Peoria Public High Schools will have an assigned Peoria Police Officer starting next year.
It seemed like a fairly straightforward issue. Should the city provide a Peoria police officer to each of the three Peoria public high schools at 47 dollars per hour?
But before the vote, councilman Chuck Grayeb criticized Peoria schools for lack of student discipline. Councilwoman Denise Moore responded that there are limitations on teachers.
Grayeb says, when we have a huge call for service tying up our police officers because the school officials don’t seem to be enforcing the rules for the children in the schools, that creates great consternation for me.” Moore responded, “State and federal government requires certain types of behavior from administrators and teachers. And what I do not want to do is provide any person, whether it’s a teacher of anybody else, more authority to discipline my child in any way that is not acceptable to me.”
Despite the disagreement, the council voted unanimously to approve the assignment of armed officers for duty at the high schools during the upcoming school year.
In other business the Peoria City Council dealt a split decision to two entrepreneurs.
The council approved a special use permit for Jonathan Romain’s plan to convert the old Greeley School on Northeast Jefferson to a center for artists.
But Councilwoman Beth Akeson questioned what she felt was a lack of planning. I would feel much more comfortable if I had a business plan for that we knew that all of these issues were well thought out. And I’m somewhat surprised there isn’t a business plan,” Akeson said. Romain responded,”we could come in here with the best business plan in the world and be out of business next year. That happened at Blaine,” referring to Blaine Sumner School.
The council approved the plan on a 9-to-two vote. But the council decided against voting on a special use permit for a halfway house for women recently released from prison. The request was tabled for several reasons, including the lack of a business plan.