Moline 4th Ward alderman candidate Dick Brown will be seated prior to the April election.|
Moline Mayor Don Welvaert told the city council on Tuesday night he will appoint Mr. Brown to the seat and swear him in on Feb. 19.Ted Ronk resigned from the seat last week, stating he was retiring and moving out of the ward.
"Mr. Brown is the only candidate running in the 4th Ward and it seems proper to seat Mr. Brown as he will be the obvious successor following the April 9 general election," Mayor Welvaert said.
Mayor Welvaert said he is waiting until mid-February to comply with state and city election laws that require a candidate to live in the represented ward at least 12 months prior to the date of election or appointment.
"While Mr. Brown meets the qualifications for the April 9 election, we will need to wait until after Feb. 12 to appoint him," Mayor Welvaert said.
In other business, the city will apply for a $2.3 million grant to address lead-based paint hazards in homes and apartments in Moline, East Moline, Rock Island and Sterling.
Moline aldermen, sitting as the committee of the whole, voted to allow the city to submit a grant application to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. Moline will be the lead applicant for the grant; if funds are awarded, Moline will administer the money and ensure program compliance.
The four cities plan to work cooperatively with the Rock Island Health Department, Project NOW and Rock Island Economic Growth Corp. to make homes healthier and safer for children, according to city planner Jeff Anderson. Moline also plans to request an additional $200,000 in grants for the health department to launch a healthy homes education initiative.
In the past, Moline, Rock Island and the three community agencies have worked as a consortium to address lead issues. Since 2005, the group has spent two federal grants totaling $4 million to abate lead in 287 homes. This is the first time Sterling and East Moline are joining the consortium.
Mr. Anderson said the federal government outlawed the manufacturing and use of lead-based paint in homes in 1978. However, 92 percent of the homes in Moline and Rock Island were built prior to 1978.
"This is an opportunity to increase the safety of homes," he said.
Mr. Anderson said the grant will allow Moline to mitigate lead hazards in 90 residences in the city and 152 regionally during a three-year period.
The Moline City Council formally will vote on the grant application later this month.
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