“It doesn’t take a majority to win, just a tireless minority that will keep starting brush fires in the mind and hearts of their fellow men.”

Samuel Adams

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Part I Really Mayor Public Attendees Knew Before Aldermen Perez

Part II

Video of Mayor Harl and the Committee Change

Listen closely to two comments and what he forgot to mention. He forgot to mention that he added himself to the committees and with the excuse that now two committee members could meet and talk without violating the OMA.

This is the section of the Municipal Code he refers to:

In the 2014 Illinois Municipal Handbook in Chapter 7, Article II Section D (1) states: (found on page 203) Special Rules for Five Member Boards- Prior to 2008, Section 2.01 of the OMA defined meeting to include a majority of a quorum of a five-member board (2 people), instead of a quorum (3 people). This limitation had long frustrated municipal officials who were unable to discuss even the simplest items related to public business without technically conducting a meeting under the OMA. Now, two municipal officials in a five member board may meet to discuss public business without it being considered a meeting under the OMA. Although this law has liberated municipal officials from the majority of a quorum requirement for five-member bodies, it contains an additional limitation. The amendment to the OMA also requires an affirmative vote of at least three members of a five-member body, such as a municipal body in the commission form, to adopt any motion, resolution or ordinance, unless a greater number is otherwise required, regardless of whether all members are in attendance. This rule also applies to committees and all other public bodies with five members.

Committee meetings were designed for the aldermen to work on specific areas of governing and not for the mayor to attach himself to them for self interest control of what transpires. He also states that he had numerous aldermen ask for the more members and if you believe that pie in the sky comment, you have not lived in this city. POWER TENDS TO CORRUPT is my thought and taking place right now in Peru.

Monday, July 28, 2014

Yes There Was a City Council Meeting This Evening and ..........

I impulsively decided to attend the council meeting this evening and there was a large number of people in attendance and of course all the medical marijuana startups trying to establish themselves in the city. I do question why so many want to be in Peru or is it that Peru seems to be making all of this public and other District 17  cities are remaining quiet. Keep in mind one per district and the question to ask is "what is the benefit to the city?" We seem to be spending an inordinate amount of city time with these ventures whereas according to the Ottawa Times, their city is handling it in a different manner and have been assured by unnamed companies that they would like to operate in their city.
From what I have read there is actually not much of an economic benefit to any city chosen, so who really needs them? And other cities are not even seeking them out.

One aldermen had questions about why the mayor changed the committee structure on such short notice and what was the benefit to the aldermen individually. The 2 aldermen shoved into the Public Service committee are going to have a long and lonely time on that committee which is dominated by Lukosus and Waldorf and Chamlin Engineering.  The answer from the mayor about the change is in short nothing more than the law now allows him as a committee member on both committees to be meeting with one other individual on the committee without violating the OMA and you can bet that is what has been happening and will continue.
The second question is about the private and behind the scenes manner in which the mayor handled the offer that was make for the Coke distribution plant on Progress Blvd. Harl insisted it had been discussed in meetings and that the alderman should check the minutes and he said he had gone though all minutes and could not find any reference to this proposal. The mayor then mentioned something about private meetings and then Ald. Radtke said he vaguely remembered something about it. I hope you are getting the picture now about the way that Peru is conducting business for you. I am getting ticked off about how the mayor and some aldermen believe running this city is their own privately owned venture.
Does that sound familiar, a phrase you have heard before in Peru politics. If Peru mayors are unable to keep everything open and above board for the benefit of the taxpayers of this city, it is definitely time for the city council to seek an official CEO, a City Manager. We would not be paying NCIG to write grants because often city managers do that. We would not need a comptroller or budget director because the city manager usually does that. Tonight I can only think of the phrase I have see so often lately:

Is this what we have now in Peru, a mayor attempting to control the decision making committees by installing himself as a voting member of the 2 remaining committees along with the aldermen in place that he has already favorited.

