Tuesday, June 30, 2009
Chris Wiegman gives SIUC's website a thumbs up.
Does the state budget have a prayer?
You'd think we'd have seen more of this back during the windstorm.
Cab robbery on N. Illinois last Sunday.
Sunday, June 28, 2009
Oh, deer. You'd think they'd do a study of human deer interaction on the SIUC campus.
Rich Whitney speaks at energy festival, with a couple of silly comments and one pragmatic comment if you scroll down.
I see Mayor Cole made it to the state Senate last Wed.
Good time to buy a home in C'dale?
Saturday, June 27, 2009
Not surprisingly, the comments were overwhelmingly in favor of single payer. One mildly surprising thing was the last of insurance horror stories told by those speaking. With the exception of one gentleman who referred to himself as a "citizen-prisoner" of the state of Illinois because state Medicare would not pay for his hospital care at a non-state institution (which Rep. Flowers said was an error and that she would look into it for him), most of the rest of the speakers offered support for single payer but from a theoretical "single payer is good, will save us money and guarantee insurance for all and this is why" view, rather than a "Someone I know went bankrupt because they couldn't pay medical bills" stance.
One brave gentleman actually spoke in opposition to single payer, but not from the "ohmigod, we're gonna bankrupt the state" position. Instead, he was concerned about his money going to the state to pay for other people's insurance when he didn't have a say in it and losing his choice as to what type of insurance he wanted. A few people jumped on his comments but luckily, they attacked his position, rather than him personally, with one woman interrupting people already speaking to make her statement, because lord knows, she couldn't wait a few more minutes to state her piece. After that , the speakers stated to diverge on to such things as: fast food is bad for you, people should take responsibility for their own heath and Rep Mike Bost's trucking company, at which point I cut out.
Update: Seems the majority of Americans want some form of public health insurance, even if it means higher taxes.
Friday, June 26, 2009
Thursday, June 25, 2009
authorized budget 2009 $629,759
estimated actual 2009 $459,331
Actual 2009 $440,460
Budgeted 2010 $555,212
If the council does shut the Hayes Center down, there's enough money there to fund the Building and Neighboorhood Services director's position again.
authorized budget 2009 $7,372,962
estimated actual 2009 $6,987,418
actual 2009 $6,973,073
budget 2010 $7,185,703
Fire Department (including emergency management)
authorized budget 2009 $3, 287, 038
estimated actual 2009 $3,222,745
actual 2009 $3,050,025
budget 2010 $3,126,819
Campus Lake open again for paddling.
Rep. Bost could handle the literal heat but not the figurative.
Commentors on the Capital Fax blog don't think much of Mayor Cole's chances for statewide office.
Il. budget cuts could affect about a third of SIUC students, since no financial aid.
Rudisall retiring from SIUC's law school.
The other characteristics I don't necessarily agree with is the the shifting of C'dale from a railroad town to a college town. This was presented as an ongoing process, whereas it looks to me as this is a done deal, with the railroads, once the lifebood of Carbondale, a negligable influence on the town since the 70s and probably earlier. For better or worse, the shift from the railroad as economic engine to the university took place decades ago. One interesting thing that came out of this discussion was that the original plans for SIUC did not call for on campus housing, instead preferring to house students off campus in apartments and boarding houses concentrated in the area between S. University and S. Poplar, a trend which, despite the presence now of oncampus housing, continues today and contributes to the run down nature of much housing within the area.
The committee also looked at possible areas for future growth. Carbondale's growth is really constrained by the huge amount of property owned by SIUC on the south side of the city and the foodplains and creeks on the east and west side, leaving only the north and infilling as viable areas for expansion. The city is looking at the area around New Era Road on the northwest outskirts of town as the major growth area over the next 5-15 years, though the trailer courts on S. Illinois and the area along S. Wall are also being looked at. There was also some concern expressed that the consultants working on the plan are not aware of the existance of the Green Earth organization and its green spaces within the city.
