By Steve Robinson | February 18, 2019 - 10:58 pm
Posted in Category: Normal Town Council, The Normalite

NORMAL – For 23 years, the Twin Cities’ Not In Our Town Committee has been tasked with seeing to it the Town of Normal and City of Bloomington demonstrated to residents and visitors alike that they were inclusive communities. But also in those 23 years, NIOT had never produced written updates to the Town on progress made concerning those efforts.

That changed Monday, as NIOT Committee Member Mike Matejka gave a brief presentation at Monday’s regularly-scheduled Normal Town Council meeting in Council Chambers on the fourth floor of Uptown Station.

In addition to giving some historical background to the work NIOT had done over the past 23 years, Matejka pointed out special events NIOT had hosted in an effort to make young people more aware of opportunities for them. Among those was a “Listening Session” held at Miller Park in Bloomington last summer. Among the goals for that event, Matejka said, “Was to make young people feel part of the community, particularly those of lower income.”

He said NIOT works to make sure students who feel alienated in some way are made to feel welcome within the community. He credited local school administrators with supporting the group’s effort in that area.

Design Waivers For Trail East Building Approved: Before adjourning to executive session, Council members unanimously approved a resolution granting waivers from the Town’s Uptown Design Review Code and supplemental Roundabout guidelines to approve a preliminary plan for the proposed Trail East building, to be located at the eastern edge of the Roundabout.

Representatives for the project’s developer, Iowa-based Bush Construction, introduced their concept for the proposed five-story building at the Council’s Jan. 7 meeting. Among the highlights of the proposed new building are an arcade design, storefront transparency, and several public entrances off of College Ave., Constitution Blvd., and Beaufort St.

A public hearing on the proposed building was held by the Uptown Design Review Commission on Feb. 11, but no residents addressed the Commission. At that hearing, Commission members voted 4-0 in support of the project as proposed with the waivers required for arcade design, storefront transparency, design for a tower which will be part of the structure, and floor heights.

Commissioners approved the project, also, on the condition the developer submit a signage package, landscaping plan, and an exterior lighting plan which the Commission would review in the future.

Mayor Chris Koos did have one suggestion for representatives of the developer who attended the meeting. He said he noted the building has an all-brick look to it along College Ave. He asked the developer’s representatives to consider finding a way to break up that look.

Rivian’s Progress Noted: A Chicago Tribune article published Sunday addressed the Town’s continued hopes for the success of Rivian Automotive, an electric car manufacturer which bought and took over use of the former Mitsubishi Motors of America plant on Normal’s west side. The plant is being used now, with roughly 70 employees currently, and once production of electric cars gets into high gear, it’s anticipated there will be 1,000 employees at the site.

The Tribune article pointed out that a $700 million investment spearheaded by Amazon, announced on Friday, had managed to raise about $1.4 billion for Rivian which would allow the auto manufacturer to begin production next year.

“This year, as they start to develop the assembly line, that will ramp up manufacturing pretty significantly,” Koos said after the Council session. “When they are ready to produce, I think they said they would be at 500 jobs.” He added it was his understanding from what Rivian officials have told him that as production increases, the numbers of staff needed will increase.

When the company negotiated with the Town, Rivian officials estimated rolling out the first vehicles off the assembly line sometime in the fourth quarter of this year. But the company has had to push that deadline back slightly, to sometime in the first quarter of 2020.

By a unanimous vote last February, Council members approved an ordinance abating the 2017 property tax levy for Rivian. Doing so was in accordance with the 2016 economic incentive agreement the Town signed with the auto manufacturer. To receive the abatement, Rivian successfully completed a couple of stipulations sought by the Town: To complete its purchase of the former MMNA facility; and invest at least $500,000 in project expenses, but did not include the cost of the former MMNA property. At the time of that agreement, the Town estimated the abated property tax for the Rivian land was equal to $74,900 for the Town and $32,300 for the Normal Public Library.

Concerning the three-month delay, Koos said, “In terms of meeting their obligations for sales tax rebates, they’ve done that handily and continue to do so. That won’t be an issue.”

Omnibus Agenda Items Approved: Omnibus agenda items approved by the Council included:

• Approval of minutes of the regular meeting held Feb. 4, 2019.

• Approval of Town of Normal expenditures for payment as of Feb. 13, 2019.

