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home : news : local   March 26, 2015

8/27/2014 6:34:00 AM
La Salle Council hears pitch for text-alert service

Rachel Stella
Staff Writer

People are more likely to immediately check their text messages than their voice mail, according to Amber McNeilly, a representative from HomePages who addressed La Salle City Council on Tuesday to present her company’s citywide text alert service.

The cost to the city would be $995 per year, plus an additional $150 per year for a customized label on each message. Participation would be the choice of each cellphone-carrying resident, who might or might not be charged for the receipt of each text message, depending on his or her phone service plan.

The city would decide when, how often and for what reasons messages would be sent — whether for emergencies only or for other announcements.

“This is not something that’s going to spam people,” McNeilly said, emphasizing that users could choose to opt out at any time, and no advertising messages would be sent.

“We try to use as much communication as possible, but we still have people who ask, ‘Hey, what’s going on?’” Mayor Jeff Grove said.

Grove said the text alert system would not replace the city’s current CodeRED phone call alert program, but that the two programs would both be available.

The request was sent to the finance committee to be discussed further.

Pot fever
At this time, there are no formal requests to the city of La Salle for special use permits from would-be marijuana growers, but that’s not stopping officials from entertaining them one and all.

The council voted 7-0 (Alderman John “Doc” Lavieri abstained) to give the mayor the authority to facilitate the process of approving any such requests, were they to be made. This does not mean the requests would be immediately approved, but that they would not have to wait until a council meeting to introduce their request.

Late water bills noted
Alderman Tom Ptak said water bills are going out late due to a glitch in the billing system, but residents would be allowed the same amount of time to pay their bills from the date they receive them.

Streets and sidewalks
The council awarded the bid for the 2014 motor fuel tax-funded road projects to Universal Asphalt & Excavating of La Salle for $299,266.13, to be paid with motor fuel tax funds.

The bid for the 2014 sidewalk replacement program was awarded to Cruz Concrete of Spring Valley for $145,616.80, with the option of paying only $127,862.80 if city workers handled the removal of sidewalks, curbs and driveways. This would affect sidewalks in the downtown area and be paid with TIF funds.

In other business
The council also voted to:
* Meet at 1 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 3 to discuss updates to the rental ordinance, particularly examining the responsibilities of apartment complex owners regarding trash disposal.
* Approve (6-2; Aldermen Jim Bacidore and T. “Boo” Herndon voted nay) an amendment to the city code regarding grass-cutting: The city will now charge property owners $95 per hour, $60 for equipment and $35 for vehicles for grass its workers cut.
* Approve an ordinance providing for the regulation of electrical contractors.

Rachel Stella can be reached at (815) 220-6933 or Follow her on Twitter @NT_LaSalle.

Reader Comments

Posted: Tuesday, September 2, 2014
Article comment by: METALWORKER

Last week I saw a city truck park in front of St. Hyacinth Church. A young man got out of the truck and picked a weed trimmer from the back and went across the street and trimmed the weeds growing between the sidewalk and curb. He did that only in along the corner home.

He did not touch the sidewalk which has weeds at least six inches high covering it.
He put the trimmer back in the truck and picked a tank sprayer out and sprayed the weeds along the curb around this house, side and front then went to the house just to East. The house in the middle of the block was not touched. The weeds in front of the house and along the fence are now four to five feet high., and side walks still have weeds growing on them. The city moves fast, but taverns and down town will again get new concrete walks while the rest of us will make do with 100 year old brick walks.
This young man was supervised by a patrolman in a black and white. Puts a whole new slant on " take care of your own"
Also I have a question on text-alert service.
How will that work? Texting while driving is supposed to be against the law. I say supposed to be as it is still being done, and I haven't heard of any arrests.
So will that law be put aside? One cannot check a text for an alert without breaking the law so what good is it? There has to be a better way.

Posted: Wednesday, August 27, 2014
Article comment by: METALWORKER

The city of La Salle's side walk program is suspect at best along with its grass cutting policy.
Why are new sidewalks replacing perfectly good concrete sidewalks in front of taverns and downtown areas?
La Salle has miles of old brick sidewalks that are a hazard to walk on. There is a sidewalk on the east side of Tonti across from St. Hyacinths church that has weeds a foot high. The property owner has installed a picket fence right up against the sidewalk. Wow, three of La Salle's policies violated there.
Two blocks to the East is a park. That park is used for base ball, and foot ball and has a play ground with a few of the remaining swings in La Salle. There are sidewalks along the South side of 10th St across from the park that are covered with grass and weeds. People going to the park have to walk on the street. Again, where are La Salle's policies being enforced?

There is a house on the 1000 block of 10th St. with weeds at least 3 foot high around the house and along the fence line. This is a rental property with three or four 20 yr. olds living there that park cars on the sidewalk on a regular basis. In La Salle it is against the law to park on the berm but ok to park on the sidewalk.
Where oh where has the city government gone in La Salle?

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