Top 10 Village Accomplishments from 2017
By Village Manager Phil Kiraly
As if in the blink of an eye, 2017 has flown by and is quickly drawing to a close. Thinking back on last year, I find myself wholeheartedly proud of the way Village staff tackled the multifaceted projects and challenging goals set forth by our Village Board, and am especially impressed with how they overcame the unexpected hurdles that we faced. Of course, their successes are possible because of the on-going guidance and support of the Village Board, our committee and commission members and our actively engaged community.
To help summarize these efforts in service of our community, I’ve compiled a list of the top 10 highlights from what we accomplished together in 2017:
- Transitioned garbage collection services to Lakeshore Recycling Systems (LRS): Front-of-mind this year was the transition to Lakeshore Recycling Systems for garbage collection services, a major shift from our long-standing in-house service. Eighteen months of analysis and community engagement went into the decision, and ultimately, the move allowed service levels to be maintained, ended the General Fund subsidy to the Garbage Fund, avoided the need for future garbage collection equipment investments and opened up Public Works staff to other critical maintenance projects. Learn more about the analysis that went into decision to transition here.
- Consolidated emergency dispatch services with the Village of Glenview: 2017 marked the completion of a multi-year review process resulting in the transition to using the Village of Glenview for our emergency 911 dispatching services. I know this was an uncertain move for many residents, as it meant closing the Village Hall after regular business hours and on weekends. State law mandated that the Village take measures to consolidate, and so we dedicated ourselves to closely analyzing the few options available to us. Now, over six months later, public safety response times have not been impacted, and we stay committed to minimizing any disruption to our residents. Learn more about the consolidation here.
- Embarked on the most extensive capital improvement program in recent Village history: This past year’s Community Improvement Program (CIP) project list was the most extensive in recent history – with staff managing over $5.25 million in investments in our community’s infrastructure and capital equipment. Street resurfacing improvements were made on 22 street segments totaling over 4.9 miles, over 1,100 linear feet of water mains and 14,000 square feet of sidewalk was replaced and 3,500 linear feet of storm sewer pipe was installed. Also as part of the program, you’ll also soon see a new ambulance on our streets and other critical Public Works equipment in the field. Learn more about the Fiscal Year 2018 CIP here and view the proposed Fiscal Year 2019 CIP here.
- Conducted an emergency cleaning of the Village’s 90-year old water plant intake pipe and an emergency relocation of a primary water transmission mains: As you may remember from our outreach in August, during a routine inspection of the 3,300 foot-long water plant intake pipe, an excessive level of sand and sediment was found inside our intake, which required an emergency cleaning. Also this summer, we conducted an emergency relocation of one of our primary water transmission mains just outside the water plant, which was exposed on the beach after months of high water levels and heavy waves. Our water distribution system is one of our most critical pieces of public infrastructure. Learn more about the Water System Master Plan here.
- Began implementation of the Downtown Plan by commencing a design review process for Tudor Court: Wrapping up another multi-year process, the Village Board formally adopted the Downtown Plan in December 2016 and staff has been working to implement Downtown TuneUp recommendations, including a comprehensive design review process for Tudor Court. Learn about the Tudor Court Design Review Process here.
- Finalized a land-sharing agreement with the Cook County Forest Preserve for the Glencoe Golf Club: In some ways the end of one project and the start of another, in June the Village finalized a long-term land sharing agreement for the Glencoe Golf Club with the Cook County Forest Preserve District, an update of an almost 100-year old partnership. This finalized agreement now reopens the conversation of the next steps for the Golf Club’s aging clubhouse.
- Launched a fully redesigned website and e-newsletter: Underscoring our Village’s commitment to grow community engagement, staff launched a fully-redesigned Village website in March (when I began writing this blog!) and grew the Village’s online presence through the creation of a new bi-weekly e-newsletter. Sign up for Village eNews here.
- Grew our social media presence, including building our followings on Facebook and Twitter by 52% and 47%, respectively: …But we didn’t stop with just Facebook and Twitter. The Village Manager’s Office worked with the Public Safety and Public Works departments to share road closures, crime information and other service details on NextDoor and via the Village’s emergency call-out system, Glencoe CONNECT. Register for NextDoor here and Glencoe CONNECT here. By the way, I’m now on Twitter too and am in the habit of sharing the latest Village news as well as interesting developments from the local government professional community. Follow me on Twitter here.
- Initiated a new strategic visioning process with the Village Board: Taking all this progress into consideration, our Village also undertook a major effort to plan for Glencoe’s future. This past fall, we engaged the Village Board in a Strategic Visioning Workshop where we began development of a new strategic work plan to guide the Village’s collective vision moving forward. As part of this staff developed a comprehensive State of the Village Report, which can be viewed online here.
- Commenced multiple sustainability initiatives with the help of the Sustainability Task Force: Since their start in 2016, the Sustainability Task Force has pushed a number of initiatives forward and notably in 2017 the group launched a business recognition program. Learn more about the Task Force here and the Business Recognition Program here.
On top of all this, we engaged 46 volunteers on our various Village Boards, Committees and Commissions. As your Village Manager I take pride in having so many dedicated volunteers, knowing that there is no limit to the positive impacts of their input on the future of our Village. Learn about serving on a board or commission here.
These projects and initiatives amounted to quite an effort on the part of all those involved, of which I hope you too are proud. As always, should you have any questions or suggestions for the Village, my door is always open. We all look forward to serving you again in 2018, and to preparing to celebrate the Village’s 150th birthday in 2019!