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  • Fairbury News staff

Tipton is newest alderman

James Tipton, left, takes the oath of office from City Attorney Steven Mann.

Fairbury’s newest alderman was officially sworn-in during the first council meeting of 2022 Wednesday evening.

Members of the Fairbury City Council approved the mayor’s appointment of James Tipton to fill the late Alderman Lynn Dameron’s seat. Tipton served on the Zoning Board of Appeals and has operated a business in Fairbury for the past several years after working out of town earlier in his career.

“About 25 years ago, I started a business here in town and have been operating that,” Tipton explained.

Tipton has always been interested in politics but didn’t really take an active role until the opportunity arose.

“I thought now might be the best time to do it,” he said.

In a related matter, the council appointed Matt Davis to the Zoning Board of Appeals for a five-year term to replace Tipton.

Also at Wednesday’s meeting, the council increased the price of pool passes with a single season pass increasing from $60 to $75, family season pass from $125 to $145 and a single day pass changing from $4 to $5. This is due to the price of labor going up.

Council members and the mayor seemed to agree the pool loses money every year but is an appropriate service provided to the community.

“The pool essentially always operates in the red,” acknowledged City Superintendent Brett Ashburn.

The pool’s snack bar made $5700 for the year and netted $2200.

“I’m reluctant to increase concessions too much because a lot of kids eat there,” noted City Clerk Nancy Widlacki.

Widlacki said they can only offer pre-packaged food items at the pool and cannot cook food on site. Around 150-175 passes are sold during a year.

“I think a lot of people depend on (the pool),” added Alderman Jerry Hoffman.

Superintendent Ashburn announced the Boys and Girls Club plans to change out the carpet at the Stafford Community Center and install laminate flooring.

The council also approved an ordinance annexing Wenger property into the city on West Pine Street. Alderman Jon Kinate made the motion to approve it.

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