VILLAGE OF NORTH AURORA
COMMITTEE OF THE WHOLE MEETING MINUTES
JULY 20, 2020
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Village Board meeting was conducted live remotely
CALL TO ORDER
Mayor Berman called the meeting to order.
In attendance: Mayor Dale Berman, Trustee Mark Gaffino, Trustee Mike Lowery, Trustee Laura Curtis, Trustee Mark Carroll, Trustee Tao Martinez, Trustee Mark Guethle, Village Clerk Lori Murray.
Staff in attendance: Village Administrator Steve Bosco, Finance Director Bill Hannah, Community & Economic Development Director Mike Toth, Village Attorney Kevin Drendel, Public Works Director John Laskowski, Police Chief Dave Fisher.
AUDIENCE COMMENTS – None
TRUSTEE COMMENTS – None
1. Gerald Ford Incentive Request
Community & Economic Development Director Mike Toth explained how the Gerald Group, which operates multiple dealerships in the North Aurora Auto Mall, was looking to do a $1.8 million renovation to their Gerald Ford location and was requesting a $900,000 from the Village over the course of 10year period that would capture the incremental sales from the improved facility.
Doug Gerald of The Gerald Group further explained that the renovations would allow them to increase their service areas and ultimately result in additional sales. The Village would retain a minimum base price of $219,500 in sales tax revenue yearly. For reference, the Village received $258,353 in sales tax in 2019 from Gerald Ford and estimates this year are $235,000; the decrease mainly due to COVID-19. By year 10 (2030) of the projected revised growth rate, the Village could potentially earn $311,638 in sales tax revenue.
Trustee Lowery clarified that the Village would continue to receive approximately the same amount in sales tax revenue from previous years and that the rebate portion would come from a percentage of taxes generated by future sales. He expressed support for the incentive request from The Gerald Group.
Mayor Berman, Trustee Gaffino, Trustee Guethele and Trustee Martinez also expressed support of the project. Trustee Martinez wanted to know if there were any direct benefits to customers, to which Doug Gerald explained their benefits would be the newer, improved facilities and a better experience and they would use the tax rebate to help with the upfront renovation costs.
Trustee Curtis said she had a concern that the Village seemed to have a growing affinity to subsidizing businesses and said she does not believe the Village should keep giving handouts to businesses in the community and felt that the Village could consider taking a more measured approach. Trustee Carroll said he understood Trustee Curtis’ concerns, but said the Village should encourage businesses and encourage growth and noted that there is a lot of competition from other Villages who want businesses like The Gerald Auto Group and it is within the Village’s province to encourage that growth and maintain an image of being business friendly, especially in today’s current environment. He also said that having viable businesses helps taxpayers with property taxes.
Trustee Gaffino agreed with Trustee Carroll and said The Gerald Group has been a good neighbor for North Aurora. He said that he looks at each request as a standalone and while some may not be viable he believes this request to be beneficial to both parties.
Overall the Board expressed support for the incentive request and the next step will be for Staff to draft an Economic Incentive Agreement.
2. Mobile Food Vendor Text Amendments
Community & Economic Development Director Mike Toth brought up the changes that Staff has made to the proposed Mobile Food Vendor Text Amendments after the proposed ordinance was table at the last Village Board Meeting. Verbiage regarding and including trailers as part of food trucks was noted as was that Banbury Road is now prohibited for the stopping and making of sales. The largest change presented was what would require a special event permit or not for mobile food vendors as that was the main point of contention previously. Community & Economic Development Director Mike Toth said the current time according to code is two hours and that Staff is proposing up to 4 hours allowed on private property and 2 hours on public property, along with stipulations that prevent a mobile food vendor from coming on private property more than once in a week; otherwise a special event permit would need to be requested and approved. Also, if there is more than one mobile food vendor in a day at a location or more than two at a time a special event permit will also be required.
Trustee Carroll asked if there could be a distinction in the code between mobile food sales and mobile food catering. He said no one would object to a private residence having a food truck on their property for a private event for four hours. Trustee Gaffino expressed support for this distinction as well. The trustees clarified that by catering they meant an event in which the property owner negotiated a price with the mobile food vendor for the hours in which they were at their property and that no individual sales were made.
Village Administrator Bosco said he liked the clarification and that this allowed for residents who were having a last minute party not need to get board approval for a special event permit, when the board may not be in session before said event. Trustees expressed support and interest in modifying the language to allow for catered mobile food vendor events for up to four hours with no special event permit required. Special event permits would be required for mobile food trucks making sales lasting more than two hours on private and public property.
Motion to adjourn made by Trustee Curtis and seconded by Trustee Guethele. All in favor. Motion approved.
Natalie F. Stevens
Deputy Village Clerk