Report to the People # 71 by Philip W. Chapman, County Board District Three

The purpose of this report is to provide information and aid in government transparency.

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Grants Committee: I attended the Grants Committeeon December 10. I argued for a grant from UDAG interest (this means tax payer dollars aren’t used) to the Southwestern Illinois Development Council originally Co Founded by Ralph Korte, of Korte Construction. The Development Council membership includes 200 major corporations.

Judiciary – Facilities Issue: Detention Center: Previously, The Judiciary Committee advised to upgrade and keep the Detention Center Building due to cost effectiveness. I voted on Finance Committee to earmark $185,000 for new air-handlers and a boiler. The board along with Judge Hylla will have to decide on how best fund the rest of a proposed $935,000 upgrade (which is cost effective compared to the 7.5 to 8 million dollars for a new Detention Center. I discussed funding options with Judge Hylla and Auditor’s staff on December 13.

Finance Issues: I attended the December 12 Finance Meeting.

(1) MESD Infrastructure: The County received 75 million dollars to upgrade the levies system. The county must now decide how best to fund 16 million in needed infrastructure improvements to include dredging five lakes, pump repair, and improvement of the confluence of two major watersheds.

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(2) Comp Time and Vacation Accrual: I expressed concern that established comp time and vacation procedures might not currently be followed. If so, this seems unfair to staff and to tax payers.

Tax Cycle Meeting: I Chaired the Tax Cycle Meeting December 12.

(1) Possible Quadrennial Assessment Realignment: The Chief County Assessor reported on a possible Quadrennial Township Assessment Realignment. The advantages of change would be; (A) greater ease in conducting assessments, and, (B) less cost to the county.

(2) Fee Study: The Committee decided to meet again on December 19 to consider approval of a Fee Study for the Recorders Office to accommodate new state statutes.

(3) Economic Indicators and a Robust Economy: Timely tax payments, early disbursals of revenue to taxing bodies by the Treasurer’s Office, and the number of Deeds of Conveyance reported by the Recorders Office indicate a robust economy.

Transportation Committee: I attended the Transportation Committee December 12. I voted for grant from Motor Fuel Tax Funds for the Southwestern Illinois Planning Commission. The Commission remains instrumental in finding money for in county infra-structure needs.