Geneseo Council introduces Junior members to public service

Beth Welbers
Geneseo Republic

The Geneseo council shared the chamber with three Junior members at their meeting July 13th.  Finn Moore, 7, grandson of Martin Rothschild, (Ward 3) Charlotte, 5,and her sister Mollie Prochaska, 3, granddaughters of Keith Kennett (Ward 3), were on hand to observe and make their own (non-binding) recommendations.  

Patterned after the "Take Your Child to Work" days, the Junior members got the opportunity to see local government at work.  City Administrator JoAnn Hollenkamp asked the new members what they liked best about living in Geneseo, and with a little help from the Senior members, came back with a unanimous choice of the parks. With a little more encouragement, the trio offered the suggestion of the addition of "super long monkey bars", "a bumpy slide" and "more swings" as an enhancement to current playground equipment. 

Hollenkamp mentioned that possible expansion to junior high and high school students as junior councilmen might occur in the future, to introduce young people to local governance and community service. 

Regualr and Junior Council members shared the Chamber Tuesday July 13.  Front Row: Mayor Sean Johnson, Martin Rothschild, Finn Moore, Jr. member, JoAnn Hollenkamp, City Administrator, Molly Prochaska, Jr. member, Charlotte Prochaska, Jr. member, and Keith Kennett.
Back Row: Bob James, Brett Barnhart, Paula Simosky and Doug Crow.

An office in the City Building will be leased to State Senator Win Stoller for the purpose of opening a constituent services office.  The office is expected to be open for assistance to the public sometime in August. 

Recognition was given to several City employees for their efforts with the Thrill on the Hill fireworks event on July 2. Chad VanDeWoestyne, Shaun Easton and Gene Karzin were honored with a certificate of the City's appreciation. 

A presentation was made by Jenn Johnson of Inspired Continuing Care who will be opening a facility in Geneseo for special needs young adults who may have aged out of programs or do not qualify for programs at Abilities Plus.  Many of these people would have no choice but to stay at home, which can be detrimental to many special needs clients.  She plans to keep them active in the community, with field trips, teaching life skills, possible jobs like dog walking and paper routes. Johnson would like to partner with the community and help clients achieve independence.  They are a 501C3 charity and are currently funded through grants and donations.

In other business, City Finance Director Jamie Matthews noted steady growth in the City's reserves.  Currently they are at $3.5M of a $4M goal of reserves needed to qualify for preferential rates when bonds are necessary.  

Chamber of Commerce Executive Director, Zack Sullivan talked briefly about the upcoming schedule of events.  Other projects of interest to the Chamber and City  would be additional downtown seating, a pocket park in the recently acquired lot on West First Street, with possible public restrooms, the train station and downtown murals.