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Normal Council Approves 5 Year Hancock Stadium Package

Tue, 16 Jul 2013 12:29:48 CDT
By: RachelDarling

Normal Council Approves 5 Year Hancock Stadium Package The Normal Town Council unanimously approved a resolution that will allow information sharing between McLean County's various educational institutions. Normal Mayor Chris Koos says The Reciprocal Reporting Agreement will provide the participating entities with information about juvenile incidents and codify a common practice. City Manager Mark Peterson clarified the need for the agreement...

   

"It made sense to develop a standardized agreement and a standardized set of criteria that would apply to all entities that from time to time may need to share information."

Information that is prohibited to be shared by law, will remain private. At last night's meeting the Council also approved a resolution authorizing the development of a multi-story building on South Main Street with Normal Flats LLC.
     
The Town of Normal also agreed to partner with Illinois State University in the completion of the Hancock Stadium Project. Hancock stadium is currently undergoing renovations to update its facilities and increase its capacity. The Town Council agreed to contribute $500,000 to the project in $100,000 dollar installments over five years to update its street- facing marquee and sound system.

Mayor Koos supported the agreement. He says ISU brings jobs and income to the town...

   

"Illinois State University is our largest employer and is a nonprofit employer. And every year the state puts stricter requirements on them and sends them less money and that doesn't go unnoticed."

Councilman Jeff Fritzen spoke to resident's concerns about the stadium's benefits...

   

"Intercollegiate athletics, you know, is an entertainment venue of choice by many, many people and it's also great way to promote the institution and in so doing it's also going to promote the community."

Fritzen says the town's involvement sets a precedent to hear future projects, not necessarily to fund them. Councilman Sonja Reese also supported the agreement...

   

"I do like very much the idea that this is a process though that allows us to look each year at our ability to do this."

Councilman Kevin McCarthy spoke to concerns of residents that may not be interested in the Stadium's offerings...

   

"Contributing some small portion to an overall project does decrease the bottom line of the cost of the project to our largest employer so, being that as economic driver, an overall reducing the price and cost to our largest employer, I think is an investment well made."

This fiscal year's installment comes as an unplanned budget item. A portion of the 2012-2013 year end General Fund surplus will be used to cover the installment. Future installments will be issued on a year-to-year basis and can be canceled if they prove too taxing to the Town's budget in the future. The Council passed the motion with Councilman Scott Preston casting the lone dissenting vote over concerns of community benefit from the project.
   

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