WHAT WE KNOW: Last December, the council made preliminary plans and approved rate hikes to pay for $8 million in projected sewage treatment facility upgrades.
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WHAT'S NEW: Donohue engineer Terry Boyer informed the council the new cost estimate for the work is $11.7 million, due to more electrical replacement, more control building work and better headworks constructability. The change will mean the surpluses the city was to be building will go instead to loan payments. Aldermen were dismayed, but approved recommending to council the improvements to the wastewater treatment facility and moving forward with an Illinois Environmental Protection Agency 20-year loan for $12 million. One alderman excused the engineers by saying the early work was not enough to get a true picture of what was needed. "I'm definitely not condoning it because it seems like a large miss, but to put it in layman's terms it's the equivalent of having an X-ray or an MRI," said Ald. Sean Johnson.
WHAT'S NEXT: Aldermen voted 6-2 to recommend to council opting out of all recreational marijuana businesses with the exception of transporting organizations. Alds. Robert Wachtel and Bob James voted no. Johnson said he knew a couple citizens who were thinking of getting into marijuana trucking. City attorney Derke Price said it's a highly regulated business and trucks would be required to deliver their loads the same day they picked them up, so they would not be bringing product into Geneseo. Johnson said there are revenue situations on the horizon and he couldn't make light of six jobs or two jobs in transportation. Ald. Paula Simosky had made a motion to allow cultivators and infusers, saying she was concerned the county could have these kinds of businesses in the city's back yard. Her motion died for lack of a second.