City and county news briefs

Rockford news briefs

Rockford’s new Mayor Larry Morrissey spent his first full day in office by lobbying in Washington, D.C. for federal funds to complete passenger rail service from the Chicago area to Rockford. Morrissey traveled with a large contingent of public officials, business operators and community leaders. Morrissey met for one hour with U.S. Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.) during his visit.

At the May 2 City Council meeting, aldermen approved $153,726.38 that will reimburse CBRO Ltd., for construction of another lane on Shiloh Road that will eventually connect Guilford and Trainer roads.

The city is donating a portion of its property to allow expansion for the county’s upgrade of Baxter Road near the Mulford Road intersection.

The city also donated a portion of property to allow Rock Valley College to install a fiber-optic communications cable between its buildings.

Morrissey nominated Rockford attorney Patrick Hayes as the city’s new legal director. He is expected to take office later this month. Hayes is an attorney for the law firm of Guyer and Enichen, P.C. Hayes will replace longtime Legal Director Ronald Schultz. Hayes’ nomination was approved by the City Council May 2.

Morrissey also nominated Jim Ryan as the city’s new administrator. Ryan was director of Capital Development for former Mayor Doug Scott. Ryan replaces Einar Forsman. His nomination was also approved by aldermen May 2.

Winnebago County news briefs

Winnebago County Chairman Scott Christiansen’s office is accepting applications until May 13 for a vacancy on the County Board. The vacancy was made by the resignation of Democrat Jim Hughes, who represented District 11.

Applicants may receive details about the application process by calling (815) 987-2590.

County officials are revisiting the issue of leaf burning. An ordinance has been proposed to allow leaf burning in far northern, western and eastern portions of the county bordered roughly by Illinois 173, Meridian Road, Interstate-90 and the Ogle County line.

The county is expected to approve May 12 paying $257,605 to MTG Management Consultants of Seattle, Wash., to study how to coordinate and increase efficiency in the criminal justice system. Why county officials didn’t conduct such a study before determining the size of the new 1,212-bed jail could not be determined by time of publication.

Winnebago County officials announced plans April 28 to re-establish a jail inmate work crew program that was disbanded in 2002 allegedly due to budget cuts. Inmates will clean roads and complete light construction and restoration projects.

From the May 4-10, 2005 issue

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