Mayor Wendy Ottens called the meeting to order at 5:30 PM and directed the Deputy Clerk to call the roll. On roll call, Alderperson King, Banker, Mask, VanKampen, Nederhoff, Brondyke, and VanZuiden were present. Alderperson Hunt was absent. Also in attendance was Attorney Shirk, City Administrator Clark, Zoning Officer Sikkema, Treasurer Fosdick, and Deputy Clerk Garibay. Visitors were also present.
RECOGNITION OF VOLUNTEERS
Alderperson King recognizes, Eric Sikkema as the Fire Chief for Fulton, and the entire Fire Department. He states that the fire department is an organization that does a lot to protect our community. They spend countless hours day and night, away from their families to give to their community. Mayor Wendy says the entire community appreciates their dedication and service. City Administrator also gives recognition to Eric Sikkema and introduces him to the Council and visitors as the newly hired Public Works Director. Eric and his family our residents of Fulton, and Eric brings 11 years of experience to the department as he previously was employed by the Port Byron Public Works Department. We welcome them to our community.
COMMUNICATION FROM VISITORS
Thomas Warner Jr, a member of the Eastern Star Chapter of the Masonic Lodge invites the public to attend a public gathering on October 23rd, from 2-4 pm. The gathering is in honor of the Chapter’s 125th anniversary, which is on October 15th of this year. The picnic style lunch will be located at the Masonic Lodge and will be open to the public.
Larry Russell states that the county has received monies from the American Rescue Plan. There is monies available to organizations and to contact local authorities for inquiries and how to apply for assistance.
Jane Orman Luker states that on October 6th the American Countess Boat will be docking in the area and they will be touring Fulton again. She states that the Fulton destination is one of the favorite tours of the passengers.
EmmaLea Bittner, Impact Program Coordinator from Sauk Valley Community College explains the ins and outs of the program. It is an earned tuition program, and thanks to a very generous donor from Fulton – she explains how it is impacting our local students.
As of right now there are 51 students from Fulton that are enrolled. The have already volunteered 327 hours locally. Each student must participate in 100 hours of community service before their high school graduation (25 hours per year). They must also apply for at least one other local/state or national scholarship and complete the FASA.
As they continue their education at Sauk Valley Community College under the paid tuition program they must maintain a 2.0 GPA per semester, be enrolled in a certificate, degree or transfer program and continue to participate in the 25 hours of community service per year.
Approve the August 23, 2021, and August 24, 2021, Council Minutes. Ald. Mask motioned, seconded by Ald. VanKampen. No Discussion to follow. Roll call vote 7 yes, 0 no. Motion approved.
Approve the August Treasurer’s Report. Ald. VanZuiden motioned, seconded by Ald. King. No discussion. Roll call vote, 7 yes, 0 no. Motion approved.
Approve the September Bill List. Ald. King motioned, seconded by Ald. Mask. No Discussion. Roll call vote, 7 yes, 0 no. Motion approved.
Public Bid Opening for Sale of Property owned by the City of Fulton (Lot 1 and 10 in Block 5, West Fractions, in the City of Fulton, Whiteside County, IL – which is the intersection of 4th Street and 10th Avenue).
Mayor Wendy publicly opens the (one) bid that was received. The bid is in the amount of $3,001.00, which is contingent on the approval of being issued a Class A Liquor License. The interested parties would be willing to put down 10% earnest monies on the date of the sale. The bidders are Manreet and Melanie Kalyan.
Alderperson VanKampen inquires if the property has been appraised. Mayor Wendy emphasized that we did not have an appraisal since the city advertised the sale of property in the local newspaper, one time per week for three weeks.
Jane Orman Luker asks how we knew that this property was for sale. Mayor Wendy states again that it was advertised in the paper for three weeks. Jane asks about the historic downtown ordinance and will it be followed. City Administrator states this is a very vague ordinance, and it would have to be discussed by the zoning officer and the council.
Manreet and Melanie Kalyan present their ideas of the project. The project would be a Brewery with food options. Their target is not to have a bar atmosphere but to accommodate to a couple or family night out. They pass out a business drawing of the proposed business which would include inside and outside seating. The other lot in the purchase would be for a parking area. They are also tentatively purchasing the next two buildings on the south side of the empty lots. These will also accommodate the new business. Their time frame for construction will be concluded by next summer if all goes well with supplies and the current supply and demand chain. The square footage of the proposed business will be 2500-3000 square feet with a 14-foot ceiling to accommodate the equipment.
