May 11, 2017 City Council Meeting Minutes

May 11, 2017 City Council Meeting Minutes


The regular meeting of the Hickory Hills City Council was called to order by Mayor Mike Howley on Thursday, May 11, 2017, at 7:31 p.m. in the City Hall Council Chambers.


Mayor Mike Howley led the Pledge of Allegiance.


Upon roll call, the following were present:

  • Mayor, M. Howley
    Aldermen, D. Ferrero
    T. McAvoy
    B. Fonte
    M. McHugh
    J. Stachnik
    J. Szeszycki
    B. Waight
    S. Zimmerman
  • City Clerk, D. Catizone
  • City Treasurer, D. Schramm
  • City Attorney, V. Cainkar
  • City Engineer, M. Spolar
  • Police Lt, A. Vodicka
  • Public Works Director, L. Boettcher
  • Building Commissioner, J. Moirano

There being a quorum present, the meeting was called to order.


Clerk Catizone administered the oath of offices to the newly elected Aldermen:

Brian Waight, 1st Ward Alderman
Deborah Ferrero, 2nd Ward Alderman
Brian Fonte, 3rd Ward Alderman
Joseph Stachnik, 4th Ward Alderman

Bryan Farr, President
National Historic U.S. Route 20 Assoc.

Mr. Farr presented the City with a U.S. 20 Historic Route street sign. He explained the Association’s mission to identify and preserve the cultural importance of the cities, small towns and rural areas along Route 20 in order to promote travel, tourism and economic development in those communities. Mr. Farr thanked Alderman Tom McAvoy for his guided tour of Hickory Hills. They toured local restaurants, attractions and historic sites along 95th Street. In Hickory Hills, U.S. Route 20 runs along 95th Street between I-294 and Kean Avenue. Alderman McAvoy thanked Mr. Farr for spotlighting Hickory Hills and Mrs. Carla Blazys (Hills Chamber member) for participating in the tour.

Mayor Howley stated a reception will follow this meeting for the newly elected and Mr. Farr.


Alderman Stachnik moved to open the meeting to the public. Alderman Fonte second. Roll call: Aldermen Ferrero, Fonte, McAvoy, McHugh, Stachnik, Szeszycki, Waight, Zimmerman aye. So approved.

Mr. Brian Kasper
9245 S.78th Avenue

Mr. Kasper voiced his concern regarding littering on 78th Avenue and in the general area of his street. Mr. Kasper said he thinks this happens at night with cars driving by and throwing garbage out the windows. He would like to have the Council’s thoughts on this matter. Alderman Waight stated he lives in this area and has some trash. Alderman Waight suggested placing a sign at McDonald’s and other fast food restaurants saying please do not litter. Mr. Kasper stated he is available if the City would need any assistance. Mayor Howley thanked Mr. Kasper for his comments and the City will try to get the word out and possibly posting some signage.


Alderman Waight moved to close the meeting to the public. Alderman Fonte second. Roll call: Aldermen Ferrero, Fonte, McAvoy, McHugh, Stachnik, Szeszycki, Waight, Zimmerman aye. So approved.


Alderman Szeszycki moved to approve the minutes of the regularly scheduled meeting of April 27, 2017 as printed subject to deletions or corrections. Alderman Stachnik second. Roll call: Aldermen Ferrero, Fonte, McAvoy, McHugh, Stachnik, Szeszycki, Waight, Zimmerman aye.
So approved.



2017 Appointments – Mayor Howley presented the following list of the 2017 appointments for approval.


City Attorney & City Prosecutor Vincent Cainkar
City Engineer Michael Spolar
(Robinson Engineering, Ltd.)
Chief of Police Al Vodicka
Building Commissioner John Moirano
Director of Public Works Larry Boettcher
City Collector D’Lorah Catizone
ESDA Director Chris Knights
Elevator Inspector Dave Rotermund
(Thompson Elevator)
Community Resource Officer Ingrid McNeff
Plumbing Inspector David Tavares
Electrical Inspector Rick Stiegal
Fire Inspector Battalion Chief Don Huenecke
Building Inspector Ed Mack
Sprinkler Inspector James Groark
HVAC Inspector James Manuzak

