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Wheatland Hall Decision Goes Back to Voters Aug. 9

The space study committee has already decided that only 3,800 square feet will be needed, but is collecting more info on building options and groups that might use the building.

Wheatland Township residents will vote next month whether they want to buy, rent or build a new town hall or remodel the existing building.

Tuesday night, the charged with evaluating the options proposed that the new township headquarters be about half the size of the building the township board had planned to build.

They continue, however, to look at area buildings that are for sale or lease, explore the costs of upgrading the current building at 31W236 91st St. in Naperville and consider the pros and con of building on a site the township owns at 4232 Tower Court in Naperville.

At a special town meeting on Aug. 9, the committee will present its final conclusions and the decision will go to the voters who attend.

“Come Aug. 9, it’s going to be in the hands of the electors,” space committee member Mike Crockett said. “You, as electors, will vote on Aug. 9.”

The committee, which citizens voted to create in May, looked at the three services townships provide: general assistance for the needy, property assessments, and maintenance of township roads and bridges, according to the committee report.

Since the township highway department has its own new $3 million building, the committee concluded that 12 township employees - a supervisor with two assistants, a clerk, a collector, and an assessor with six assistants – required about .

“We considered all the things townships do on a needs basis, not a wish basis,” said Rick Peabody, a space committee member and Naperville resident.

(Wheatland Township encompasses portions of the village of Plainfield, the city of Naperville and unincorporated areas.)

In 2010, the township board proposed a 3,400-square-foot building, and then expanded it to 6,000 square feet later than year. At its annual town meeting in April, the board unveiled blueprints for a 7,300-square-foot building.

It was at that meeting that a group of 17 citizens petitioned for a special town meeting in May to discuss the building.

At the May 23 meeting, about 200 residents overwhelmingly passed a measure to suspend all action and expenses on the new building and approved a space study committee to conduct a needs assessment analysis and examination of “viable space options.”

In its need-analysis, the committee is taking a narrow view of township functions and office requirements. Its citizen members – Crockett, Peabody and Deb Holscher – said there is no mandate to provide recreational areas for senior citizens, sports groups or people with disabilities.

Estimating the cost of space building space at $400 to $500 per square foot, the committee said a recreation area would cost between $400,000 and $500,000. Adding public functions would multiply the sanitation cost by six, Peabody said, because state code requires only one bathroom stall for staff, but six if the building is open to the public.

Township trustees Frank King and Joe Hudetz are also on the committee. King did not voice an opinion at the meeting and Hudetz was absent.

Crockett and Peabody called for a detailed analysis that would include surveys documenting need and interest in such programming and alternative facilities that can accommodate them.

“We’re not interested in a wish list of things that, if we build it, people will come,” Peabody said. “The information has not yet been given to show the validity of the need for these services and the township’s need to provide them.”

