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  • Kent Casson

TIF agreement approved

231 S. Green Street is shown Wednesday afternoon.

A TIF redevelopment agreement between the City of Chenoa and VCB Properties, LLC, also known as VerClare Boutique, was approved by the Chenoa City Council Tuesday evening.

Finance and Insurance Commissioner Kyle Buchanan said the agreement calls for $9,000 up front to help with the closing cost of the building and another $9,000 to be reimbursed with receipts that would be turned in for a total of $18,000.

According to the owners, the Verclers, the goal is to refresh the building at 231 S. Green Street with new windows and doors. An apartment will be included along with basement storage and a Route 66 area in the back.

“It will be a nice focal point downtown,” said Christian Vercler.

Cristina Vercler stated they want to have the best looking building downtown.

“If you haven’t seen it, it is pretty neat,” Mayor Chris Wilder said of the building, which was built by artist W.D. Neher with some impressive sculptures still in the basement.

In another matter, the Chenoa City Council approved a city employee charitable time off program. This came about due to unforeseen circumstances. Employees asked how they could donate benefits or time off to someone else.

According to the mayor, a city worker can donate a certain amount of hours. This then becomes a cash value of how it is stored through accounting. Attorney Steve Mann reported this is a recognized IRS entity that can only be used in specific instances like medical emergencies.

“The city has oversight of who receives it and who can donate to it as well,” Mann explained.

Mann also spoke of the various updates from Springfield which he will be keeping an eye on for the city, such as police reform and other issues which could have a local impact. Commissioner Lee Reinhart also reminded the council of House Bill 163.

“Hopefully, some smarter heads will prevail in Springfield,” he said.

Mayor Wilder encouraged residents to call, e-mail and make their voices heard on the matter.

Water and Sewer Commissioner Reinhart noted two mains and one service line broke last week and the guys were in a hole for several hours trying to repair a main to keep the system running.

“I’m grateful for our crew,” Reinhart said. “Last week was a rough week for us in the water and sewer department.”

Reinhart urged city residents to download the Eye On Water app on their phones which shows water usage. This was tested last month and an alert kicks in when needed. This is good for those residents who go away for the winter.

“It does work,” Reinhart added.

More information is in the city bulletin which comes out each month.

City residents are encouraged to update their phone numbers with City Hall to ensure the city has the proper contact information in the event of an alert such as a boil order. Reinhart said they have not enacted an all-city boil order for a year and a half. The city’s new billing system has a feature for alerts.

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