Evergreen Park seeks funding for capital improvements

  • Written by Sharon L. Filkins

The Evergreen Park Village Board welcomed the new year with a balanced budget and calls for an appropriation ordinance and liquor license requests during the Tuesday night meeting.

A proposed appropriation ordinance for fiscal year beginning Nov. 1, 2016 and ending Oct. 31, 2017 for Evergreen Park was presented at a public hearing prior to the regularly scheduled board meeting on Tuesday. The meeting was brief, with no questions or comments from the public.

Presenting the proposed ordinance was Village Treasurer John Sawyers, who stated that the village is operating with a balanced budget.

“In the general fund, we are requesting an appropriation of $26, 419,574 as we have a surplus of nearly $11,000,” said Sawyers.

He added that there have been significant capital expenditures such as six new squad cars, totaling $159,000; a new prisoner transport van at $87,000; a new ambulance at $153,000; and a body camera system for police officers at $115,000.

Other large expenditures included a HVAC system upgrade at the firing range, a backstop at Duffy Park, a new roof at the storage garage and a truck upgrade.

As for the sewer and water fund, Sawyers said an appropriation of $7,075,340 is requested because there is a surplus of $41,660 in the fund.

Trustee Mark Mazullo commented that public safety was the number one concern for the board as the budget was discussed.

“All the department heads were very reasonable in their requests as we met in our budget meetings and we were able to meet their requests,” said Mazullo.

According to Sawyers, approval of the appropriation ordinance is anticipated at the Jan.17 board meeting.

In the board meeting following the public hearing, an ordinance was approved to amend the village municipal code to add a Class H Liquor License.

The approval was based on a request from Chicago Famous Seafood, The Crazy Crab, located at 9204 S. Western Ave., to change from a Class E to Class H liquor license. The change will allow them to serve specified drinks such as margaritas or daiquiris in addition to the beer and wine allowed under their Class E liquor license. The Class H license limits the consumption of the alcohol to the premises only.

The board also approved a business certificate for the new owners of a Brown’s Chicken restaurant at 3414 W. 95th St., now a Brown’s Chicken J.J. Fish & Shrimp, but only after several questions were raised by the board.

Mayor James Sexton told the new owners, Steve Matariyeh and Samer Alsalibi, that the restaurant has been a solid business in the community for many years and he hoped that it would continue in the same manner.

“What kind of changes are you planning for the site?” Sexton asked.

The owners stated that the primary change was adding additional seafood items to the menu. They were also planning painting and general clean-up of the facility.

Trustee James McQuillan said he would be more comfortable if the new owners would meet with the village building commissioner and go over their plans for any changes or additions they were planning.

Sexton agreed. “I think it is a good idea to meet and make sure your mechanicals with the new additions are good and up to par.”

The mayor also announced that the next board meeting will be held on Tuesday, Jan. 17 due to the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day observance on Monday, Jan. 16.