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

A packet with information on tonight’s agenda items is available here.

5:49 p.m. Meeting called to order. Minutes approved. Payroll and bills approved.

Insurance consultingcontact with Mesirow Financeal Services approved.

Free Holiday Parking in downtown garages approved.

CTA police funding approved.

5:52 p.m. Rock salt agremeents with District 65 and 202 approved.

Agreement with Village of Skokie for shared use of fire training facility. Fire chief says improved training opportunities may help improve the city’s fire insurance rating. Says haven’t had own training facility since old fire station #1 (now fire headquarters on Lake Street) was renovated over 10 years ago.

Alderman Ann Rainey, 8th Ward, asks whether Skokie had built a facility that was inadequate and thus needs rehabilitation money from Evanston. Assistant City Manager Marty Lyons says given what the facility is used for it will need ongoing maintenance.

Fire Chief Greg Klaiber says the facility is not currently being used for live fire training now — but it can be used for many other types of training. Says even if had built own tower would have to do maintenance on it periodically.

Klaiber says now department does training twice a year at a facility in Glenview for large scale incidents. Can only send one company at a time out there because its far away from Evanston. With Skokie will get training 12 times a year. And they’ll be close enough to respond to incidents that happen in Evanston during the training.


6:06 p.m. Transfer of $704K in motor  fuel tax funds to general street maintenance. Approved.

Agreement to approve SWANCC as a listed entity for health insurance. Rainey asks whether city gets anything out of this? Lyons says Evanston is self insured. SWANCC will pay its own premiums. Evanston’s risk is capped at $30K. Will help control costs at SWANCC. City Manager Wally Bobkiewicz says SWANCC board is looking into comparative cost options as major SWANCC agreements come to a conclusion over then next 15 years or so.


Amend civilc service commission rules. Approved

Add “Drive” as an available street designation. Approved.

6:14 p.m. IEPA water pollution control program borrowing uathorization. Approved.

Liquor license approval for 27 Live. Approved.

Liquor license reduction. Mecafresh closed. Approved.

Liquor license approval for Wine Goddess. Approved.

Liquor license approval for Cheesie’s. Approved.

Liquor license approval for Clarke’s on Orrington. Approved.

Fire lane agreement for Northwestern University visitor center. Approved.

6:18 p.m. Parkway signage discussion. Ordinance now prohibits them.

Suzette Robinson says residents have concerns about equity of enforcement — sports events perhaps treated more easily than others? Robinson says as pratical matter, public works doesn’t remove signs over the weekend — so garage sale signs tend to stay up, until after the sales are over.

Says mayor asked her to ask council to consider possible exemptions for some types of signage.

Alderman Coleen Burrus, 9th Ward, asks whether exempt groups would need to get some sort of permit from the city? If not, she says, could end up with signs everywhere all the time. Wants to know where the signs would be located.

Alderman Delores Holmes, 5th Ward, if not for profit serves entire community, wouldn’t they want signs all over town? Says for yard sales people tend to just put up signs close to the sale location.

Burrus says fears sign litter throughout town.

Rainey says she doesn’t see any need to change the rules. Don’t think a change would have any effect. I don’t want to spend another second talking about it. Says big-shot judges leave signs up forever and we don’t seem to take them down.

Alderman Jane Grover, 7th Ward, suggests putting violation notice stickers on the signs and send them a bill.

Committee decides to recommend no action.

Meeting adjourned at 6:28 p.m. Planning and Development Committee to start at 7:15 p.m.

Bill Smith is the editor and publisher of Evanston Now.

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