City Council applying for a grant to help maintain Lake Charleston


Mary Ellen Greenburg

Councilman Jeff Lahr, and Mayor Brandon Combs, go over street closure requests for the Fourth of July festivities, Tuesday night at the City Council meeting. Combs and the rest of the council agreed to the street closures for the parade and other festivities.

Mary Ellen Greenburg, Staff Photographer

The City Council is seeking out to apply for a grant to help maintain the Lake Charleston shoreline, and there will be street closures for Fourth of July.

The council applied for a grant from the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency pertaining to the perimeter of Lake Charleston. This grant will be used to help prevent erosion on the lake shoreline.

According to the agenda, the council expressed intent to use $150,000 of Charleston Area Charitable Foundation grant funding, and up to $30,000 of the City’s funding in the 2019 or 2020 fiscal years, along with the IEPA 319 grant funding.

This leads to a total of $180,000 from the city for the project.

There will be street closures on July 3-4, that were approved by the City Council. The street closures will be for the Four on the Fourth: Four Mile Foot Race, the parade and other festivities.

The last event on the agenda for the night was a presentation of an award for exemplary service above and beyond the call of duty, to firefighter and paramedic Philip Matar.

While he was off duty Matar was taking his father to the doctor on May 8, 2018, and happened upon a car that was on fire on Interstate 57 due to a collision with a semi-truck. Fire and paramedics had not arrived yet and the driver of the car was not responsive.

A state trooper and other bystanders were trying to get the driver out while Matar jumped up on the hood of the car and kicked in the windshield with the help of a shovel. He and others removed the driver and provided medical care until help arrived.

“There was no thought, instinct just kicked in, we have multiple hours of training. Without the tools you have access to everyday on the job, it’s a little different, but it still kicks in and you’re still getting what you need done, done.” Matar said, “I was part of a team. There were other bystanders there, we all came together as a group and got that man out. There was a nurse and two EMTs that also stopped to help,”

Mary Ellen Greenburg can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected]