March 29, 2023 Local Stories in and Around St. Joseph, Illinois

Live at St. Joseph Village Board, September 27

I am here so you don’t have to be.

MX electric sponsors our live blogs. SO if you have an electrical issue call Max!

Public Comment time: Micki and Lowell Suits are here. They are discussing golf cart ordinances, ect.

Max is saying that there is no one monitoring the golf cart usage. (So true)

Discussing what is required when they issue a permit.

This is basically a rehash of the discussion last time. Who is liable, is the village liable? Can people sue?
To paraphrase the lawyer people can sue the village for anything so…

Art is discussing state statutes on golf carts. Art bringing up graduated licenses. This is actually a great point. You can’t have a car full of people if you are a teen. Do they want golf cart full of kids driving around?

They are discussing changing the route golf carts can drive on, the age, the type of vehicle and the registration fee.

Terri Cummings doesn’t feel Jim Wagner should do the golf cart inspections. She feels it is a conflict.

Tami saying making changes would be appropriate as things have evolved and changed and they have learned from previous versions of the ordinance, ect.

Max saying he has driven all over the town in his golf cart and he didn’t realize there were certain places you could cross, ect.

Joe pointing out that if you add any houses it could be an issue with more cars and it would be less safe for golf carts to cross all over, ect.

Terri saying the board should set policy not do the inspection. “I feel very strongly about that.” she said. Max saying they could do a once a year day on a Saturday, ect.

They want to make this more simple but are discussing it at two meetings.

Luke is training another employee to also do inspections. As far as the crossings on 150, Luke thinks you have to get a special permit to have crossings, ect. Luke saying that the state only allows a cross walk on 5th because it is a lower speed zone.

My biggest question about this is no matter what they decide who is enforcing this? They have said numerous times they have no way to enforce the golf cart ordinance and it is not being enforced now so how is that going to change?

Changes they are proposing. Able to drive at 16 with a valid drivers license, change registration fee to $50 yearly. Still discussing enforcement and routes.

I am not going to claim that some people are tired of discussing this but the body language of some people sitting at the front desk is pretty funny. They look how I feel.

Max just admitted they can’t enforce it. Joe pointing out they can ask Champaign County to enforce it more.

Someone just said it “Why have an ordinance if we aren’t going to enforce it.”

They have to have an ordinance since state statute doesn’t allow golf carts is how I understand it but they could do a really general one that just says they are allowed and skip the permitting, ect. It kinda sounds like the permitting is in place because they are afraid of being sued.

I was under the impression you can’t put a golf cart on Main Street because it’s a state route, same as Warren so I am not totally sure why are they are still discussing whether they can be allowed on there.

Joe is trying to move this along, bless him.

This link is super helpful regarding what is allowed under state law.

Discussing what type of vehicles to allow. UTV, ATV. I think they are leaning more towards UTVs, not ATVs. I can’t imagine a scenario where allowing ATVs on village roads is a good idea. (parades are exception) This isn’t four-wheelers, mopeds, dirt bikes, ect.

Not discussing enforcement right now.

So stay tuned.

Discussing vacating the ordinance at the HS. So the HS can use it for parking and eventually expansion of some sort. It’s a under construction document and both parties are going back and forth with it.

New Business: DEMO of the structure by the rail trail.

They have to see if there is asbestos before they move forward with the demo.

The contract for the boy scout building has been formalized. Jeff made the motion, Terri and Dan seconded it. Everyone approved it but Art.

Strategic planning session: Joe has gotten quotes from NIU. Joe encouraging them to get it in the budget for next year. They are all for this because it will allow more long term planning.

Would this be the place to ask for a sidewalk on prospect so kids walking to and from school are safetly?

They also can hand it to the public and say ‘Hey, this is what we are doing….”

They are discussing something with philo exchange bank’s special use permit. The sign they want to put up is ten feet off of the property line but it should be 15. But no one caught it and it was approved in the special use permit so they are just going to allow it.

Halloween Trick or Treat hours will be set at the first meeting in October. There will be a Halloween Parade on Oct. 29 at 10 a.m. starting at village hall.

There is a Christmas Committee. There has been a Christmas tree donation from Todd Woods and Jim Wagner.

Art is bringing up how Champaign Schools are going “woke” His words, not mine. And they may redistrict kids from their current schools so there is more socioeconomic diversity in the schools. He wants the village to promote itself so people could move here. Here is the article. It’s interesting but I can’t see hundreds of families wanting to move because of it.

They are going into closed to discuss pending litigation and something else. I am leaving because they said there would be no board action afterwards.

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