BaseballThe role of the relief man referred to as the “set-up man”on a baseball team is to get batters out so that the next reliever – the closer – can put away a victory. But considering how he got to the Normal CornBelters, no amount of preparation could have set up right-hander Horacio Acosta for how he would arrive where he is today.

A native of Miami, Fla., 24-year-old Acosta grew up playing the game, played on his high school squad, and went on to play at two junior colleges – Miami Dade Community College in 2010 and Wabash Valley Community College in 2011 – before advancing to Point Park University in Pittsburgh in the spring of 2012. But before Acosta could event take the field for Point Park, an NAIA school, fate in the form of a drunk driver, intervened on Feb. 5, 2012.

That was the day Acosta was struck by the inebriated driver while walking. The driver swerved, hitting Acosta from behind, forcing him through her car’s windshield, hospitalizing him for two months. The most serious injuries he received from the accident were to his head and left arm. He still bears some scars from the accident, which is still in litigation.

Acosta managed to be released from the hospital in time to join his Point Park teammates for the second half of the season, helping them get the team to the NAIA World Series, where they finished as runner-up.

CornbeltersAcosta returned to Miami-Dade Commuuity College the summer after the accident to bolster the academics he’d missed. His baseball coach there took him to a player showcase event in Summer 2013 where team scouts could get a look at him. “I had a good day that day,” Acosta said. But although the tryout went well, Acosta could not be signed by any teams because he was in the midst of taking classes, something not allowed by Major League Baseball.

As a result, Acosta would have to wait for the Major League Draft that June. But Acosta missed the Draft as a result of pulling his hamstring doing workouts. He spent the winter of 2013-14 in Columbia playing Winter Ball giving him his first taste of professional baseball. He also played for the same Columbian team he was on during this past winter.

How Acosta got to the league in Columbia was through former St. Louis Cardinals shortstop Edgar Renteria, who is a close friend of the Acosta family.

Acosta reported he had two vastly different experiences with the Columbian team. In 2013-14, his inexperience proved a disadvantage relegating him to the bench on a team that was in last place throughout most of that season. Last season, the team did a major about-face, making it to the League finals, but losing. Between those seasons, Acosta played in a recreational baseball league in Miami in an effort to keep his skills sharp.

It was during last year’s winter ball experience that Acosta became acquainted with CornBelters infielder Ozney Guillen. Guillen, in turn, mentioned Acosta to ‘Belters Manager Brooks Carey.

Explaining that Acosta is one of his “go to guys,” Carey said Acosta got that tag for “every time I ask him if he’s ready, he says ‘yes.’ You don’t find too many first-year bullpen guys like him.”

“I just prefer being in middle relief, just because of the way I throw,” Acosta explained about his sidearm delivery.

Frontier LeagueThe night of the accident in Pittsburgh, Acosta said, a doctor who treated him told him he should “be thankful for your life. You could have been killed, or suffered more serious injuries, rather than scrapes and cuts.”

Acosta is making the most of his baseball debut, with a current 5-0 record after being in 30 games, including one save in 49 innings pitched. His outings have included giving up 3 home runs, 19 earned runs and 17 walks. He has struck out 40 men so far this season. He’s carrying a .349 Earned Run Average.

As a result of how matters have turned out for him, Acosta explained, “I thank God every day for my life. Just the fact that I’m still playing this game is a blessing. Not many people get hit by a car and still, y’know, run or do physical activities. For me, that’s a huge blessing.”

Belters Return To The Corn Crib Aug. 7: The ‘Belters wrapped up a 10-day, 9-game road trip Thursday, which included three against Western Division leading Rockford. The ‘Belters set a team record for runs and hits in a single game and tied several individual league marks in a 24-10 wind-blown win over the Rockford Aviators on Sunday afternoon at Aviators Stadium.

