City of Byron Administrative Committee met Sept. 4.
Here is the minutes provided by the committee:
MEMBERS PRESENT: Chairman Alderman Christy Hanlin, Alderman Todd Isaacs, Alderman Amber Dach
MEMBERS ABSENT: Alderman Dan Reilly (military deployment)
OTHERS PRESENT: Mayor John Rickard, City Attorney Kim Krahenbuhl, Economic Development Director Larry Hewitt, Jacque Reeverts (Reruns)
Alderman Hanlin called the meeting to order at 5:16 pm.
1. PUBLIC COMMENT - None
2. APPROVAL OF MINUTES AUGUST 7, 2019: Alderman Dach motioned to approve the Administrative Committee meeting minutes of August 7, 2019, seconded by Alderman Hanlin. Motion passed.
3. RERUNS TIF APPLICATION – Jacque Reeverts met with the contractor again to see if there are any other options for the façade of the building. She has attempted to get quotes from other contractors, but has not been successful. She is willing to make adjustments to the quote from Robeson as much as possible (i.e. no awning, etc). Priority is getting the bricks off the front of the building before winter. Alderman Isaacs reminded the committee that roofing costs are not eligible for TIF reimbursement. Even though the quote is for $89,000, Jacque is looking for any amount possible to help offset the cost of the project. Alderman Isaacs asked if there was any protection for us if the owner sells the building immediately after the work is done. Director Hewitt said that statutorily there is none. Jacque reassured the committee that she has no plans to sell the building or the business. There was discussion about asking an applicant to provide more than one quote on a project since we have not done that in the past. Because of the scope of this project, and the possibility that there may be another way to accomplish it, the request was made for another quote. Director Hewitt said there was $30,000 budgeted for TIF grants for this fiscal year. Alderman Dach discussed the need to set policy for the distribution of TIF funds. She feels council should look at this in depth to set criteria, refine the application process, discuss the possibility of setting a cap, determine requirements for number of quotes needed and possibly implement some type of protection for the city. She would also like to have guidelines defined for the look of the downtown area. Jacque said that whatever amount would be granted, she could work with the bank and the contractor to figure out a way to complete the project. Out of the $30,000 budgeted for TIF grants, we have spent $9,500. It is possible to spread out payments over several years. Director Hewitt said that up to this point, the TIF has not had that much money in it to consider funding a project of this size, and since the fund is growing, now is a good time to develop the parameters that Alderman Dach is suggesting. Alderman Isaacs motioned to provide Jacque Reeverts, Reruns, with a total of $30,000 - $10,000 a year over the next three fiscal years, starting with this fiscal year. The agreement is with the owner, not the business, so if the business is sold, the TIF contract will be null and void. Seconded by Alderman Hanlin. Motion passed. Alderman Hanlin suggested that if there is money left in the account at the end of the fiscal year, we could consider putting that towards the $30,000 total.
4. REVISIONS TO PERSONNEL POLICIES – Alderman Dach agrees with the new definitions of personnel. Health insurance is listed for full time, over 32 hour, employees only. There was a question regarding the statement that an employee contribute 10% of the health insurance premium. It was confirmed that this change is in reference to full time employees only. Mayor Rickard asked the committee to hold off in sending to council until several other items are revised.
5. CANNABIS ORDINANCES – Alderman Dach and Alderman Gerdes plan to attend sessions regarding these ordinances at the IML conference in several weeks. Attorney Krahenbuhl said that most areas in Byron would not qualify given the distances to homes, schools, etc.
6. UTILITY TAXES – The city has the option of implementing taxes on Nicor and ComEd bills. At one time, council had discussed this, but decided to implement a 1% sales tax instead. 5% is the maximum – Based on recent usage, Nicor could yield approximately $42,000, and ComEd $185,000. Part of these funds could be used to get our police force fully staffed, including an SRO officer. Alderman Hanlin suggested that police get 50%, and the rest split between other departments. Director Hewitt added that ComEd and Nicor charge 3% of the 5% in administrative fees for the collection of these taxes. Alderman Isaacs asked how the public should be notified of the tax. Director Hewitt will find out how other communities handled this. Alderman Hanlin suggested that once the police force is fully staffed, we could also look at increasing their pay to be more consistant with surrounding communities in an effort to retain officers. Alderman Hanlin motioned to have Attorney Krahenbuhl draft the ordinances needed to implement the Nicor and ComEd municipal taxes. Once these are prepared, a recommendation will be made to council to implement the utility taxes. Motion seconded by Alderman Dach. Motion passed.
7. HIGHWAY AND DOWNTOWN FAÇADE DESIGN STANDARDS – No discussion.
8. CITY WEBSITE DISCUSSION – No discussion.
9. EXECUTIVE SESSION (Section )(c)(1)-Personnel - No Executive Session.
10. EXECUTIVE SESSION (Section)(c)(21)-Review and Approval of Closed Meeting Minutes - No Executive Session.
11. ADJOURN – Meeting was adjourned by Alderman Hanlin at 6:27 p.m.