Zoning Officer Sikkema invites the Kalyans to speak with him to see what is allowed in the downtown business district, although the city council has the final say on what can be constructed. There is also a parking regulation which is somewhat determined by the number of employees, but it is assumed that this Is what the extra lot will be used for.
The Council will further discuss in closed session.
Approve City Administrator’s Contract. Alderperson Mask asks that this be discussed in closed session and then come out into regular session to vote. All are in favor to discuss first before approval.
Approve Halloween Trick or Treat to be held on Saturday, October 30, 2021, from 6-8 pm to coincide with Clinton’s Trick or Treat hours. Ald. Keith motioned, seconded by Ald. VanZuiden. No Discussion. Roll call vote, 7 yes, 0 no. Motion approved.
Discussion for” Grant for Traffic Safety “– IDOT. Safe Route to School. City Administrator Clark states that these are grants that are being offered, with a 25% match. The entire project must be paid up front by the city and then reimbursed from IDOT. We will do some research on these projects and come up with some ideas and submit the grant soon, possibly for extra signage, speed signs and possibly a sidewalk program.
Discussion for Council Meeting Changes – two meetings per month verses one. Mayor Wendy states this would need another ordinance change. Ald. VanKampen says we need more time for discussion and would like to have 2 meetings. Ald. VanZuiden states that we just changed the ordinance a few months ago, and everyone agreed to the one meeting a month. He is opposed to another change. Ald. Banker agrees with the one meeting, stating we can always call another special meeting if needed. Ald. King would like 2 meetings per month. He states that we need more time. He said he was not here for the last vote when the meeting was changed, he would not have voted for one meeting. Ald. Mask says that there is too much business to conduct in one meeting. Ald. Nederhoff says he can live with - either way. Ald. Brondyke thinks two meetings would allow for more discussion on the business at hand. The council will vote at the next meeting on the proposed change.
Finance – N/A
Economic Development – they met and discussed the website and updates, and changes are being made by Tori Wade. City Administrator Clark states that the new Tourism Liaison, Lesley Webster, will update and monitor our social media pages and is heading up the tourism aspect of Fulton. She currently is employed by the Clinton Chamber and oversees the Convention and Visitors Bureau, but we will collaborate with them to employ her services here in Fulton. We are currently in negotiations with the Chamber for the contracted services.
Further discussion continued the Industrial Center, Downtown improvements.
Parks and Recs – Ald. VanKampen says she is scheduling a parks and rec meeting for October 14th at 4:30 p.m.
Public Safety – N/A
Marina – Ald. VanKampen is scheduling a meeting for October 21st at 4:30 p.m.
Zoning – N/A
MAYOR’S REPORT – Need more discussion on a solution to the trash cans and prompt removal after pickup. Trash and Trailers in residential areas.
The AmericInn will be having a re-grand opening on October 20, 2021, from 9-10 a.m. They hope all councilmen will attend.
CITY ADMINISTRATOR’S REPORT – INCLUDED
CHIEF OF POLICE REPORT – INCLUDED
ADJOURN TO CLOSED SESSION TO DISCUSS PERSONNEL AND SALE OF PROPERTY -
Ald. Mask motioned, seconded by Ald. VanKampen to enter closed session at 6:55 p.m. Roll call vote, 7 yes, 0 no. motion approved.
RETURN TO REGULAR COUNCIL MEETING AT 7:17 p.m.
Approve City Administrator’s Contract. Ald. King motioned, seconded by Ald. VanKampen. Discussion to follow. Contract will be for 2 years instead of 1 stated. Salary will be $89,000 per year with 5 weeks’ vacation, 3 personal days, and sick leave according to the personnel handbook. Administrator will be able to keep the City issued phone and number that he currently has. Work week will be a minimum of 40 hours. Contract will begin October 4, 2021, with the new pay period. Roll call vote, 7 yes, 0 no. Motion approved.
Council has agreed that they will have a continuation meeting to be held on October 12, 2021, at 5:30 p.m. for a motion to approve the sale of city owned property, and an ordinance to change from one meeting per month to two meetings per month.
Ald. King motioned, seconded by Ald. Banker. All in favor. Meeting adjourned at 7:25 p.m.
Tammy L Garibay