That contest’s 24 runs and 25 hits are new team records and highs for the Frontier League this season. Pat McKenna hit three home runs and recorded nine runs batted in to tie league records, while Aaron Dudley tied a league mark by scoring six runs.

Friday, they look to gain some ground when the Rockford Aviators visit The Corn Crib for three games this weekend. Friday and Saturday evening games begin at 6:35p.m., with Sunday’s day game beginning at 3:05p.m. The team gets a league-imposed day off on Monday, Aug. 10 followed by visits by the Florence Freedom Tuesday through Thursday, Aug. 11-13 and Washington Wild Things Friday through Sunday, Aug. 14-16. Following getting Monday, Aug. 17 off, they begin the week with a three-game road trip at Lake Erie.

‘Belters 3rd Baseman Lucas Leads League In RBIs: CornBelters 3rd baseman Richard Lucas is on top of the Frontier League in terms of Runs Batted In, knocking in 54. Shortstop Pat McKenna is fourth in that same category, with 49. ‘Belters first baseman Aaron Dudley finds himself ranking third in overall average with .349, behind league leader Brian Hansen of River City, and Austin Gallagher of Windy City.

McKenna has been swinging for the fences enough to rank third overall in the league in home runs with 16. Taylor Ard of River City hold the title in that category for now, with 21, followed in second place by Washington’s Daniel Popkins, who has 18.

BaseballAfter 2 1/2 seasons playing with the River City Rascals, pitcher Chandler Jagodzinski was traded to the Normal CornBelters. Understandably, after having spent that much time with one team in O’Fallon, Mo., the Rascals’ home base, Jagodzinski admits to being “disappointed” to being dealt by the only team he knew since beginning his playing career there in 2013.

Jagodzinski came to the CornBelters through a trade with River City that had Normal obtaining right-handed pitchers Jagodzinski and Marc Rutledge in exchange for sending right-handed pitcher Victor Beriguete and southpaw pitcher Stephen Frey to the Rascals.

“Rascals Manager Steve Brook said he needed to make changes and I respect that,” Jagodzinski said of the deal. “Steve was respectful about everything and Normal’s a great place. So it wasn’t too bad of a trade.”

CornbeltersLike every ball player, regardless of level they are playing in, they all have favorite and least favorite parks to play in when they are on the road. Jagodzinski is no different in that respect, he said. He explained that when the Rascals visited The Corn Crib over the last few seasons he has been playing, he said he liked the park’s turf field, but admitted if it had one drawback, he thought it was that he was coming to a stadium “that’s really not a pitcher’s ballpark” because of its short outfield fences.

He took a year off to complete getting his degree from the University of North Florida at Jacksonville, majoring in Photography, before pursuing his baseball career. As a pitcher over his 101-game career with both teams, he is 8-7 with a .345 Earned Run Average, with 23 fielding assists to his credit.

Although he hasn’t had a call-up to the minors since entering the Frontier League with the Rascals in 2013, he admits he “still wants to play the child’s game known as baseball. I have a hope, that, someday I get picked up.”

Jagodzinski explained his mindset toward the game this way: “It’s a job, but you’re having fun. You get to hang out with your friends. It may be a job, but you can have fun at your job.” He said he has no desire to go from being a player to becoming involved with the business side of the game once his playing days end.

But Jagodzinski admits reality sets in and the thought of not getting a call-up crosses his mind occasionally. Regardless of where his playing career carries him, Jagodzinski said, “I still love playing baseball and as long as I can play in this league, I will.”

That attitude comes from Jagodzinski’s having played the game since age 5. “I always wanted to play football, but in the end, I decided to stick with baseball,” he explained. He said he felt baseball was his “calling.”

“I felt I picked up the game quickly compared to basketball or Soccer,” Jagodzinski explained. “I loved watching the spring training games. I’ve had a love for it ever since I started playing it.”

