In Hoopeston

Photo by Carla Waters

City Clerk Gail Lane, Mayor Bill Crusinberry and city attorney Chuck Mockbee take part in last week’s Hoopeston City Council meeting.

Mayor Bill Crusinberry and other city officials will be going to a meeting with the Illinois Department of Transportation to talk about road construction projects.

Crusinberry updated city officials about the meeting at the Tuesday Hoopeston City Council meeting.

The meeting will be Sept. 11 at the regional IDOT office in Paris, Illinois. “This meeting is the first stage of redoing Thompson Avenue from the railroad tracks to the city limits. It will be a similar to the project that we did on South Market and then North Market. Curbs, gutters, the whole street. We’ve been putting motor fuel tax money aside every year, then there’s some federal dollars that go into this, too,” he said. In another matter, Crusinberry said he has looked at the information from the municipal league on legalized recreational marijuana.

“They thought everybody should act one way or another, either prohibit it or regulate it,” he said. “If you are going to regulate it, I see Rankin just passed a tax on theirs, I think. I see in the paper today, I haven’t verified this yet, Champaign says if you are going to pass the tax on it you have to let the Department of Revenue know by the end of September, which doesn’t give us much time.”

He said there is also information from other sources including State Sen. Jason Barickman and others about the matter. He said there are still many questions. A forum is coming up in Chicago, which Crusinberry said he would probably attend. He asked if anyone had ideas on how Hoopeston should handle the matter, to which no one answered. He said he wanted to make everyone aware of what the latest issues are.

In another matter, several city officials reported that the Sweetcorn Festival was successful again and that city crews and volunteers worked hard on the event.

Alderman Carl Ankenbrand said he had spoken with Police Chief Jim DeWitt about the festival.

“He said he was very pleased with how the festival went this year,” he said. “He was pleased with how his officers and auxiliary police handled situations out there. He said it went pretty smoothly.”

Alderman Jeff Wise, street department chairman, praised that department’s crews for the work they did before, during and after the festival.

“I just want give a little praise to the street and alley workers who did a good job getting everything ready for the festival, and working through all that.”

Alderman Alex Houmes said, parks chairman, said, “The park employees also did a good job with the festival this weekend.”

It was also noted that the Jaycees and all the volunteers did a lot of work to get the festival up and running smoothly. Crusinberry said the crowds were good all weekend long.

In another matter, Alderwoman Lourdine Florek introduced water superintendent Steve Baker who said that the new jetvac would be in sometime in the next week. “So we can get busy with cleaning sewers out,” he said.

“So what Steve is going to do is get Hoopeston on a maintenance schedule,” she said, “so that we can keep the sewers and stuff jetted and cleaned.”

She said, too, that there was a odor noticed in the city last week, which was due to the lagoons at the wastewater treatment plant being drained. “They are removing sludge and there’s no water on them so the smell raises up and then when a good breeze comes, I know I could smell it at my house. Just so people are aware of that. That will be ongoing for a while until they get the lagoons cleaned.”

The water hydrants are being painted, she said. “Yellow is a preferred color now by various water groups so as we replace hydrants they will be yellow, but for now we will have a mixture of red and yellow.”