Fire district training facility OK'd for Sugar Grove

Village considers public comment policy change

SUGAR GROVE – Sugar Grove trustees on May 7 approved plans for a firefighter training facility.

The Sugar Grove Fire Protection District will build the facility at the rear of its property at 25 Municipal Drive.

Some residents from Prairie Glen neighborhood, which abuts the planned site, recently expressed concerns about the potential for extreme smoke or noise and about how the facility would look.

In response, fire district officials offered reassurances that smoke would be light and noise minimal during training sessions.

In addition, fire district officials modified their original plan to add a gable roof and make the building the same color as the fire station.

They also decided on a different location for the facility, also at the rear property but with existing trees, and said they will add evergreen bushes for even more screening.

Under the special use and height variance trustees approved, the village will allow the training facility to be 22.5 feet high on a paved area and to be composed of shipping containers, with two stacked on top of three others.

The village will restrict the facility’s hours of operation to 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. and require that the exterior stairs be secured when the building is not in use.

Some residents had asked that the fire department locate the training facility in the front of the property, but that would have required relocating parking, which would be problematic, village officials said.

Public comment policy change proposed

A proposed policy change presented at the May 7 meeting would allow people to speak during public comment periods at village meetings without having to state their names and addresses.

The proposed policy change would reflect a recent revision to the state’s Open Meetings Act. The village board is expected to vote on the issue May 21.

The policy change could make people who hesitated to comment before when they were asked to give their name and address more comfortable to speak, which would better inform the village board and staff, Village Administrator Brent Eichelberger said.

The policy revision would not prevent people from providing their names and addresses voluntarily when addressing the board during public comment periods, Eichelberger said.