• A resolution authorizing an agreement for construction materials testing services for the 2019 construction season with Bloomington-based Ramsey Geotechnical Engineering LLC (RGE).

• A resolution to appropriate $526,648 of Motor Fuel Tax (MFT) funds for the resurfacing of various streets for the 2018 MFT Street Resurfacing Project.

• A resolution conditionally approving the final plat of Lot 1 of resubdivision of Lot 2 in the first addition of North-Land Commercial Subdivision and Lot 7 in the fifth addition to North-Land Commercial Subdivision by expedited process (Menards, 900 Greenbriar Drive).

• An ordinance renaming Duff Street to Julia Duff Street.

• A resolution considering the release of executive session minutes from June 19, 2017 and October 1, 2018.

By Steve Robinson | February 15, 2019 - 10:52 pm
Posted in Category: The Normalite, Unit 5

NORMAL – To look at the pictures taken of both the tennis courts at Normal Community High School and the parking lot at Parkside Junior High School, one gets the feeling time has not helped, and that both surfaces are in need of immediate repairs. In fact, during at least one previous meeting before their regularly-scheduled session Feb. 13, members of Normal-based Unit 5 School Board had seen photos of the conditions of both locations as the district considered tackling life safety projects.

At both locations, running cracks and deep gaps between those cracks abound.

As part of the Feb. 13 session, Board members held a public hearing to determine concerns by the public before board members voted to agree to spend Life Safety dollars to repair those locations. Meta Mickens-Baker was the only Board member who to addressed the issue before the Board took a vote to seek bids for the repairs, stating that looking at photos taken of both surfaces, “In looking at the photos, they definitely need repair, and are a potential hazard.” She said that was particularly true of the tennis court at NCHS. If it wasn’t repaired soon, she told Board members, “I’m afraid we’d have to close it because of the likelihood of students having a real injury” while playing there.

Joe Adelman, operations manager for the district added to the Board’s conversation on such repairs, explaining two other schools, Parkside Elementary and Hudson Elementary, are being looked at for potential future repairs to their parking lots, as well. He added he and his staff are aware that parking surfaces at “all 30 of our building sites, including all 22 of our schools, need attention.”

Before the hearing closed, Board President Barry Hitchins reminded Board members that at a future meeting, they will get a chance to approve bids for the projects once they come in. The district must first publish a request for proposals, or RFPs, giving contractors an opportunity to submit bids to receive the work.

Staff Commended For Presentations Given: During comments he made during the meeting, Dr. Mark Daniel, district superintendent, commended district staff members who recently gave presentations at conferences. The first teacher commended by the superintendent for a presentation given was Parkside Junior High School teacher Naomi Kosier, She recently gave a presentation called “Reading Aloud Refreshed” at the 2019 Comprehensive Literacy and Reading Recovery Conference in Downtown Chicago Jan. 23-25. The Conference was sponsored by National Louis University. Kosier is the district’s middle school intervention coach for the district. She has taught for 23 years.

Daniel also mentioned a team of four other district staff members who jointly gave a presentation called “Sink Or Swim: Throwing A Life Preserver To English Learners In An English Emersion Setting.” That presentation was done by Amanda Armstrong of George L. Evans Junior High School, Janelle Learned of Normal Community High School, and Leslie Romagnoli from the district office, during the annual Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) Conference in Chicago.

Signed into law by President Barack Obama, the Every Student Succeeds Act is a U.S. law passed in December 2015 which governs the United States K–12 public education policy. The law replaced its predecessor, the No Child Left Behind Act, and modified but did not eliminate provisions relating to the periodic standardized tests given to students.

Energy Efficiency Projects Discussed: The session ended with a presentation concerning energy efficiency projects past and future which the district has been planning for. Board members heard from Jason Vogelbaugh, a representative of Rockford-based Alpha Controls And Services, LLC who works with the district to update its buildings, and Adelman. The company is paid by the district on a contract basis working on numerous projects, Vogelbaugh explained.

To date, Vogelbaugh and Adelman explained to Board members, the projects which have been completed thus far throughout the district include geothermal projects at PJHS and EJHS, and Energy efficiency projects undertaken at both of the district’s high schools. An energy efficiency project is slated to begin at Kingsley Junior High School in May, while a geothermal project slated for Chiddix Junior High School is in the planning stages, Adelman explained.

