Kraft threatens lawsuit

Kraft threatens lawsuit

CARLINVILLE (Oct. 5, 2017) – During the June 19 meeting of Carlinville City Council, a motion was approved to move forward with the Regional Water Concept. During the Aug. 7 regular meeting, with all aldermen present, a motion to appoint Alderman Cindy Campbell as Carlinville’s representative on the Regional Water Board receive unanimous approval with Campbell abstaining.

After attending a meeting of the Regional Water Board Sept. 25 in Jerseyville, Campbell reported the group decided to name the water entity the Illinois Alluvial Regional Water Company, which will be formed in the same model as the Gateway Regional Water Company.

Campbell explained there were some people in the audience at the Sept. 25 meeting who were opposed to her voting as a representative of the city of Carlinville in certain matters. Among those she named were Alderman Beth Toon, Sherry Brianza, Camille Brotze and John Kraft of Edgar County Watchdogs. Even though Toon voted in favor of Campbell’s representation in July, she was among those questioning Campbell’s authority.

According to the minutes of the Sept. 25 meeting,  a question from the guests in attendance asking if the three current members have been given appropriate authority to make decisions, sign contracts and commit funds on behalf of their respective organizations.  Steve Ruppert of the Fosterburg Water District and Allen Davenport of the Jersey County Rural Water District, both stated they did. Campbell stated she would go back to the Carlinville council to “clarify what rights their original motion granted to her, prior to the next meeting.”

Campbell expressed particular concern when Kraft threatened legal action if she voted with the other water board members.

Each of the communities/water entities on the regional board committed seed money to be spent to move the regional concept forward. Carlinville’s portion is $30,000 which came from the grant that paid for the water study. While there was some concern whether those funds were actually in the city’s possession, research conducted the following day verified the funds were deposited into the city’s account at CNB on Aug. 22.

Alderman Randy Bilbruck expressed his concern about not yet having solid numbers with regard to the financial commitment the city will have to make. He noted that the city of Jerseyville had not yet made a commitment to the regional concept.

While Jerseyville is not yet committed to the project, according to the minutes of the Sept. 25 meeting, other area communities have expressed serious interest and had representatives in attendance at the meeting. Those communities include Dorchester, Bunker Hill and Carrollton. Interest from Carrollton is of particular importance to Carlinville since a water line to Greene County would make access easier for Carlinville. The water line could run west along Route 108 instead of all the way to Fosterburg or Jersey County.

Solid numbers will not be available until all communities/water entities have committed to the project. If more communities are involved at the ground level, expenses can be shared, which would likely mean savings for each community.

After the Carlinville Council held a lengthy discussion on the matter, during which time Toon repeatedly questioned Campbell’s authority, the council approved a motion to allow Campbell to fully represent the city of Carlinville on the Regional Water Board. She will be able to act in the same capacity as the other voting members.

Campbell stressed that the reason the city is part of the regional concept is because the council voted to do so. She noted that those who were opposed to the regional concept (Toon, Bilbruck and Alderman Kim Heigert) did not have enough votes in support of their choice.

During the public comment portion of the meeting, Matt Turley presented the council of a list of his reasons why the city should not be a part of the Regional Water Concept. He explained his belief that Litchfield would be a better choice. Since the Litchfield option had already been rejected and no motion was made to reverse the June vote, his presentation prompted no further discussion.

In other business

Following a presentation from Macoupin County Enterprise Zone Administrator Mary Beth Bellm, the council approved a pair of motions to allow the property that is the intended site for the Cottages at Carlinville, an Alzheimer’s living facility, to be allowed into the enterprise zone, contingent on the property’s purchase by Greer Management Services.

The council approved an ordinance granting a variance at 502 West First South for the construction of a garage.

A motion was approved declaring structure at 224 West 1st South as an unsafe property.

The council agreed to accept the low bid from UCB of 2.45 percent on a four year loan to purchase a Caterpillar backhoe.

Correspondence from Ss. Mary and Joseph Church, M&M Shrine, Deanne Berrey, Ameren Illinois and the Macoupin County CEO program were all placed on file.

Approval was given to the minutes of the previous meeting and to a motion to pay the city’s bills, including those from the Lake, Lake Adhoc and Lake Watershed committees.

CAPTION: Matt Turley presents and argument against Carlinville’s membership in the Regional Water Concept, now official known as the Illinois Alluvial Regional Water Company.