July 9 Rockford City Council briefs

A Finance and Personnel Committee report recommending approval of an agreement for benefit consulting services with Rockford Consulting & Brokerage, Inc., was laid over. Ald. Ann Thompson-Kelly (D-7) made the motion, which was promptly seconded, to lay over a vote on the $115,000, 13-month agreement.

Rockford Consulting & Brokerage Senior Vice President Ryan Brauns is a longtime friend and supporter of Mayor Larry Morrissey (I) and was named to Morrissey’s transition team in 2005. His company also handles benefits consulting services for Winnebago County.

Brauns is also secretary of the Rockford Board of Election Commissioners in addition to sitting on the City’s RockStat Advisory Committee. Brauns also serves on the Rockford Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors and is vice chairman of the Chamber’s Government Affairs Council.

The matter will be up for a vote again July 16.

Aldermen gave final approval to extending the Coronado Theatre’s operating line of credit from $350,000 to $600,000. Thompson-Kelly voted “no.”

The council approved a resolution to take bids and proposals for citywide sidewalk, curb, gutter and wheelchair ramp improvements to be funded by the new 1 percentage point sales tax increase.

A resolution to authorize the city to take Requests for Proposals (RFQ) for marketing of the “Miracle Mile” in the State and Alpine tax increment financing (TIF) district was also approved.

Aldermen passed a committee report recommending a $1,498,206.28 contract be awarded to low-bidder Rockford Blacktop Construction Company for construction of airport boundary water mains.

A report recommending Doyle, Woodhouse & Moore be commissioned to sell six vacant commercial lots was approved. Doyle, Woodhouse & Moore’s commission fee will be 6 percent.

The council also passed a report recommending the Community Development Department apply for an $80,000 grant from the Illinois Housing Development Authority for the rehabilitation of homes in the Gilbert Avenue area.

Mayor Morrissey congratulated Winnebago County on having transferred the entire jail population into the new Justice Center.

“While it certainly doesn’t solve a lot of our public safety concerns, it moves us in the right direction,” Morrissey said, adding discussions are ongoing as to possible uses for the newly-created space at the Public Safety Building.

Mayor Morrissey proclaimed the week of July 9 to be Rockford Community America in Bloom Week. The city was a recipient of an America in Bloom award in 2005 and will be hosting the organization’s conference this year. Judges for the competition will be in Rockford July 8-12. Urging the community to take part in beautification efforts, Morrissey said, “Company is coming.”

Judd L. Gastel was re-appointed to a five-year term on the Mechanical Board. Gastel is president and chief executive officer of Norstar Heating and Cooling.

Aldermen John Beck (R-12), Lenny Jacobson (D-6) and Carl Wasco (D-4) were absent.

from the July 11-17, 2007, issue

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