KJHS will present an interesting challenge for converting to geothermal, Vogelbaugh and Adelman explained, for numerous reasons. Those include the building’s age, having been opened in 1957, and undergone numerous remodeling projects over the years. The building had previously been used as NCHS, and remodeled when it was converted into a junior high school in the mid-1990s.

Among issues needing tackled are failed roof top units, failed boilers, and significant safety issues when work on the over-156,000 sq. ft. facility begins. Vogelbaugh said the geothermal project would save the district money because the current tab to heat and cool the building annually is around $282,000.

Adelman told Board members Eugene Field School remains the only “boiler operation” within the district.

Schools that have already been worked on are showing decreases in amounts of energy used to heat and power them, Vogelbaugh told Board members. Normal West, for example, he said, has reduced the amount of gas used by 10 percent. PJHS has seen the reduction in gas used come down by 99 percent, he added.

NORMAL – Two incumbent Normal Town Council members, and five of the seven challengers seeking to win a Council seat left open by another Council member’s decision not to run for another term participated in a debate hosted by Neighbors Association of Normal (NAN) Saturday, Feb. 2. The event was held in the Community Room at One Normal Plaza, the former Illinois Soldier’s and Sailor’s Children’s Home.

Two one term Council incumbents – Kathleen Lorenz and R. C. McBride – faced five of the six declared first-time candidates during the two-hour session facilitated by NAN Member Lyndetta Alsberry. Five of the six other formally announced candidates for the two seats – Alex Campbell, Dave Shields, Joel Studebaker, Karyn Smith, and Stan Nord — round out the field of candidates and also took part in the session. The sixth candidate, Pat Turner, was unable to participate due to a family emergency. Karl Sila, a write-in candidate for a Council seat, did not participate in the session formally, but was present in the audience.

Lorenz and McBride are each seeking re-election to a second term on the Council. There is a vacant seat needing to be filled as a result of Council Member Jeff Fritzen’s decision not to seek another term in what was the second of two stretches on the Council, having first been elected in 1983. He stepped away from politics in 1999, and ran again in 2003, and has been reelected onto the Council since.

The priorities the Town of Normal ought to consider when offering tax incentives to businesses wanting to come to Normal was one topic which generated numerous comments among the candidates.

“I think one of the most important things you should do with tax incentives is affordable housing,” stated Campbell, an ISU student. “I think it’s an issue that, while it definitely effects students.” But he said he believes the most neglected group to be affected by the incentives are people he put into classification of “non-student non homeowners.” He said he believed it important to see the Town provide incentives to local developers so they can use that cash to create “more mixed income housing.”

“I think that’s super important,” Campbell said, adding, “While it’s just as important to build nice homes, it’s also just as important to build things like newer townhomes.”

Shields said when it comes to what citizens deem important enough to considering offering tax incentives, every citizen will come up with a different need they believe worthy of the incentive being warranted. Those items range from affordable housing to money for a new Normal Library to living wages to senior citizen programming.

“The fact is none of these are mutually exclusive,” Shields stated, adding depending on individual concerns, all of those items are considered worthy of being given priority. “The job of a Council member is to make sure the Town is a thriving, livable place for everybody.” He added each opportunity for such incentives should be looked at for its individual merits and the Town should do “what we can when we can with what we’ve got.”

This subject is “a crucial question for us right now,” Studebaker said. The Town, he added, “has had a number of controversies over the last couple of years, and so, we need to decide ‘what do we want to decide in this community?’

“For me, one of the priorities is a library,” Studebaker explained. He added that if the Town opts to give money or incentives for a developer for any future project, the Town should prioritize such projects.

“I disagree with the premise that tax incentives are necessary,” Smith stated to begin her response to the question. She said the Federal Tax Code begins by describing what items do not get taxed.

“Rather than make concessions to what gets taxed, I think if we took a look at broadening the tax base, and then examining how different entities are taxed, then we could be sure it was done fairly for businesses and residents alike,” Smith added. Doing that, she explained would keep the Town from being concerned about tax incentives to promote development.

“Tax incentives should be used when there is a need for the community, or if there is an economic benefit for a business to come into the community,” Nord said. “If a business like Portillo’s says it’s not profitable to sell their hot dogs in our town, we should not give them incentives so it would be profitable to be here.” He called the deal the Town agreed to with the Oak Brook-based restaurant chain “straight out corporate welfare.”

