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Recap: City Council

Here's a recap of our live coverage of tonight's Evanston City Council meeting.

The meeting is scheduled to begin about 9:15 p.m.

A packet with information on tonight's agenda items is available online.

Meeting called to order at 9:21 p.m.

Alderman Tendam is absent tonight.

City Manager Wally Bobkiewicz says city has received word that it's been awarded $200K for boat ramp improvements. That's more than a quarter of the grant funds awarded statewide this year.

City Clerk Rodney Greene says there will be a special town meeting, called by petition, at 6:45 p.m. Tuesday (tomorrow). City manager (and acting township supervisor) says the items on the agenda were only relevant if the township referendum had NOT passes, but since it did, he expects it to be a very short meeting.

Public Comment

Junad Rizki says he believes Northwestern wants the city to move the water reservoir. Says two engineering reports say the lowest cost solution would be to replace the top of the tank. Objects to city spending $86K on a new consulting report.

Says if the tank is to be moved, Northwestern should pay for it.

Calls for audit of city water department. Claims city isn't making money on its existing water sales contracts — has no confidence that new sales deals would be any better.

Jerri Ann Garl, 1607 Dobson, complains that grant request for "safe routes to school" cameras was expanded over what was initially approved by the City Council.

Special order of business

— side notes —

Assistant City Manager Marty Lyons says, reference the operation of the water utility — that Moody's has maintained the water fund's triple-A rating (the city's overall rating was cut a while back to one notch lower than that).

City Manager says state waterworks association have given Evanston its first annual award as the best managed waterworks in the state.

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FY2013 Year End Financial Report

Related story

Lyons says spending for the general fund was just slightly over budget — 0.21% –(mainly because of late-year overtime costs), revenue was a 2.76 percent over budget.

Ends up with a $2.2 million surplus … most of which will be used for transfers to other funds.

Bobkiewicz says will have what hope will be final snow number next week — believes it will be significant. Also wants to do more street repaving work because of damage from winter storms. Says that too will be significant.

Consent agenda

We'll note anything taken off the consent agenda.

  • CDM Smith reservoir study contract taken off consent agenda at request of Alderman Fiske.
  • Historic preservation agency grant off consent agenda (split vote in committee)

Consent agenda approved.

Reservoir study

Fiske says she's not comfortable voting for the new study, not having seen the NU study.

Braithwaite seconds.

Bobkiewicz says believes the additional work is necessary, concerned about concerns over the roof. Don't want to be penny wise and pound foolish. Don't have the luxury to have the facility cave in from the roof or the sides.

Rainey says it was explainedd to us that the issues Rizki raised would be addressed in the study.

So it's held until the next council meeting.

Historic preservation recording grant

Rainey says this is like killing a flea with a sledgehammer. Says has only been one or two instances where this has been an issue over the past decade.

Application approved 7-1.

Little Beans Cafe special use

Wynne moves to give final approval tonight.

Approved unanimously.

835 Chicago Ave. special use

Wynne moves to refer it back to committee for further discussion at April 28 meeting.

Call of the wards

Braithwaite … Penny Park redesign meeting Thursday night.

Grover … says political yard signs and their metal spikes can go into the recycling bin.

City Council public meeting ends at 10:20 p.m. … and council moves to go into executive session.

 

 

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