January 27, 2022 Local Stories in and Around St. Joseph, Illinois

Live at St. Joseph Village Board

It’s a big night. Girl scouts are talking about their Bronze Award and announcing a new cookie initiative… and the board should decide on liquor licenses.

So many girl scouts are here. They are talking about their bronze award project.

There is a girl scout here with the most beautiful teal hair. #funhaircolorsforthewin.

We are moving around the agenda. Going right to GIRL SCOUT BRONZE PROJECT.

Troop 2012 is made of fifth grade students from St. Joseph Middle School.
For their Take Action Project
They want to improve flower beds at Hackler Park around the Gazebo and sign. They want to put flowers around the sign at Kolb. They want to finish the project in the early summer. They are doing this so the visitors will feel relaxes and have a good time at the parks.

Bronze Project:
Geocaching birdhouses at Kolb, Hackler and Woodard Park. They will do this in the early summer.

“I don’t think it would be asking too much for us to participate on the mulch and timbers,” Mayor Tami Fruhling-Voges said.

Trustee Roy McCarty said he was happy to see the scouts at the meeting.

They are raising the money for the project through their cookie sales.

They will be selling cookies at Caseys on Feb. 7 from 3-6 p.m. with delivery to houses from 4-6 p.m. and a drive-thru cookie booth at AJ’s station on Feb. 8 from 8 a.m. to 1 pm. with house deliveries from 9 a.m. to noon.

If you want your cookies delivered Kate Clark will be posted a link on the St. Joseph Community Page and we will share it on the Record. Order in advance and get your cookies delivered to you! #HOWCOOLISTHAT #GIRLentrepreneurs

The trustees said the girls did a great job- they did- and that it was a great presentation- it was.

Board presentation: Don’t yell, curse, you got 5 minutes and don’t be repetitive.

Package/pour license time. The mayor is discussing what the village can do, ect. Asking the audience to keep an orderly fashion.

Amy McElroy- I think it is shocking that you are even remotely considering a pour license at a gas station. You are across the street from a library and you are across the street from a church. Adding alcohol in the mix is irresponsible. We are turning ourselves into a trash town.

The girl scouts are all really invested in the speakers. This is awesome.

Lisa Wortman from Jack Flash is presenting now.
Wortman is arguing that it isn’t a moral question, gambling is already allowed. The question is if you want the tax money. “Our gaming rooms throughout Central Illinois speak for themselves.” Wortman saying they can’t apply for a gambling license under the current situation because “it would set up a situation with unlimited drinks and exposure. I can promise you that we do police, we do sting ourselves, that two-drink maximum will be enforced and it will be in the ordinance.”

Wortman saying they talked to the customers after they squashed “rumors and bad information.” Several of those costumers were brave enough to sign a petition despite fear of backlash, Wortman said.

100 people signed a petition saying they wanted a license.

Wortman saying Jack Flash does support the community. Youth baseball, SJO Golf Outing, ect. Basically, they are like every other business in town.
“We are happy to do so,” she said.

Wortman saying the board and mayor need to support businesses and are entrusted with making revenue decisions. Wortman saying there are already video gambling customers here and they need to keep them spending their money in town instead of other towns.

Roch Cain submitted a letter. He decided to attend his son’s game instead of this meeting. #familyfirst

Cain saying he has sold over 51 percent of food since they opened which is a requirement of their liquor license/gambling license.

Cain pointing out that they could have six gambling locations in town. Cain saying video gambling supplements a lot of restaurant’s income and that they took the gamble to open a restaurant.

Denise Hatfield- saying that they talked to customers and they were neutral or supported it. Those who strongly supported it signed it.

Jack Flash refusing to submit the petition for the public record.

Kathy Runk is also against the pour license.

Arveda Lund- has a question regarding a license. If they get a license do they have to pour?

Fruhling-Voges saying it has to be allowed.

Jim Wagner pointing out that a lot of people on the petition are from Homer, Royal and Sidney.

Dan Davis- We represent the citizens of St. Joseph. We are hearing a direct number- how many of those names are directly associated with residents in St. Joseph.

