Council members meet to discuss budget progress

By Craig Hastings
I took just 30 minutes to dispense of the business at hand during the Monday, March 27 City Council meeting. Prior to the regularly scheduled 7:30 p.m. meeting the council met at 6:45 p.m. to discuss the progress of the Fiscal Year 2018 budget draft.

All committee meetings have taken place, and department heads have been asked to tighten up where they can in preparation for the next 12 months of this budget.

As the TIF program winds down into its final months the council was requested to approve one last major project proposed in the downtown area during the regular meeting. Tony and Sarah Vitale were approved a grant in the amount of $250,000 in order to purchase and make improvements to the properties at 100-104 West Sale Street. The Vitales will invest a like amount of their own money to purchase the properties, renovate, buy equipment and dining room furniture, etc. to open a “Joe’s Pizza” restaurant. The Vitale’s currently operate several restaurants that bare the same name in Central Illinois. The buildings were recently the addresses occupied by Since 1776 Antiques.

Sometime last week the south pavilion in Ervin Park had sustained approximately $2,000 in damage to the metal ceiling panels. The council discussed installing cameras in the park due to damages each of the two city parks suffer each year. This event was one of the more financially damaging crimes to date. Anyone with information is encouraged to come forward and a reward may be paid for information that leads to the arrest of any suspects. The particulars of the crime will also be submitted to Crimestoppers for dissemination through local newspapers and social media outlets.

In other business, police will now be enforcing the new parking ordinances passed by the Council last month. Anyone with questions concerning the new ordinance should contact Tuscola Police.

The full story can be found in the March 29, 2017, edition of The Tuscola Journal.