Frontier LeagueAfter his playing days end, Jagodzinski would like to pursue his other passion, the one he has the degree in. Being a photographer, he said, would keep him near the sport he loves, not from the batter’s box or mound, but he hopes, someday, from the photographer’s well. Photography was a passion he picked up from his father, Edward.

“Jagodzinski has been a great pick up for us,” ‘Belters Manager Brooks Carey said. “He’s very reliable, durable, throws strikes, has good stuff.”

Here’s hoping Jagodzinski helps keep Normal in the hunt for a playoff spot and that he never loses his approach to the game.

‘Belters Return To The Corn Crib Aug. 7: Carey’s troops are on the road this week, having played Tuesday through Thursday at Traverse City, trying to gain ground in the Wild Card standings. They will spend Friday through Sunday, July 31 and Aug. 1 and 2 in Rockford to take on the Aviators to try to regain first place in the Frontier League’s Western Division. After the Monday off on Aug. 3, and an extra off day on Aug. 4, they will travel to Florence where they will take on the Freedom for a single game on Aug. 5 and a doubleheader on Aug. 6.

The team will return to The Corn Crib for a 10-day, 9-game home stand, starting with three against the Aviators Friday through Sunday, Aug. 7-9. Weeknight and Saturday games will be at 6:35p.m. Sunday’s game starts at 3:05p.m. Following a league-wide day off on Monday, Aug. 10, Florence visits for three games Aug. 11-13, followed by Washington for three games Aug. 14-16.

Normal 150 YearsNORMAL – Many of us, regardless of where we live now, hold dear now fond memories of the neighborhoods we grew up in as children or where we raised children. Fortunately, for many of us, those memories are as fresh as they were when they happened so that they can be shared now, regardless of how much time has gone by.

The residents and former residents of the Fell Park area of Normal — considered the first addition to the Town after it was founded in 1865 — took time to celebrate during a “Fell Fest” event in that park on Saturday, July 24. Fell Fest was one of a number of events the Town is hosting to celebrate the Town’s 150th anniversary.

It was explained to the audience in attendance that memories were collected about eight years ago to obtain an historical record of what the neighborhood was like decades ago.

Council Member Jeff Fritzen, Former Mayor Paul Harmon and his wife, Sandra, and former Council Member Garrett Scott read memories written by former residents.

Harmon read aloud the memories of William “Billy” McCowsky, who wrote he lived in the neighborhood in the early 1940s on North Oak St. “I remembered the streetcars running down Linden Street every time they passed,” McCowsky relayed. “We had to make our own entertainment. There was only a radio to listen to in the evenings. My dad worked for the Normal Sanitary Dairy and he was so upset when they went to using trucks rather than horses. He got up at midnight to deliver milk. The old horse he had knew where he was to stop.

“Dad would use a basket to carry the milk to the door and the horses would meet him at the end of the block,” McCowsky relayed.

Sandra Harmon relayed the memories of Beth Smith, who explained her husband Richard and she moved to a house on Poplar Street in 1943, remaining there until their sons, Rick and Douglas, were in the third and fourth grade. “The boys played with neighbor children,” Smith recalled, adding Rick enjoyed going to the park to play horseshoes with men from the neighborhood.

“We had many picnics in Fell Park, as it was close and we could walk over,” Smith explained in her writing.

Fritzen added the recollections of Steve Barnes, who, when he was younger, lived at 305 E. Willow. “Me and the other kids pretty much lived at the park all summer,” Barnes recalled in his note. “When I was young, we could find sticks for stick horses and pretend guns to play as cowboys. We had to be creative with our imaginations to make up games to play. We did not have TVs or videos. Later, we had marble games and contests.”

Barnes added, “You could act as goofy as you wanted to with your friends.” He recalled attending Eugene Field School. Barnes recalled a neighbor, Mr. Hilton, keeping any balls that the kids hit into his yard. And he recalled Field School’s principal from the 1950’s, Mrs. Davidson.

