City staff to research west-side infrastructure needs
City council members laid over Ald. Victory Bells (D-5) resolution to establish Weldon Road as the citys western boundary, during its Monday, March 20 meeting.
Ald. Ann Thompson (D-7) said, in a Tuesday morning interview, aldermen would consider a reworked resolution next week.
Were going to reword Ald. Bells proposal, Thompson said. We need to be in the position for planning 30 years out.
Considering such long-range planning, the proposal will be revamped after city staff does some research. Thompson said city staff will examine what infrastructure is needed to sustain business development on Rockfords west side.
She said encouraging development will help create jobs and lower the citys unemployment rate. According to the U.S. Department of Labors Web site, Rockfords unemployment rate was 7.1 percent at the first of the year.
Thompson noted enacting the new proposal would help create a larger tax base, saying, Its very important that we do this.
City Administrator Jim Ryan said, We need to determine what utilities will be necessary for full city services for the area.
Ryan added the city views Weldon Road as a planning boundary. He noted growth has taken place on the citys northwest, southwest and east sides. According to Ryan, the revamped resolution would accomplish another goal, We are certainly looking toward a balanced-growth community.
In other business, aldermen approved a $22,500 legal settlement. Kerry Partridge, a city attorney, confirmed the settlement was approved and its amount, but said he couldnt comment further.
The case is still pending, Partridge said.
Although the plaintiffs hadnt signed off on the settlement, Partridge said he anticipated wrapping up the case within a couple of weeks. Repeated attempts to reach the plaintiffs attorney, T. Lee Boyd Jr. of Chicago, were unsuccessful.
from the March 22-28, 2006, issue