Referring to Tax Increment Financing districts, or TIF Districts, Lorenz said they are used “as an economic tool.” She said the point to using them “is to increase the wealth of the community.” She added after government bodies like the Council approve such action, they are considered “a public-private endeavor” where developers approach the Town or other governing body seeking permission to build things such as affordable housing.

Once such a project is approved, Lorenz said, government steps back and “those seeking to construct and capitalism takes over.” She said she provided that illustration to give the roughly 25 people who attended the session an idea of how governing bodies like the Council intend for TIF Districts to function.

Evaluating the need for TIF Districts “need to be evaluated on a case by case basis, and they are,” McBride said. He said the need for such a district came into play in December 2016 when the Council unanimously approved a TIF district for the former Mitsubishi Motors North America plant to be used by electric car manufacturer Rivian Motors.

“We had a plant that was going to be stripped and turned into a concrete slab,” McBride recounted, had Council members not entered into the agreement, along with other area taxing bodies including Normal-based Unit 5 School District.

The subject of Normal offering tax incentives was prompted with candidates recalling Normal Town Council members unanimously voting, also in December 2016, to authorize executing of a redevelopment agreement with Bloomington Landmark Development Inc. regarding construction of Portillo’s which was built and is now located on N. Veterans Parkway.

At the time Council members approved the Portillo’s agreement, Bloomington Landmark Development Inc. sought and Council approved $1,825,000 to meet a standard rate of return for such a real estate investment. The agreement provided for a rebate from the Town of all sales, and food and beverage taxes from the restaurant to the developer to a maximum in that amount. The Chicago-based eatery formally opened in August 2017.

Other subjects candidates discussed included issues concerning municipal water policies and rates, candidates’ views on climate change, and funding liability for Town employees’ and retirees’ health costs.

Council candidates are scheduled to meet again in a candidate forum which will be broadcast by Illinois State University’s National Public Radio affiliate, WGLT FM 89.1, on Thursday, March 7. The 90-minute debate will be held in the Old Main Room of ISU’s Bone Student Center beginning at 6p.m.

By Steve Robinson | January 18, 2019 - 10:48 pm
Posted in Category: The Normalite, Unit 5

NORMAL – If you looked out your window or just managed to get outside, it was apparent winter weather, with snow, winds, and bad conditions has hit the area with full force so far this season. District Superintendent Dr. Mark Daniel addressed how the district will decide on closing schools due to the conditions during this session.

Daniel said several different factors play into his decision to close schools. Those include road conditions, especially in rural areas; varying forms and amount of precipitation, and predicted changes in weather conditions.

Daniel said he and the district management team begin receiving feedback from crews which maintain school properties. In addition, he monitors what other superintendents throughout the county are hearing and seeing and receiving reports on to help decide whether closing schools is called for. Unit 5 covers 214 square miles in the county, Daniel explained.

“We want First Student, our busing provider, to let our parents know when buses are going to be running behind at least 15 minutes behind schedule,” Daniel explained.

Daniel said although the team gathers early, they have seen the weather pattern threatened which could close schools for a day usually hits around 5 or 5:30a.m. “I usually have to make a decision around 5:30,” Daniel explained. He said he needs to make the decision to close school by then because bus drivers are beginning to report to the bus depot to begin routes. He added making the decision by then also allows parents to arrange child care and for teachers who live outside the Twin Cities to plan their trip to work accordingly.

When it comes to winter weather, Daniel said, “Safety is first and foremost.” He further admitted that having worked in Michigan before coming to Unit 5, ice is a bigger factor in his thinking than snow.

When the storm that hit the area on Saturday, Jan. 12 came, “I was very pleased that we shut down almost all of our activities,” Daniel told the gathering. “The bottom line is safety – safety for our students, safety for our families, and safety for our staff.”

Pay Raise For Substitutes Approved: Substitute teachers will see a raise in pay thanks to a unanimous Board vote at the meeting. As a result of the vote, daily rates of pay, based on the number of days a substitute works. Substitutes will see their pay increase based on the number of days they are called in. Substitutes who work between 1-15 days will be paid $85 per day; Substitutes working 16-30 days will be paid $90 per day; Substitutes working 31-60 days will earn $95 per day, and those working 61 days or more will earn $100 per day. Using that same scale, retired Unit 5 teachers who substitute will earn in a range between $105 and $120 depending on the number of days worked.

