned of Mike’s resignation on the day of the Council Meeting. The Council took emergency action to allow me to appoint Jim Benisch, the current Deputy Chief, as our Acting Fire Chief, which he accepted early the next morning. The purpose for the title of “Acting” Chief is so that we can coordinate with the newly-formed Chillicothe Fire District, which will take some time and effort. I would like to generously thank Mike for his service as Chief and also Jim for agreeing to step in.

 Speaking of fire protection, the week of October 8 is Fire Prevention Week and this year’s theme is “Every Second Counts: Plan Two Ways Out”. Seconds can make the difference of safely escaping a fire or a tragic result. Things to consider – Draw a map of your home marking two exits, hold a daytime and night time fire drill at least once a year, teach your children in case you can’t help, check your smoke alarms, and be sure everyone knows to close the doors behind them to check the spread of smoke. If you want the Fire Department’s help in planning, call 274-3567. The Fire Department will be conducting fire drills at our schools on October 11.

 If you have been following the gravel pit legal issues, I can inform you that the Peoria County Zoning Board of Appeals has provided the Judge with the additional information that he requested. With that done, hopefully, the Judge will rule in favor of our case to not allow a gravel pit operation to proceed which would impede the City’s growth to the west of town.

 IVC Homecoming is coming up on the weekend of the 29th! Enjoy the parade, homecoming dinners, and the big game.  Go Grey Ghosts!

 That’s all for this time. See you around town!



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