Ian Clark at City Council

MONTICELLO – The newest member of the Monticello City Council was welcomed with hugs and handshakes last week, prior to being unanimously approved to fill the vacant Ward 3 seat.

Ian Clark, who served on the council between August 2017 and April 2019, will take over the seat left vacant with the resignation of Pam Ward, who moved to Mahomet.

The seat is up for re-election in April 2023.

Clark has lived in Monticello since 2003 and lives in the South Charter Street Historic District. He olds an older home in one of the city’s first neighborhoods and has an interest in keeping local infrastructure strong.

He is employed at Caterpillar in Decatur.

He is also known for a near-death experience in 2010. Training for a competitive run, he collapsed on a Monticello street and stopped breathing for up to eight minutes before emergency crews resuscitated him. He credits CPR with saving his life and has shared his experience at local school assemblies.

“I really appreciate Ian filling the vacancy,” said Mayor Larry Stoner. “He has been a representative for Ward 3 before and I know he has a real busy life and so I really appreciate him stepping up.”

“I was happy to be asked to serve and I look forward to serving,” Clark said. “I’m just happy to be here.”

Other business

The council approved a redevelopment and economic incentive agreement with Ella Property Development at 216-220 W. Washington Street.

Three years ago, the council approved the Monticello Business District, a program that allowed for the creation of the Building Improvement Grant Program, a combination of the former façade improvement and downtown life safety grant programs.

“The goal of the program is to assist with public and private redevelopment efforts, using public funds to reimburse business/building owners upon completion of approved private development improvements,” said city administrator Terry Summers. “There has been a lot of success in the downtown area since this was first implemented in 2020. This is yet another project and they have done some work to that building already. This particular one is more of a façade improvement that faces Washington Street.”

Reimbursements of up to 50% of the total cost up to $10,000, are available.

At Ella Property Development, old basement wells were removed and closed off, old stucco from brick was removed, as well as plywood boards, and a door. Windows were replaced and the entire south side was repainted.

“I am really pleased with the amount of work done already on that building and believe this will really enhance it,” Stoner added.

The estimated cost of the work is $23,557. The city will pay up to $10,000 of that.

Pavement striping

The council approved an agreement to stripe the downtown Square with A.C. Pacement Striping Company, based in Elgin.

“Basically it is going to be the entire downtown Square and the truck route and an area in front of Fillippo’s Pizza (200 S. Market St.),” said Director of Planning and Development, Jim Grabarczyk. “This should be really nice and I think it will pop and improve what we have now.”

The city will pay $34,968 for the work. City officials had budgeted $40,000.

“At long last, that will be taken care of,” Stoner said.

Hotel/Motel tax annual report

The hotel/motel revenue experienced a net increase of $7,805 from the previous year. That figure represents new revenue from the Moore Building of $71.10, and an increase, an increase of $343 from the Foster’s Inn and a decrease of $21.03 from the Zybell House and a decrease of $1,744 from the Best Western.

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