Zoning Board of Appeals (7 Year Term)
Joseph Mancuso 05/01/15 – 04/30/24

Auxiliary Police Officers (1 Year Term)
Betty Soprych
Valentine Zilinskas
Arthur Ventura
Anthony Falzone, Jr.
Steve Makropoulos
Brian Trapp
John Bracha
Edvinas Gaidomavicius
Anthony Falzone, Sr.
Nadia Garcia
Michael Mallon
Brian Mendygral

Police Pension Board (2 year Term)
Mary McDonald 01/01 – 04/30/19

Board of Fire & Police (3 Year Term)
Henry Kman 07/23/09 – 04/30/20

Hearing Officer (1 Year Term)
Arthur Wrobel 05/01/14 – 04/30/18

Community Affairs Commission (3 Year Term)
Sandy Wcislo 02/25/99 – 04/30/20

Alderman McAvoy moved to approve the 2017 appointments. Alderman Zimmerman second. Roll call: Aldermen Ferrero, Fonte, McAvoy, McHugh, Stachnik, Waight, Zimmerman aye. Alderman Szeszycki present. So approved.

Mayor Howley announced the Hickory Hills Park District is holding a carnival at Kasey Meadow Park that will run from May 11th through May 14th.


Clerk Catizone reminded the Council the deadline for newsletter articles is May 15th. The newsletter will be mailed out the week before the Street Fair.

Clerk Catizone announced the next Boxing for the Troops will take place on Tuesday, May 16th at 6:00 p.m. at the Community Center.

Clerk Catizone reported the City of Hickory Hills and First Midwest are working together to bring a new program to our City employees.

The program is called “On the Job Banking” and provides a wide array of discounted bank products and services delivered right to your workplace. Their first monthly visit will be Monday, May 15th, at the Clerk’s Office.

Clerk Catizone reported American Express has changed their rewards program and now will charge $90.00 per year to participate in this program. The American Express credit card is used on larger purchases.


Treasurer Schramm reported the City Council has held three (3) special budget meetings. He has distributed a two (2) page summary this evening. Before the numbers are sent to the Attorney to prepare the budget ordinance, he is seeking approval of the proposed FY2017-2018 budget. Alderman Ferrero moved to approve the FY 2017-2018 budget and direct the City Attorney to prepare the budget ordinance for the next meeting on May 25, 2017. Alderman Ferrero moved to approve the FY2017-2018 budget and direct the City Attorney to prepare budget ordinance. Alderman Szeszycki second. Roll call: Aldermen Ferrero, Fonte, McAvoy, McHugh, Stachnik, Szeszycki, Waight, Zimmerman aye. So approved.


No report.


Mr. Spolar reported a bid letting was held on Thursday,
May 4, 2017 for the 2017 Micro-Surfacing (MFT 17-00000-02-GM). This bid was advertised through IDOT. One bid was received and the bid is as follows:

AC Pavement Striping Co. $88,524.63

Mr. Spolar stated AC Pavement Striping Company has performed the micro-surfacing for the City on the last four projects. Therefore, he is recommending to award the contract to AC Pavement Striping Company in the bid amount of $88,524.63. Alderman Waight moved to award contract to AC Pavement Striping Company in the amount of $88,524.63 with the condition that 94th Street receive a full pass and not just one pass. Alderman Ferrero second. Alderman Szeszycki noted there is a one pass street in this bid. Mr. Boettcher stated it has been a Public Works policy to do one pass on dead end streets because of low volume.

Alderman Waight again stated 94th Street takes a big hit with traffic going through and would appreciate a full pass on this street. Mr. Spolar stated 94th Street was on the list. Roll call: Aldermen Ferrero, Fonte, McAvoy, Stachnik, Waight, Zimmerman aye. Aldermen McHugh and Szeszycki nay. So approved.



Alderman Szeszycki moved to approve the bills payable for the first half of May 2017 in the amount of $507,609.45. Alderman McAvoy second. Roll Call: Aldermen Ferrero, Fonte, McAvoy, McHugh, Stachnik, Szeszycki, Waight, Zimmerman aye. So approved.



No report.

