Mt. Vernon Register-News

January 18, 2014

City council addresses solicitors

By TESA GLASS tesa.glass@register-news.com
The Register-News

---- — MT. VERNON — The city will be changing its solicitor licenses to better inform residents.

“The language on the licenses we issue to those soliciting door-to-door will say that the solicitor is not endorsed by the city or a part of any city programs,” City Manager Ron Neibert explained. “They will be required to present the license to the resident when they go door-to-door.”

The city requires anyone who is selling a product or service door-to-door to have a permit, which is obtained from the City Clerk. Recently, there have been issues with solicitors for electric service.

“There are a lot of electrical companies soliciting door-to-door,” Neibert said. “Some are allegedly telling people they are part of the city’s aggregation program, when they are not.”

The City Council, which meets Monday night, is expected to approve the change in the license, a move which officials hope will help residents.

The council will also be presented with an ordinance to make a one month change to the water/sewer ordinance.

Neibert said the one month amendment would allow residents to have a water adjustment made to their bills one time if frozen pipes happened in

their home during the recent cold snap.

“Right now, the city can only give an adjustment to homeowners for leaks if they happen outside the confines of the home,” Neibert explained. “Given the cold weather, there were a lot of frozen pipes that happened within homes. The amendment will allow the same adjustment criteria to apply inside a house.”

Neibert said the same rules will apply for residential water customers only. The adjustment will be one only, and affect the billing cycles between Jan. 15 and Feb. 15. Those needing the adjustment will be required to provide a statement from a plumber, if used, and receipts for material used to fix the broken pipes.

In other business, the City Council will:

n Hear bid results for the North 27th Street sidewalk project;

n Hold a first reading on an ordinance to rezone property at 1801 S. 10th Street from B2 to BPL as requested by Martin & Bayley, Inc.;

n Hold a first reading on a conditional use for a day care center/church for property at 500 E. Harrison by Antioch International Assembly;

n Hear a resolution approving a temporary construction license between Ameren IP and the City for a multi-use trail on North 27th Street;

n Hear a resolution approving a water rate increase for municpal water customers;

n Approve an application for a Safe Routes to School grant for sidewalks in the Summersville School area;

n Hear a resolution of support for the application to the Illinois Housing Development Authority for a housing rehabilitation grant;

n Hear a resolution approving a design contract for the Veterans Memorial Drive and South 34th Street ITEP shared-use trail;

n Hear a resolution accepting the surrender of a Miller Lake lease from the Moose Lodge; and

n Discuss a Downtown Tax Increment Finance District inducement resolution with Kendra and Dale Peterson for 104 N. Ninth St.

The council will meet 7 p.m. Monday night at the Rolland W. Lewis Community Building.