Village to benefit from capital bill

Staff Writer
Geneseo Republic

 Cambridge and Henry County will benefit from a capital improvement bill signed into law on Monday, July 13. Cambridge is supposed to receive $100,000.

 “We are really excited about getting the money and have been working really hard the last six months with Illinois House of Representative Don Moffitt and Senator Dale Risinger to obtain this grant,” stated Dwaine VanMeenen, village administrator. 

 “We are planning on using the money for the Court Street water line replacement project but will have to wait and see when the money will become available and when we have to use it by,” the administrator said.

 VanMeenen said he feels Cambridge is very fortunate to receive this grant along with other grants recently obtained. 

 “We got a grant for $15,000 to purchase our new police car,” he stated. “We have also received a $1,000 grant from Wal-Mart and a $1,000 grant from Alcoa, which will be used to purchase a new radar system for the new car in addition to some other things.”

 VanMeenen said they are also working with U.S. Rep. Bill Foster to get some additional help.

 “We talked with him about getting some help (money) to extend Ridgewood subdi- vision streets and make the new street where the Cambridge Fire Protection District will move,” he concluded.

 Henry County will receive $250,000 for highway and bridge maintenance.

 “I don’t know what the guidelines will be for using the money,” stated Steve Brandau, Henry County superintendent of highways. “As soon as I find out, plans will be made or the money will be used for things which have already increased in price, such as salt.”

 The bill that Gov. Pat Quinn signed into law includes $31 billion worth of capital improvements.

 Bonds will be issued to pay for the projects in the capital bill, which includes provisions to raise the money needed to retire the bonds.

 The state sales tax will go up from 1 percent to 5 percent on candy, sweetened tea and coffee, and grooming and hygiene products.

 There will also be higher liquor taxes, based on volume. A six-pack of beer will go up 2.6 cents, a standard bottle of wine will go up 13 cents and a fifth of liquor will go up 81 cents.

 Car title fees will go from $65 to $105. Car title transfers will go from $15 to $30. Annual license plate fees will rise from $79 to $99, and driver’s license fees will double to $20 (for a basic license). 

 The bill also legalizes video poker in bars and private clubs, which is expected to bring in $300 million per year. Municipalities can opt out.