Rockton Village Board approves budget, names new Village Collector and Treasurer


Rockton's Board of Trustees took action on a variety of agenda items at the June 7 meeting. The board approved minutes from a May 19 special meeting that focused solely on the budget for the fiscal year beginning June 1, 2022 and ending May 31, 2023.

Village President John Peterson said, “Our budget has $90,000 for sewer projects. Specific amounts are being budgeted for grid replacements, equipment for different projects and money has been placed in the budget to fulfill needs for the lift station."

Also factored in are future street projects and main water projects at Hawick and Prairie Streets.

Village tourism is being added to a website. Wayfinding signs and a future beautification project on Prairie Street have also been incorporated into the budget. “When putting the budget together, we have been good at making cuts where needed,” Peterson said. 

"We have taken a conservative approach to our budget since the economy is very shaky.”

Peterson alerted the public about a garbage rate increase. Currently the garbage monthly rate is $16.49 per month, but it will increase $3, to $19.49 a month. 

“I am very proud of the budget,” Peterson added. “I hope with the projections that we end up productive.”

The board approved a three year audit proposal to be done by Sikich.

Trustees approved a request allowing the Knights of Columbus to host a “Tootsie Roll Drive” on Friday, Sept. 16 at the intersection of Salem and Union streets from 3-7 p.m.

Under Buildings and Parks, Arianne Honkamp received approval from a special events application for the return of “Drive 815” to be held in the months of June through October.

Also approved was the fireworks permit for Saturday, June 19 at Old Settlers Days. Trustees also approved a purchase requisition for Pearson to do toilet repairs at the pool bath house.

Michele Prather was appointed as the new Village Collector. Corine Hughes, the previous Village Collector was appointed to the position of Village Treasurer. “I think that Corine has done a fantastic job,” Village President John Peterson said.

Trustee Scott Fridly asked for approval of a resolution adopting a residential construction building checklist. This would be used when developers or business owners fill out applications to open for business. “This would alleviate situations where a packet might have incomplete information. This check list puts the burden on the developer and somebody is taking ownership this way,” Fridly said. Four signed copies would be provided, with copies also being kept in Village Planning & Development Administrator Tricia Diduch's office.

“This is something that should have happened a long time ago,” Trustee Jodi May said.

The Board approved amending the water system maintenance fee.

Trustee May gave the latest statistics from the Rockton Police Department. “Police made 114 traffic stops, gave 51 warnings, 63 tickets were issued, there were 18 criminal arrests and six accidents happened with no injuries."

Trustee Tyler Seever addressed parking schedules to designate no parking on certain portions of Kocher St. This motion passed in a 6-0 vote.

Seever explained, “We are expanding no parking on Kocher Street from Kocher to Union and an area leading up to Warren Street. Right now it is too crowded and fire trucks cannot get through,” Seever said.

After an Executive Session the board voted to enter into a Retirement Separation Agreement with Rockton Police officer Dave Cotter and Chief Dickson. The Village agreed to enter into an employment agreement with the new Rockton Police Chief, Matt Hollinger.

Under new business, Peterson expressed a fond farewell to trustee Scott Fridly who has decided to resign his trustee position. (After having served as an elected trustee, he was appointed to fill a vacancy on the board last year.)

“I am sorry to see Mr. Fridly leave us again. Scott, you are going to be missed,” Peterson said. Fridly said he was leaving his position because he had too many work commitments.

“You've got a good board. This is the most comfortable I have ever felt serving on a board,” Fridly said. 

Trustee Justin York told Fridly, “You have provided service and leadership.” Trustee Scott Danielson agreed with Peterson and York.

At the next Village Board meeting on Tuesday, June 21 Rockton resident Dan Baumgartner is set to be appointed as a Trustee to fill Fridly's spot. “I think he will bring great perspective to the board,” Peterson said.

Trustee Tyler Seever will oversee public works and trustee May will return to once again chairing the committee of water, sewer and garbage.

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