Events begin at 4 pm with cruising from 4 to 7 pm in downtown Freeport. There will be live music, a food court offering a variety of tasty choices, and three contests: the Soundwerks Plus and Tailor Made Autoworks LLC Sound Off Contest, the Gary’s Collision & Customs Muffler Rapping Contest , and the Dan’s Route 66 Service Burn Out Contest. There will be a lot filled with antique cars, a Motorcycle parking area, two main parking lots, and a lot, for the classic cars. In addition, downtown restaurants Main Street Bistro, PJ’s Stephenson Street Station, and This Is It Eatery will be open. PJ’s will also offer the band, The Beaux, playing 60s and 70s music. Souvenir t-shirts and photo booth will be available at K&M Photography on Stephenson Street. Spectator parking is available on streets and in parking lots outside of the Cruise Route. For more details go to http://www.freeportcruisenight.org/contact.html
It’s nice the City of Freeport has the funds to resurface part of South Street from Hance Drive to Route 26. If you look at the condition of this street, it is better than 90% of the streets in Freeport. In fact the City has so much money, they just remarked the turn lanes at Route 26 only to tear up the road a few weeks later. We used to call such projects “make work,” but in reality it is just plain stupidity.
Ask your alderperson when your street is going to be replaced (or at least repaired). The answer my friend is blowin’ in the wind!
Owner: Freeport Senior Housing II, 1001 E. Touhy Ave Suite 50, Des Plaines, IL
REAL ESTATE TAXES PAID: NONE
As with much of the new senior housing in Freeport, no real estate taxes are paid on the buildings. This shifts the real estate tax burden to the home owners and small businesses in the community. The occupants and investors in this building should thank the citizens of Freeport for this generous tax subsidy.
While retirees on social security have received little or no increases in benefits in recent years, Illinois state retirees in the generous and bankrupt State of Illinois have continued to receive annual 3% increases. In fact retirees on social security received no increase in 2010 and 2011. See http://time.com/money/3903601/social-security-interest-rates-2016/
When the rest of the country suffered during the great recession, Illinois state retirees continued to see their benefits escalate. Many State retirees after a few years of retirement are making more than they were making when working at their state jobs. No wonder they all want to retire at 50, and move to Florida to collect their Illinois pensions while working at new jobs! Oh well, let’s increase taxes in Illinois. We all want our state retirees to have a comfortable retirement in Florida.
City crews are busy putting in new sidewalks around the public parking lot across from the post office. Freeport has plenty of money and the street department plenty of time when it comes to maintaining the downtown area and other areas of the city. At the council meeting on July 20, Alderman Chesney asked the Freeport City Engineer when they would be working on Woodside Drive. He mumbled something – basically no real timeline. It cannot wait one year much less five or ten years. As usual Tom Klemm, the 1st ward alderman, who represents this area, said nothing and does nothing. The residents in this area have limited options when it comes to addressing the total lack of road maintenance in this area. Many of them have already exercised one of the options – sell your home and leave Freeport. That may be the only solution! A downtown with good streets and sidewalks is great, but it will do little good if residents keep leaving the city.
The City is spending $517,714 on new streets, and now $140,790 for micro-surfacing select, important, and one must only presume, high tax revenue generating streets in Freeport. Again, the Woodside Drive area is getting nothing. The streets in the Woodside Drive area are a disgrace to this community and just plain dangerous. See Good Day Illinois on June 1 at https://gooddayillinois.com/2015/06/01/street-superintendent-dole-pledges-to-repair-alleys-in-the-city-of-freeports-5th-ward-fire-station-parking-lots-are-a-priority/
The Freeport City Council will be meeting on Monday, July 20 at 6:00 pm at 524 W. Stephenson Street, 3rd Floor. You can watch it live on Comcast Channel 17. Some items of interest on the agenda:
- Annual report on biennial inspections of bridges in the City. See report at http://www.cityoffreeport.org/OrdRes/2015%20Bridge%20Report.pdf
- Discussion on City spending plan
- 2nd reading of Appropriation Ordinance for fiscal year 2015-2016
- Resolution to adopt spending plan for fiscal year 2015-2016
Mayor Gitz in Journal Standard on Sunday, July 19 tried to explain the difference between the Appropriation Ordinance and Spending Plan. He failed miserably – bureaucratic double talk. The biggest reason the Appropriation Ordinance does not accurately reflect projected spending is that City like other taxing bodies such as the Freeport School District are TAX PIGS. Taxing bodies want to suck all of the revenue they can from the real estate taxes. If for some reason (unlikely in Freeport), real estate assessments rose, the City could get more revenue. For God’s sake, every taxing body wants all of the money they can get. If this were not the case, appropriation ordinances and tax levies would accurately reflect projected income and expenses.
- Recommendation from City Engineer to accept bid of $140,790 for micro-surfacing.
- Phase 1 proposals for the renovation of old Carnegie library for city hall purposes – see details at http://www.cityoffreeport.org/OrdRes/DES%20BUILD%20COUNCIL_20150720.pdf
To view the complete meeting agenda go to: ttp://www.ci.freeport.il.us/citygovernment/Agendas/A20150720a.pdf
Craig Morgan, American country music artist and military veteran, headlines the entertainment in the Grandstand on Saturday night, July 18. For a complete list of activities at the fair, go to http://www.stephensoncountyfair.org/