Stachnik/Public Safety

No report.

Zimmerman/Public Works

Tollway Public Meeting – Director Boettcher reported the Tollway has held several Open House Information Sessions to receive input from the public. The Tollway initially had two (2) billion dollars that has been approved to remove and replace twenty-two (22) miles of existing and aged pavement from 95th Street going north. They will be adding 4 lanes (2 each way) in 2021-2026.

Director Boettcher noted the County has allocated 40 million dollars to “Maintain & Modernize”. Robinson Engineering has submitted a grant application to upgrade street lighting on County roads to LED. So far, 106 applicants have responded for the allocated 8.5 million dollars for this advertised grant. Mr. Boettcher thanked Mr. Spolar for defining how the City would meet the intent of the grant on a telephone interview. Public Works expounded upon the Tollway’s improvements starting in our City on 95th Street and then north for 22 miles. In addition, the City requested specific Tollway signing flaunting activities at this exit which includes: Moraine Valley Community College, Forest Preserve activities including Maple Lake, Little Red School House, walking paths and horseback riding.
Ms. Lehr also pointed out that three (3) grade schools are adjacent to the proposed County streets.

Mr. Boettcher reported on April 17th Cook County held their Annual Construction Update Meeting. It was announced that Roberts Road resurfacing from 87th Street south is still on hold while they work with the MWRD on storm water issues.
There should be no conflicts with the 2017 Street Fair.


No report.

Waight/Laws & Ordinances

Alderman Waight reported he has 1 business certificate application for approval. Nadeem & Naser Bakery & Pastry located at 8609 W. 95th Street. This is an Arabic bakery which will be opening on May 27, 2017. No objections were noted.

Fonte/Health & Environmental Control

No report.

Ferrero/Community Affairs/Youth Advisory

No report.

McAvoy/Chamber Business Development

Alderman McAvoy stated all Aldermen should have received information regarding a request from Aladdin’s Palace Banquet Hall located at 8821 W. 87th Street for a Ramadan related events temporary tent. It was noted the owner, Ms. Layal Elshafei, is present this evening. Alderman McAvoy noted her uncle, Mr. Elshafei, is the owner of the shopping center and has given his approval. Alderman McAvoy stated we have structured this request strictly with conditions that have been agreed with and will be applied. He noted this was allowed before at Steeple Hill Church. No amplified music will be allowed. Alderman McAvoy noted this is a noble experiment and permission can be revoked at any time. He believes this will not be a problem and recommends approval. A questioned was asked regarding the purpose of the tent. Alderman McAvoy stated this is for over flow of the banquet hall during Ramadan and smoking will be permitted in the tent only. Alderman McAvoy moved to approve the temporary tent to be located at the Aladdin’s Palace. Alderman Fonte second.

Mayor Howley stated Alderman McAvoy has thoroughly vetted this matter and is very careful what goes on in his Ward. He supports this proposal. Alderman McAvoy also noted they have agreed to have one person outside to monitor the tent. A brief discussion ensued. Questions regarded noise, size of tent and set up of tent. Ms. Elshafei stated the tent will hold 70-80 people with open sides weather permitting. The duration of the temporary tent will be two days before the event and two days after approximately May 22th through June 29th. Ms. Elshafei mentioned if they had music, it would only be background music. The times are 3:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m. weekdays and Friday and Saturday 5:00 p.m. to midnight. Auxiliary Police may be used. Building Commissioner Moirano stated he has worked with Aladdin’s Palace in the past and has had no problems. Roll call: Alderman Ferrero, Fonte, McAvoy, McHugh, Stachnik, Waight, Zimmerman aye. Alderman Szeszycki nay. So approved.


Alderman McHugh thanked Alderman Szeszycki and Treasurer Schramm for all their efforts and work on the new budget.


Mayor Howley wished to extend a Happy Easter to all those that celebrate.


Alderman Ferrero moved to adjourn the meeting until the next scheduled or specially called meeting. Alderman Fonte second. Roll Call: Aldermen Ferrero, Fonte, McAvoy, McHugh, Stachnik, Szeszycki, Waight, Zimmerman aye. So approved.

Meeting adjourned at 8:20 p.m.