Orion to beef up camera security

Beth Welbers
Geneseo Republic
Orion O

The Orion village board voted Monday, June 21, to spend $12,168 to add security cameras to its parks.

Tri-City Electric submitted the bid for the cameras, which will help the village identify anyone involved in vandalizing property and threatening park visitors, said Village President Jim Cooper.

At the request of Seventh Street resident Ron Saunders, the board approved moving a fire hydrant on the street, which is under reconstruction. If the fire hydrant had been left in place, the sidewalk next to it would have been three feet wide. Moving it will leave the sidewalk five feet wide. The cost will be $5,900.

The board approved a request from Orion Cub Scout Troop 123 to close 11th Avenue from Fifth to Seventh streets on Sunday, Sept. 5. The Scouts will close the street from 6:30 to 3 p.m. for a Soap Box Derby during Orion Fall Festival.

Cooper said he would tell the fire department that if a fire call comes in, Scout leaders and volunteers will be ready to remove anything in the way of fire trucks leaving the station.

Responding to change orders for the 11th Avenue water main project, the board approved $14,005 for flared joints, Illinois Environmental Protection Agency requirements and American-made fittings.

The board thanked Orion resident Ron Peterson, a former board member, for all he does to beautify Central Park.

“He gives and gives to this community,” Cooper said. “If we had an award for Orion Hero, it would go to Roger Peterson.’

Board members agreed to hire CPA Tom Engelmann to audit the 2020-21 financial records. He has done it for years. If the board received any grants, Engelmann will receive $650 per grant to prepare a special review.

Trustee Steve Newman said he is talking to the Henry County Sheriff’s Office and the Village of Cambridge about hiring a full-time deputy that Orion and Cambridge could share.

Orion is looking for ways to reduce vandalism, and the village also has received reports of the behavior of people in Central Park making parent and their children uncomfortable.

Cooper said police need to start giving tickets to habitual speeders.

In other business

• It was the first board meeting in the village hall basement since Illinois locked down in March 2020 because of the pandemic. Cooper asked anyone who was not fully vaccinated to put on a mask or leave.

• Trustees Mike Dunlap and Neal Nelson were absent. The board still has a vacancy to fill. Anyone interested should contact Cooper, any trustee or village hall.

• Because the Fourth of July will be observed on Monday, July 5, the next village board meeting will be Wednesday, July 7. The recycling pickup that week will be delayed a day to Friday, July 9.

• The village will be advertising for a deputy clerk/treasurer, in anticipation of the retirement of Village Clerk Lori Sampson and her replacement by deputy clerk Dee Lundburg.

• After the meeting, village officials wished Ron “Tank” Thompson a happy birthday. He regularly sits in the audience for the meetings.