Finally, the committee looked at the main topics it wants the vision statement to cover. In no particular order, they are: housing, downtown, economy, walkability, education, open space preservation. The meeting closed with a short discussion of what the heck "smart growth" is, since we supposedly want it for the community.
Wednesday, June 24, 2009
Shawnee Energy Fest -June 27 & 28, 2009
Tuesday, June 23, 2009
Cole was reelected to the office of mayor in 2007 for a four-year term that will expire in 2011. If he vacated his seat early in the event of a winning campaign, mayor pro tem Corene McDaniel would serve as acting mayor.
I was told this once before by someone and it's not quite correct. From my reading of the appropriate statues (and what I was told when I checked), if Mayor Cole resigns his office, the city council members then elect one of their number (maybe Corene McDaniel, maybe not) to serve as acting mayor until the 2012 election. The acting mayor would then select someone, with the advice and consent of the remaining council, to take their position on the council.
If Jack, Pohlman or Haynes were selected as acting mayor, their replacement would stand for election as normal in 2012. If one of the other three were chosen, a special election would be called in 2012, with the winner seving out the remaining two years of the term. Be that as it may, under state law, the mayor pro tiem does not automatically take the mayor's position if the mayor resigns.
Monday, June 22, 2009
Uh, Gov. Quinn, the budget needs to save everything. Whether it can or not is the question.
What a surprise. SIUC is getting looked at in the case of the "clout list".
James' account of his internship at the Mobile Press-Register might make for interesting reading but with small white font on black background, I'll never know.
Yep, DCFS cuts will hurt kids. All cuts will hurt somebody. Interesting discussion going on in the comments here with most people supporting their views through anecdotal evidence.
Darn, Carbondale isn't an All American City. Are we a partial American one, then?
Geez, more bicyclists through town. At least they stopped at Mary Lou's
Trains, trains and more trains.
It's nice that they're doing it but couldn't they find a house a little closer to SIUC?
Thursday, June 18, 2009
I see 4 Governmental Funds:
General Fund- the general operating fund of the city. Most operating expenses are paid out of here.
Specific Revenue Funds- these hold moneys received from specific taxes or grants. Three of them: Motor Fuel Tax fund, Tax Increment Fund, Child Care Services Fund.
Debt Service Fund--this is where money is held to pay principal, interest and agent fees for city bonds.
Community Investment Funds--account for financial resources used for the acquisition or constructions of major capital facilities and infrastructure, not financed by legally restricted special revenue or proprietary funds. Currently only one the Local Improvement Fund.
The second category of fund is the:
Proprietary Funds--established to account for municipal activities funded by specific taxes and service fees. There are four of them:
--Waterworks and Sewage
--Parking System Operations
--Solid Waste Management
Giant City Lodge is a great place for a vacation.
Southern Illinois Hawks win at soccer.
Blessed takes in a concert during the Southern Illinois Music Festival.
Plemon Financial Coaching answers your debt questions.
Tuesday, June 16, 2009
--Maintain the integrity of residential neighborhoods though strict enforcements of occupancy limits
--Maintain a proactive approach to responding to neighborhood issues and concerns
--promote the community policing philosophy throughout the residential neighborhoods
--seek cooperation from property owners and tenants in the correction of code violations and aggressively prosecute those who fail to comply with the law
--increase awareness of and participation in Neighborhood Watch programs.
Next was a brief public hearing on the vacation of the Wagner Street right of way on the north side of the city. One property owner spoke in favor of the vacation of the right of way.
Next, the consent agenda. As is usual, Councilman Fritzler pulled one of the warrants out for a separate vote and someone, Councilwoman Pohlman I think, wanted a separate vote on the Wagner Street right of way vacation. Councilman Fritzler wanted to ask about an expenditure of $396.11 to pay a security company to escort a city employee the three blocks to make the city's bank deposits, asking if it wouldn't be more cost effective, saving the city $5000 a year, to have a police officer escort the employee, rather than hiring a security guard? He also wanted to know about money spent on inflatable beach balls to promote the city's recycling efforts. Councilwoman Pohlman also asked about the beach balls and the mayor promised to look into if they were made out of recycled plastic. Both the warrant and the right of way passed.
