By Chris Johnson


PECATONICA – One of the issues preparing to be faced by Trustees with the Pecatonica Village Board is the realization that there will be less money coming in this year.

With the State of Illinois still behind in the distribution of specific funds, municipalities across the State know they will be working with less, in some situations, possibly a lot less.

Trustee Steve Eytalis said he and the Board are already aware of the challenges which are going to be faced. As a result, adjustments have been made, as work continues on the 2016-2017 fiscal budgets.

“Our budget was predicated on the Governor giving a 50 percent reduction to municipalities. We are already working with a bare bones budget. We have been making the adjustments that we need to.”

Eytalis said one of the most noticeable changes in funds distribution is in the field of public safety.

In 2015, a decision was made to limit the amount of expense incurred by the Village’s Police Department.

“We’ve already discussed reducing policing from where it was. Heading into the next fiscal year, we expect to see a continued reduction in police protection expense. It will be a little over half of what it was. Yet, it has had no adverse effects. There were no noted crime increases.”

In additional action, during the recent meeting of Committee Members, within the Pecatonica Committee of the Whole, a major rehabilitation project received its due attention.

It is already known the Public Works Department faces some large-scale issues, with the reported condition of the Village’s wastewater underground transfer system.

But another problem which has also been discussed remains front and center in the minds of the Village Board.

The municipal water tower, which recently received an internal investigation, has a lot of problems. It’s a situation, where it’s not going to get better and it’s an expense that the Village is going to have to incur, according to Trustee Eytalis.

“It’s going to be a major project and one we have to take care of. It involves maintenance and painting of the water tower. Right now the paint is flaking off, it needs internal maintenance. The integrity of the tank is important. There is accumulation of sediment, some rusting and corroding, it doesn’t necessarily affect the quality of the water, but we don’t want the tank to fail.”

Eytalis said when the time comes for the Village to take down the tank’s service and set up a bypass, the Village resident’s water service will not be impacted.

The well houses have also received attention, according to Eytalis.

Right now, it seems everything is going well, but there will be a time, when a decision will have to be made on a possible new underground well.

However, Eytalis said, that time is not yet.

“The well houses are up to speed they should be good for a number of years. Well house one by the gas station is operating fine. The other well may have had its last overhaul. In the future, there may be the need for another well.”

The Pecatonica Village Board was scheduled to continue working on the fiscal year 2016 budget, in addition to making sure the issues facing the municipality are adequately addressed, during their monthly Village Board meeting, which was held on Tuesday, Jan. 19.

Details on the meeting of Trustees and Village President Dan Barber will be presented in next week’s edition of the Gazette Newspaper.

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