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Village of Norridge, Illinois
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Est. 1948
708.453.0800
Monday, May 22, 2017

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4000 N. Olcott Avenue
Norridge, Illinois 60706-1199
(708) 453-0800
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Village of Norridge
Attn: Village Clerk
4000 N. Olcott Avenue
Norridge, IL 60706


State of the Village 03/2017

Thursday, March 02, 2017


STATE OF THE VILLAGE
Spring is almost here and I am sure we all agree that the mild weather and no snow has been a refreshing change from years past.  As we take a look back at 2016, and look forward to an exciting 2017, I would like to give you an update on the “State of the Village.”
We, at the local level of government, are continually challenged to be able to provide the high quality services you have become accustomed to, at little or no cost to you. As I have said before, it is really all about revenue – the amount of money brought into the Village to pay for services and the maintenance of infrastructure like streets, sewers and water.  About 75% of all operating revenue for the Village, which is used in part to provide these services, is funded by the sales tax revenue received from the State of Illinois based on retail sales at the businesses in Norridge. What can be termed “essential” services, such as police protection, clean drinkable water, and the removal of waste through our sewer system, have been well maintained in the challenging economic times we have faced.
In the last 4 years, over 22 new businesses have opened in Norridge.  These businesses, which are listed below, validates that Norridge is, and will remain, a prime destination for shopping and dining.  We welcome:
ABC Bakery                                    Mathnasium
Alta Moda                                       Mattress Firm (3 locations)
Blossom Café                                  Newbes Sports Bar
Charley's Philly                               Noodles & Company
Charlotte Russ                                 Palermo Bakery
Chipotle Mexican                            Panda Express
Corningware Company                     Panera
Elly's Pancake House                       Red Robin Restaurant
Forever Yogurt                                Stefania's European Grocery Store
Garfield’s Beverage                         Stella's Place
Lock Up Norridge                            XSport Fitness
 
With the development of the new Norridge Market Place – a $27 million dollar revamp of the property known as the “show property”, in addition to the completion of the Harlem Irving Plaza expansion project, which will now house Nordstrom Rack, the Village will see an increase in our sales tax revenue.  We are looking forward to the spring opening of Miller’s Ale House and the future opening of the new AMC Theatre. 
Under my administration, the Village Board of Trustees and I have aggressively pursued alternative new sources of revenue, in light of the decreases in traditional revenue sources we have seen recently. We have been successful in procuring several grants (Federal, State and County) totaling in excess of  $2 million, which in essence is money saved or not spent from our General Fund, for providing services and/or infrastructure. We were able to secure $500,000 of the $1.8 million Village-wide street light cable replacement project to repair our aged infrastructure that in the long run will save money spent to repair outages.  We are in the process of searching for additional funding so that we can complete the project.  The Overhill Avenue reconstruction project, which provided new sewers, streets and curbs to Overhill Avenue from Foster to Lawrence Avenues was funded by a $1.9 million federal grant. 
Costs for services to our residents and businesses are still at the very low end of the range compared to those costs in other nearby communities. Here are just a few examples:
•Our water rates are at the very low end of the municipalities who obtain their potable water through the City of Chicago system; even though the amount which the City of Chicago charges us continues to rise;
•The Village incurs all costs for taking away the waste water from your property and allowing it to safely empty into the sanitary district system; 
•Norridge does not charge for residential garbage collection; while almost all other communities in the area do so, with fees running anywhere from $6.00 to $20.00 per month, and some as high as $50.00 monthly. The cost for garbage service in our community is over $1 Million annually, and none of the cost for this “essential” service is passed on to any of our single family residents;
•Norridge does not levy a real estate tax for any services provided by the Village. A quick look at your tax bill will confirm this. The local municipality part (tax) of most real estate tax bills in other communities typically runs between 7% and 12% of the total tax bill for any given property; while for 2016, the Village of Norridge’s municipal levy was only 3%.
The only tax levy from Norridge is for the Police Pension Fund, which is at the directive of the State and  almost all other towns have been levying for many years. The State of Illinois gave municipalities until 2015 to demonstrate that they are taking steps to ensure that, by 2040, safety pensions will be funded at 100%. (In the Village of Norridge, the safety pension is the Police Pension Fund.)  Norridge has been one of the few municipalities in the state that did not levy for safety pensions.  Payments were made from the Village’s General Fund.  However, higher levels of obligation mandated by the State have made it necessary to levy a tax solely for the Police Pension Fund.
Under the direction of Chief of Police David Disselhorst, the crime rate has continued to decline in the last few years.  The Norridge Police Department is dedicated to providing the best possible service to ensure all residents feel safe at all times.
I am encouraging all residents to attend our two upcoming events in March.  The Spring “Coffee and Conversation with the Mayor and Village Board” will be held on Saturday, March 11th beginning promptly at 9:30 A.M. in the Village Hall board room.  This is an opportunity for you to hear, first hand, about what is going on in the Village, as well as ask any questions that you might have.
Secondly, our Spring Recycling Event will be held Saturday, March 18th from 9:00 A.M. – 1:00 P.M.  Please see the attached flyer for some important changes to the electronic recycling program.
Very truly yours,
 
James Chmura
Village President
 

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