Morrison Historic Preservation Commission Reports to City Council
By LYNNETTE FORTH | For The Prairie Advocate News
MORRISON – Morrison city council members met on April 22nd, 2013 for a regular council meeting held in the Whiteside County Board Room. Following roll call, and the pledge of allegiance led by Mayor Drey, council members reviewed a report from the Historic Preservation Commission’s meeting which was held on April 16th.
At that meeting, commission members reviewed the Preliminary Proposed District Boundaries from our Consultant, Darius Bryjka of In (Alliance). It was the consensus of the members that they would like to add some additional properties. Member Don Mulnix volunteered to research the suggested properties as soon as possible to show their place in history of Morrison in an attempt to support their inclusion within the proposed district.
A public informational session will be held on May 21st, 2013 at 6:00 p.m. at the Community Room of the Odell Library. The next meeting of the Historic Preservation Commission is scheduled for May 7th at 5:00 p.m.
Mayor Drey congratulated all who ran for office, and welcomed them unofficially during the report of City Officers. Treasurer Ernie Huling was recognized for his years of service as treasurer for the City. Attorney Zollinger reminded new members to complete online trainings under the Open Meetings Act, which is mandated by the State’s Attorney General’s office.
Director of Public Works, Gary Tresenriter recognized the efforts of his Public Works employees for their hard work during the recent sandbagging efforts, and also those of the Fire Department and paramedic volunteers, along with the Police Department members who helped to get out notices of a water main break later in the day.
The consent agenda was approved which included: March 25th, 2013 regular session minutes; April 8th, 2013 regular session minutes; Bills Payable in the amount of $$56,710.55; March 2013 Treasurer’s Report; Approval of pay request for Well #5 Well House for $6,080.00; and Request for street closure by First Presbyterian Church for a church picnic on May 19th from 8:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m.
Items for consideration and Possible Action included:
Ordinance #13-10: Approval of Fiscal Year 2013-2014 budget (approved by 7 “yes” votes, with Marti Wood abstaining due to not having questions answered by Administrator Wise. Wood said “I think we need a little more information.”
Alderman Thorndike replied, “Are you planning to hold a special meeting? You have to redo the whole budget.”
Scott Connelly stated, “Nothing says you can’t amend the budget, but an appropriation ordinance is needed.”
Thorndike replied “It is not carved in stone.”
Resolution #13-03: Permit 306 E. Main Street, Owners: American Legion to opt out of Historic District was approved. Sarah Thorndike stated, “I think it is a bad precedent.”
Other Items for Consideration, Discussion, and Information included:
Crane Project Management for Building Inspection Services (Administrator Wise submitted to the Aldermen a “quasi-resume/bio” for Mr. Crane of Crane Project Management. Comparison figures from another firm for building inspection services were added. Wise will discuss with Gary Tresenriter, Chief Brian Melton, and the new official over the coming weeks.
Sarah Thorndike commented that she and Pete Whiting had started getting building codes. “He (Whiting) wanted the Board to look at codes with local building tradesmen. We read all the 2006 code books. He left in 2010, and there was a Public meeting in 2011 to share the information”.
Thorndike expressed that she would like to see an alternative to hiring Crane Project Management, and make the job a shared position with another town or train one of Morrison’s employees. She recommended using the expertise of those who were on the committee. She also suggested her knowledge and Power Point Presentation with the four new members of the Council.
Alderman Wood read a comment from a citizen stating “a corner building for sale on Main Street has an apartment listed on the main floor”. Wood stated that “code 62-173c1 states that residential use is above the ground floor.”
Mayor Drey said, “The building may have been grandfathered in, and needs to be looked into.”
Alderman Connelly said, “That isn’t a legislative issue. It is not the Alderman’s job to enforce codes.”
Adminstrator Wise explained to Wood to have the citizen with the complaint to contact him at the City Hall.
The next regular City Council meeting is scheduled for May 6th, 2013 at 7:00 p.m. in the Whiteside County Board Room. The public is encouraged to attend.