By Sean Ditch
The City Council of Lebanon held its first city council meeting of September on Monday the 11th at 6:30 PM inside city hall. A good size crowd of people attended.
The meeting kicked off with citizen John Wright addressing the council with information about decorating the Public Square Park around December to celebrate the holiday season. Discussion was then held then, although a vote isn’t usually held when a member of the audience speaks at council meetings, an exception was made in this case, since the decorations had taken place for years before. A motion was made, and all members of the council voted in favor of the decorations.
Alderperson George Fero shared his thoughts on the events that took place at the Committee Meeting on Tuesday, September 5th. “At last week’s committees meeting the council received an earful from a large contingent of residents of Lebanon. This was the largest group of residents who attended any meeting committee, or council, since I have been a member of this body. Their message was loud and clear, the city leaders really are not business, nor even resident, friendly and responsive. This is no news to me, but finally there was an upswell of public concern. We have individuals who will bend over backwards to help, but are thwarted by others who are intentionally or unintentionally holding the city back…Businesses, and even residents, new to Lebanon looking for a place to open shop have no way to easily find out what they need to have and do to establish themselves here.”
Fero went on to further explain in more depth how he felt in a full statement that can be read online on heraldpubs.com.
After Fero’s statement, in which all alderpersons commented and shared similar agreements with Fero, the committee reports were shared. The streets and alleys shared a few items that were each unanimously voted on by the council: A resolution for a short-term agreement between Lebanon and TWM Engineering concerning the Lebanon-Herman Street Resurfacing Project, which would be funded by a grant by the department was passed. Another was the purchasing as a sole source an 80 inch Vibratory Roller/Smooth drum from Bobcat of St. Louis for $12,046.80. Lastly, A Resolution Authorizing and Directing Application to the 2023 Safe Routes to School Program for Assistance, for the Purpose of Constructing Sidewalks to Connect Existing Pedestrian Accommodations was also passed. This would build sidewalks on Mary Jane Street as well as South Horner Street.
The Ordinance Committee presented for approval an Ordinance Establishing the Lebanon Business District; Approving a Business District Plan; Authorizing the Imposition and Collection of a Sales Tax Within Such Business District; And Approving Certain Actions In Connection with the Establishment of Such Business District, all as one vote. All alderpersons voted in favor.
Public Property had a number of items presented for approval by the council. Each were also approved unanimously: A recommendation allowing Looking Glass Playhouse use of the Mini Park Pavilion and gazebo for Haunted Happenings on Friday, October 20th and Saturday, October 21st, with setup beginning at 5:00 PM and 6:00 PM, respectively. Public Property also recommended the purchase of 12 new evergreen color trash receptacles with no lids for the Brick Street sidewalks for the cost of $7,500.00, with the money coming from the Non-Home Rule Tax Fund. The committee also passed replacement of the existing fence around McKendree Park Lift station with a new white vinyl fence for $3,600.00, with the money coming from the Maintenance-Sewer department. Lastly, the committee passed plans to purchase a Ford F-150 Truck from Lou Fusz in Highland, Illinois for the Water/Sewer Department at a cost of $44,992.00, the money coming from Capital Outlay.
In Unfinished Business, the Collection of Funds by the Knights of Columbus and Lebanon Lions Club at certain intersections in town were unanimously approved. The intersections for the Knights of Columbus are the 4 way stop at Monroe Street and West St. Louis, as well as the 4 way stop at Route 4, Route 50, and McAllister Street, with the dates to be finalized by City Clerk Luanne Holper. The intersections for Lebanon Lions Club will be the same intersections as above, with the dates and times being Friday, October 13th from 7:00 AM to 6:30 PM and Saturday, October 14th from 9:00 AM-12:00 PM.
George Fero’s full statement can once again be found at https://www.heraldpubs.com/2023/09/11/statement-from-lebanon-alderperson-george-fero/ and the next city council meeting will be Monday, September 25th at 6:30 PM inside city hall.