Eleanor Barnes’ memories, relayed by Scott, included the fact her parents purchased a home across from the park in 1939. Barnes recalled the park being used as a “partial babysitter” by her and the other mothers around the neighborhood. When Eleanor was young, she explained, all her mother had to do to get her home for dinner was yell into the park for her. “The park was a good place for picnics and family gatherings,” Eleanor recalled. “It was also a good place for all the kids in the neighborhood to play.” She also recalled playing games and that all the mothers “on all sides of the park were looking out for us.”

“In the winter, we all enjoyed the ice from the overflow of the tower in the park,” Eleanor Barnes remembered. “I hope the families living around the park now are enjoying it as much as my family.”

Margery Bonnam relayed her memories through Sandra Harmon. Explaining her family will drive by the neighborhood of Willow St. and Beech St. when her sons visit, Bonnam relayed, “I used to play in the park, and the only thing there at the time was a sandbox in the northwest corner of the park, and picnic tables. I have so many happy memories and remember many of the people who lived on Willow St. and Cherry St. I would walk home from Central School, and many times, would walk by the blacksmith shop on Mulberry St. and Linden Ave. and watch the blacksmith work his forge. I wished I would have had the chance to talk to him. Somehow, he was always busy.”

Fritzen read a memory submitted by his mother, Helen, which included her observation that life is moving at “a much faster pace now” than it did when she lived in the neighborhood in the 1930s. Then, Mrs. Fritzen observed of the period, “There was more time to spend with family, friends, and neighbors and not having time filled with tight schedules.”

Living just two blocks from the park, one either used shank pulley trolleys or walked. Mrs. Fritzen said she remembers walking to church and Sunday School. “I loved growing up in Normal, originally living on Poplar Street, and being near Fell Park,” Mrs. Fritzen relayed. “It was a great place for friends and summer activities.”

Marlene Crockett, now 79, addressed the gathering, observing that nowadays, there is a “lot less gardening. Back then, in the times we’re talking about, everybody grew their own vegetables. People knew their neighbors and they looked out for each other.” She also noted that back in the era most of the speakers were remembering, the 1930s and 1940s, mothers made their kids’ clothes. She said she misses the sound of roosters crowing in the morning in the neighborhood, and saying hello to neighbors who sat on their porches as she passed by their homes.

For 90-year-old Reggie Whittaker, many memories also remain. In fact, Whittaker is still a resident of the neighborhood, living in the home his grandparents, Oliver W. and Esther Whittaker, lived in when the neighborhood was established, buying the home in 1893. It also happens to be the house Reggie was born in.

In a memory recalled by Whittaker and read by Scott to the gathering of roughly 50 people near the Park’s gazebo, he recalled “Play Days” put on by the Town’s Women’s Improvement League. “We had a lot of supervised games to play with other kids.” Whittaker recalled seeing the foundation for Eugene Field Elementary School being unearthed in 1935 using mules and a skid scraper. He also recalled picking berries on the acreage around the Illinois Soldiers and Sailors Children’s Home. “Fanny Bright would pay the kids a nickel to pick berries for hours,” Scott read, bringing to life Whittaker’s recollection.

Whittaker also recalled one of his neighbors, the McCubbin family, had a horse and a six-sided chicken house. Like many of the children of his era, he attended Central School until Eugene Field Elementary was built.

Reggie Whittaker points to “the building of houses” that have gone up around the park as the biggest change he’s witnessed over the years while living in the neighborhood.

Along with the prepared remarks, a couple people who grew up as kids in the neighborhood stepped up to address the crowd with their memories. Richard Savage and his 103-year-old mother, Ethel, attended the gathering. Richard Savage recalled for the gathering playing baseball at the diamond in the park and trying – and periodically succeeding – in hitting the park’s water tower. Winter weather provided a “kind of rough ice rink,” as well, he added.

Following the gathering, Ethel Savage said she believes the people who make up the neighborhood around Fell Park are what make it special.