#marijuana growing

Friday, July 25, 2014

Illinois Law Regarding Adult Entertainment

  (55 ILCS 5/5-1097.5) 
    Sec. 5-1097.5. Adult entertainment facility. It is prohibited within an unincorporated area of a county to locate an adult entertainment facility within 3,000 feet of the property boundaries of any school, day care center, cemetery, public park, forest preserve, public housing, place of religious worship, or residence, except that in a county with a population of more than 800,000 and less than 2,000,000 inhabitants, it is prohibited to locate, construct, or operate a new adult entertainment facility within one mile of the property boundaries of any school, day care center, cemetery, public park, forest preserve, public housing, or place of religious worship located anywhere within that county. Notwithstanding any other requirements of this Section, it is also prohibited to locate, construct, or operate a new adult entertainment facility within one mile of the property boundaries of any school, day care center, cemetery, public park, forest preserve, public housing, or place of religious worship located in that area of Cook County outside of the City of Chicago. 
    For the purposes of this Section, "adult entertainment facility" means (i) a striptease club or pornographic movie theatre whose business is the commercial sale, dissemination, or distribution of sexually explicit material, shows, or other exhibitions or (ii) an adult bookstore or adult video store whose primary business is the commercial sale, dissemination, or distribution of sexually explicit material, shows, or other exhibitions. "Unincorporated area of a county" means any area not within the boundaries of a municipality. 
    The State's Attorney of the county where the adult entertainment facility is located or the Attorney General may institute a civil action for an injunction to restrain violations of this Section. In that proceeding, the court shall determine whether a violation has been committed and shall enter such orders as it considers necessary to remove the effect of any violation and to prevent the violation from continuing or from being renewed in the future. 
(Source: P.A. 94-496, eff. 1-1-06; 95-214, eff. 8-16-07.)

Thursday, July 24, 2014

HIghlights of the Finance Committee Mtg.

There were 2 men present from IVAC who gave a presentation to the Finance Committee.  I apologize for not knowing their names.

They talked of the reasons why this area seemed to be lagging behind other areas of the state in growth and after much research it seems to them that the best way to market the towns of this area is to think regionally and not locally. Looking at this part of Illinois in terms of LaSalle, Bureau and Putnam, a tri county region seems to them to be a better way to market the cities because a development in anyone of them will ultimately benefit all because most anyone can travel for employment.  Whereas the retail development is best left individually to each town as they wish.

IVAC  have begun to use social media on the Linked In site.

A brief discussion on employee health policies.

Again as I wrote earlier, some discussion about a CFO or a Comptroller or a #City Manager.

Transformer repair at the James Hardie plant needs to be done soon. I believe a spare is currently available in the city.

Re: Concert at the Airport:

Police Chief Bernabei said they are ready with with police, fire and esda. Also expecting approximately 10,000 to attend the concert and they are ready to cap sales if need be. Noonan by contract is responsible for paying up to $4100 in cost of the safety provided and if for some reason it is over that amount the city is responsible for the rest. She will provide her own security for the area around the stages.
The city will receive $1.00 for each ticket sold and $5.00 for each car that is parked at the airport.

The city did approve both concerts before the hard rock one was booked and they only had knowledge of the first one which was a Country/Western group of bands held a few weeks ago. It seems that they had faith that Ms Noonan would not be doing what she did by booking the kind of bands she has.

I did express my sentiments that this not happen again and to be aware and make sure you know what you are approving for any future events.

#airport security

Sunday additional note: City Council Mtg tomorrow at 7:30 PM and preceded by a Committee Mtg of the Whole at 6:30 PM.  Both allow public comment at the end of the meeting.

Making the Case for a City Manager

Nearby cities and their city managers

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

OFF BEAT: Did Streator hit the jackpot with new hire? - The Times: Local

OFF BEAT: Did Streator hit the jackpot with new hire? - The Times: Local

This is a good article about the hiring of a City Manager in Streator.  Many of you and I also would like to see Peru hire a City Manager, someone to be the CEO of this city. The discusssion briefly came up today during the Finance Committee today when talk of hiring a CFO was suggested by Ald. Potthoff as Budget Director Gary Hylla will relinquish that position and retain the Treasurers position at the end of the year. Mayor Harl wants only a Comptroller but the legalities of that are uncertain to me as to whether it is a elected position or not. It was suggested by Ald. Perez that this could be the time to look into a hire of a City Manager and Ald. Potthoff said he is open to that idea.

Get a few ideas of your own after reading this about whether this is the right time to get on board with a City Manager.  He would do the hiring and firing of employees along with making the whole city work right with the right people.

Streator Manager salary and benefits

Talk of paying a CFO approx. $60,000 and for double that you get a manager who takes on many responsibilities that no one is doing now in Peru and additionally add some professionalism to our government.

