1. In a 7-0 vote at Monday’s meeting, the Pekin City Council approved a six-month moratorium on parking time limits in downtown Pekin.
Pekin City Manager Tony Carson met with local business owners several weeks ago when they expressed concern about parking limits. The downtown has drawn in a lot of service oriented businesses over the past several years — beauty salons, a tattoo artist and other services that cannot always be accomplished in two hours. The parking time limit moratorium applies to city owned parking lots and the streets.
Carson said that if there are any negative issues that arise during the trial period adjustments can be made.
2. The Council voted 6-1 to approve the Pekin Area Chamber of Commerce request for the city’s annual dues of $14,000. Councilman Michael Garrison voted no on the issue.
Chamber Executive Director Bill Fleming said the money supports chamber programs — the R. David Tebben Community Leadership Academy; Emerging Leaders young professional group; quality of life events like the Marigold Festival and the Fourth of July fireworks; the first contact for new businesses, new residents, and visitors; and represent the city in areas such as transportation with its Chamber Transportation Committee of more than 20 years.
The Chamber also has members on various city committees, such as the economic development committee.
3. The Council approved in a 7-0 vote the purchase of 10 new Tasers, holsters, batteries and warranties for the Pekin Police Department at a cost of $14,154.
Six of the Tasers will go to sergeants in the department, and the others will be backups, Billie Ingles, Pekin Police public information officer, said prior to the meeting. The money was previously approved in this year’s budget. The city previously purchased from Taser, but Axon bought out Taser. The city will now buy from Axon/Taser. The Tasers will have a five-year warranty.
Police Chief John Dossey said Axon is the “sole source vendor for the less lethal option we are seeking to acquire.” Dossey said the Tasers reduce officer injury, workman’s compensation and suspect injury.
4. The Council in a 7-0 vote approved the annual agreement with Pekin District 303 for a police liaison officer on campus.
The city and the district share the cost for the officer including salary and benefits. Each will pay $52,273.35. Pekin Police Chief John Dossey said in his memo to Council that the city has a longstanding relationship with the district.
“Both the (Pekin District 303) High School Board and the police department believe that having a police officer trained and available for juvenile justice programs improves the safety of the students, staff, and general public and will deter juvenile crime,” said Dossey.
5. The Council in a 7-0 vote approved an agreement with the Illinois Comptroller’s Office to access its Local Debt Recovery Program to collect overdue money for fines owed to the city.
The comptroller will withhold the fines from income tax refunds, lottery winnings and other money that may flow through the office to the person owing the debt. The comptroller’s office will charge a $20 per transaction fee on top of the past due amount to the city.
Included in the program will be any past due payments of fines to the police department that are not more than seven years old. Debts with warrants attached or liens on property cannot be included.
Follow Sharon Woods Harris at Twitter.com/sharrispekin