Posted Online: Dec. 20, 2012, 11:02 pm

Former mayor appointed to BHC board

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By Anthony Watt,

Black Hawk College's newest trustee was sworn in Thursday.

Former Moline Mayor Lawrence Lorensen was appointed by the board to replace former trustee Sonia Berg who resigned her seat citing the time demands of her profession. He will serve until April 2013.

"I'm just helping them out to provide that there's a full complement of board members," he said on Thursday night after the meeting.

Mr. Lorensen has a long history with the college. Along with teaching at BHC for 35 years, he also has served with one of the school's foundations.

A BHC government professor until he retired in 2001, Mr. Lorensen currently is chairman of the MetroLINK board. He also was an alderman for Moline's 1st Ward from 1969 to 1977 and Moline mayor from 1977 to 1981.

Many of his BHC students have pursued their own government careers, such as former U.S. Rep. Lane Evans; BHC Trustee Jerry Lack, who served on Rep. Evans' staff; East Moline Mayor John Thodos; and former Moline Mayor Allen McCaulley.

In other business Thursday night, the board elected trustee Donna Frye as the new BHC board vice chair to replace Ms. Berg. That vote was unanimous, with trustee John McCooley not present.

The board also voted unanimously to approve a $20 million bond issuance and set the college's portion of the property tax levy.

The bond issuance would fund a new health sciences building on the college's Moline campus and an agriculture sciences building on the Kewanee campus.

The tax levy is expected to mean a 1.83 percent increase in what property owners pay in taxes to the college, according to a report on the proposal. That translates to a $3.28 increase for the owner of a home worth $100,000, from $178.96 to $182.24.

Leslie Anderson, BHC's vice president for finance, said Thursday night the final levy is expected to be lower, depending on the interest rate that is set on the bond issuance.