Okawville Hires New Cops

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By Jill Moon

The Okawville Village Board welcomed aboard new full-time Police Officer Brian Salvi at its monthly meeting September 28.

Salvi, 38, of Covington, is a former full-time deputy for Washington County.

The police department has also filled a part-time officer position with Alex Hawthorne, 21, of O’Fallon. Hawthorne is a July graduate of the police academy.

Chairperson Sarah Deterding reported receipt of over $658 in fines from the circuit court during September. She also reported over $3000 in video gaming receipts although this has been the third consecutive month with no payment from the state.

Chief Millikin reported an incident-free and trouble-free Wheat Festival. The department has been reimbursed $500 for a new radar unit and will be reimbursed $905 for bulletproof vests.

Street closures were approved for the Chili Cook-off October 10. A liquor license was also approved for the Chamber of Commerce for the event.

Mayor Jasper reported that action had passed for the Board to take possession of the Lindsey property. He said that no matter who they sold the property to the mobile home must go.

Chairman Morris Ritzel of the Finance Committee proposed a reimbursement of $700 per month for utility bills to the Washington County Senior Services. The board passed this for the second year.

Ronda Pryor of the Personnel Committee reported researching new options for health insurance for village employees. The committee concluded that the best option was to stay with their current plan through Blue Cross. This action was passed.

Chairman Nathan Dick of the Streets and Sidewalks Committee proposed a motion to contract with Haier Plumbing to do necessary repairs at the northeast corner of Hanover and Belleville Streets to improve drainage. Cost of this project will be $9,585.00 or less. The Board approved.

Put off for more discussion and new designs was a contract with Haier to do similar repairs at the same corner but on the southeast side. He also reported waiting on IDOT to approve placing a crosswalk and yellow flashing light at Front Street and Memorial Drive.

Chairman Dick said the new dump truck chassis will arrive in October and proposed a bid of $13,470.00 or less for a truck bed from Woody’s. This would include a hoist and pump and was approved.

Chairman Brian Nelson of the Water and Sewer committee proposed a contract with Handy Helper Fencing to build a white fence around the Spring Valley Lift Station for $6,850.00 or less. This was approved.

Mayor Jasper explained 2015-2016 Tax Increment Finance projects. The total commitment for 2015-2016 amounts to $90,500. $17,000 worth of contracts expire this year. Some contracts are bigger than others. The projects range from new gutters at the American Legion to whole new additions and shops such as the improvements at Weeke’s and Haier Plumbing. Dairy Queen got a fairly extensive makeover.

The Board agreed that this assistance to local businesses was a benefit to the whole village, not just for cosmetic reasons but to keep local businesses local and running smoothly to accommodate its residents.

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LEFT: New Full-time Okawville Police Officer Brian Salvi is greeted by Mayor Jasper. RIGHT, New Part-time officer Alex Hawthorne.