In the only contested vote of the
evening the board approved a new six-member economic development
committee 9-2. The committee consists of board chair Dale Voyles and
members Chuck Ruben, Dave Hepler, Terry Werth, Bob Farmer and Bill
Sahs. It will meet at the courthouse the second Monday of the month,
starting June 9.
Voyles, who will head the committee
until Nov. 30, said he chose these members because they hold
chairmanships that "represent a significant portion of what affects
economic development in Logan County." Ruben leads the board finance
committee; Hepler, planning and zoning; Werth, road and bridge; and
Farmer, airport and farm. Sahs is liaison to the Lincoln/Logan
County Chamber of Commerce.
Mitch Brown announced his intention to
vote against the motion because he thinks the six members should
represent the six county districts. In particular, the committee has
no representative from District 6, which includes the Mayfair area
and East Lincoln Township to where it meets Atlanta Township.
"Mayfair people come out and vote," Brown explained. "They vote
religiously; they call me religiously" whenever an unwanted land use
threatens their neighborhood.
Paul Gleason also cited lack of
district representation as the reason for his vote against the
committee. Vice chair Gloria Luster was absent from the meeting.
Voyles said that even though board
members are elected by district, they have the obligation to
represent all people of the county. Dick Logan concluded the
discussion: "I'm just glad we're getting back in the economic
In another matter the board voted
unanimously to offer a $12,500 bonus to qualifying sheriff's
department personnel who submit a letter of resignation effective
Nov. 30, 2003. To qualify, an employee must be 50 or older with 20
years of service. Employees will have a window of 10 days to make
their decisions and submit their letters.
Four deputies meet the qualifications.
If all four retire, a cost analysis predicts a savings of $155,000
in salaries over three years. Any employee who retires will be
replaced, but the less experienced replacement will draw a lower
salary. Sheriff Steve Nichols said the analysis does not include
savings on worker's compensation, the $50,000 in bonuses or the cost
of training new employees. Nichols added that he does not anticipate
much training expense.
One vote announced at Thursday's
board-of-the-whole meeting was postponed Tuesday night. The
resolution would have required all organizations, either public or
private, that accept funds from the county board to comply with the
provisions of the Illinois Open Meetings Act. Since Thursday the
office of State's Attorney Tim Huyett has approved the content and
wording of the resolution.
However, when Logan pointed out that
the issue was not listed on the meeting's agenda, John Stewart
withdrew his motion. It was placed on the agenda for June 17.
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At the beginning of the board meeting
Andy Lascody of Springfield accountants Sikich Gardner & Co.
presented audit findings for the year ended Nov. 30, 2002. He noted
that the general fund balance had declined from $2,812,500 to
$2,359,900, a loss of $452,600. About $1.5 million of the fund is
spendable cash; the rest has offsetting liabilities.
Lascody praised elected officials for
keeping expenditures below budget. Otherwise, he said, the general
fund decline could have been much worse. Overall, expenditures were
up about 4 percent from 2001 but were $547,700 under the budget of
However, revenues were down $354,800
from 2001, putting them $547,700 under the 2002 budget. Lascody said
much of the shortfall was outside the county's control. This
included lower state payments for sales tax, state income tax, and
photo processing and use tax, which together yielded $251,800 less
than in 2001. In addition, interest income was less than half of
budget -- $92,400 compared with $250,000.
Two county entities spent more than
their incomes -- court security overspent by $900 and county
development took in $22,480 more than budgeted but paid out $31,428
over budget. Four funds ended with deficit balances -- the drug
investigation fund at -$1,390 (the 2001 deficit was $4,327); the
senior citizens tax fund, -$563; the historic sites motel tax fund,
-$10; and the geographic information systems fund, -$4,000. The GIS
money comes from a $3 fee for recording a deed. County Clerk Sally
Litterly said the fee has not changed in four or five years.
The board unanimously accepted the
audit. Copies are available in the county board office in the
In other business the board voted to:
--Pay R.L. High Roofing & Masonry
$20,550 to repair the courthouse dome. Board members expect a grant
from the Illinois Department of Natural Resources to cover this and
several other capital expenses. The anticipated grant of over
$38,000 represents a percentage of the money from the sale of ground
adjacent to Madigan State Park.
--Spend $7,616 from the county bridge
fund to repair piling on 50th Street over Hunter Slough in Mount
--Purchase airport liability insurance
from Facer Insurance for $4,370.
--Consolidate building maintenance and
repair for all county buildings under the building and grounds
budget beginning in fiscal year 2004.
The board appointed Raymond F. Leesman
to the Housing Authority of Logan County, Margaret Evers to Logan
County Tuberculosis Board, Betty Gail Wagner to Logan County
Cemetery Maintenance District, Bob McCue to Abraham Lincoln Tourism
Bureau of Logan County and Ray Vonderahe to Logan County Board of
reported that the finance committee has agreed to fund two co-op
programs for Lincoln Community High School students. One will employ
several students in animal control, and the other will supply one
worker to help in the county board office. The students will be paid
and also receive high school credit. Both programs will begin in