Bloomington Discusses Possible Speed Limit Change, 2018 Budget | WGLT

Bloomington Discusses Possible Speed Limit Change, 2018 Budget

Mar 27, 2017

The Bloomington City Council held both a speed limits work session and FY 2018 Budget Public Hearing Monday night.
Credit Staff / WGLT

The Bloomington City Council may move to lower the speed limit on a southwest-side road. 

Aldermen discussed reducing the speed on Fox Creek Road from West Oakland Avenue to Stonehedges Court during a non-voting work session Monday night. 

Ward 7 Alderman Scott Black thinks citizens should be more involved with city staff in changing speed limits.

Black said he gets uncomfortable when aldermen have to try and "pinpoint" what a speed limit should be.

"That's not very methodical," said Black. "If we look at the data, get citizen input and craft a process, we're thinking of the whole city instead of just one neighborhood because there's always going to be a review process for each one of the streets."

Black said he would love to see a commission created for staff members to join residents that are concerned about the speed limits. 

The council lowered the speed limit on a portion of Hershey Road in December.

The Council also held a public hearing to discuss the proposed budget for FY2018.  The budget will be updated slightly to $214.1 million to account for close to $296,000 in grants the city received for renovating housing.

Finance Director Patti-Lynn Silva explained the city needs to attach the funds they received from the Illinois Housing Development Authority grants after the original budget of $213.8 million was posted in February. 

File photo of Ward 7 Alderman Scott Black.
Credit Staff / WGLT

The budget shows the city is slated to spend about $300,000 for a sewer oversizing project in the far east Grove subdivision.  

Black said he understands the obligation for the project, but he would prefer to have it split up over several years in order to save up more money to restore the city's historic core.

"We have sewers in my ward that are over 100 years old in some cases. So, I think it's prudent for us to take a look at our contracts to see if this is the best way we can be spending our time and our resources. Can we spread it out over a period of time to get the best value for our historic core," said Black.

The Grove subdivision is often criticized by some council members and the Mayor as an example of sprawl that costs the city more in services than tax revenue generated. A budget vote is scheduled for April 10. 

Also during Monday's meeting, the council approved a $1.85 million contract to drill test wells into the St. Peter Aquifer at Lake Bloomington that could result in an additional drinking water supply for the city.

The council additionally approved a contract with Stark Excavating set at $1.48 million to complete improvements for the Linden Street bridge over Sugar Creek. 

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