Committee of the Whole Minutes
VILLAGE OF NORTH AURORA
COMMITTEE OF THE WHOLE MEETING MINUTES
MAY 21, 2012
CALL TO ORDER
Mayor Berman called the meeting to order.
In attendance: Mayor Dale Berman, Trustee Chris Faber, Trustee Ryan Lambert, Trustee Mark Guethle, Trustee Mark Gaffino, Trustee Laura Curtis, Trustee Vince Mancini, Village Clerk Lori Murray.
Staff in attendance: Village Administrator Wes Kornowske, Finance Director Bill Hannah, Community Development Director Scott Buening, Village Attorney Kevin Drendel, Public Works Superintendent Mike Glock, Police Chief Dave Summer.
AUDIENCE COMMENTS – None
TRUSTEE COMMENTS – None
1. Discussion on Utility Bills On-Line Access and Web Payments
Finance Director Bill Hannah mentioned that there have been requests from residents about having better online payment options and taking credit cards for payments of water bills. Staff recommended implementation of the web payments module. The cost analysis is budgeted for the next fiscal year and will have a net cost of $11,000/year. The Finance Committee discussed this at their meeting and recommended discussion at the Committee of the Whole level. Mayor Berman asked what would happen with the paper bill for those who sign up for online payment. Bill said they will have the option to not receive a paper bill. Trustee Curtis said she could not see why someone would opt not to have the paper bill since they would then forego the View to the Village newsletter. Curtis said her concern is that the Village would double the cost by having the paper bill and maintaining the system. Curtis noted that there are many other avenues for paying such as free online bill pay with any financial institution, US Mail, and dropping off bills at the Village. Curtis said she was not convinced the Village should absorb the cost for the convenience of only 10% of the residents. Curtis suggested a convenience fee be attached to the use. Curtis said it would not be fiscally prudent for the Village to shoulder the entire expense and would penalize those who are not using the system because the cost of this service would come out of the Village funds. Guethle asked if there are other municipalities using this service. Hannah said that Montgomery, Sugar Grove, Oswego, St. Charles and Geneva are offering or going to roll out similar services. All said they accept the fees as part of their business process. Kornowske said with the exception of Montgomery. They will be charging a $2.00 convenience fee. Trustee Faber said he disagreed with a convenience fee because it would keep a large percentage of people from using the service. Gaffino asked what the 3% costs the Village right now for the use of MasterCard, etc. Hannah said it is a sliding scale through Illinois E-pay. It is between 2-1/2 and 3%. Under the proposed system, it would be a flat fee, such as $2.00 - $2.75 for the transactions. Faber asked how many people use Illinois E-Pay. Hannah said about 65 people. Berman asked how the Village currently handles bill payments. Hannah said that most go to the lock box and those payments come over on electronic file. The Village then uploads and post payments to customer accounts. There are also residents who walk in and drop off their payments. Berman asked what the payment is for the lockbox. Hannah said about 20 cents per item. Faber said he would like to offer it although it is a lot of money.
To be placed on the agenda for the next Village Board meeting for decision.
2. Discussion on a Local Technical Assistance Grant with the City of Geneva for Affordable Housing Strategy Study
Community Development Director Scott Buening said that this is a proposal for a joint grant application with Geneva, Batavia and possibly St. Charles for a Local Technical Assistance Grant with CMAP. Buening said he was approached by the City of Geneva and they are doing an affordable housing study. This is a no-match grant which means the Village does not have to provide any money. Each community would be able to decide its own goals and objectives. Geneva would be spearheading the study.
Trustee Curtis asked what the benefit is to the community. Berman said the Village has to qualify to have 10% of its homes to be in the affordable housing category. Buening said this would allow the Village to develop goals and objectives for improving the housing stock.
3. Discussion on the Website Redesign Request for Proposals
Village Administrator Wes Kornowske said that there is $20,000 budgeted. Solicitation of the proposals will be sent out to as many firms on the list and will also be published on the Village website. Due date for proposals will be June 29th. Kornowske said he would bring back proposals to the Committee of the Whole in July or August.
TRUSTEE COMMENTS - None
Motion made by Trustee Guethle and seconded by Trustee Mancini to adjourn to executive session to discuss Labor Negotiations, Imminent Litigation and Review of Executive Session Minutes. All in favor. Motion approved.
Lori J. Murray