“We had lots of empty lots in the neighborhood,” Whittaker said. “But after World War II, the soldiers were coming home, so they started building the houses. They were just veterans coming home and making a home here.”

By Steve Robinson | July 20, 2015 - 10:42 pm
Posted in Category: Normal Town Council, The Normalite

Town of NormalNORMAL – During their regularly-scheduled session Monday night in Council Chambers in Uptown Station, Normal Town Council members voted unanimously to table making a decision on amending a Town ordinance regulating the number of animals permitted at any one residence. The intent on the part of the Town was to prevent the potential for puppy or kitten mills from cropping up within Normal.

The current ordinance limits the number of any one type of animal in a home to two per household, with an exception for young animals. The exception was to allow for litters from existing pets. Valerie Wellin, board president with the group Wish Bone Canine Rescue (WBCR), addressed Council members, explaining that one of the ordinance’s provisions is something WBCR has concerns over.

That regulation requires that the litter’s mother must have kept on the premises where it lives for at least 30 days before the litter’s birth. That regulation helps tie the litter to an existing pet, preventing people adding to an additional litter of animals as a rouse regarding the litter. Wellin asked Council members to consider exempting rescue shelters and foster homes from the ordinance, as it does not always happen that rescue pets would be in one place longer than 30 days prior to delivering their litter.

Mayor Chris Koos said the proposed ordinance was a clarification, not a change, and that the Town was trying to let the owner of female animals keep and maintain them before the litter were to be delivered. He added, in light of the need for further study and discussion on the item, that perhaps it should be tabled. Council members voted unanimously, with Council Member Kathleen Lorenz absent, to table the matter until their first meeting in September.

Council Approves Site Location For New Healthcare Facility: Council members unanimously approved a site location in Normal for a new healthcare facility within Normal. The site would be acquired, altered, and improved by the Public Building Commission of McLean County, which would also lease the site.

McLean County currently operates the property off of Main Street in Normal which contains the local juvenile detention center, McLean County Nursing Home, the Fairview Sanitarium, and the Emergency Management Garage. Fairview Sanitarium has been vacant for a number of years. The Town currently leases a portion of the property from the county for Fairview Park.

The Building Commission and McLean County sought the Town’s approval for the site the Commission wants for acquiring, constructing, improving, repairing, maintaining, operating, and securing the properties as well as a new federally qualified health center which would be build at the former sanitarium site.

The County intends to transfer the title of the property to the Building Commission. The Commission, in turn, would lease the property back to the County. Fairview Park would not be affected by the transfer.

Council members were required to act on the transaction because the site of the new facility sits outside of the County seat, Bloomington, and therefore, the transaction needed to be approved by the governing body overseeing the location of the land, in this case, Normal.

Employee Group Insurance Gets Renewal: Council members unanimously approved a resolution authorizing renewal of the Town’s Employee Group Health, Dental, Life/Accidental Death and Dismemberment program, and implementing cost management tools from Benefit Value Advisor and Prime Theraputics.

Beginning with the 2015-16 fiscal year, there will be a change concerning how contributions will be made to the plan. The Town will contribute a specific amount toward an insurance benefit, and Town employees will select from three separate plans how best to apply the funds.

As of last September, the Group Insurance Fund the Town had a fund balance of $2.26 million. Currently, that balance has dropped to $2,330,000. The Town has a target fund balance it would like to see maintained of $2,390,000 because that figure represents the equivalent of the four highest months of claims and fixed costs.

Special Olympics Illinois: The Town received recognition from Special Olympics Illinois for having hosted a street dance in Uptown for the nearly 4,000 athletes from throughout the State who participated in SOI’s State Summer Games event last month at facilities on the Illinois State University campus. Council members heard from athlete and SOI Global Messenger Representative, Drew White, 22, and from Jim Fitzpatrick, director of Torch Run Marketing and Community Relations for SOI.

