Peoria city and county officials have a list of priorities for state lawmakers as the 101st General Assembly begins work in Springfield.
City manager Patrick Urich, county administrator Scott Sorrel and public health administrator Monica Hendrickson detailed their lists during a Friday breakfast workshop. Public safety pension reform and a long list of road and building improvement projects are among the top priorities for both the city and county.
“We’d like to see them look at a rolling 30-year amortization. We’d like to see them expand the authority of the pension boards,” says Peoria city manager Patrick Urich.
Urich says the city is also seeking a combined $58.5 million for five road improvement projects.
“First would be Main Street from Washington street up to Farmington road. It would encompass both major construction projects between OSF and Bradley’s Convergence Center...and then Pioneer Parkway. It’s a major commercial corridor. We'd love to see reconstruction of that from Knoxville all the way over to Allen Road.”
Repairs on Allen Road between War Memorial and Willow Knolls, partial Glen Avenue reconstruction and a Commercial Street extension in the Warehouse District are also on the city’s road improvement list.
Peoria County administrator Scott Sorrel also has a list of capital improvement projects. But he’s also hoping state lawmakers address specific county government issues.
“We’ve got some things that are unique to county government that are our priorities that includes juvenile justice reform, bail reform and probation officer funding,” says Sorrel.
Sorrel adds Peoria county has held the line on expenditures but revenue remains a concern, particularly with a loss in population. The county’s portion of the property tax rate hasn’t changed but overall property values are down. That means less money in the county’s coffers. Sorrel says state investment could reverse the downward trend by creating more local economic opportunities.