ST. PARIS – The village will hold a public meeting next month to discuss the police levy on the Nov. 8 ballot.
The public meeting will be held at 7 p.m. on Oct. 18 in the municipal building, 135 W. Main St. The meeting was scheduled during Monday’s regular council meeting following a suggestion from council member Terry Ervin II.
The village is trying to pass a five-year, 4.9-mill additional levy for the purpose of providing, maintaining and operating the police department.
Referencing previous village levies, Ervin said the meeting would be a good idea to allow residents to ask questions about the levy.
In addition to the police levy meeting, St. Paris will hold public meetings on the electric aggregation ballot question on Oct. 3 and Nov. 7 at the municipal building. Both meetings on electric aggregation will start at 6:30 p.m.
Regarding the appointment of the village’s next police chief, Mayor Joe Reneer informed council he extended the deadline for applications to Friday. He said he had received some applications as of Monday’s meeting and should receive a few more.
Council approves action for street survey
Council unanimously approved entering into a contract for a street survey to help the village budget for street repairs.
Council member Niven Jester said he received information from Village Administrator Joe Sampson that a company called Midwest Paving Analysis Design would come into the village to perform a street survey.
Jester said they would want the company to perform a street survey where every street in the village would be surveyed. The survey would prioritize each street and the needs of each street.
“It’s independent analysis outside of the village, this will allow us to budget for the future,” Jester said. “It will actually give us a graph of each street, what that street needs and how much it will cost to repair that street so we will be able to budget street repair in the future.”
Jester said the results of the survey would also provide transparency for the public as the graph would be available to the public. The initial cost for a two year assessment would be $1,750 Jester said.
Council tables magistrate contract discussion
Council unanimously agreed to table approving a contract for attorney Darrell Heckman, the village’s magistrate.
When the contract was brought up for discussion before council, council member Dave Palmer asked if it benefits the village to have a magistrate instead of going through the Champaign County Municipal Court.
Jester replied it would be worth it if the proper court costs and fines were imposed. He continued by stating the village’s previous magistrate, current municipal court judge Gil S. Weithman, would impose court cost and fines based on what the municipal court set.
Based on the information he received, Jester said, court costs and fines are substantially lower on the cases Heckman presides over.
“It’s not a money-making venue, but my understanding is that the court costs and fines have been so low with (Heckman) as magistrate that it would be beneficial – if you’re looking at it at a monetary aspect – to just write your summons or citations or your complaints to municipal court under village code and get that money from the court,” Jester said.
After a conversation on the subject, council agreed to table taking any action on the contract.
In other action:
•A committee aimed at reviewing potential changes to a village ordinance on water rate changes for charges comprised of Ervin, Palmer and Sampson was formed after Sampson suggested potential changes to the ordinance.
•Reneer thanked residents for attending Pony Wagon Days and commended people working behind the scenes to make it happen.
•Reneer read a proclamation declaring September as Prostate Cancer Awareness month in the village.