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Prairie Grove to borrow for road projects

PRAIRIE GROVE – In order to pay for upcoming bridge and road work, the village of Prairie Grove is set to take out $1.59 million in bonds, its village administrator said.

The village of Prairie Grove plans to go out to bid this month, with the Village Board to approve the conditions of the borrowing at its May meeting, Village Administrator Jeannine Smith said.

If all goes as planned, the village could begin work on some of the road projects laid out in its five-year plan, including resurfacing a quarter-mile of Half Mile Trail, the heavily traveled portion from Terra Cotta Industries to Route 31, she said.

The village is in the first phase of engineering on the replacement or repair of the Justen Road bridge, which has been declared by the Illinois Department of Transportation structurally deficient and functionally obsolete.

That means parts of it are in poor or worse condition and it no longer meets current design standards.

About $1 million of the money will go toward new projects, and the remainder will go toward paying off the village’s 2008 bonds, Smith said. The village has three years to use the funds.

Those bonds are about 50 percent paid down and were taken out to pay for road projects, including Niche and Valley View roads.

Like those bonds, the Village Board does not plan on levying for the new bond, Smith said.

In the seven and half years Smith has been with the village, the board has always abated the bond portion and used other revenue, typically sales tax.

The estimated first year cost of the new bond issue is $183,648 and varies between $180,828 and $183,648 throughout its 10 year term, Smith said.

Because the village of Prairie Grove is a home-rule community, it did not have to go to the voters to ask for the borrowing authority.

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