Next up was the item generating the most discussion of the night, what wound up being a resolution denying a special use permit to put a couple of apartment units in an area zoned for professional/administrative use. The opposition to the re-zoning came from residents of Woodland Hills, the gated subdivision off West Striegal Road. From the look of the proposed map, the parking lot for the apartments would butt up against the fence surrounding Woodland Hills and the trees the developer proposed putting in to screen the subdivision from the lights and noise of the apartments wouldn't be big enough to to the job by several years.
The developer pointed out the property in question had been for sale for 14 years and his proposal met all fo the requirements the city had in place. The Woodland Hills residents countered that the development would mean increased traffic in the area and a decline in property values. The mayor noted he had held a meeting with Woodland Hills residents that only 7 had attended and, when Councilman Wissmann asked how many of the residents had attempted to discuss the situation with the developer, only one held up their hand, while the developer indicated he had attempted, at least, to contact residents, but with no luck. In the end, Councilmen Fritzler, Jack, Pohlman and McDaniels voted to deny the permit. A good thrid of the audience left after this vote.
The resolution authorizing city manger Gill to purchase property for a fire station on the west side of town passed pretty quickly and then it was on to the Eurma Hayes Child Care Center report, which points out that the center has really turned into a money pit over the last few years, with the city subsidizing it to the tune of $1 million since 2004. Among notable expenditures, the city replace the roof after the recent storms at a cost of $64,000 and remodeld the kitchen last year in a building only 50% (maybe 75%, they're not sure) of which is used. Currently there are 44 children using the center, down from a high of 150 in the early 90s, from 35 families, 13 of which don't even live in Carbondale. The city charges the Center no rent for the building, leaving the Center to seek outside funding for salaries and other expenditures. The state is a major source of funding but last year, the Center expected funding of $115,000 from the state and only received$67,000. Somehow, (I couldn't figure out quite how) the Center expects to receive $174,000 for 47 children for fiscal 2009-2010. The city manager proposed shutting down the facility on August 1st. The council will vote on the proposal at its July 21 meeting.
Councilman Haynes protested that was too short a time to give to a major decision such as this. I thought a month was about all the time the council gave to discussion about the Saluki Way tax (yeah, I still think that was a bad idea) and eliminating the Building and Neighborhood manager's position. Mayor Cole then launched into a good 5 minute speech about how the economy was bad at the national, state and local level and people needed to realize this and, if we didn't cut here, the city would have to cut someplace else. Meeting dismissed at 9:37
Monday, June 15, 2009
Future GEN is baaaaack.
Ted left Carbondale last Friday.
Flag Day in Carbondale.
This is timely, now that Future GEN is baaaaack.
Congratulations to Lizette R. Chevalier
Dang, more bicyclists blogging about coming to Carbondale.
Wow, $11,000 raised for Bald Knob Cross.
Wilderness Survey – Can you Help?
One of the main obstacles to moving forward with our longstanding Wilderness proposal for Burke Branch is the Forest Service insistence that the area doesn’t qualify for Wilderness designation because it contains too many roads and too many pines. We dispute the validity of these claims, but we need documentation to prove that Burke Branch not only qualifies as Wilderness, but deserves to be protected as such.
To that end the Illinois Chapter Shawnee Wilderness Campaign is organizing a one-day photo documentation survey of this huge, 6000+ acre area, which is located in far southeastern Illinois. To cover this ground and accomplish the task in one day we need a cadre of strong hikers with digital cameras.
The survey will take place on Monday, June 29 beginning at 8 a.m. Specific logistics will be determined after we know how many people we have participating. To sign up for this unique opportunity to help out the Wilderness Campaign please contact Barb McKasson at 618-529-4824 as soon as possible. (You may also contact Terri Treacy at firstname.lastname@example.org, but she will not be able to respond until June 23). For those of you traveling a distance also let Barb know if you will need a place to camp or lodging recommendations.
