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Orion talks about plans for new village hall, state grant
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NEWSTRACKER: ORION BOARD

Orion talks about plans for new village hall, state grant

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WHAT WE KNOW: The $368,000 project to replace water mains on 11th Avenue didn't start until after Labor Day and there was some concern about completion before it got too late in the year.

WHAT'S NEW: The contractor ruptured a gas line at 11 a.m. Monday, but the fire department came and closed the road. Work on the project was shut down for a little while, but it resumed and Trustee Mel Druckere reported at Monday night's meeting that the gas company hoped to have the line fixed shortly. He was hopeful about the overall project. "Hopefully, they'll be close to being completed within the three weeks that they projected," he said.

WHAT'S NEXT: Village Board President Jim Cooper asked trustees to look over a floor plan for a new village hall created by Point Builders of Davenport at no obligation to the village. Cooper has asked the firm for a ball park estimate of what the structure would cost, and he wants trustees' ideas on changes to go into more detail at the next board meeting and then invite the contractor to a subsequent board meeting. He said they told him the building would fit easily on the former bowling alley property that the village now owns. Separately, the village might also apply for a recently announced state grant under the auspices of the Rebuild Illinois Main Street and Downtown Capital Program. The downtown construction grants are intended to help communities recover from the effects of COVID-19. Trustee Steve Newman said he felt the village could make a great case for being able to use the funds for an Orion Community Center or a Wyman Coulter Community Center. The deadline is Jan. 10. Cooper said Denise Bulat of Bi-State Regional Commission told him the location of the former bowling alley property on the southeast edge of town would probably not be graded well in determining who will get the competitive grants. Trustees mentioned the Peterson building downtown. Cooper also said the program and policy manager for the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity told him if the village had a $1 million project and said they were willing to put $200,000 towards it, that would weigh heavily in their favor.

-- LISA HAMMER

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