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$10K grant boosts Northlake’s effort to purchase back-up generator for public works facility

ComEd and the Metropolitan Mayors Caucus have paired up to issue a Powering Safe Communities grant valued at $10,000 to the city of Northlake.

The funds are meant to pay for the costs associated with purchasing a back-up generator for the public works facility.

Mayor Jeffrey Sherwin said the city is very happy to hear the grant has been awarded.

“We’ve been planning on it for a long time,” he said. “It’s a matter of putting all the funding together. The grant is the last piece of the funding that we need for the project.”

He said the public works facility is the last of city-owned buildings to have an emergency power source installed for use in case of outages.

“If there were a power failure, we had no power to the public works building,” Sherwin said.

Over the years, the city had identified alternate means of paying for emergency generators to be installed at other city-owned facilities. Sherwin said the grant presents an opportunity for taxpayers to see a cost-savings.

“The taxpayers now don’t have to come up with that portion of the funding for the generator,” Sherwin said. “The entire project is $75,000. So, $10,000 goes a long way to make that project a reality.”

The city of Northlake is one of 21 communities to receive a Powering Safe Communities grant for 2018.

“I think we were persistent,” Sherwin said, referring to why he thinks the city received the grant. “We applied in previous years, but there was a lot of competition. So, the good thing about it is you cannot win twice until everybody’s had a chance. I knew eventually our number would come up.”

In the last three years, the Metropolitan Mayors Caucus and ComEd have provided more than $500,000 in funding toward 70 public safety projects. The grant can pay for a number of different initiatives, ranging anywhere from a new squad car and pole-mounted security cameras to thermal imaging cameras and a portable 10-print fingerprinting system.

“I know everybody can pick their own priorities,” Sherwin said. “It’s nice they give you that latitude.”

About a year ago, the city of Northlake submitted its application for the Powering Safe Communities grant. Applications were reviewed by the Metropolitan Mayors Caucus, a group comprised of Chicagoland’s chief elected officials. The council typically brings leaders together to collaborate on policy issues.

“The Northlake application stood out to the review team,” said Brian Tomkins, project manager for the Metropolitan Mayors Caucus. “The review team is comprised of subject matter experts based on the application. Our review team felt the city of Northlake had a very well-written application. It’s a very worthwhile project to fund.”


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