ELBURN – None on the Elburn Village Board had anything but praise Monday night for the volunteers who work with the Elburn Community Emergency Response Team, acknowledging the work they do – including directing traffic in emergencies and being poised to help when needed if a situation were to escalate – is important.
But they couldn’t come to an agreement on how to define the group’s relationship with the village when faced with the issue of providing accident coverage.
Ultimately, trustees opted to keep things at “status quo,” providing $1,062 in insurance for the organization. But Erin Willret, the village administrator, pushed for an answer on the question: “Is it a function of the village?” Officials said they’d determine the answer in the next few weeks.
Among the questions: Is CERT a government entity? Could there be an intergovernmental agreement? Perhaps there could be a memorandum of understanding? Is it an auxiliary police group?
Some trustees noted the importance of the services the CERT group can perform. Noting that many freight train cars pass through the village each day, Trustee Bill Grabarek said that having individuals with critical training would be valuable in the event something goes wrong.
But Village President Dave Anderson said that didn’t answer Willret’s question.
“Is CERT a function of the village?” Anderson said was the question, “not [whether it is] valuable to the village. … As a board, that is the decision that has to be made.”
Trustee Dave Gualdoni, who is directly involved with the CERT group, said it has been a struggle to define the village’s relationship with the group. Trustees indicated they would like more information about how CERT groups are defined in other towns.