Local

Huntley trustees approve 2018 budget with focus on capital improvement projects, public safety

HUNTLEY – Huntley trustees approved a fiscal 2018 balanced budget that increases spending on public safety and capital improvement projects.

The budget allots about $26.2 million – 5 percent less than the 2017 budget, according to village documents.

Expenses focus on enhancing quality of life, promoting fiscal sustainability, promoting innovation through technology, new business development and improving organizational development efforts, Village Manager Dave Johnson said.

Trustees met Dec. 7 to discuss the budget and hold a public hearing.

The budget includes hiring four new positions for the village, including a part-time human resources assistant, part-time communications manager, full-time police officer and asset management coordinator for the Public Works and Engineering Department.

Major proposed capital projects include:

• Wastewater treatment facility regulatory, operations and maintenance upgrades of $3 million for both the east and west wastewater treatment facilities.

• $778,000 for the annual street improvement program that will resurface the Huntley Meadows subdivision and complete pavement patching, crack sealing and marking at various locations in the village.

• $325,000 for the water equipment replacement fund for necessary water main replacements.

• $276,800 for a two-year process to replace the financial management software.

• $110,000 in the equipment replacement fund to replace the police department in-squad video cameras. Police pension obligations also will increase by $184,303.

Looking at the economic climate of the village, Johnson said the 2017 equalized assessed value is estimated to be $886,278,665 – the highest in the village’s history, representing a 7.9 percent increase from 2016.

Sales tax revenue also has increased 67 percent over the past five years, bringing in $2,581,000 in 2017.

For 2018, Panera Bread is looking to build a new restaurant with adjacent retail space at Huntley Grove plaza.

Panda Express, Verizon Wireless and O’Reilly Auto Parts also will be joining the Huntley Crossings area on Route 47.

Jewel-Osco has announced plans to renovate the existing store on the south side of the village and build a 62,000-square-foot store at Reed Road and Route 47, investing $18 million into the community.

Jewel submitted plans for the new store to Johnson on Dec. 8.

The village is expected to see a
$1.3 million surplus at the end of 2017, as revenues were 7 percent higher than originally budgeted and expenditures are 5.4 percent less than originally budgeted, Johnson said.

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