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Board increases county engineer’s salary

Vote on expanded Sunday liquor sales coming next month

Published: Wednesday, Feb. 6, 2013 1:15 a.m. CDT

MORRISON – The Whiteside County Board voted unanimously Tuesday to increase the county engineer’s salary.

Russ Renner has been the county’s engineer for a year. When he was hired, the county agreed to pay him 95 percent of the state recommended amount for his first year. The vote Tuesday appropriated $109,000 for Renner’s salary, which is 100 percent of the amount the Illinois Department of Transportation recommends for county engineers.

The increase will take effect Feb. 27.

The board also voted to endorse a letter written by University of Illinois Extension to area schools requesting that they use the free “Tomorrow’s Leaders” curriculum, which provides an overview of what local officials do.

The letter urges middle school teachers to use the curriculum to prepare for and participate in the March 2014 Illinois Local Government Week festivities sponsored by the Extension office and Sauk Valley Community College.

Board member Glenn Truesdell, who taught at Rock Falls High School from 1969 to 2000, voted against the resolution after saying that he is not sure the board should be trying to tell school districts what to teach.

“It makes me uncomfortable,” he said.

The board also voted unanimously to hold over two resolutions for votes at the March 19 meeting: one to consolidate Whiteside County into the Lee/Ogle Educational Service region and the other expanding the hours businesses with county-issued liquor licenses can sell alcohol on Sundays.

Board member Donald Blair asked whether approval will create a burden on the sheriff’s department.

“I really don’t think it’s going to cause any difference,” Sheriff Kelly Wilhelmi said.

The board also passed a resolution that the county board will appoint only three election judges a precinct for the April 9 election unless it is deemed necessary to have five. State law allows counties to appoint as few as three in odd-year elections. Election judges are paid $135 a day plus mileage.

The March meeting

The Whiteside County Board will meet at 6:30 p.m. March 19 at the Whiteside County Courthouse, 400 N. Cherry St. in Morrison.

For an agenda, go to, click on "documents and forms" and then click on "Meeting agendas/approved meeting minutes," or contact County Administrator Joel Horn at or 815-772-5100.

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