Monday, July 21, 2014

Public Services Initial Meeting

Attended by Ald. Waldorf chairman, Ald. Lukosus, City Clerk Bartley, TEST Chris Perra, Jeff King and Doug Bernabei and not sure what we call them at a Public Services meeting, Mayor Harl, Ald. Sapienza, Ald. Mueller, Jeff Perry from Chamlin, Eric Carls, city engineer and 2 others that I believe were other Chamlin Engineers. They did not pass an attendance sheet around.

A lot of the meeting was conducted by the engineers covering topics as roads, sewers, airport (nothing about the past or coming concert). Bucket truck is being prepared for light department, need a very expensive tool for valves on old water mains. We are going to work with La Salle this year and purchase salt together per Jeff Kings information.

Mayor Harl is interested in purchasing the old Coke plant for PW department.

I asked the mayor if he would be appointing one of the aldermen from some committee to attend Recreation Board meetings and he said no, it was not necessary.  I pointed out that in the past either from a long ago Recreation Committee to the just eliminated Public Property Committee, an aldermen or 2 attended the Rec. Board and he simply said not needed, they could read the minutes. Also did not know that the Rec. Board submits a budget to the city as he wanted to know what they spent their money on. Ald. Mueller and Sapienza stated they would alternate and attend the Rec. Meetings.

This was a 2 hour plus min. meeting.  There is so much to cover that I think this will become the norm. If they continue to have the Committee as Whole meetings prior to council meetings, I can't even imagine what they will discuss because most aldermen will already know whats been taking place. I still can't believe they are going to try and run this city on 2 committees


Friday, July 18, 2014

Is This What is Meant by Abuse of Executive Power?

Committee Structure in Peru today:
Accounts and Finance:Potthoff and Radke
Public Works(electric, water, street & sewer): Waldorf & Lukosus
Public Property and Recreation, buildings and grounds : Perez & Mueller
Public Health and Safety:(police, fire, esda and ambulance) Ferrari & Sapienza

Next week, the last 2 committees will be eliminated and the aldermen taken into the remaining committees.

Here is a little history of Peru and the aldermanic committees. Prior to the tenure of Mayor Harl, there were as a rule 3 aldermen per committee.  After Harl had been in office for 2 years, he decided to reduce the size of all committees to 2 which did not make sense because then if the 2 aldermen did not agree, the mayor said to send to the city council for a vote. Now if all goes as planned he will make 2 committees (the first 2 listed) and put 4 aldermen on each plus the Mayor who will also be on each committee.
What happens to the problems that were being worked upon by the 2 disappearing committees will be anyones guess.  At first glance, it appears to be a matter of control by the mayor.
We are not as a city working well at all and this certainly is not going to improve what takes place.
For new readers, I will add that currently the Chief of Police is also co superintendent of Public Works and Jeff King, our Fire Chief is the other co superintendent of the department along with being building and zoning inspector and head of the fire department. They are also head of ESDA. The electric department is also without a department head and is supervised by both chiefs.

Of course we can always depend upon Chamlin engineering and TEST to be skilled in what they do.

In all my research, I have not been able to come up with a city that operates with 2 committees. The mayor is also a part of the Design and Review Committee, so he is definitely wearing the biggest hat. We the residents are not particularly thinking any of this is very good for the city as a whole. The city is composed of many areas of concern that will be neglected more than it is at present because there will be no oversight.  Giving the aldermen responsibility within the government of the city is why we elect them and now that responsibility will be lessened  Perhaps the people who opposed the reduction of aldermen might want to rethink their view.


Thursday, July 17, 2014

Country music festival gives locals the blues | WEEK News 25 - News, Sports, Weather - Peoria, Illinois | Top Stories

Country music festival gives locals the blues | WEEK News 25 - News, Sports, Weather - Peoria, Illinois | Top Stories

Sounds like this promoter is handling this in a very professional manner and something the residents of this city would appreciate regarding concerts at the airport.

Any event open to the public and particularly a #rock concert should have publicly announced rules and regulations. It is my understanding that at this time Peru does not ask any questions about type of concert, #rock bands and has no idea who the promoter is bringing in and asks no questions. The city and particularly the elected officials are counting on you not caring what happens in Peru.

Peru City Aldermen Committee Members

Potthoff and Radke serve on Accounts and Finance.

Waldorf and Lukosus serve on Public Works.. Electric, water streets.

Ferrari and Sapienza serve on Public Health and Safety ( police, fire, esda, ambulance.

Perez and Mueller serve on Public property.. Covers buildings grounds and Recreation.