Village Board discusses future projects for Arthur
Mayor Randall researching possible downtown mural ideas
By ARIANA R. CHERRY
At the most recent Village of Arthur’s Board meeting, Mayor Rod Randall presented an announcement from the Douglas County Health Department.
“The IDPH reported that today marks the two-year anniversary of the first COVID case being recorded in Illinois. Even more sobering, over 30,000 Illinoians have lost their lives to COVID since that day. The death of another Douglas County resident was reported last week, bringing the total number of county deaths to 55.”
“Also today,” Randall continued, “was the first day of appointment-based COVID testing with the DCHD. Now you can set up on their website a specific time to be tested without waiting in line. From January 17-24, the positivity rate for Douglas County was 39.1%, while that number was 18.9% for the entire region 6. You can now also receive up to four free rapid antigen tests at your home by using the link https://special.usps.com/testkits. I did it and it was super simple,” he said, completing his announcement.
After sharing information from the DCHD, the board moved onto the treasurer’s report. Treasurer Mike Hilgenberg reported a total of $85,198.37 in expenditures. $8,125 of that amount went for updating and making the changes to the Simply Arthur website. The largest expenditure of $43,954.80 was used to pay for well repairs and maintenance on the main water wells that are located about four miles north of Arthur. Almost every 10 years, the deep-well pumps have to be pulled and rebuilt.
An ordinance was passed for village-owned railroad right-of-way property located on the Douglas County side which is for sale at $1.25 per square foot. There are potentially three interested buyers who are interested in the property, but the purchase won’t be approved until building permits are acquired as well as an engineer site plan.
Before wrapping up, board members discussed a handful of topics during the “general discussion” portion of the meeting.
Mayor Randall informed the board that construction for the Walnut Street property has plans to start this summer. First the village needs to make improvements to the water and sewer, while later this spring, they will need a confirmation for a building permit in order to move forward. Another topic that was discussed was the possibility of adding a mural on the north wall of the barber shop on the west side of the 100th block of South Vine Street. Presently, designs are being discussed for the mural. One idea for the mural is painting the annual events of Arthur in a time-line design.
It was also discussed that the Arthur Welcome Center needed some extra outdoor care to its landscape. Some of the items needing attention included reworking the brick edging, removing and adding new mulch, planting new grass and the possibility of pouring a concrete pad where the furniture and buggy sits so that it would be easier to mow around. There was also some talk about constructing a more permanent restroom structure instead of having porta potties.
The last topic of conversation involved researching the idea of pulling up the carpet in the community building and putting in a new “poured floor” which is a hard liquid substance that is put over concrete and then has different colors of material added to it. Mayor Randall informed the board he would research these topics and come back at a later date with more information.