Moraine Township

Moraine Township Board of Trustees
Thursday, June 25, 2009 7:30 PM
Moraine Township Office

June 25, 2009

The meeting was called to order at 7:31 PM by Supervisor Barnes and upon roll call the following members were present: Trustees Dwayne Douglas and Bryna Gamson. Trustees Margoth Moreno and Jackie Schechter were absent. Also Present: Clerk Ellen Gussin, Nancy Laatsch, Janet Freed, and John Joanem. Assessor Peter Koukos arrived later in the meeting.

Approval of Minutes
The Regular Meeting Minutes of June 11, 2009 stand approved as written.

Approval of Bills
Supervisor Barnes reminded the Board of its question from the last meeting concerning the Elite Coffee Service engaged by the Assessor’s Office. She had asked Assessor Koukos to attend tonight’s meeting to address the concern; his arrival was delayed by other commitments and so the approval of bills was delayed until after the Supervisor’s Report. Upon the Assessor’s arrival, the Board first took up the matter of approving the current bills and questioned the charge for the Assessor’s Office new “Biz Hub” unit; they have leased a combined fax, copier, and scanner with full color capability, linked to all employee computers and suitable for the volume of work generated by the Office. The lease fee is billed quarterly. Trustee Gamson moved, seconded by Trustee Douglas, approval of the bills. Upon roll call, motion carried.

Concerning the Elite Coffee Service Assessor Koukos reported that he believes the service is well worth the expenditure, as “happy employees are better able to serve happy customers – the public constituency.” The service comes to about fifty cents per cup and offers a variety of coffee types as well as tea and hot chocolate. The Board questioned the cost, but the Assessor firmly believes this expenditure is within his purview.

Public Comment
Supervisor Barnes introduced John Joanem, Attorney, who has agreed to serve the Township as its new Attorney and bill on an hourly basis, as needed, without a monthly retainer. He gave a brief statement expressing his pleasure in being of service and citing his Township experience including his current service as Waukegan Township attorney. He looks forward to working with Moraine Township. Supervisor Barnes gave Attorney Joanem a copy of the State Attorney General’s Ethics Ordinance to review; he will advise the Township concerning which parts are necessary to include as well as what we need to personalize for Township business.

Agency Presentation
Cancer Wellness Center, Nancy Laatsch, Executive Director
Nancy Laatsch distributed a folder of materials to the Board. Cancer Wellness provided services to 342 Moraine Township residents this year. They have also conducted school programs in the area including one in south Lake Forest and several others in Highland Park. The geographic area served by Cancer Wellness goes from the northern border of Chicago in Cook County to the Wisconsin state line. Grants allow provision of full services including library and other resource materials. They now provide bilingual services, and in answer to a question concerning whether there have been any referrals from or to Lake County Health Center in Highland Park, Director Laatsch responded that there has been some dialog with case workers but no specific referrals. However, they have strategically decided that they need to connect with all the health services within Lake County, learning the many challenges faced by newly diagnosed cancer patients in getting into a treatment program first, and then learning about other opportunities such as Cancer Wellness. They are currently running a pilot program in which a Cancer Wellness case worker visits a medical practice within the County once per week; this case worker is seeing about 20 patients each visit. Supervisor Barnes commented that the Moraine Township Door-to-Door Van receives calls to take people to Cancer Wellness in Northbrook. There is no fee for Cancer Wellness services, although everyone is given the opportunity to give to the Center if they so wish. Philosophically, they offer all services to cancer patients and families without barriers. They do not get money from the State but they have very close relationships with the local representatives including Karen May, Susan Garrett and Kathy Ryg. Nancy ended her presentation with a big thank you to the Township for its support.

Supervisor’s Report
Family Service is looking to add a Latino advocate to its staff; this is a United Way funded program.

The Pantry Plants Garden is receiving good care with great volunteers to whom the Township is most grateful.

The Township Offices remodeling program is slowly progressing; the architect is ready to go to bid and it is hoped that construction can begin soon.

Update on the recent fire in Highwood: A few people were injured and treated; one family lost everything and had to find a new apartment; and the Township put several people up in a hotel overnight until they could go back to their apartments. Supervisor Barnes will have a tally of the funds expended at the next meeting.

Assessor’s Report
The books will be closed on July 15, and notices of changes to properties will be published in early August and the information will be sent to citizens on a (blue) Property Assessment Notice, which is no longer on a card but rather a full sheet of paper which will provide more detailed information including an estimate of what any change may mean in terms of the property’s tax assessment. In 2011 the Assessor expects the EAV to decrease which will result in an increase in individual taxes, which will be challenging for taxpayers to reconcile.

Committee Reports
One of the vans broke down, and the Township leased a van locally while it was repaired. We expect PACE to reimburse the expenses as they have in the past.

Latino Advisory Committee will be meeting on July 6 at 6 PM in the Township office.

Old Business

New Business

With no further business to conduct, Trustee Douglas moved, seconded by Trustee Gamson, the meeting be adjourned at 8:15 PM. Motion carried.

Respectfully submitted,

Ellen S. Gussin
Moraine Township Clerk


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