Friday, June 12, 2009
Green scholarships coming to SIUC.
So are funding woes.
Couple of small thefts on the north side Tuesday.
Saturn of Carbondale has 3 (count 'em 3) cars left.
Tony Shaw reminisces about his time in C'dale.
Thursday, June 11, 2009
Where have all the nurses gone, long time passing?
Remember, Illinois is Chicago and downstate.
More Southern Illinois students LEADing.
Bicyclists, they're everywhere, they're everywhere (Nice pics of downtown, too).
1. Expand the City's boundaries and jurisdiction in an orderly manner while maintaining quality services.
2. Support transportation improvements that will improve access to and from the community and properly channel traffic through the City.
3. Develop and maintain a comprehensive bicycle trail network in the community.
4. Provide customer service training to all City employees.
5. Transition the City's vehicular fleet to energy efficient vehicles.
6. Acquire energy efficient equipment for City facilities and operations.
7. Encourage and attend neighborhood meetings to serve as a source of information and provide more community outreach.
8. Seek cooperation from property owners and tenants in the correction of code violations and aggressively prosecute those who fail to comply with the law.
9. Maintain the integrity of residential neighborhoods through strict enforcement of occupancy limits.
10. Promote the concept of citizens helping themselves and each other rather than relying entirely on City government.
Wednesday, June 10, 2009
Digital TV is still coming.
Stix, Clai's and Callahan's may change hands.
Maggie weighs in on the decline in enrollment at SIUC.
More bicyclists passing through town.
Tom Burtonwood gives us a look at his studio, circa 1999.
1. Promote economic development and community growth
2. Provide quality services with fiscal responsibility
3. Encourage citizen participation and community pride
4. Strengthen and promot neighborhood living (which interestingly does emphasize the importance of the Building an dNeighborhood Services Division to achieving this goal. Gonna be intersting to see how well it achieves that one when it doesn't have a Buidling and Neighborhood Services director anymore.
Tuesday, June 9, 2009
Kids learn about animals at Touch of Nature.
In case WSIU woudl let you forget, their Fantasy Auction is this weekend.
SIUC awards more scholarships
Some tornadoes in the area last night, not sure how many (3.5" of rain at my house)
The Varsity Theater is up for an All American City award.
Budget cuts could hurt regional services (Well duh!)
Third suspect in custody.
Flag Day ceremonies planned for both C'dale and Murphysboro.
Monday, June 8, 2009
Saturn of Carbondale closing about June 19th.
The Sunset Concerts are coming, the Sunset Concerts are coming.
Tom Kane has an exhibit in the Civic Center. Took a look at it this morning. Nice work.
Sunday, June 7, 2009
About a thousand people sampled wine and art last Friday night.
Man bites police officer (because man bites dog has been so overused).
Here're some pictures from the Downtown Art and Wine Festival.
Local Muslims liked Obama's speech. No idea what other locals thought of it.
A couple of people like SIUC's music program.
Mayor Cole seeking something at the state level. He apparently has no idea what though.
More bicyclists coming through Carbondale.
Guess I'm too tired to understand this 'casue it makes no sense to me. Nice postcard though.
Also, SI Wireless has moved into the Capps Law Firm building on East Grand Ave.
Friday, June 5, 2009
Young Writers Workshop comes to campus later this month.
The 'skeeters are coming, the 'skeeters are coming.
In response to student demand (?), Krispy Kremes are now at the Student Center.
Clifford Liddell held on drug charges.
If you have a STD, safelabcentre.com is now here for you.
Tuesday, June 2, 2009
The C'dale Public Library is offering assistance with converting your TV to digital.
Support groups for Mom in southern Illinois.
Downtown Art and Wine Fair this Friday night (assuming it doesn't storm again).
Cross country bicyclists pass through Carbondale.
Energy-related events in the area for June, both of them.
WSIU keeps flogging the Fantasy Auction.
Oluwatofunmi Kaiyewu had mental health problems and was often absent from his SIUC classes.