Thursday, March 12, 2009
sponsored by Graue Inc.

City briefs: Police and firemen recognized for swift actions in ER; children at risk from drivers around Northwest School; road repairs and stimulus funds; CEDS; and more

(Originally posted Wednesday afternoon)

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[March 12, 2009] 

RestaurantPolice chief presents letters of commendation to firemen for helping subdue hostile subject in ER

The regular workshop meeting for the city of Lincoln was called to order by Mayor Beth Davis-Kavelman, and the floor was turned over to police Chief Stuart Erlenbush.

Erlenbush recounted an incident at the Abraham Lincoln Memorial Hospital emergency room on Feb. 11 that resulted in police Cpl. David Oltmanns issuing numerous warnings to a belligerent party before putting the person under arrest. The individual resisted arrest, and three firemen immediately assisted Oltmanns. The subject was subdued, forced to the floor and handcuffed.

The chief read a letter expressing appreciation and commending Assistant Chief Mark Miller, Lt. Ben Roland and inspector Chris Harding from the Lincoln Fire Department for their professionalism. Each officer was presented with a copy of the award.

Child and crosswalk safety

Northwest School is having some problems with poor drivers near the school. According to Tracy Jackson, street superintendent, the principal says that when the city patrols are there everything goes well, but once they leave, it seems that drivers become very reckless, endangering the children.

The school has put together a safety committee that suggested that the street in question be made one way. The council discussed this and said that they would like to explore other options before resorting to a one-way street.

Erlenbush said that at the junior high, the city put in a crosswalk, moved some of the parking spaces and opened it up a bit to improve child visibility and that it has worked very well.

Jackson says that at Northwest there are no parking spaces painted and that they could do that. He will contact the principal and discuss this option.

IDOT stimulus funds

The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 includes funding for infrastructure improvements. These funds are being allocated through the Illinois Department of Transportation according to population.

The city of Lincoln will receive $464,878. Specific streets within the city are eligible for improvement with these funds: Broadway, Pulaski, State Street south of Fifth, College Street and Union Street.

City engineer Mark Mathon asked that the council consider what should be done with these funds and offer him guidance on how to proceed. He also advised them that the money cannot be used for normal maintenance.

CEDS meeting scheduled for April 15

Joel Smiley, executive director Lincoln & Logan County Development Partnership, told the council that the partnership is ready to start having meetings regarding the Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy for Lincoln and Logan County.


Four meetings are planned, which the public will be encouraged to attend. The city meeting date was set for April 15 at 6:30 p.m. There will be another meeting in Lincoln for the county, a third meeting in Atlanta for the northern communities and a fourth in Mount Pulaski for those in the southern part of the county

Tom Akers of Heartland Community College will be the meeting facilitator.

Smiley said that there would be formal press releases once all the meeting dates were set.

He added that the business incubator project is moving very rapidly. The concept has changed from having one central location to include multiple locations all over Logan County. This would accommodate diverse opportunities, with the possibilities of high-tech, warehouse operations and manufacturing. Having a portfolio of locations gives us a great edge in bringing good startups here, Smiley said.

A meeting with SCORE representatives has been scheduled for March 18. SCORE would work closely with the business incubator project.

Smiley also said that another program of the partnership's five-year strategy is about to launch. He and a committee would be going to each of the top employers in Logan County -- about 30 companies -- to discuss their needs and issues and look at the companies' potential to expand.

Models of what other communities have done would be used to assist in this process, he said. He invited council members who would be interested in participating to contact him.

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Auto Sales

Lincoln citizens are not happy with Comcast

Alderwoman Kathy Horn said that she is getting several calls about Comcast. The company is raising their prices without notice while at the same time taking away services. She wonders whether there is anything the city can do about the situation.

City attorney Bill Bates said that they had to give notice of rate increases, but Alderwomen Joni Tibbs and Melody Anderson both said that they have had similar experiences, and without notice. Both said that they had in the past made numerous calls to the company to get their bills straightened out and that other customers should do the same.

Bates said that the city can lodge a complaint with the company, but other than that they don't have any control over Comcast.

Immediately following the Comcast discussion, Alderwoman Kathy Horn moved that the council go into executive session for the purpose of discussing collective bargaining. The motion passed and the public portion of the meeting concluded.

Emergency sirens are acting up

Fire Chief Kent Hulett said that at last Tuesday's test of the emergency sirens, they did not work. They have been repaired and will be tested again next week.

However, shortly after that the alarms sounded in town. The chief went to investigate and returned to say it was a false alarm, and the system is not fixed. He assured the council that the problem would be addressed and repairs made as quickly as possible.

Petition for street closing April 25

Lincoln College has requested that a portion of Feldman Drive between Nicholson and Kankakee be closed between 8:45 and 10:45 a.m. April 25 for the college's 5K run and one-mile walk.

City engineer Mark Mathon said that he'd be talking to the college to make sure that press releases went out regarding the road closure.

Bids for City Hall roof

Bids were opened for the roofing project for City Hall. Four companies had placed bids. Robert Shattuck of J.H. Petty was present for the opening of the bids. Because the bid packages were sent out with options as to what work would be performed, the building and grounds committee will have to meet and review each bid to determine which one is the best value.

Bids for farm property behind Wal-Mart

Bids for the farming rights of the 25 acres behind Wal-Mart were opened. The council will discuss and vote on those at next week's meeting.

Bids for new truck for sewerage treatment

Bids were opened and read for a new 2009 pickup for the sewerage treatment plant. Bids were received from six businesses, three of them local. The bids will be reviewed for compliance to specifications and voted on at the next meeting.

FEMA grant for new firehouse

Hulett told the council that he has learned that the Federal Emergency Management Agency will announce a $250,000,000 grant program earmarked for new construction of fire stations.

Hulett has talked with FEMA representatives, and the city of Lincoln is now on the contact list to be notified when the program is announced.


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