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Fiber optics coming to Spring Valley

SPRING VALLEY — Spring Valley City Council approved an easement Monday to allow I-Fiber to place fiber optic cable throughout the city.

The city engineer, streets supervisor, council members and city attorney all had questions and reservations about the project and tabled it at a previous council meeting.

“We’ve never failed to come to an agreement,” Roger Swenson of Northern Illinois University said.

I-Fiber is a not-for-profit organization created by NIU, LaSalle County and other agencies to dig fiber optic cable throughout northern Illinois. It would allow municipalities, hospitals and other agencies to tap into the network for secure data transfer and fast Internet.

Since the last meeting, city officials were able to talk with and discuss their issues with I-Fiber. Their primary worries involved the replacement and repair of any city utilities or property disturbed during the process.

I-Fiber representatives said no matter what would happen, they would replace it. The work will take about three weeks to complete. St. Margaret’s Hospital, St. Margaret’s Community Clinic and Hall High School will have access to the cable line for a monthly fee.

The city may also have access. I-Fiber representatives are willing to look over the city’s bills and see if the cable line could save them money.

Also at Monday’s meeting, the Spring Valley City Council wants the owner of a dilapidated building at 200 E. St. Paul St. to put a fence around the property to protect residents from falling debris.

“It’s probably one of the worst of the buildings I’ve seen,” city engineer Jack Kusek said.

The building needs a minimum of $200,000 in repairs, and the mortar and bricks are so loose it can fall down at any time. The council voted to contact the owner to put up a fence to protect the public, or else the city would purchase a fence and charge the owner.

The city has been dealing with the building since June 14, 2011, when the fire department was called to the building for a fire. Spring Valley Fire Chief Todd Bogatitus said the building is in such bad shape he won’t allow anyone to go inside during a fire.

“It’s too dangerous,” Bogatitus said.

The city has a court date about the property on Jan. 18. The city has vowed to be more aggressive with the owners of dilapidated properties.

In other business:

• Kusek said Well 10 once again came back with a positive for bacteria, but a follow-up test came back negative. He will look into it further.

• The city is working with the bonding company to play suppliers for work done by contractors on Seventh Street before a lawsuit is filed against it. The city has bonds in case the contractors fail to pay suppliers and is working to get the issue resolved.

• The council approved the re-subdivision of Lots 20, 21 and 22 in Block 136 of Dalzell’s second addition.

• Council members approved the tax levy ordinance as well as abated all of levy for the water and sewer, city hall and motor fuel tax bonds.

Comment on this story at www.bcrnews.com.

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