City Council approves lease agreement

Verizon to use water tower for wireless

The Savanna City Council unanimously approved a new lease agreement with Verizon Wireless, which should net the city approximately $400,000 over the next 20 years.

Contracts and Lease Committee Chairman Jeff Griswold gave a lengthy presentation detailing the two-year negotiation process with Verizon Wireless, which he said resulted in the committee’s following agreement proposal to the full council.

Verizon Wireless will place telecommunication towers on an elevated platform on the city’s water tower for a base rate fee of $16,900 per year, for the next 20 years. There will be an increase of 10 percent every five years, netting the city $392,165 over that 20-year term.

The previous rate had been set at $8,160 annually.

Public Works Superintendent John Lindeman provided a word of caution that 20 years was a long time to tie the city’s hands in terms of use possibilities for the tower.

The council also:

• Heard a proclamation read aloud from the local SADD (Students Against Destructive Decisions) chapter proclaiming April as Alcohol Awareness Month, affirmed by Savanna Mayor Chris Lain.

• Approved the first reading of an ordinance authorizing the sale of 16 surplus real estate properties, seven of which are FEMA properties which cannot be sold to private individuals.

The properties are as follows: 1005 Chicago Avenue, 605 Bowen Street, 731 Chicago Avenue 123 Hill Street, 29 Fourth Street, 608 Cooley Avenue, 332 Oak Street, 111 Milwaukee Street, with the FEMA properties being 230 Calumet Street, 234 Calumet Street, 426 Oak Street, 432 Oak Street, 220 Viaduct Road, 418 Oak Street, and 1612 Portland Avenue.

• Approved the Finance Committee report from Chairman Christine Lee, who told the council that the 2019 budget has been finalized and agreed to after the committee went through all items line by line, with an expected ordinance to follow during the council’s regularly scheduled April meeting.