Several Fox River Grove residents are angry about a board proposal to sell off bonds to build a garage, particularly when voters said in a nonbinding referendum they wanted the matter to go before the public in the form of a referendum question.
Nearly 20 residents made their feelings known Thursday night during a sometimes contentious public works meeting.
"I'd like to know why you don't want to listen to the voters," said resident Glenn Kayler.
On Dec. 17, the village board proposed to sell between $2.8 million and $3.5 million in bonds to build the garage. To comply with the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency's recommendation, the village needs to shut down its existing garage by the wastewater treatment plant and build a new one, said Village President Robert Nunamaker.
Nunamaker heard about special bonds that allow the village to negotiate its own interest rates and the marketplace could either accept or reject them.
Nunamaker said he's acting swiftly because he wants to put people back to work in Fox River Grove, and capitalize on cheaper construction bids and on the low interest rates.
"If we do this (we need to) start doing it now," Nunamaker said. "They're kind of on a first-come, first-served basis."
Right now, the village has the money to pay off the bonds in 20 years at the cost of $240,000 a year, Nunamaker said.
The only way the village could issue the bonds would be if a local movement to put the matter to a public vote fails.
Opponents need 247 signatures on a petition if they want the matter to come to a vote on the November ballot.
So far, they have 97, said Tom Dioguardi, one of several people circulating petitions around town.
Opponents also say the garage has no place on a residential street and fear higher taxes if it turns out the village can't pay off the interest on the bonds.
They also say the board could have been better about letting residents know that it was planning major action just before the Christmas holiday.
"You guys may not be meaning to be sneaky, but that's the way it comes off," Dioguardi said.