Farmer opens up blocked ditch on property west of Colona
NEWSTRACKER: COLONA

Farmer opens up blocked ditch on property west of Colona

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WHAT WE KNOW: Ballegeer Farms dammed a drainage ditch just west of Colona city limits sometime last month, prompting the city to consult its attorney about legal options in lieu of possible flooding.

WHAT'S NEW: Mayor Rick Lack announced at Monday's meeting that the farmer had opened up the ditch, although what would happen in the future was uncertain. "We don't know what's going to happen," he said. Public works committee chairman Larry Swemline said having the ditch dammed threatened Colona homes behind Ninth Street, and from Sixth Street to Eighth Street and from Seventh Avenue to Ninth Avenue. He said Ballegeer may be trying to force the city to buy a generator and pump, but that area had been a natural waterway for a very long time.

Meanwhile, solar panels were installed at the sewage treatment plant Dec. 20, but because of electrical issues the panels were not put in operation. Public Works Director Chris Lenth said parts had arrived earlier in the day, although he hadn't heard whether or not they'd been successfully put into use.

WHAT'S NEXT: Lack said a vote will be held at the council's Jan. 27 meeting on approval of an ordinance for a three percent sales tax on cannabis sales in the city. He said the ordinance--taken from a sample ordinance offered by the Illinois Municipal League--does not involve zoning for any cannabis businesses. "It's the first of a number or ordinances regulating the sale of cannabis," he explained.

-- LISA HAMMER

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