Fitzpatrick presented Council members with a framed plaque, which included a photo of the Victory Dance activity, to thank the Town for the effort they put in to hosting the party and the athletes, their families, coaches, and volunteers who visited during the event.

“Today, I want to thank the Town of Normal for hosting the inaugural Victory Party held in Uptown and extend our gratitude,” White told Council members. He added he received “simple joy and excitement from being part of the event.”

Liquor Commission Hears Update On Cases: Council members, serving as the Normal Local Liquor Commission, heard from Liquor Commissioner Koos concerning the settling of two cases concerning the sale of liquor to persons under age 21. Both incidents occurred during a Town liquor audit held June 4. In the first case, Kroger, located at 1550 E. College Ave., submitted a guilty plea and was fined $250 for a first offense. The grocery paid a $250 fine.

In the second case, Casey’s Retail Company, doing business as Casey’s General Store #1655, 810 N. Beech St., submitted a guilty plea and was fined $2,500 due to the fact the store had had two prior violations in 2012 and 2014.

Both stores have paid their fines. Liquor Commissioners also unanimously approved minutes of three previous meetings: A regularly scheduled meeting on March 16, and two special meetings held April 6 and April 20.

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

• Approval of minutes of regular meeting held July 6, 2015.

• Approval of Town of Normal expenditures for payment as of July 15, 2015.

• A resolution accepting the low bid and awarding a contract to Otto Baum Company, Inc. for the Normal Theater stucco repair project in the amount of $37,800.

• A resolution authorizing the City Manager to negotiate a contract with Compass Group USA, Inc. through Canteen Vending Services to provide vending services to various Town facilities.

• A resolution authorizing the execution of an intergovernmental agreement with McLean County for animal warden services.

• A resolution authorizing the execution of an intergovernmental agreement with McLean County for animal shelter services.

• A resolution authorizing an employee wellness services contract with Advocate BroMenn Regional Medical Center.

• An ordinance amending Section 17.8-26 of the Town’s Municipal Code regarding the number of animals permitted at a residence.

• An ordinance amending the FY 2014-15 Operating and Capital Investment Budget.

Town of NormalNORMAL – During their regularly-scheduled session Monday night in Council Chambers in Uptown Station, Normal Town Council members voted unanimously for the Town to exchange property with Illinois State University. The land the Town will receive from the University will be used for a planned new fire station at 608 N. Main St. The new facility is one of three new stations meant to replace existing stations. The Main Street location would also serve as primary headquarters for NFD, as well. ISU’s Board of Trustees approved the land swap at their July 24 meeting.

In exchange for the Main Street location, ISU will receive three properties owned by the Town. Those are: The existing NFD Fire Station #2 building, located at 604 N. Adelaide St.; Sudduth Rd. rights of way, located between Kingsley St. and Main St.; and Beaufort St. parking lot, located south of Beaufort St. and adjacent to the Union Pacific Railroad’s rail line.

The Town will also give ISU property the Town is currently negotiating the purchase of, located at 404 W. Locust St. Due to financing matters, that property will not be received until it is closed on, which is a matter being deferred until 2017. Of NFD’s search for a suitable location for the new fire headquarters, Normal Fire Chief Mick Humer told Council members, “We’ve been looking for a very long time.” He said NFD examined Geographic Information Systems data, as well as talked to ISU officials to find out what location would best suit the Town.

Humer said the proposed new fire station location has “good access” to Hovey Ave. and College Ave. He cited it currently takes NFD Firefighters from Station #1, located at the corner of Blair Dr. and College Ave, around 9 ½ minutes to respond to a call from Normal Community High School.

But one resident who spoke as the meeting began was not happy with what he saw as an abandonment of the Town’s west end with the land exchange which would close the current fire station on Adelaide St., Fire Station #2. “I don’t understand why you want to move it,” Steve Thompson said, addressing the proposing closing of NFD Station #2. Addressing Council members, Thompson asked, “I don’t understand why you want to move it. I’ve never seen any of you on the west side. Why are we losing the only thing we’ve got and I’d like a real answer.”