In a memo to Daniel, Marty Hickman, business manager for the district, laid out the updated pay scale for substitutes. Long-term substitutes would earn $80 daily in the first 10 days worked and $100 daily from the 11th day of work going forward in the school year. Retired Unit 5 teachers on extended assignments would start at $100 per day pay for the first 10 days and see the pay go up to $115 daily from the 11th day onward.

The last pay increase for substitutes took place in 2001, Hickman told Board members. The issue of substitutes’ pay arose in public comments during a Board meeting in August. Pay wasn’t the only issue at the time, either, as maintaining communications with the district was among other matters other than pay substitute teachers wanted to see addressed by the district. In September, the district formed a work group for substitute teachers to address their concerns.

Hickman said as a result of the change in the pay scale, the district will likely spend over $64,000 to pay those subs, and the pay increase takes effect retroactive to Jan. 16. Regular communication with the district, in email, for example, was another concern for substitute teachers. Board Member Mike Trask informed Board members substitutes will soon be getting their own individual district email accounts.

Board Member Amy Roser called Unit 5’s actions in this area “a great start for recognizing subs.”

Chiddix Junior High’s “Good News”: Board members were introduced to Carson Damery, a seventh grader at Chiddix Junior High School who recently approached administrators at her school about raising funds for a good cause which she knew would not only have an impact on a relative of hers who was dealing with a medical condition but did it to make her fellow students aware, as well.

The condition, known as peroxisome biogenesis disorder, or PBD, is a rare condition which causes those afflicted with it to lose eyesight, hearing, and motor function. People who are afflicted with it usually see it develop between ages 5-10. Having a cousin with the condition, Demery wanted to do something to help. She approached CJHS teacher Jenny Snyder and together the pair developed a plan and timeline for helping raise funds as well as find ways to involve other students.

To raise awareness, Damery addressed all 650 students in her grade level to inform them of the condition and why she wanted to raise funds. Her reason for wanting to do this was personal because her cousin, Max, is affected by this condition. She calls her effort “Mission For Max.” Recently, the school had a week-long fundraiser. In the fundraiser, they raised pennies one day, nickels the next, and so on through to the end of a week, hoping to earn $500. But as a result of her efforts, she and Snyder told Board members, they actually raised double what was hoped for. She said there are other fundraisers planned, as well.

Grove Elementary Doubles Its “Good News”: Some people learn the game of chess at an early age. That can be said of members of Grove Elementary School’s Chess Team, coached by teacher Tiffany Borne, explained the school’s principal Sarah Edwards, in sharing with Board members and those in attendance at this meeting, sharing a “good news” segment about the success the club has had.

In the past year and a half the team’s instructors have worked with students, Edwards explained, each member of the teaching staff involved with it has helped make the chess club a positive in the lives of students. Borne was recognized by Edwards in a second “good news” item presented to Board members in relation to the Chess Team’s success. Under Borne, Edwards told District Superintendent Dr. Mark Daniel and Board members, the club has experienced their success. Edwards said Borne dedicates a great amount of her personal time to the Club, including working to make certain that the club has coaches and materials necessary for the students to add to their skill level each year. In addition, Borne planned, organized, and oversaw a chess tournament at Grove in December.

2019-20 School Calendar On Hold Until February: A change in State School Code is holding up Unit 5’s Board from voting on and releasing the 2019-20 school calendar. The district is waiting to see what legislation will be passed in Springfield concerning school attendance. House Bill 247 amends State School Code, having students in class for a five hour period. A Senate bill, Senate Bill 28 is also being mulled. It will take being in committee to get the elements of both into one bill before legislators can vote on anything. That’s why Unit 5 is waiting to vote on finalizing the calendar.

Next Board Meeting Feb. 13: This is the only Board meeting scheduled for this month. The next scheduled Board meeting will be Wednesday, Feb. 13 at district headquarters, beginning at 7p.m.

By Steve Robinson | January 7, 2019 - 10:48 pm
Posted in Category: Normal Town Council, The Normalite

NORMAL – Developers unveiled what they have in mind for the proposed five-story building on the east side of the Roundabout during the regularly-scheduled meeting of Normal Town Council Monday night. During the meeting in Council Chambers on the fourth floor of Uptown Station, representatives from Iowa-based Bush Construction laid out their vision for what that section of Uptown could look like once construction is completed, a project they have dubbed Trail East. They also laid out a proposed time table of when work on the project would begin.

