City Council

By Shelby R. Farrell


BELVIDERE – One Belvidere alderman was quickly replaced, and the City Council had a new face on Wednesday, Sept. 9.

James Campbell was elected as the 5th Ward Alderman in April 2013. However, he resigned from his position on Belvidere’s City Council two years before elections. Campbell was recognized for his time on the council at the City Council meeting on Sept. 9.

Mayor Mike Chamberlain announced the appointment of John Sanders as Campbell’s replacement at the City Council meeting on Aug. 17. He also brought the consideration the waive Municipal Code 2-88, Referral to Committees, which removes steps in the appointing process. Both considerations were voted 6-2 that night, approving the appointment and waiving of code 2-88.

Clayton Stevens and Clinton Morris, both 1st Ward Aldermans, voted against the motions. Sanders had previously been the 5th Ward Alderman, losing the election to Mark Sanderson in April, and Morris said it was Sanders voting on an issue at the Belvidere Township Office that caused him to vote against his appointment.

“At the time, Mr. Sanders voted twice in support of that, and in the final vote he voted No,” Morris said. “No additional information was given. He didn’t make any comments on it, so Mr. Sanders knows I was disappointed with him, and I just don’t feel that he has the strength to represent the tax payers, so based upon that, I vote accordingly.”

Stevens also made comments on the motion, saying he didn’t even know the seat on the council was open.

Sanders was sworn in as the 5th Ward Alderman at the Committee of the Whole meeting on Aug. 24, and his first City Council meeting was Sept. 9.

More parking at Belvidere-Boone County Public Safety Building

At the Sept. 9 meeting, Belvidere City Council approved the closure of Menomonie Street between Main Street and Webster Street to add parking for city police squad cars.

The section of road runs northwest of the Boone County Sheriffs Department, the Belvidere Police Department and the Boone County Circuit Judge Courthouse. A residential neighborhood is on the opposite side of Menomonie Street.

The parking improvements were brought to the Committee of the Whole meeting on Aug. 24, where Chief Jan Noble explained the need for parking.

“Over the course of the months of June and July there was significant parking lot repair, but during that period of time our vehicles had to be moved off of the parking lot for black topping and gluing, and we were forced to temporarily move our cars out to the street,” Noble said.

He said they were able to angle-park during those summer months, thanks to the Belvidere Street Department. The angled parking on Menomonie Street between Main and Webster streets doubled the amount of parking spaces, because they had previously parked parallel on that block.

“First and foremost, by being able to close Menomonie Street between Webster and Main and creating an additional safety barrier that gives the North side of the PSB non-access by public, by trucks, by anyone who would want to see in closer to our building, making this a restricted area,” he said.

The restrictions won’t affect the people living on the other side of Menomonie Street from the police departments. Two houses are on the block, but one is unoccupied and owned by the police department, Noble said. He also said the owner of the other house agreed with the project.

Belvidere’s City Council also agreed with the project, which cost over $10,000, but the council approved to split the costs 50/50 between the City of Belvidere and Boone County at the Sept. 9 meeting. Construction began the second week of September.

Intergovernmental agreement passed with school District 100

Parking wasn’t the only improvement Belvidere’s Public Safety department made at the Sept. 9 City Council meeting.

Belvidere City Council renewed the city’s contract for the School Resource Officer program with School District 100 for the 2015- 2016 school year. The officer is still working under the city, though during the school year, the school district pays the city 70 percent of the officer’s wages.

The program went into effect on Aug. 18, and the officer is required to be available to Belvidere High School and Belvidere South Middle School during all school days from 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. He also has to be available for all school-sponsored functions, including home football games, dances, and graduation.

Noble said the School Resource Officer, nor the program itself, hasn’t changed from last year.


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