September 26, 2023 Local Stories in and Around St. Joseph, Illinois

Live at St. Joseph Village Board, Aug. 23, 2022

I am here with five people in the audience. #hugecrowd

Plus, the usual Mr. Sennert doing IT and Mr. Miller giving the legal advice.

Max Painter saying he doesn’t understand the festival committee and what they pay for, what the village pays for and where the lines are drawn. #Youandmeboth

Max always brings issues like this to the forefront. I really love how he has a serious interest in making sure the village’s best interests are represented.

Public comment: Lowell and Micki Suits are here to discuss changes they would like to be seen made to golf carts. They are making the point that it’s kinda silly to have the age limit for golf carts being 21 when other towns are 17, 18, ect.

Jim Wagner saying they can’t enforce what they have now and kids are driving across 150 which is a no-no and across the highway. #Ohno People aren’t registering, ect. It is up to the county to enforce it.

Micki is asking when they plan on regulating the ordinance they have.

Max wants the fee lowered to $50 per year, if they have a drivers license let them drive it and unlimited drivers. $200 for five years.

Let’s just be real. All laws are made with the hope people will follow them. It doesn’t seem like a good use of county time to regulate this unless it’s like an egregious situation. #justmytake #idontevenlikegolfcartsinthevillage

Tami is pointing out we are non-homerule so they have to follow state statute and that means you cannot cross Rt. 150.

The lawyer is rehashing what non-homerule means. DIscussing liability if the golf cart is in an accident.

Wagner saying they have to cover all their bases because he couldn’t live with himself if someone got killed regarding the ordinance. Max is saying there are people driving it now who aren’t permitted.

Micki is concerned with the lack of enforcement.

Rightfully so. Why does the village make all these ordinances they can’t enforce? It’s very frustrating.

Wagner saying they wouldn’t necessarily issue tickets. It could just be pulled over and told to register, stop driving across the road.

There is a way they can enforce it. I forget the technical term but basically, the village forms a tiny “court” and they enforce the tickets.

Electric Trucks being discussed now. This is kinda weird that they are even discussing this when they just spend 22 minutes saying “hey, we can’t enforce what we have.” It’s priced similar to a golf cart, goes 25 miles per hour, has a horn and is air-conditioned. The same pros as a golf cart, economical, small, ect. Art discussing how these are made in China.

DIscussing the former antique store and who owns it, what they want for it. Plus all the old boats that are stored there.

Joe is trying to focus the conversation. #thankthelord “Mark’s time and my time is a resource.” #hardcore. Basically, he is saying don’t make me research this if you aren’t actually going to do it. Which is a valid issue. Sometimes they waste a lot of time researching stuff then nothing happens.

They literally just discussed enforcing and lack thereof for 25 minutes and now some are all like “Whatever… yay electric trucks.” This is not a very focused convo. It is all over the place.

Terri Cummings points out they need to figure out how to enforce it before they expand it.

They aren’t passing the vacating the alley ordinance because the intergovernmental agreement isn’t done because SJO asked them to change a few things. Basically, SJO wants to use the alley as part of their parking lot right now and doesn’t want it in there that they have to maintain trees, ect. because there may not be trees, ect. Joe said he wanted it tabled because they needed to work on the intergovernmental agreement before passing the ordinance.

Discussing a business grant process. He is giving them several options. I will have to do a separate story on this because it’s a lot of information. they are discussing having it be for facades currently in business.

Wagner signs is asking for a special use permit to hold an anniversary event. #happy15years. He wants to shut down the road in front of his store, have a some bounce houses, ect.

It passed.

Swimming pools without fences discussion. “if it is possible for someone to complain about something they will do it.”

“This is one of those things where there are complaints about swimming pools without fences.”

Joe has lived in a town where there was child who drowned in an above ground pool. Tami bringing up that a dog drowned in an above ground pool in town as well.

There are four different pools that the village has ID without fences. The village sent them a letter saying you need a fence. There has been no response. Joe wants to know how far the board wants to push it, do they want to take it to court, ect.

JIm Wagner saying he wants to push it pretty hard.

‘A tenant recently applied for a pool permit. A tenant can’t do it so they had to put a fence up anyway,” Joe said.

Terri saying she wants to understand the process. “We issue the permits?” she asked. Joe said they usually go see where they are placing the pool and that’s that. Terri asking why the person who enforces the building code can’t enforce the fence code. #exactly.

Marc Miller the lawyer saying they can write the ordinance and then write the ticket. We have no way to enforce that unless we take them to court. A technique that may work is to have a fine amount that is refundable if they do the fence, ect.

Terri wants a specific person to be in charge of the permits. #thatmakestoomuchsense

Mike suggests they let people put up a snow fence in case they can’t get fencing. I mean, sure, but can you imagine the fit neighbors would throw. Mike, I think wants them to be lenient if they are trying to get the fence.

Fall Festival discussion time. Tami saying there have been a lot of great remarks on the festival. The village got thank you cards and people enjoyed the parade, ect. Tami is making the case why the village should be the umbrella organization for the festival. It’s on village property, they participate financially, the trustees want more information about the community festival committee and how the general public thinks the village puts it on anyway.

Max wants to know why certain businesses are allowed out there and others aren’t. Mike says anyone can participate and be a vendor. Terri saying she wants to discuss it at another time- maybe the goal session setting meeting. So that means I will have to attend that. #funtimes

Meeting is adjourned.

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