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Shorewood residents air concerns over proposed warehouse development

Residents packed the boardroom March 27 at the Shorewood Village Board of Trustees meeting, as officials were slated to review proposed plans for a warehouse development with a truck turnaround terminal off Mound and Frontage roads.

The developer, HSA Acquisitions, and the property owner, George Kappos, are looking to get the project off the ground.

A public hearing was previously held Feb. 27 over the Village’s intent to approve and authorize an annexation agreement between Shorewood, George Kappos and HSA Acquisitions for an approximate 48 acres of unincorporated land.

The proposed 20-year agreement stipulates that no fees will be further assessed to the developer upon annexation into Shorewood. It states that the developer is required to help the Village improve Mound Road and will pay $312,181.18 to satisfy this aim.

Several residents raised concerns for the project later during Shorewood’s Committee of the Whole meeting.

“I imagine you want it for the tax base,” Lynn Wright said. “Is there anything else people would offer to put there besides that big ugly warehouse?”

None of the elected officials or Village staff expressed any knowledge of such information.

“We can’t tell them what they need to put on there,” Trustee Anthony Luciano said. “They’re investing money in a project, and that’s what they seem to feel would be the best return on that money is this warehouse.”

The Village does not own the property, to date. It is, however, zoned for agriculture by Will County and included in Shorewood’s comprehensive plan. The annexation, if approved, will require rezoning for office research light industrial district use.

During the Village Board meeting, staff brought to the board’s attention that several other related matters need to be reviewed and considered regarding the development. Part of the project, slated to be voted on during the meeting, was tabled.

Typically, when an ordinance is presented to the board, it is required to go through a first read, enabling officials to get a good understanding of what they’re voting on.

Mayor Rick Chapman said this matter is important enough that the Village is not looking to waive the second read and take action during the meeting, but officials will take action in two weeks.

As such, officials did not vote and will consider a series of related measures at their April 10 meeting.

Utility payment processing fees discussed

Also at the Committee of the Whole meeting, the board was briefed on the Village’s intent to pass onto the consumer any utility payment processing fees made by residents that use credit cards to make a single transaction.

Village staff has determined that officials are able to take action to satisfy this aim.

The rate will amount to two percent when assessed to a resident’s utility bill.

The Village uses the financial software Accela to enable residents to make utility payments.

Each month, Shorewood has been footing a bill of about $3,500 to cover the costs for utility payment processing fees.

The Village is required to give 30 days notification of this change to residents, if it’s approved.

Board action, if passed in April, will not impact anyone who is set up to make utility payments through auto pay.

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