CITY OF WATSEKA, IL
A progressive community located in Iroquois County, 90 miles south of Chicago, Watseka, Illinois provides big city convenience in a rural setting.
Watseka’s New City Municipal Center was built in 2009. It now holds the police department offices and City Hall offices. The Current Mayor is John Allhands. All City Committee meetings and Council meetings are held in the Council Chambers. The water bills are paid at this location as well as getting any permits that are needed through code enforcement. City Hall is open Monday thru Friday from 7:30 to 4:30
Lakeview Park was built in 2007. I has a ¾ mile walking path around a 5.5 acre stocked fishing area. Lakeview also has a fishing pier. There is a pavilion that was donated by the local Kiwanis club that can be reserved at any time for parties by calling City Hall at 815-432-2711. Lakeview Park also has a skate park, playground equipment and a basketball court.
Ordinance NO. 2418
An Ordinance amending Ordinance No. 2403, Authorizing the issuance of General Obligation Bonds is available as a DOWNLOAD PDF
201 Brianna Drive
PO Box 338
Watseka, Illinois 60970
City Hall Phone
City Hall Fax
Monday thru Friday 7:30 A.M. to 4:30 P.M.
To contact the Mayor or an Alderman the City has an email address of firstname.lastname@example.org
Citizens please be aware of Predatory contractors with questionable business practices entering our City. If you have any questions or concerns about non local contractors please contact City Hall at 815-432-2711 or please inform City Hall if you see some non local contractors.
PRESS RELEASE MARCH 28, 2018
Due to the record flooding our City experienced on February 21st, 2018, the City has initially permitted homeowners and tenants to occupy homes regardless of the damage they received.
There are a large number of homes that must be declared Substantially Damaged by the Federal Mandate that the city must follow to adhere to the National Flood Insurance Program.
Letters of Damage Assessment will be composed for owners of these homes. By this Federal Mandate, homes that are substantially damaged must be relocated, elevated or demolished. These homes cannot be sold or occupied unless one of these three options have been complied with.
For questions and concerns, contact City Hall at 815-432-2711 between the hours of 7:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m.
Justin Nichols wants to stay in Watseka.
The Nichols Paint and Fab crew is in the middle of shooting a second season for “Wrench’d”, their show on the Velocity Channel.
Nichols and Maegan Ashline went before the Watseka City Council Tuesday to explain the company’s needs. They have outgrown their building.
Allhands said, “I wanted to bring up what’s going on with Mr. Nichols as far as his business and the show.”
He asked Nichols to explain the ratings and other aspects of what is going on with the television show.
“We are actually right in the middle of season two, so we are wrapping that up,” Nichols said. “We are doing two builds for SEMA (Specialty Equipment Market Association), which is a big show out in Vegas, which is super hard to get in to. We are doing two builds this year for that. We did one build last year. We are in Battle of the Builders, which we are competing with top-notch stuff out there. We’re going to win, so we’ll see what happens. That’s one good thing.
“The ratings are double of all the other shows on Velocity,” Nichols said of “Wrench’d”. “We beat Primetime twice, our show is 9 o’clock, there’s is at 8. That’s never happened in Velocity history. So they’re super happy. They are talking about more episodes for this season, but nothing’s set yet. They said we’re not going anywhere, so we’re doing some more seasons.”
Allhands asked if the business has grown since the show.
“It’s crazy,” Nichols said. “As far as builds go, I’ve got probably two notebooks full, which is about 200 builds in since the show started airing. We’re already three years backlogged for builds, plus I’ve got all those I’ve got to go through in my spare time. We’re working 20 hours a day right now trying to get everything done because the timeframe for TV is crazy.”
Allhands said he and Alderman Mark Garfield had each, independently, tried to work something out for Nichols and his crew.
“You’re needing more room as far as retail, correct?,” Allhands said.
“i’m trying to expand,” Nichols said. “Just trying to decide what direction to go and we kind of have to do that in a hurry. if anyone has any options or ideas. We obviously want to stay here. I was born and raised here. It was my goal to keep it here. I had the opportunity before we started to go elsewhere, but then lucked out and we were able to stay here. I want to support the community. I want to bring stuff in, car shows, people, what have you. It’s definitely my chance to help and give back.”
