• The village has lowered its property tax levy, continuing a trend for the last several years.
In a 4-2 vote, the Village Board approved a 5 percent drop in the levy. Trustees Mike Stumpf and Jeff Weber voted against the drop. Stumpf says he feels a continual drop in the levy could hurt services provided to the community by the village.
The levy now has been reduced for the last six years. In 2012 and 2013, the levy was reduced by 5 percent, and by 10 percent in 2011. 2014’s levy totals $461,354.
“We have one of the lowest tax levies (in the area), and the business district is growing; we have a nice cushion there…and I only see the village getting better with more businesses and more people being happy with this community,” Trustee Sarah Johnes said in a Nov. 18 Village Board meeting. “I see no reason why we can’t continue to reduce the burden on the taxpayers by lowering the levy again.”
• Kevin Tepen with C.J. Schlosser and Company LLC reviewed the village’s 2013 audit and presented his findings to the board this week.
“Cash is going up, and debts are going down,” Tepen said. “It was another solid year for the village.”
• The Godfrey Township Board of Trustees (the same board as the village, but a separate entity) voted to raise the township property tax levy by 4.9 percent. Godfrey Township Supervisor Doug Mueller says the township has worked hard to find a fair compromise, ensuring the village’s reserves are healthy and the taxpayers are paying the lowest rate possible.
Trustees Sarah Johnes and Eldon Williams voted no on the levy rate.
• Following an email sent to the village, the board says it will be monitoring the annual Paris Drive light display to ensure safety and enjoyment for the community.
A concerned neighbor has contacted the village again this year regarding possible traffic problems for the neighborhood caused by the music-synchronized display, which has grown to include at least three houses on the street.
Last year, the village and the homeowner who began the tradition came to an agreement in which the lights would be on during set times in the evening, off by 9 p.m., and the duration of the display would be limited to the month of December.
The Village Board says it will be monitoring the situation to see if a need arises to set up an emergency solution such as temporary institution of a one-way street, as the next regularly scheduled board meeting where action could be voted on will not be until Dec. 18.
It is free to tour the D’Adrian neighborhood, but donations are welcome and are given to local charities. For more information on the display, visit the Facebook page at “Lights on Paris Drive.”
• An early snow in 2014 has local municipalities looking hard at their salt supply. Godfrey Director of Maintenance Jim Lewis says he is concerned the village does not have a secondary salt supply source for the first time because of a lack of abundance and availability on the part of suppliers.
The village has 1,200 tons of salt and used a minimal amount on this month’s snow. Lewis said a normal winter will use about 1,200 tons, and last winter the village used 2,500 tons.
The village has about $5,000 budgeted for salt. Trustee Jeff Weber assured Lew