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Public works project proves not as costly as anticipated

MORRIS – A project originally intended to be “in-house” will cost the city $34,650, thanks to a shortage in public works labor.

Replacing curbs and gutters along Park Boulevard was on the to-do list for Morris public works crews, but a busy summer clearing storm debris kept city workers from getting to the project.

“We were planning on doing that project in house,” Morris Mayor Kopczick said. “However, due to the storm that hit and the massive amount of clean up that has been required, we just don’t have the time to dedicate to that.”

Kopczick added the city lost about 15 student workers once kids returned to school this week.

“Now, we don’t have the folks we need,” he said. “We’ve got Corn Fest coming, and we don’t have all of our kids so things get a little tougher this time of year.”

With no extra workers, the city extended its annual street maintenance program, being completed by D Construction, to include the Park Boulevard project.

The Morris City Council approved Monday the $34,650 extension to the street maintenance budget.

Although unexpected, the added expense will not put the city over its annual budget, Kopczick said.

Morris officers honored

for drunk driving arrests

Monday was a proud night for two Morris police officers who were awarded for their outstanding amount of drunk driving arrests.

Police Chief Brent Dite presented officers Paul Burke and Jessica Smith with certificates from the Alliance Against Intoxicated Motorists during council meeting.

AAIM performs an annual study on DUI enforcement by collecting data from every department state-wide. Once the data is collected, they issues certificates of appreciation to officers they designate as top cops from each department.

“We were lucky enough to have two officers selected this year,” Dite said.

Combined, the Morris officers made 15 DUI arrests in 2013, according to the AAIM registry.

As part of the recognition, Dite read a letter of appreciation from Rita Kreslin, Executive Director of AAIM.

“Every year, hundreds of people are killed and thousands are severely injured as a result of alcohol and drug-related crashes in Illinois. It only takes seconds to become a victim without warning or choice,” Dite read. “Impaired drivers make choices. They choose their weapons – vehicles and alcohol, or drugs.”

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