Eunoia July 14, 2011 at 02:21 PM
what happened to the Polo fields and Indoor bowling facilities that other "special interest" groups wanted included ??................ the Wheatland Athletic Assn could always lease space from the YMCA down the street from the current Twp. offices - as well as the other DuPage County group could rent the Gym space at the YMCA's in Naperville/DuPage county - Please Twp government needs to be MORE FRUGAL with tax payers money.
Jay Iacobucci July 14, 2011 at 05:32 PM
Why isn't the option to do nothing given to the taxpayers. As we have all learned during these hard economic times that sometimes you just have to do without.
Eunoia July 15, 2011 at 04:38 AM
Why Not put a resolution on the ballot for 2012 to REFUND the Over Payments Of Taxes to all Wheatland Taxpayers ?
Mike Crockett July 18, 2011 at 08:35 PM
If you believe the best option is to do nothing, and you would like that as a consideration on the August 9th meeting agenda, I would recommend you find like minded people from Wheatland Township and present a signed petition of at least 15 people (but the more you get the better your chances) and present it to the Township office. Be sure to follow petition rules by having all pages notorized.
sensible July 19, 2011 at 02:22 AM
Do the citizens of wheatland township realize that a new Highway Maintenance building has been built at 103rd & rt 59(next to the fire dept) which is almost twice the square footage of the current township building which housed BOTH the township offices and highway maintenance equipment? Now the township wants to build a new office JUST for the office workers..is that necessary?? Why can't the township house everybody in the brand new building?? The CURRENT Wheatland Twp building which housed ALL staff & highway operations: http://maps.google.com/maps?=en&ll=41.717111,-88.230136&spn=0.000514,0.0012&sll=37.0625,-95.677068&sspn=35.684144,78.662109&t=h&z=20 ------------------ New Wheatland Township Highway Maintenance ONLY building: http://maps.google.com/?ll=41.692486,-88.201544&spn=0.000489,0.0012&t=h&z=20
sensible July 19, 2011 at 02:33 AM
Articles to bring you up-to-date on the wheatland township building discussion: http://plainfield.patch.com/search?keywords=wheatland+township
Mike Crockett July 19, 2011 at 02:58 AM
Your right Sensible. The township is composed of two legal entitites, the Road District and the Township Supervisor and Assessor. Each has its own budget. Both entities increased their tax levy over a period of years to generate excess funds to build their own version of the Taj Mahals that you find in other Townships. The thinking goes, "they have theirs, Wheatland township should have theirs too." And so it goes. That is why, the people said enough. Bring your neighbors to Plainfield East HS at 7pm on August 9th and vote. It's your township. It doesn't belong to the Supervisor or the Trustees.
Mike Crockett July 19, 2011 at 01:23 PM
You need to rephrase your question.
sensible July 19, 2011 at 11:15 PM
Check out the different options to vote on TUES 8.9.11 at 7 pm at Plainfield EAST High School. The final measure is not finalized yet. http://www.wheatlandtownship.com/space-committee
Jane July 20, 2011 at 01:18 AM
I didn't elect a "space committee" to office to make decisions. Let Mike Crockett run for office if he wants to be an elected official. Let his friend Deb H do the same. The sad truth is that this issue is NOT about the people who are the residents of the township; it's about a handful of people who want to be elected officials. They wouldn't run for office because they can't get along with people. I would rather put my trust in the people who have EARNED the right to make the decisions: those who don't show up at the last minute and make quick decisions without a long term understanding of the situation. Do we want the doctor who has been on staff for 10 years to make the decision or the intern?
Mike Crockett July 20, 2011 at 03:23 AM
Yes, I know. I sit on the committee.
Mike Crockett July 20, 2011 at 03:29 AM
Sorry Jane, the people spoke and you were overruled on May 23rd. You will have a chance to vote on August 9. See you there. By the way "Jane" do you care to tell us your last name so we can properly address you on August 9th?
Mike Crockett July 20, 2011 at 12:53 PM
Jane, I have a question. What due diligence did Supervisor Morse and Trustees Haddad and King provide as justification for a 7300 SF town hall they proposed on April 12 at the annual meeting? Another question: What support have they provided since April 12th? They were tasked by the electors on May 23rd to provide facts that support the 7300 SF building yet, to date, they have provided nothing on the town ship web site. That information was supposed to be there by June 7th. Yet there is nothing. In my point of view, being elected to government doesn't give you a free pass to do whatever you want. I'd say we have far too many elected officials that have built their "careers" on the backs of taxpayers rather than doing what is in the best interest of the people who elected them. Finally, you appear to attack Deb and I personally, yet you don't even identify who you are. If there is a sad truth, that is it.
Brad Baber July 28, 2011 at 03:49 PM
Question, will the vote be a voting booth secret ballot, or a raise your hand meeting type deal? The raise your hand method could have been a little better managed last time.
Brad Baber July 28, 2011 at 03:51 PM
And who will administer the ballot or counting?

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