TIF district, community safety concerns ColorFest event among topics on agenda

Anna City Council meets July 20

Continued progress on the establishment of a Tax Increment Financing district, community safety concerns and plans for a ColorFest event were among the topics discussed at last week’s regular meeting of the Anna City Council.

The meeting, which lasted for about 90 minutes, was held Tuesday evening, July 20, at Anna City Hall.

Tax Increment Financing District

The council heard an update on continuing plans for the establishment of a Tax Increment Financing, TIF, district in Anna.

The city is working with Moran Economic Development in Edwardsville on the project. Keith Moran, the president of Moran Economic Development, was on hand to talk about the project.

Moran discussed a TIF district redevelopment plan and project synopsis which had been presented to city officials.

The synopsis noted that municipalities are authorized to create TIF districts by the Illinois Municipal Code. State guidelines are in place which set requirements and procedures for establishing a TIF district and a TIF district plan. The city is in the process of going through the steps which are necessary to establish the district.

Moran Economic Development explains on its website that Tax Increment Financing is a tool utilized in Illinois and 48 other states to support development and revitalization efforts.

“With this development tool, financially strapped local governments can make the improvements they need, like new roads or sewers, and provide incentives to attract new businesses or help existing businesses stay and expand. And TIF does this without tapping into general municipal revenues or raising taxes,” the website explains.

A map of the proposed TIF district in Anna was included in the synopsis presented to city officials. The proposed district will include areas from east Anna, heading west along Vienna Street to near North Green and parts of Davie streets.

The proposed district will be the topic of a hearing which is planned at 4:30 p.m. on Sept. 21 at city hall.

Community Safety

A community member and city employee voiced concerns about safety issues in the neighborhood around Anna Junior High School/Davie School. The building which houses the school is located along South Green Street.

The community member said that a man, described as a “troubled individual,” showed up on his front porch on the Thursday night prior to the council’s July 20 meeting.

The man banged on the door of the house. “He’s at my door...scaring my family to death...” the community member said. The man also went to another nearby house and begged for money.

The Anna Police Department responded to a call about the incident, but said there was not any action they could take at the time.

After hearing the community member’s concerns, Mayor Steve Hartline said that “several concerns” were shared with city officials. The mayor promised to follow up on the matter and thanked the community member for voicing his concerns.

ColorFest Event

The city’s liquor control ordinance was on the agenda at the July 20 meeting. 

City officials are looking at making a change in the ordinance in conjunction with plans to sponsor a street festival event during the 2021 Union County ColorFest celebration in October.

The festival tentatively is planned for Saturday, Oct. 9, and would include music, vendors offering food, arts and crafts. Activities would take place on Lafayette and Davie streets.

The sale of beer, as well as wine from local vineyards, also is planned. The city’s liquor control ordinance would need to be amended to allow for such sales at city-sponsored events.

A proposed change in the ordinance will be drafted and presented at the city council’s next meeting.

Other Business

In other business at last week’s meeting:

City administrator Dori Bigler reported that work on a project which is designed to ease flooding which occurs in the 500 block of East Vienna Street now is scheduled to begin in early August. The project had been scheduled to start in early July.

Plans continue for the development of an all-inclusive playground at the Anna City Park. It its hoped that the playground, called Hadley’s Haven, would be developed and in use by the summer of 2022.

Council member Martha Ann Webb voiced concerns about the conditions of headstones at the Anna Cemetery. 

City public works manager Gary Dahmer said that some 200 headstones are down at the cemetery. 

Mayor Hartline questioned whether the matter was a city responsibility. Webb suggested that the condition of some of the stones could be a safety issue.

The city administrator plans to follow up on the matter.

A permit for an Anna-Jonesboro Community High School homecoming parade was approved. The parade is set for 1 p.m. on Sept. 24. 

The Gazette-Democrat

112 Lafayette St.
Anna, Illinois 62906
Office Number: (618) 833-2158
Email: news@annanews.com

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