Recap: Administration and Public Works Committee

A rendering of the view looking south on Chicago Avenue with the proposed new office building in the middle of the 1700 block.

Here's a recap of our live coverage of this evening's Evanston City Council Administration and Public Works Committee meeting.

The committee is expected to begin consideration of rate increases for trash hauling and review a contract to sell the library parking lot for development of an 11-story office building.

The meeting is scheduled to begin at 6 p.m. A packet with information on tonight's agenda items is available online.

Meeting called to order at 6:13 p.m.

M 1 - Minutes. Approved.

A 1 & A  2 - Payroll and bills. Approved.

A 3.1 - Dunbar armored car service contract extension. Approved.

A 3.2 - Kenny Costruction sewer rehab contract. Approved

A 3.3 - Change order for Thieneman Construction for water treatment plant reliability improvements. Approved.

A 3.4 - Change order for water treatment plant aluminum sulfate purchas from Affinity Chemical. Approved.

A 3.5 - Residential refuse collection contract to Groot Industries. (Hold)

Vote, as requested by staff, is to hold for next meeting this item and the next five items.

A 3.6 - Condo refuse collection contract to Lakeshore Recycling. (Hold)

A 3.7 - Residential yard waste collection contract to Lakeshore Recycling. (Hold) 

A 3.8 - Stand-alone food scrap collection contrat to Collective Resource Inc. (Hold)

This program would only be for commecial food scrap collection

Erlene Howard of Collective Resource asks about residential food scrap collection -- a service that they also offer.

Dave Stoneback says the yard waste program provider will provide residential food scrap recycling.

Stoneback says planning to have additional meeting at 7 p.m. on Sept. 20 about the new waste hauling contracts.

Stoneback says Collective Resource could still offer its food scrap collection service privately to Evanston residents.

(The food scrap collection service along with yard waste collection will only be available for the 8.5 months that yard waste collection is conducted.)

A 3.9 - Recycling program for multi-family apartmet buildings with 6 or more units. (Hold)

A 3.10 - Solid waste fund analysis. 

Related story: Big fee hikes proposed for trash removal

Solid waste fund runs a deficit now and requires a subsidy from the general fund.

Stoneback says the city got favorable rates from vendors for new conracts -- lower than what they are for this year. But the rates will increase with inflation in subsequent years.

Some municipalities don't have a yard waste charge -- Skokie, for example. But Glenview charges $140 a year for yard waste.

Alderman Peter Braithwaite, 2nd Ward, asks how the increases would impact the typical water bill (which carries the trash hauling fees).

Trash hauling fee would increase $16.56 a year for people with 65-gallon carts, and $37.50 for people with 95-gallon carts.

Alderman Ann Rainey, 8th Ward, says she thinks the general fund should cover the entire cost of residental waste hauling -- but says that won't fly, but would like to subsidize it at least somewhat.

Says if put garbage on the tax bill it would be deductible for homeowners who itemize deductions.

(But largest water customers are the big not-for-profits -- so for that, she says, it makes sense to have a separate charge so they pay.)

Alderman Cicely Fleming, 9th Ward, says she agrees with Rainey. Says proposed sticker fee would be excessive.

Calls the increase "not sensitive" to the population.

City Manager Wally Bobkiewicz says that with more costs and no additional revenue would have to make deeper cuts in spending.

Rainey said she's OK with raising the property tax to cover the cost.

Bobkiewicz says will come up with alternative funding scenarios in time for next meeting.

Alderman Tom Suffredin, 6th Ward, asks for more information on what other communities are doing.

Bill Kenny of Lakeshore says service is always different across different communities -- backdoor, curbside -- various other service levels.

Rainey says she'd like to see cost comparison between having the fees on the water bill and having it on the property tax bill.

A 4 - Senior meal program contract with Hoffman House catering. Approved.

A 5 - Development agreement for ETHS home at 2005 Grey Ave. Approved.

A 6 - Sale of real property at 2005 Grey. Approved.

A 7 - Sale of 1714-1718 Chicago Ave.

One speaker opposes the sale.

Approved 5-0. Related story.

A 8 - Chicago Avenue speed limit reduction.

Approved.

A 9 - Sale of surplus property. Approved. Related story.

A 10 - Cut in boot program trigger from 5 to 3 tickets. 

Rainey says the change will reduce the financial pain for people who get the boot, by making the cost of paying off the debt less.

Rainey suggests more signage to warn people about street cleaning towing.

Braithwaite says this will impact people with multiple cars -- says it's happened to him before.

Deputy City Manager Erika Storlie says tracking tickets based on the registered owner is the only way to have the tickets still an obligation after a vehicle is sold.

Approved.

Three discussion items (APW 1, 2 and 3) held for a future budget discussions because of the late hour.

Meeting adjourned at 7:15 p.m.

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