there be dancing in the streets again this year?
Following the success of the last
year's downtown sesquicentennial celebration, which scheduled more
than 40 hours music in the streets, city aldermen and the mayor have
received numerous requests to have more summer street dances. Mayor
Beth Davis asked the council if anyone was opposed to considering
the possibility of having one evening of music again this year. If
not, she would look into lining up something for this summer.
Mayor Davis said she has already spoken
with the local tourism bureau about the best possible time to have
this again this year. Memorial Day is one choice.
At one time there was a Route 66
drive-through that took place downtown. There were lots of old cars
and the Route 66 Association members in town. It is thought that
this could be coordinated with the music event for the second week
in June, beginning next year. The two activities combined would make
it a bigger event, and from next year on it could become an annual
Major downtown street work is scheduled
to begin in about six weeks and continue through the first week in
July. So, this year's event might be held somewhere just off the
square, such as the Clinton Street parking lot.
Ethics Act model for new city ordinance
The city is looking at creating a new
ordinance in compliance with a mandate issued by the attorney
general. All Illinois municipalities and school districts are to
enact their own ethics ordinance using the State
Officials and Employees Ethics Act as a
model. The new ordinance is to be no less restrictive than the state
law, which was passed in
The ordinance needs to be completed by
After looking over the new law, City
Attorney Bill Bates also suggests that the city follow two other
recommendations of the attorney general and appoint the following
1. Ethics adviser to the city
2. Ethics commissioner to the city
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A major area of the act specifies gifts
that may be received.
Penalties for violations to the act are
severe. They include fines of $1,001 to $2,500 and a possibility of
up to 364 days in jail.
in the black
Finance committee chairman Verl Prather
provided an update to the council on current and future budgets.
Alderman Prather praised everyone for
holding down their expenses and "doing some pretty painful things
last year to make it the way it should be."
"It paid off now," he said. "We're
doing more with less these days, which I think about every
government agency is." Prather forecasted that the city will be in
good shape in the general fund because of the efforts of department
Alderman Derrick Crane announced that
the city will be putting four excess properties up for sale by bid
want to keep their trees
One or two road projects that were
delayed due to a shortage of finances are being considered again
this year. One of those projects involves the continuance of
rebuilding Elm Street in the section from Fifth Street southward.
Jonie Tibbs said that she has had calls from residents saying that
they would prefer having "just a nice street rather than curb and
gutter." Streets Superintendent Tracy Jackson has heard the same
thing from the residents. Other city representatives said they have
been contacted as well, and the residents are saying that because
they will lose trees and lawns, they don't want the street widened.