Council Member Kathleen Lorenz asked about the affect traffic congestion on Main St. could have on NFD response times. Humer said constant traffic flow is a positive to responding to calls.

Council Member Jeff Fritzen reminded Council members that, when proposals for building new fire stations were brought to the Council’s attention over a year ago, the Town considered leaving current fire stations in place and building a fourth one. But, he explained, building that fourth station would mean having to man the fourth station, thus creating a “manpower issue.”

Council Approves Land Purchase Agreement: The property exchange with ISU was one of two land acquisition agreements approved on the evening. The second one came when Council members unanimously approved a resolution authorizing the purchase of property located at 1217 S. Adelaide St. for $364,000 and a budget adjustment approval by the Council of $379,000. The building will become the new home of the Town’s Facilities Management headquarters.

Facilities Management has been operating out of 207 S. Linden St. for nearly a decade, but that building is now in need of repairs, but has become too expensive to maintain. A report submitted by Mark Clinch, director of the Town’s Facilities Management division, and reviewed by City Manager Mark Peterson, explained the building “functionally obsolete.” In 2014, Clinch reported, the Town spent $70,000 to repair a section of the building’s roof.

A check with local realtors by Facilities Management turned up an approximately 6,000 sq. ft. building at 1217 S. Adelaide St. which would replace the Linden St. location. Hill and Hill Plumbing has occupied the proposed location since the building was constructed in 1995. A report to Council members from Town Staff indicates that because the Town’s Facilities Management personnel and the current business owners do similar work, very little modifications to the building will be needed.

Once the building at 207 S. Linden St. is vacated by the Town, it will be demolished and the land, likely, will be converted into green space or temporary parking.

Regional Planning Commission Director Addresses Council: Council members also heard from Vasu Pinnamaraju, executive director of the McLean County Regional Planning Commission (MCRPC), concerning the Commission’s preparations for creating an update to the Town of Normal’s Comprehensive Plan. A comprehensive plan is intended as a guide for physical planning and development in the future for the community. Normal last had one in the early 1990s, prepping for 2015. The current comprehensive plan will look at such planning for the year 2040.

The work to be done will take over two years, with conclusion anticipated by December 2017. The process would have three phases: Existing Conditions Analysis; Community Visioning, and Strategic Planning. A committee of Town Staff would oversee the process. MCRPC is just getting started on Normal’s having just completed a similar study for the City of Bloomington.

Council Takes Tour Of Student Apartments Above Buffalo Wild Wings: Prior to the regular meeting, Council members received guided tours of the apartments above Buffalo Wild Wings restaurant, located at 603 S. Main St. The 1-, 2-, and 3-bedroom apartments are located on the top three floors of the four-story building on which the restaurant is the tenant on the first floor. Former Normal Town Council Members Chuck Scott and Sonja Reece were also invited for the tour. The apartments are managed by First Site Apartments, whose principal owner is Jeff Tinervin. Tinervin conducted tours of the apartments for Mayor Chris Koos and Council members, followed by a light dinner at the restaurant.

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

• Approval of minutes of regular meeting held July 20, 2015.

• Approval of Town of Normal expenditures for payment as of July 29, 2015.

• A resolution rejecting bids for the 2015 Concrete Pavement Crack and Joint Sealing Contract.

• A resolution authorizing execution of an intergovernmental agreement with the City of Bloomington, the County of McLean, and the McLean County Soil and Water Conservation District for the administration and implementation of watershed management programs.

• A resolution authorizing execution of an intergovernmental agreement with Illinois State University pertaining to fire protection service.

• A resolution authorizing a pipeline crossing agreement with the Union Pacific Railroad for the replacement of a water line main at Railroad Milepost 123.98 near the Linden Street crossing.