Jerrod Engler, vice president of construction for the construction firm told Council members the five-story structure would be a 120 sq. ft. mix of brick and paneling, and that second and third floors already had companies already interested in becoming tenants. Private residences would make up the fifth floor, he added.

Engler explained the developers envision the building having a food mart located where it faces the corner of College Ave. and Constitution Blvd. Another tenant showing an interest and being added to the project is Windy City Wieners restaurant, currently located at 108 E. Beaufort St. Windy City Wieners, Slingshot Cowork at 106 E. Beaufort St., and the building which formally housed The Pod art center at 104 E. Beaufort St. would all come down to make way for the proposed development.

Town Public Works Director Wayne Aldrich told Council members all utilities for the new building would go underground along E. Beaufort St. and the Town will foot the bill for making that possible. He added construction could result in some street closures. He added the Town has been in contact with and will stay in contact with property and building owners in the area throughout the construction period.

John E. Bishop, senior architectural manager for The Farnsworth Group, told Council members structural design on the project would begin in May and implementing the design would begin in June. Anticipated completion for the roughly $30 million project would be August of 2020.

The proposed development had residents both in support of it and against it speak to Council members prior to the developers’ presentation. Resident Stan Nord in telling Council members he opposed the project, adding, “The Town should subsidize $4,200 per month rents. Normal is more than Uptown. Other parts of Town have needs.”

Resident Mike Matejka told Council members he supported the project and added he hoped the developers would use local union workers in the construction process.

In voicing his objection to the project, former Mayoral Candidate Marc Tiritilli told Council members, “Preserving artwork was mentioned when this project was brought up. Let’s shift to keep the artwork. There are ways to preserve the historic nature of this town.”

Mural Relocation Discussed: Concerning artwork located at 104 E. Beaufort St., Council members unanimously approved a resolution to waive the formal bid process and authorized City Manager Pam Reece to enter into an agreement with Bloomington-based The Farnsworth Group for removal and relocation of the mural there in anticipation of that location becoming part of the future development in Uptown discussed earlier in the meeting. In 2011, an art business, The Pod, located at that address, began giving access to artists to create a mural on the building’s west side which was visible from the Roundabout.

But the business closed in January 2017 and the store has been vacant since. During public comments to Council members at the start of the meeting, current Town Council candidate Karyn Smith registered objections to the destruction of the mural as being part of what would happen in order for the proposed five-story building to go up on that site. Smith said the change in the cost of construction of the five story building is all due to a change made by the developer.

Although not part of the original plan when Council members approved the plan in October, 106 E. Beaufort St., too, along with 104 and 108 were slated to be torn down for the building site. That change moved the project’s cost up by $800,000, from $29.2 million to $30 million. The Town’s contribution, too, has jumped as a result, from $8 million in future property taxes to $8.65 million in property and sales taxes.

Reece told Council members the cost involved in removing the mural from the building and relocating was researched by the Town and found to run between $56,200 and $81,560. She added the Town may seek to recover costs incurred in the project from the building’s previous tenants.

Council Approves Special Use For Rooming House: Council members unanimously approved a special use permit for a building in a residential neighborhood. A two-story home at 405 Normal Ave. is being considered as a rooming house for use by Alpha Omicron sorority. The sorority would like to use the building to house 23 students and a house mother. Normal’s Zoning Board of Appeals gave conditional approval to the project at their Dec. 18 meeting.

James Knightright lives a couple doors down from the building and told Council members he wasn’t concerned about the students who would be coming into his neighborhood, but rather that the process used by the Town “excluded locals” to give their say on the matter. In addition, he told Council members a parking ban on that street in force from 6a.m.-9a.m. was “inconvenient and treats students disrespectfully.”

Widmer Appointed To Children’s Discovery Museum Board: Mayor Pro Tem Jeff Fritzen announced to the gathering the appointment of Rob Widmer to the Children’s Discovery Museum Foundation Board. Recently retired as President of Heartland Community College, Widmer, a grandfather of 11 children, has had opportunities to experience first-hand. He is filling an open seat of the Board and his term expires July 30, 2021.

Two Omnibus Items Approved: Council unanimously approved two omnibus items: Approval of minutes from the Council’s regular meeting of Dec. 17, 2018, and payment of Town expenditures as of Jan. 3, 2019.