The village council approved an ordinance authorizing the issue of General Obligation Bonds for the village in an amount not to exceed $14 million during Monday’s village council meeting. The money from the bonds would be used for streets, infrastructure and alley improvements, said Mike Sturino, village administrator.
The bonds represent a creative way of obtaining the money from last November’s referendum, in which the village passed a one half of 1 percent increase in the retail sales tax, on the front end to finance future infrastructure improvements.
Commissioner Tim Gillian said he hopes to have work on these projects begin soon, adding that this is the first step toward making that possible, as bids can’t be accepted until the money is secured.
The approval, warns Village Attorney Michael Durkin, does not mean the bonds will be issued and sold but acts as a triggering mechanism for the process, which includes public review.
“Since this is an alternative revenue source, it triggers publication in the newspaper: a notice that there are 30 days for a backdoor referendum petition [from the public],” Durkin said.
The notice, which must be published in the REVIEW, within 10 days of approval of the ordinance, gives the public 30 days to gather 621 signatures asking that the ordinance be vacated and deliver said signatures to the village clerk.
Should no backdoor referendum protest be presented, the council still has to approve the issue and sale of the bonds and decide what amount, up to the $14 million, it will ask for on the market.
At the meeting, the council also approved an amendment to the zoning map and site plan for the 7550 Cermak Rd. and 2151 Desplaines Ave. properties.
The modification changes zoning for the property, currently occupied by Woodlawn Cemetery, from an R-1 single-family residential to a B-2 community shopping zone.
The change allows the owners to build a funeral home within the property.
As part of the site plan, the property owners have agreed to provide sidewalks along the public right-of-ways on Desplaines Avenue and Cermak Road.