Video Includes Both the General & Special Meetings
On September 9, 2013, the Avon Township Board met and held their regular monthly meeting. In addition to the regularly scheduled meeting there was a Special Meeting held immediately after to address concerns from last months general meeting and suggest additional changes. During the regular meeting the topic of having a Deputy Clerk was addressed. Clerk Jeannie Kearby suggested that the Township should have a Deputy Clerk to cover for her should she be unable to fulfill her duties due to a sickness, etc. as well as to help out when the workload was excessive such as in the upcoming audit. Supervisor Lisa Rusch, who was at home recuperating from some type of rumored abdominal surgery but “in attendance” by way of phone, objected to paying for a deputy clerk position. There was discussion on interviewing for the position and bringing those names before the Board for consideration. The amount of compensation was also discussed and it was mentioned that in recent past a deputy clerk was paid $50 per meeting because at the time there was no clerk. The final motion was to get names but not to make any offer of compensation at this time. Another item that the Supervisor shot down was creating the position of a Treasurer who would have the authority to sign checks in the Supervisor’s absence. Rusch, although unable to perform her duties in the office, claimed that no checks were being delayed since staff was busy couriering them back and forth to her. No Board member forced the issue by calling for a vote so it died for lack thereof. During the Special meeting, Trustee Cathy deGroh criticized Supervisor Rusch for not updating the Board members on her reason for an extended leave for recovery and stated that she only learned about it thru other sources. Rusch’s reply was something on the order of “You are always welcome to call me at home if you have questions and that a person should have some privacy when it comes to personal issues”. Cathy deGroh said that once you become a public figure, some privacy issues may not apply.
During Highway Commissioner Bob Kula’s report it was stated that he had plans to switch the current bus lease for seniors to a van lease. The change would save the Township an immense amount of money over the term of the lease and still provide the services with the only difference being six passenger capability instead of eight. Kula stated that the vehicle is only used a few hours a day, usually with only a few riders, and sits the balance of the time. By switching leases, the maintenance costs revert to Pace instead of the Township. Kula continues to find ways to save money.
On the other hand, Assessor Chris Ditton was once again a “no-show” and unable to answer questions regarding his “over-budget” expenses. In his absence, Senior Trustee William McNeill and the Board had to decide where to post the overages on Ditton’s budget since they were part of the bills that were already paid. The last meeting Ditton attended was when he was questioned by then Trustee Doug Williams about these expenses in Springfield and Ditton got very defensive, playing hardball when answering them. Maybe it’s time to relieve Assessor Ditton of his pre-paid credit card!
There was a presentation by Paul Dean from Family Services asking for the Township’s continued support for senior citizens in the community including counseling and assistance with their many needs. Lake Villa Supervisor, Dan Venturi. also made a presentation asking for the Township to continue supporting the Pace bus system that travels throughout a few local communities. The money from previous grants is due to run out but with contributions from the member communities the routes would continue to operate for a number of years. The amount asked of the Township was $8,000 which will be voted on at a future meeting. The total was around $40,000 shared by member communities.
The video below is a little over two hours long and includes the regular meeting, the short portion after the executive session, and finally the special meeting. The size of the file in high-definition exceeded 5GB so it had to be reduced in quality to a more sustainable size for uploading. Thus, it may not appear as crystal clear in full-screen mode.