Eastern’s future brought up in City Council

Lynnsey Veach, Staff Reporter

Eastern’s future ended up being a topic of discussion at the Charleston City Council meeting on Tuesday, with an alum encouraging citizens to attend Friday’s Fund EIU rally.

Kate Klipp, a Charleston resident, 2007 Eastern graduate and an organizer of the Fund EIU Rally said she encourages the city to promote Eastern by attending the rally.

The rally is scheduled for 4 p.m. Friday, and Klipp said “We would like the city to endorse our project and also attend.”

Klipp said community members, students, faculty and alumni are continuously offering to help out with the rally.

“We have staff members that are still reaching out and offering to help even after they’ve just received notice they no longer work for the university,” Klipp said.

Mayor Brandon Combs said since many citizens work at Eastern it is an important part of Charleston.

“Eastern is a valuable asset to the Charleston community,” Combs said.

Council members voted in favor of an ordinance that will waive building and plumbing fees that come with building a single-family residence. This will begin on Feb. 3 and last for the rest of 2016.

Combs said this is a pilot program that will help promote residential growth within Charleston.

“We will review it and decide if we want to move forward with it,” Combs said.

Council members voted in favor of amending Ordinance Title 3 Chapter 3: Alcoholic Beverages, which was placed on file for public inspection at the last meeting on Jan. 19.

Combs said this amendment gives the City of Charleston two special-use permits to use in a 12-month period. This also allows the consumption of alcohol on authorized city properties during these two special uses.

Council members voted in favor for the resolution of abating the tax levying for the year 2015, for the debt service of $6.14 million general obligation from the renovation of the wastewater treatment plant.

Combs said the city uses water city revenues to meet the debt service instead of levying taxes to citizens.

The council also approved the resolution of abating the tax levying, concerning the debt service of $950,000 to the Charleston Rotary Aquatic Center.

The Land Lease Agreement with Central States Tower III, L.L.C, which was placed on file for public inspection at the last meeting was approved at Tuesday’s meeting. This agreement will allow Central States III, L.L.C. to be placed at the former waste treatment’s grounds.

The Council approved a street closure request for the Drake-Hendrickson Wedding Processional on June 11. The streets between the Immanuel Lutheran Church and the Grand Ballroom in the Martin Luther King Jr. University Union will close for the wedding.

The Housing Outreach Prevention Education of East Central Illinois requested two raffling licenses for their Bowls of Hope event and Children’s Committee Raffle. The requests were approved by the council members.

The St. Charles Borromeo Council #4024 Knights of Columbus requested a raffle license for weekly drawings starting Feb. through Dec. 2016 was approved.

The Council approved the Charleston American Legion Post #93 request for a raffle license to support Post #93 Honor Guard and other legion programs.

The County Council on Aging also requested a raffle license for the Murder Mystery Fundraiser at the LifeSpan Center was approved.

Combs announced his reappointment of Nora Pat Small to a 1-year term as Ex Officio Member of the Charleston Historic Preservation Commission.