Onarga village september

Photo by Wendy Davis

The Onarga Village Board discusses the newly installed speed bumps in town.

It’s uncertain if the newly installed speed bumps in Onarga are helping.

This was one of the topics of discussion at Monday’s Onarga Village Board meeting.

Police chief Doug Brenner said the speed bumps were put in after years of complaints about speeding and blown stop sign, specifically at the intersection of Lincoln and Blue Spruce. He said they were put in “after months of investigation” and “long, deliberate discussions”.

There have been citations and arrests made at the intersection, but nothing was controlling it.

He said it’s a “troubled area”, as it’s on the edge of town and people start speeding up too early.

One speed bump was put in, as to make it not too aggressive,” he said, but they’ve found that people are trying to drive around the bump instead of stopping. They’re needing to find ways to block the sides, he said.

There have been complaints from residents that it’s not helping slow people down. Instead, it was pointed out, those who live there are just being inconvenienced.

Trustee Russ Geisler said the board, through the work of the committee, is continuing to work on something that they hope will alleviate the problem.

He said there will be another meeting with the city of Watseka on starting this ordinance court.

Doing this would likely mean more tickets would be written, as more fine money would stay in the village, he said.

What needs to be done, said Brenner, is “punish the ones who need to be punished”.

The safety committee will look into installing cameras at the park.

Brenner said there have been a few reports of batteries and vandalism at the park. He said it’s no more, really, than what’s done in other communities.

He said he’s found a price for six “quality cameras”, a three-year lease for $110 a month, but he said the committee tabled it because of the cost.

Village board president Shane Cultra questioned if the cost of fixing the damage was more than the cost would be for the cameras.

Brenner, with the agreement of maintenance supervisor Tim Hamilton, said it’s unknown at this time what the cost has been, but having the cameras is more about “holding people accountable”.

The board is also considering hiring a full time police officers.

Also at the meeting, the board approved purchasing a pool cover costing $16,719.02.

Cultra quested if the cost was too much.

Trustee Fred Walravan said the pool needs to have a cover, and the purchase is being made through a local company.

He said the good thing is the pool repair cost was less expensive than originally anticipated.

Trustee Holly Zirkle said the part of the reason the cover is more expensive is due to the shape of the pool.

She said she would write for the Mary Helen Roberts Trust grant, which would cover part of the cost. The purchase needs to be made before the grant would award any money.

The board also gave the okay to get the lighting fixed and the heater installed.

Relatedly, the board approved Becky Morgan as part time park coordinator.

In other business, the board approved a drawing from Piggush Engineering for fiber optic cable bored underground, starting at the library and going toward the school cutting across at Evergreen Street.

The recent clean up days was successful, said Hamilton. He said he doesn’t yet have figure on the cost of the electronic recycling, but the take in of electronics and tires was more than the last clean up days. The amount taken in from regular junk was about the same, he said.

Finally, Cultra said opening statements regarding the sewer system issue will be heard in the appellate court at 1:15 p.m. Oct. 3 in Ottawa.