Traffic signal upgrade coming
A traffic light upgrade is coming to the intersection of Route 24 and First Street after members of the Fairbury City Council authorized the measure Wednesday evening.
The city will be responsible for half of the project with the Illinois Department of Transportation covering the other half. The total price is $35,911. Since current sensors in the ground are not always accurate, Kelly Electric is proposing maintenance on the light which would use camera technology.
“From time to time, it goes bad,” said City Superintendent Brett Ashburn, referring to the current state of the traffic light.
Work will involve pulling new cable to each new camera, installing new control equipment and working with traffic control to program and install everything.
Alderman Bruce Weber made the motion for the upgrade while Alderman Jon Kinate seconded the motion.
Also during Wednesday’s meeting, the council approved a memorial stone to be placed at North Park in memory of the late Lynn Dameron, the longtime mayor, alderman and business person in town. The stone may be placed at the southeast corner of the park by a bench with a concrete slab underneath.
Council members approved the first option which included black print engraving on a gray colored piece of granite.
“This one really did just kind of stand out,” said Ashburn.
“I’m thinking someplace visible as you come in from the parking lots,” explained Mayor David Slagel.
While a final determination still needs to be made on the location in the park, the city does plan to hold a ceremony prior to the end of July.
Under old business, the council once again briefly discussed a green energy program for Ameren electric bills, although the matter died due to the lack of a motion. Alderman Jerry Hoffman discovered Com-Ed is doing the same thing although it has a different name.
Mayor Slagel spoke with someone in the energy sector and said commercial energy is legitimate. A community solar program must be sold directly to consumers or end users.
Communities are used to help sell to residents in order to get more sign-ups. The program is set up to always be 10 percent less than what Ameren is charging. This is just from the electric charge, not delivery.
The city’s 2022-2023 fiscal budget was approved. Some budget tweaking is expected once the police contract is finalized. IMRF rates for 2023 went down over three percent, saving the city around $40,000. City leaders budgeted assuming garbage service continues as is with a rate increase and budget numbers could change if outsourcing takes place. A deficit is shown for the sewer department this year due to principal and interest payments on the new plant.
“Reserves are already in place for this as it was anticipated in the planning for the first several years and will gradually come back into the black in future years,” Slagel said following the meeting.
The pool budget increased to reflect new minimum wage requirements for the lifeguards.
Ashburn reported the water department has installed half of the new water meters already and that Sewer Superintendent Brad Duncan is in the running for Operator of the Year at a meeting in Springfield next week.
Police Chief Robert McCormick noted the newest police recruit graduates Friday from the academy and will soon be on the street.
Duncan said the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency commissioned a load study on the Vermilion River as they want to see if it is impaired with nitrates. Study results will be revealed during a virtual meeting in May.
The consent agenda was authorized, which included April 6 meeting minutes, voucher invoice register, treasurer’s cash report, check register and overtime report.