Lake Rec Committee prepares for 2017 camping season

Lake Rec Committee prepares for 2017 camping season

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Carlinville’s Lake Recreation Committee met on Feb. 16 to discuss their budget as well as preparations that needed to be taken care of prior to reopening the Carlinville campgrounds, such as personnel and start dates.

The campground will be going through an electrical upgrade in which every location will have 50, 30 and 20 amp service to accommodate to any size camper, and the cost will be under the mandatory $20,000 for bids, according to the specs from Brian Mitchell, owner of Mitchell Brothers Electric Inc. The committee decided to go through Mitchell’s organization for this upgrade.

The campground manager will start on March 1 and work through Nov. 25 for the 2017 camping season, and the campground will be open from April 1 to Oct. 31. The committee decided to discuss manager salary on the open floor; the current salary is $21,000. Members approved raising it to $23,000. The hourly wage was also increased for the campground co-host from $11 to $12, and he was offered a lot. Budget Officer Claudia Leonatti said that the committee needed to make sure to properly report the lot to the IRS. A salary ordinance would also have to be put in place.

One of the members of the audience spoke during public comment regarding residents selling their lots and how the committee could assist in easing that process. Although Downey explained that the committee wasn’t discussing any changes to the leases (since that was one suggestion the audience member made), he did state that they are reinvesting money into the area in order to improve conditions.

Boat stickers have been ordered in the same colors as the previous year. However, campground manager Mark Boatman knows those who regularly use boats on the lake and will check to make sure boaters have the current stickers. Downey also noted that prices for the stickers would only be differentiated by in-town versus out-of -own prices rather than including horsepower as a factor.

Downey said the committee was looking into getting cabins on the lake, so people could rent them out. Litchfield does a similar thing with their campground, and according to Boatman, those cabins are rented out on a frequent basis. Overall, the cost was $7,000 for one cabin; the committee unanimously approved this purchase.

Regarding past due leases, two owners have surrendered to the city, and there has been one renewal. Downey said there were about 10 more to look into; approximately 60 to 70 leases were past due overall. The committee also discussed lease renewals for four property owners, and two more property surrenders.

The committee reviewed their budget line by line, and no significant changes or issues were cited.