Valorie Eversole Daily Union Editor
Shelbyville Daily Union
---- — The Shelby County Senior Center received some financial support from the Shelbyville City Council Monday evening.
Andrew Cichalewski, representing the Senior Center Board, asked for a $5,000 donation from the city to help with expenses for the center.
“We do monthly fundraisers, trips, have the store (Senior Center Plaza Boutique), received memorials to help with the expenses,” Cichalewski said. “We pay two wages and utilities. We’re just surviving.”
Commissioner Bill Shoaff countered with a $4,500 donation.
Commissioner Gib Smart further countered the request. He said he believes the City funds should be used for City expenses and infrastructure and not for organizations. Smart also presented to the council the ordinance authorizing a commission for the Senior Center.
Cichalewski told the council that the building was constructed 12 years ago from a grant from the Department on Aging and an agreement with the city was made to build in Forest Park and that the city would supply water and sewer.
“We (the Center) support city activities. It’s a give and take program. This is service to seniors to gather together. This is a place that’s home for our senior citizens,” Cichalewski said.
He added that a board was formed to manage the finances of the center and that a commission is not necessary.
“I’m not trying to kill the program. I’m trying to save it. I think a commission would help,” Smart said.
“We want to keep the center open,” Cichalewski said.
The ordinance will be reviewed and discussed at a future council meeting. Smart said he would vote no on the donation motion unless the ordinance was part of the motion.
The council voted 4-1 approving the donation.
City engineer Alan Spesard and General Dacey Trail chairman Jerry Yockey presented news about the grant awarded for the Phase 8 of the trail which travels from North Washington to North First to North Morgan and east on Sixth Street to the Blyman Addition road in Glenwood Cemetery.
The federally funded grant provides $842,630 for the $1,053,000 project. The city will fund the other 20 percent of the project. The project will begin in summer 2015.
The Phase 7 “connector phase” of the trail along Route 16 west of the Kaskaskia River bridge into town is currently being completed.
Phase 9 involves the Blyman Addition road north to East Ninth Street and is included in the Ninth Street project this summer.
Phase 8 will involve a lot of work on North Morgan Street to widen the street to accommodate both a bike path and parking, according to Yockey.
“The benefits will be the replacement of sidewalks on both sides along the route, road surface improvements, fix the storm drainage problems, and sets us up for future grants for streetscape,” Spesard said. “But it’s one of those project that will cause a lot of disruption to people along Morgan.”
Shoaff asked if trees that would need to be taken out along the city boulevard could be replaced with ornamental trees. Spesard said this could be possible.
“The grant was written without a lot of details, so we can do a lot of things,” Spesard said.
Yockey said the next step would be to get agreements together and let for bids.
Both Yockey and Spesard expressed thanks to State Senator Chapin Rose, State Representative Adam Brown, and U.S. Representative John Shimkus for their letters of support for the project.
In other business, Shoaff reported that one permit was granted from the EPA and the city is waiting on a second permit to remove a water line from a sewer line on South Third and South Fifth streets.
“We will need to hire a contractor for the boring. The city workers can do the other work,” Shoaff said. “This is something we just got to do.”
The council gave the nod for Police Chief David Tallman to sell a confiscated vehicle. The city had taken ownership of the vehicle.
In old business, City Attorney Jack Kiley reported that a default judgment was handed down in court against the owner of the deteriorating Lidster Hotel who failed to appear. A $500 per day fine was also imposed against the owner.
Smart reported that want to buy the property of the burned out home on North Second Street and that paperwork is being completed for the buildings on North Morgan and West Main streets.
Commissioner Thom Schafer reported that the building next to the north alley in the 100 block of East Main has been stabilized but that the real problem of the building still needs to be addressed. He discouraged the idea of opening the alley to traffic.
In new business, Shoaff reported that the fee for sewer cleanout will be raised from $75 to $100.
Shoaff reported that a Boy Scout asked to replace veterans markers in Glenwood Cemetery as part of his Eagle Scout project.
“There are 83 markers that need to be set in concrete,” Shoaff said.
Shoaff also reported that a sewer plant return pump needs to be replaced at a cost of $8,565.
Schafer reported that new drains have been cut in areas where water drainage problems are the worst in an effort “to get water to move quicker.”