Alderman Rob Hoffman asked Nichols about other projects. “I’m also hearing you are going to be doing some hosting for the Barrett-Jackson shows also,” he said.
“I was invited to be the host on Barrett-Jackson,” Nichols said. Barrett-Jackson is an auction company in Arizona that specializes in auctioning class and antique cars, plus has collector events around the country.
“When you see the people talking about cars and stuff in between cars going on the block, I’ll be picking out my cars, talking about them. Plus, we’re possibly selling a truck in Scottsdale, and we’re taking a bike to Palm Beach to sell at Barrett-Jackson as well.”
Nichols said he is also the Maverick of Color for Matrix, the paint company the Nichols crew uses. The honor is considered a Painter of the Year. He said he has to go to Barrett-Jackson and represent Matrix as well as part of that honor.
Allhands asked about what retail space Nichols needs and what they would sell.
“There’s a lot more that we make other than cars, we just don’t have the space to put them,” Nichols said. Nichois said they make benches, custom signs, basically anything with metal, from coat-hangers to whatever. Custom orders. We just don’t have the place to display it.
Allhands said, “And on top of that T-shirts and stuff.”
“Yeah,” Nichols said. “We average about six to 12 people a day stopping in to buy T-shirts. We had a couple on the way from Georgia, and another from California today. They just stop by.”
He said people just stop by to see the shop and buy T-shirts. “You can’t give everybody a tour, but it’s nice to see the people.”
Allhands said he was looking at the city’s revolving loan fund, of which there are two other requests.
He asked Nichols about the amount of T-shirts that can be sold. “You told me a figure about Gas Monkeys…they are selling just an ungodly amount of T-shirts?” Allhands said.
“Yeah, they are in the millions,” Nichols said of that show, which is on the Discover Channel. He said there are other shows on Velocity that sell millions of dollars in T-shirt sales also.
He said the market for T-shirts for his company continues to grow.
Allhands noted that the vehicles Nichols and crew build are custom and high end. Nichols said average builds are around $117,000, but that one of the builds for SEMA this year is a quarter of a million dollars.
Alderman Charles DeWitt asked about how much of a hurry Nichols was in for a new building.
“Well, I wanted to be in the new building already, but the second season is scheduled for the end of January to air,” he said. “Ideally that would be the time frame.”
Ashline said the issue is when the show starts airing, that’s when the T-shirts, the phone calls, the builds, all start to pick up right away.
“I’ll just speak for myself and say I’ll do whatever I can to keep you guys here,” DeWitt said. “I watch your show every night. I love it. I think people are really, really interested and I think you are good thing for Watseka and you need to stay.”
“I appreciate it,” Nichols said.
Allhands asked about viewership of the show.
“It’s over 2 million households,” Nichols said. “It’s obviously climbing. After season two it should be more than that. That’s pretty good for a first season.”
Ashline noted that the Velocity Channel is not one that everyone gets, so the viewership is very good when that is taken into account.
Hoffman said, “I think it’s a wonderful thing for our town. The odds of a town like this having a nationwide show is, I don’t see that happening again, and we need to do whatever we can do to help. And it’s good for us. All these people coming to town…”
He noted that at a recent family event in Oregon, he talked to people who know of and have seen the show. “It’s amazing the draw for our community,” Hoffman said.
“That is very true,” Nichols said. “It’s a weird thing to get used to. I just want to be able to help the city, you know.”
“It’s neat to see somebody’s dream come true,” Allhands said.
“I’m going to echo Charlie and Rob,” Garfield said. “Wahtever we can do and the revolving loan fund is a good mechanism for that. I’d like to suggest every one of the council members get a copy of the revolving loan fund and go through it. There’s some very interesting reading in there. Many avenues we can use to help our own businesses.”
Allhands aid there are a couple of other businesses interested in revolving loans.
The council agreed to continue looking at the revolving loan and the options it can provide.
THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF THE TIMES REPUBLIC NEWSPAPER