West Peoria News for April 2011

Don’t forget to vote in the Consolidated Election on April 5th. Offices up for election are: mayor, city clerk, treasurer, and one alderman in each of the four wards. Candidates are: Mayor – Incumbent – James R. Dillon, City Clerk – Incumbent – Carole Stephens, Treasurer – Incumbent – Jennifer Main, Ward 1 – Incumbent – Hazel Thomas, Ward 2 – Incumbent – Write In, Vote for one in Ward 3 – Incumbent – John Venzon Jr. or Candidate – Gus Mason Jr., Ward 4 – Incumbent Thomas S. Dwyer. Your voter’s registration card shows your polling place. At that election, the City Council of West Peoria is asking residents to approve a referendum for a .5% increase in Sales Tax. The economy in Central Illinois is still in the throes of an economic recession and a structural change. The business cycle combined with local, state, and national government budget deficits dominates the current state of affairs. As you know, most if not all municipalities are faced with declining revenues. The same is now true for West Peoria. Fortunately the City has enjoyed many years of surplus budgets. However, it is unlikely that this will happen again anytime soon. Therefore it is time to consider an increase in our local retail sales tax.

It is important to point out that this is the first time West Peoria has ever proposed a sales tax increase. In addition, the State income tax revenue received by West Peoria decreased significantly last year. The increase in taxes will be used to help pay for public safety – police protection. The additional tax will add 5 cents to a $10 purchase or 50 cents to a $100 purchase. The tax increase would affect most tangible personal property including sales of soft drinks, alcohol, prepared food purchased at restaurants and repair parts. Groceries, prescription, and non-prescription drugs are exempt from the tax increase.

West Peoria students from Calvin Coolidge Middle School and St. Marks Grade School, Manual and Notre Dame will attend Local Government Day on April 15th. It is from 9:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. The City will have grade school students from 9:00 – 11:30 and the Township will have the high school students from 9:00 to ll:30. After lunch the students will switch and go to the other local government. The City will have a mock City Council Meeting with the students representing the elected officials choosing topics to discuss and to vote on. Mayor Dillon talks to the student and explains how the City functions. This will acquaint students with their local governments. Lunch is provided. The students can register to vote if they are 18.

The Annual West Peoria Clean Up Day is Saturday, April 30th and runs from 8:00 a.m. until mid-afternoon. Take this opportunity to clean up your property and bring the items to the city garage on N Hillside Ave. Tell your neighbors. No hazardous or landscape waste will be accepted. This is an opportunity for all with volunteers assisting during the day. Volunteers are needed. You can volunteer by calling township supervisor Robert DeSutter at 674-6668 or stopping by the office at 2516 W Rohmann Ave.

On April 12th, the Township will hold its Annual Town Meeting which is mandated by the state in order to have township residents become familiar with their township government and officials. It is held each year on the second Tuesday in April and is an opportunity for residents to ask questions of their officials as well as to learn what has happened in the past year. It will be held in the new township offices, located next to city hall at 2516 W Rohmann at 7:30 p.m. The April 12th, City Council Meeting will be held at 6:30 p.m. in City Hall. It is one of the oldest meetings in the country.

A West Peoria home will be included in the Rebuilding Together Peoria program this April. The West Peoria City Council, West Peoria Township, and West Peoria Residents Association have agreed to jointly sponsor a house this year. The home is located at 2515 W. Downs Circle. Rebuilding Together Peoria has been repairing homes in Peoria for 17 years: in East Peoria for 13 years; and in Richwoods Township for 5 years. A partnership with Peoria County began in 2010. Rebuilding Together is the nation’s leading nonprofit organization working to preserve affordable homeownership and revitalize communities. Rebuilding Together believes it can preserve affordable homeownership and revitalize communities by providing free home modifications and repairs, making homes safer, more accessible, and more energy efficient. This is a great opportunity for local government, businesses, and volunteers to team up together in order to fill a pressing need in our community. To volunteer please call 674-1993.

If you have questions for City Hall call 674-1993. Following is some information that may help you this spring. All residents are required to sign up for garbage service with Waste Management – 1-800-796-9696. You will be charged for this service. Landscape Waste Pick Up is included in the price. Landscape Waste Pick up begins on the first Friday in April, and is picked up every Friday at the curb until the last Friday in December. Garage Sales are permitted once each quarter for no more than three days. Building Permits are needed for several projects: porches, decks, sheds, garages, new driveways or sidewalks and new homes. Most residential permits are $25.00 and can be obtained by filling out the application at City Hall. Any questions, please call Code Officer Bill O’Neill at 674-1993 or 370-1142. It is residents’ responsibility to keep their section of the alleyway free of trash, their grass mowed and weeds trimmed at all times. Your section of the alleyway is from your property line to the center of the alley. There are still funds available in the Paint reimbursement Program. Please call City Hall for more information.

The West Peoria Neighborhood Watch will meet Wednesday, April 13, 2011 at 6:30 p.m. at City Hall. Guest speak is Captain Dan Kerns from the West Peoria Fire Department. His topic will be about Fire Safety in the Home. The public is invited. The West Peoria Residents’ Association will meet on Thursday, April 21, 2011 at 6:30 p.m. at City Hall. Guest speaker will be Mr. Thomas Blumer, Principal, Calvin Coolidge Middle School.

West Peoria Lions Club will be hosting a Fundraiser Sunday April 17th noon to 4:00 p.m. at Champs West 515 N. Western. “One Stop Shopping” will be available; buy a gift for Easter, Mothers Day, or a birthday. Vendors from Tupperware, Miche Purses, Pampered Chef, Watkins Products, Mary Kay, Soy Candles & Soaps, Fused Glass Pendants, Beaded Jewelry, & Really Large Coloring Books will be on hand to help you pick that special gift. Please come and support this worthy fundraiser.

Spring is in the air and West Peoria Highway Clean-up is starting for 2011 and the Lions Club needs your help keeping our community beautiful. Volunteer Saturday April 9th at the city garage at 8:00 a.m. and lend a hand. We work 8:00 a.m. until noon and then serve lunch to the hard working crew. Call for more info @ 673-6207 We sure can use your help.

The WPLC welcomes you to stop in and visit at one of their meetings on the second Monday for the Board Meeting and the fourth Monday for general meeting with a speaker at 6:00 PM, dinner 6:30 meeting. They meet in the side room at Champs at 515 N. Western. Any questions call 673-6207. The Club recycles old keys, glasses, hearing aids, tabs, cell phones, ink cartridges. There are boxes at Alwan’s Pharmacy for you to drop off or call 673-6207 and we can make arrangements to pick up.

This past weekend, I had my first party without Haddad’s as my backup. It was not easy and much discussion was held about how we all miss Haddad’s every day.

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