Wagner- I had the chance to talk to several people. I had 25-30 people come in and say they weren’t for it. I didn’t have anyone come in and say they were for it. I didn’t have anyone come in and say they supported the gaming. I talked to some people in our neighborhood who didn’t care either way. Some people brought up the marijuana situation and how we talked about our brand. Does this fit our brand? One of our residents in town recently moved in and they felt St. Joe because the town was a little more close-knit and if they had seen a lot of gaming they would have picked a different town. We may gain gambling revenue but we could be losing it in other areas.

Roy- I have had quite a few approach me and say they wouldn’t go in the stores if they had them. We have a lot of people who oppose it. We have to weigh what the town wants and what’s in the best interest of the town.

Painter- two weeks ago I would have voted no. It is already in our town. I think there are good citizens out there who like to game to go to Rochs. They don’t have to buy any alcohol at all. You talk about people drinking and driving you have more of a situation there than at a gas station.

Wagner- we could have up to five right now- we could have up to 60 machines in the town. You can’t discredit the ones that don’t do it because they could sell out and they could decide to do it.

McElroy- selling open alcohol at a gas station is a shockingly bad message and goes against the brand.

Tami Fruhling-Voges we control what the liquor license would look like. I have hard things about the branding and what our community looks like. Tami talking about how the package pour license would have to have a restriction on what sales are from video gaming and everything else. “You couldn’t include gas.”

Heidi Hewkin-asking what type of alcohol is sold.

Wortman saying only beer will be available.

The petition only had 74 people on it in support. About 4000 people live here. So that’s not … great.

Dan Davis is talking about how much Jack Flash could bring in.

This is kind of an interesting story.

Davis saying he doesn’t want to cause Rochs a loss of revenue. #eatlocal

Fred Sterts- it is opening pandoras box. Roch’s has four machines. There are four or five businesses in town that could get them. Jack Flash, Casey’s, IGA. We go from having four to 24 to 60. When are we going to stop, how many machines are we going to allow.

Here’s a fun fact that my unofficial poll was 72 percent against this license. And there was no “false” information in that poll.

Max- all you are going to do is run people out of your business.

Molly from Peters Drive- talking about there are health issues in this community regarding addiction. Gaming is an addiction. People who want to game are going to find places to game. Protect the community, protect your young and protect your image.

Heidi- discussing what the “single-serve” amount is

Max talking about if they actually need to move forward or if they can table it and discuss it some more. Painter saying the gambling is already here.

Kathy Runk discussing supporting small businesses that are already here.

Todd Woods- “I get it why Jack Flash is looking for gaming. One thing to consider as we are moving along here the minimum wage is increasing and businesses are looking for other ways to make ends meet. I really haven’t made an opinion one way or another. I came here to see what was going on.”

Todd saying it is a good move as minimum wage increases. “That is my two cents.”

Lisa- “The thing I want to share with you all is I am a small business. I am no Caseys or Pilot. We are classy. We are in small towns and we are not in big towns.”

Lisa discussing that the consumption of alcohol is the biggest concern she is hearing and she will be understanding of that. “I am asking for your support so we have another form of income for us and you.”

Jim Wagner making the motion to vote it down. Roy seconds.
McCarty- Yes
Davis- No
Painter- No
Tami Fruhling-Voges voted Yes.

“I tried to keep an open mind. I have my concerns. Max kind of made a statement that triggered the direction I was leaning. When gaming did come into the community I as a trustee didn’t get the opportunity to opt-out.”

Fruhling-Voges – saying when gambling first came she wasn’t given the chance to opt-out or she would have. I am concerned about the branding of the community we do allow it for the restaurants. They are a very small local restaurant if they need help to subsidize the business to make it. It wasn’t an easy decision. I have been tossing around the pros and cons what would be best for the community.

Right now with the information we have- and trying to figure it out what ordinance we would have maybe we need to see what more stipulations we need.

They aren’t moving forward with it.

Lisa discussing that Art Rapp, who isn’t here, would vote yes.

The girl scouts are leaving. #bedtime.

So are the Jack Flash peeps.



Update on Monroe Street- they are still in court dealing with stuff. The village is committed to enforcing this ordinance.

Talking about goal setting. That’s the meeting where they decide what they are doing the whole year.

They are going to do a Thankful Thursday where the village workers all have lunch with the trustees as a thank you for the work they do.

Major drainage issues- a big portion is going to be taken care of by DD6. They are digging tomorrow.

“We need to start looking at the big picture,” Tami Fruhling-Voges said.

ITs over.

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