New police officers were sworn-in during Wednesday’s meeting of the Fairbury City Council.
Tyler Rafferty and Andrew Mills took the oath of office from Chief Robert McCormick, who also read a code of ethics. McCormick then presented the officers with “challenge coins” which are typically used in the military and law enforcement to prove membership in an organization and to recognize a special achievement.
“When I was appointed chief, I designed and purchased these coins to give out to my officers,” McCormick explained. “Today is a special achievement in these officers’ careers. They’ve completed 14 weeks of the academy and passed their state exam.”
One side of the coin features a Fairbury Police Department patch with a blue line symbol on the field of the U.S. flag. Core values are listed around the border which McCormick believes are important to officers. The reverse side features a family crest signifying many groups coming together.
“You are now held to a higher standard and must always be aware,” McCormick told the two men.
Also at Wednesday’s meeting, Street Superintendent and Fire Chief Martin Steidinger noted the annual pump testing is taking place on fire trucks. He said rules for the man lift are changing as of January and city employees have to take a course. This will happen Dec. 11.
Alderman Lynn Dameron reported the new sign is up at Veteran’s Memorial Park and everything should be finished by this time next week. Sewer Superintendent Brad Duncan and City Superintendent Brett Ashburn both requested a committee meeting to discuss connecting homes to the sewer system and city health insurance. The meeting was scheduled for Nov. 25 at 6 p.m.
The council also approved a referendum question regarding cannabis to be placed on the March 17, 2020 ballot.
“Shall the City of Fairbury, in light of state legislation legalizing the possession, consumption and sale of cannabis, allow the sale and manufacturing of recreational adult use cannabis within its jurisdiction?” the question reads.
Following an executive session, council members authorized the mayor and city superintendent to hire a utility billing clerk to replace Stephanie Meints who turned in a letter of resignation. Meints is expected to work through the end of the year to help with the transition.
In other matters Wednesday night, the Fairbury City Council:
-Approved a request from the Fairbury Area Chamber of Commerce to block Second through Fourth Streets on Locust Saturday, Dec. 7 from 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. for the Fairbury Christmas Parade.
-Authorized carpet cleaning at City Hall from The Restoring Touch for $756.
-Replaced four city computers, two for City Hall and two for the Police Department.
-Approved employee Christmas gifts which is the same as last year.