City alleys to get upgrades, speakers discuss recycling and housing

City of Quincy

QUINCY — In what could be a preview of Wednesday’s public hearing on recycling, 11 of the 15 speakers who appeared before the Quincy City Council Tuesday night expressed their feelings on the future of curbside recycling pickup.

Most of the speakers asked the city to reconsider and keep the service instead of making it so residents have to tote their plastics and cardboard to one of three proposed locations around the city.

The second public forum is Wednesday at 5:30 in the Quincy City Council chambers.

The remaining speakers wanted to talk about safe and livable housing and promoted an event they have coming up in October. The Tenant Workshop is sponsored by the Safe and Livable Housing Committee and will begin Oct. 4 at First Baptist Church, 739 N. 8th. It will be a five-week program to assist people who have difficulty gaining and retaining proper housing.

In City Council action, Aldermen approved a $1.3 million bid from Diamond Construction for an Alley Improvement Project. This will improve the surfaces of 43 alleys.

Alderman Jeff Bergman (R-2nd Ward) said he wished more alleys could be done, but also stressed that this was additional money on top of the street repairs that are underway throughout Quincy. Bergman said he had constituents who questioned fixing alleys before streets and he said “We’re doing both”.

Aldermen also approved a $1.2 million loan to the airport fund from the general fund to pay for the solar project at Quincy Regional Airport. Energy cost savings and renewable energy credits will be used to repay the loan.

The Council tabled the resolution to swap the maintenance responsibilities of 36th Street (from State to Broadway) with State Street (from 24th to 36th Street) with the State of Illinois. The City is planning to upgrade that section of State Street with curbs, gutters, sidewalks and bike lanes with a $10 million federal grant.

Alderman Mike Farha (R-4th Ward) motioned to table the vote for a week because his counterpart in the 4th Ward, Alderman Tony Sassen, was absent and the issue involves the 4th and 5th Wards.

Three new Quincy firefighters were also sworn in Tuesday night: Hudson Falk, Spencer Roderick and Zach Vahlkamp. Vahlkamp is the son of Fire Chief Bernie Vahlkamp, whose grandfather was also a Quincy firefighter.

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