Pittsfield's Piper Lane reopening to all traffic

Posted: Nov. 20, 2012 11:21 pm Updated: Dec. 12, 2012 1:15 am

Herald-Whig Staff Writer

PITTSFIELD, Ill. -- The Pittsfield City Council Tuesday renewed a lease for the Zoe Theater and heard an update on the Piper Lane project Tuesday night.

Mayor John Hayden announced that work will stop on the resurfacing project until spring because the hot mix for the road won't set up in cold weather.

With the paving work halting, the road will open Wednesday to all traffic for the first time in weeks.

"When city workers come back after the holiday, they'll be working on ditches and will put barricades up while they're working, so it will be closed at times," City Clerk Cindy Prentice said. "It is opening to all traffic sooner than we thought it would."

Aldermen also approved a new three-year lease with the Zoe Preservation Society. The agreement, with the same terms as a lease approved in 2009, allows ZPS to continue work toward preserving the historic theater without worrying it will be sold.

ZPS formed in 2008 to breathe new life into the theater, which opened Sept. 13, 1951, closed in the 1980s and was taken over by the city in 2004. Restoration efforts began in 2008 for the unique Art Deco-style building.

The Illinois Historic Sites Advisory Council this month approved the recommendation of the Zoe for listing on the National Register of Historic Places.

Also Tuesday, aldermen approved salaries for elected officials effective May 1, 2013.

The salaries remain the same for the mayor at just over $20,000 per year and aldermen at $300 per month. The treasurer, who earns $350 per month, will get a $200 per year increase. The city clerk, now earning $34,869, will get a 2 percent annual increase compounded over the next four-year term.

City Attorney Mike Hollahan will prepare an salary ordinance that must be approved to finalize the changes.

In other action, aldermen:

º Set public hearings for 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. Monday, Nov. 26, on municipal aggregation and a special council meeting at 6:30 p.m. to adopt a resolution for a service agreement with the lowest bidder and an ordinance requiring competitive bids be obtained.

º Gave first and final approval to an ordinance covering a professional services agreement with Jacob and Klein Ltd. and Economic Development Group Ltd., both in Bloomington, for administration and paperwork tied to creating a new tax increment financing district.

º Agreed to turn off the water at Lake Pittsfield, but the gates will remain open for people who want to camp without water service.

º Heard recommendations from the Tree Board including a policy to prohibit people bringing firewood into the campground, as a way to control potential damage from emerald ash borer. Aldermen will review the policy for future discussion.

º Heard requests for stop signs to create a four-way stop at the intersection of Clinton and Adams and to add signs at the intersection of Perry and Monroe.

º Accepted a petition for annexation for property owned by Frank McCartney, David McCartney and Kirby Hobbs on the west edge of Pittsfield. City Attorney Mike Hollahan will prepare an annexation ordinance.

º Gave final approval to water plants as a permitted use in areas zoned for agricultural use; first reading to an ordinance annexing the proposed site for Atlas Construction; and first reading approval to an ordinance allowing lumberyards as a permitted use in areas zoned B-3.

º Granted a variance request, based on condition and location, from Joshua Allen to put a mobile home at 160 W. Kellogg.