Moraine Township Board of Trustees
Thursday, October 8, 2009 5:00 PM
Moraine Township Office
MINUTES OF REGULAR MEETING
October 8, 2009
The meeting was called to order at 5:04 PM, and upon roll call the following members were present: Supervisor Mari Barnes; Trustees Dwayne Douglas, Bryna Gamson, Margoth Moreno, and Jackie Schechter. Also Present: Jan Cline Leahy, and Fred Seff. Clerk Ellen Gussin was absent.
Approval of Minutes
The Regular Meeting Minutes of September 24, 2009 stand approved as written.
Approval of Bills
Trustee Douglas moved, seconded by Trustee Schechter, approval of the bills. Upon roll call, motion carried.
Career Resource Center (“CRC”) – Fred Seff, Board Member and Development Committee Chair – Commenting on the needs for CRC services, Seff noted that last month, unemployment stood at 9.8%. Over 9 million American are working only part-time. The number of unemployed and underemployed stands at 17%. The CRC is actively engaged in assisting the unemployed with their job searches. The CRC will have an open house on Thursday, October 15, 2009, from 4:30-6:30 p.m., at the Grove Cultural Campus in Lake Forest.
Jan Cline Leahy, Executive Director – The CRC is servicing 40% more clients than they did in 2008, 857 individuals received services, and of the individuals served in 2008, 83% of these individuals are now employed. Of people receiving services, 81% felt that CRC had a positive impact on their job search. Sixty-three Moraine Township residences are utilizing their services. The CRC is seeing individuals who use their services secure employment each week. In 2008, there were 76 educational programs and 4400 hours of volunteer service. The number of monthly programs has been increased. Work stations have been added to accommodate laptop/internet use. A Linked-In group is being established. Regarding the funding that CRC receives, the United Way is supporting CRC at approximately one-half of previous levels. The CRC recognizes that Moraine Township’s support makes a positive impact on their ability to provide services to the unemployed.
On the behalf of the Assessor, Mari Barnes reported that 1800 appeals have been filed. The County has also been inundated by appeals from other townships.
There will be a fall clean up day at the Township Food Pantry Plants Garden. An invitation will be extended to those who are working at the Garden to attend the Township’s next meeting so that can be congratulated for their efforts.
There are five to six seniors who had been receiving snow plowing services, at the Township’s expense. These services were initially extended to these individuals more than five years ago before any of the currently-serving Township officials were elected. Supervisor Barnes had arranged a contractor at a lesser cost but the dollars expended are still very high. Trustee Douglas moved, seconded by Trustee Moreno, for each individual currently receiving such services to be allocated a single $200 payment for use for snowplowing services in 2009-2010 – this being anticipated to be a reduced expenditure for this program from prior years – and that thereafter, these individuals would no longer have snowplowing services available by the Township. This discontinuation of services is necessary due to declining Township revenue, and reduced staff at the Township to administer this and other programs. Motion carried.
Food Pantry – Supervisor Barnes is working with local school districts to move forward with the annual food drive. Northwood Junior High School will not be participating in the holiday gift drive this year. Gift certificates may be distributed in the future in place of purchased holiday food baskets.
Clothes Closet – During construction at the Township Office, individuals seeking assistance with securing clothing have been provided a means to secure clothing at other locations close to the Township Office. The Clothes Closet will resume operation promptly after construction work at the Office permits.
Latino Advisory Committee – Trustee Douglas reported that the Committee discussed at their October 7 meeting means by which the Township and District 113 could reach out to individuals in the Hispanic community, and it was determined that rather than creating stand alone events, the more effective way to reach out to the community is to look to events that currently are well attended, and to address those individuals. Members of the Committee were tasked to contact local churches and schools to identify upcoming events, and the viability of the Township and District 113 being present at these events in some form to make individuals aware of opportunities and services. The Committee also reported that a written brochure was nearing completion, with the content set out in Spanish, and that this was to soon be forwarded to Trustee Gamson to finalize.
Grant Report – Trustee Gamson reported that another application for funds from the Healthcare Foundation of Highland Park for the Township’s Door-to-Door transportation program was submitted on October 1 on behalf of the van passengers.
Website – Trustee Gamson reported that the Township website has been updated to account for personnel changes, to inform the public of our remodeling efforts, and to better inform the public regarding available services.
A new employee was hired to fill a Township vacancy. Grizell Toledo is our new Administrative Aide for Van Scheduling, and Paula Peddle is now Administrative Aide for General Assistance. Both are bilingual Spanish/English speakers.
The use of unpaid college students as summer interns was discussed.
The possibility of whether Township employees should be CPR trained was raised by Trustee Schechter, and it was determined by the Supervisor and Board that further details regarding moving forward was to be considered for further discussion.
The potential of securing an AED device for the Township Offices was raised by Trustee Schechter as will as the possibility of securing a grant to pay for the device.
Trustee Moreno brought up several concerns about the office. First that someone had called the office looking for her while she was out of the country taking care of her parents and was told she was on vacation. Second, about the construction costs and the public’s access to information concerning the construction project. Trustee Gamson noted that information has been available on the Township’s website, going back over two years of Minutes of public meetings, and updated recently with progress reports. Trustee Douglas noted that there was a necessity for remodeling to ensure compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act. Trustee Schechter noted that the reconfigured office will provide previously-lacking privacy in rooms for meetings with residents who require services regarding their financial and other needs.
Trustee Moreno also stated her displeasure in not being appointed to subcommittees. Trustee Douglas and Supervisor Barnes stated that they had informed Trustee Moreno repeatedly about Latino Advisory Committee meetings. Trustee Moreno’s email efficiency has been erratic and Trustee Gamson suggested Trustee Moreno resolve the problem.
At approximately 6:30 PM, Trustee Gamson moved, seconded by Trustee Schechter, to conduct further proceedings in Executive Session.
Upon the conclusion of Executive Session, with no further business to conduct, Trustee Schechter moved, seconded by Trustee Gamson, that the meeting be adjourned at 6:40 PM. Motion carried.
Ellen S. Gussin, Moraine Township Clerk with much appreciation for Trustee Douglas’s standing in as Clerk for this meeting.
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