By KIP CHEEK
MENDOTA – The Mendota City Council approved fiscal year 2021-22 budgets at its May 3 regular meeting.
Before handling the budgets, the council closed out the 2020-21 fiscal year by swearing in elected and appointed officials. They included David Boelk, mayor; Emily McConville, city clerk; Jim Fitzpatrick, First Ward alderman; Kyle Kim, Third Ward alderman; Vicki Johnson, Fourth Ward alderman; Heath Davis, treasurer. Leo Hochstatter, Second Ward alderman, was absent.
Mayor Boelk opened the new fiscal year by presenting the TIF I, VIII, 2017A and 2017B TIF budgets, which were approved by the council.
Alderman Fitzpatrick gave the Water Fund and Sewer Fund budgets. The Water Fund is projected to have revenues of $1,488,000 and expenses of $1,604,156 for a deficit of $116,156. The Sewer Fund revenue budget is expected to be $1,491,000 with expenses estimated at $4,920,115 for a deficit of $3,429,115. However, the revenue budget will increase to $5,454,937 with a payment from Del Monte and then will have a surplus of $534,822.
Alderman John Holland presented the General Fund budget. Revenue is anticipated to be $6,575,815 and expenses are proposed to be $6,673,465 for a deficit of $97,650.
In other items from Holland’s report, the council approved an amendment to the annual wage ordinance to include the addition of extra and part-time police department employees.
Per the recommendation of the Mendota Historic Restoration & Preservation Commission, the council approved a certificate of appropriateness and a $7,000 façade grant for the owners of the building at 701 Washington St.
Holland gave summaries for the Mendota Police Pension Fund and Mendota Fire Pension Fund, saying the police fund has assets of $7 million and the fire fund has assets of $3.3 million, using numbers from last year.
Alderman Kyle Kim presented figures for the Mendota Civic Center Fund budget. He listed revenue at $258,990 and expenses at $208,050 for a positive balance of $50,940.
DEL MONTE PROPERTY
City attorney Mike Guilfoyle said the city and Del Monte have closed on the deal for the city to take over approximately 77 acres of Del Monte property, which includes ponds. Del Monte paid the city $3.95 million for the deal.
Mayor Boelk said Del Monte was taking bids from five companies to clean up the ponds and the city decided it would get in on the bidding process. “Del Monte left the city, and left in a bad way,” said Boelk. “We thought we would throw our hat in for the bidding.”
The city will now be responsible for the cost of cleaning up the ponds. Boelk emphasized that the pond clean-up is a non-EPA issue, but there is an overflow of sludge into the Little Vermilion River. There are no contaminants, he said. He added that the sludge can be utilized by the city in various ways.
Boelk said the ponds will be leveled off once they are empty and then the city will decide what to do with the land. He mentioned it could be used as farm land, and noted that it will be great frontage property for U.S. 34. “This is a good deal for the citizens of Mendota,” he said. “I think you’ll see that in the next couple of years.”
The next regular meeting of the Mendota City Council will be Monday, May 17 at 5:30 p.m.