Berger to continue as chairman of Ford County Board
Gibson City resident Randy Berger was re-appointed to another term as chairman of the Ford County Board. The 62-year-old Berger says focus will need to be put on efforts to reduce the red ink in the county’s budget.
The Board voted 7-0 Monday night to re-appoint Berger as Chairman. Berger is midway through his third four-year term as a county board member. His appointment to his second two-year term as chairman occurred during the reorganization meeting. No other board members were nominated for the top leadership post.
The board unanimously approved the appointment of board veteran Bob Lindgren of rural Loda as its vice chairman.
Five recently elected board members were also sworn in by County Clerk Amy Frederick: Included were: Chase McCall of Gibson City, Tom McQuinn of Paxton, Jason Johnson of Paxton, Tim Nuss of Roberts and Dr. Bernadette Ray of Gibson City.
The Danville City Council is expected to vote on a motion to close one of the city’s fire stations. Expenditures need to be reduced in order for local officials to meet the demand to pay pension plans for the police and fire departments. But the issue of public safety has many people opposing closing down a fire department facility.
The city of Kankakee’s financial picture is gloomy too. An audit shows Kankakee’s police and fire pension liability increased by over $14 million dollars. That’s in just one-year. The price tag for that pension was at $100-million in April.
Pension reform is the cry at all levels of government. It’s so bad, many communities are being forced to raise property taxes. Local officials claim unless the state implements meaningful pension reform, the matter is out of control and can’t be fixed.
Swearing-in ceremonies this (Monday) morning in Iroquois and Kankakee Counties seated new county board members. All were winners in the November election.
Special meetings of the respective county boards included new leadership.
John Shure was elected Iroquois County Board Chairman. He defeated Donna Crow, who was also nominated.
Board members supported Shure on an 11-8 vote. One member, Russell Bills, abstained.
Dan Rayman was elected Vice-Chair on a vote of 12-8. Newly-elected board members taking their oath included: Kevin Bohlmann, Kevin Coughenour, Sherry Johnson, Chad McGinnis, Barb Offill, Michael McTaggart, and Marvin Stichnoth.
Committee assignments were handed out and the board adopted Roberts Rules of Order and set bonds for elected officials.
The Kankakee County Board unanimously elected Andy Wheeler as Board Chairman. He succeeds Mike Bossert, who was not re-elected by voters.