Channahon Village President Breaks Tie on Telecommunications Tax

In a rare occurrence Monday night, Channahon Village Board members split on vote.

In the end, it all came down to one vote. And, that one vote, delivered by  President Joe Cook, was aye.

"Being that we have to get it done to inform, I say yes," he said after voting yes.

At question was whether the village should move forward and inform the Department of Revenue that its intends to implement a telecommunications tax. The maximum a municipality can assess is 6 percent. assesses 5 percent while neighboring Shorewood assesses 3.5 percent.

The village began talking about a a couple of months ago in an effort to add new revenues to the village. The village has had to enter its reserves to pay for operating costs and officials do not want to continue to do that.

That was one of the reasons Trustee Debbie Militello voted no.

"As an individual, I did everything I could to stay afloat, including going into reserves," she said of a time she was unemployed.

She added that she did not feel that the village had looked at all its options.

Efforts to Reduce Budget

The village has made a number of changes in the last few months to try to lower its expenses. At Monday night's meeting, Channahon Police Chief and Village Manager Joe Pena highlighted a couple.

"All department heads have taken five furlough days," he said. "I'm actually assuming a dual role at no cost to the village."

Channahon resident Karin Smith spoke at the meeting and pointed out that while the village is talking about a small amount of money — an estimated $34 per bill per person per year — that is too much in this economy. She said in her subdivision alone, which has only 12 houses, she has two households with residents commuting to other states for work and one foreclosure. She said she does not have cable television because it does not fit into her budget and she is concerned about the senior citizens who need phones in their homes for safety.

"That's undue stress to our families," she said. "I think we're being taxed out."

The vote Monday night was simply to inform the Department of Revenue of the village's intentions. It was not to implement the tax. Trustees Militello, Judie Nash and Scott Slocum voted no.

Jim Devereux September 22, 2011 at 01:13 AM
William, the parking lot may not be necessary at the moment, but the plan is for the south campus to be its own school in the future. All that open area behind the school will be athletic fields. So that lot will be necessary to support sporting events as well as the juniors and seniors driving to school. Being that they were "use it or lose it funds" I don't see a problem with getting it done now.
Tim September 23, 2011 at 07:44 PM
only in channahon can someone still think that non-stop expansion is the rule. In case you haven't noticed yet, the entire country has experienced an incredible slowdown and/or retreat in growth. The conservative estimate, is that the level of growth that was 'planned for' that you bring up, will not be returning for about 20 years. Now, the funds might well have been use it or lose it, but where are the funds going to come from to maintain it over the years until it is actually needed and used? The money fairy?
Jim Devereux September 23, 2011 at 08:04 PM
Tim, Please point out where I used the words growth or expansion or even bring that up. All I mentioned is the plan to split at some point. If they don't use what the government calls "use it or lose it" funds then that money can't be put towards something else in 2012. Maybe that would cut something you may consider more important than the parking lot. If we just completely cut spending on stuff like that it cuts jobs and in turn drags the economy even more.
William September 23, 2011 at 11:07 PM
Yep more good thinkin...........print more money for things that aren't needed ............OH How about that wall on I-55...........more USE IT OR LOOSE IT money coming out of thin air...........What is REALLY dragging down this economy? Not enough TAX BASED work or OVERTAXATION AND DEFICITS??? More GOOD OLE BOY ideas.........Should I continue???..........This economy will never turn around with this kind of idiocrity
Michael September 27, 2011 at 01:25 AM
I'm calling for Joe Cook to step aside until all financial matters have been resolved involving him and the village. The village should also be audited to account for all monies spent.


More »
Got a question? Something on your mind? Talk to your community, directly.
Note Article
Just a short thought to get the word out quickly about anything in your neighborhood.
Share something with your neighbors.What's on your mind?What's on your mind?Make an announcement, speak your mind, or sell somethingPost something
See more »