Olney, IL
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Progressive & Responsive
Olney's government and police and fire departments provide service and safety to the people.

The city of Olney's progressive local government follows the council/manager form, headed by a part-time mayor and four city councilmen -all are elected to four-year terms on a non-partisan basis -and a full-time city manager, who is appointed by the mayor and the city council. The Olney City Council meets on the second and fourth Mondays of each month at City Hall.

The City Council is the legislative branch of city government. Council members formulate all policies of the city and allow the city manager to carry out their policy decisions. The city manager is responsible to the City Council for the efficient performance of all city departments.

The city clerk's office and the city treasurer's office contain a central records system, utility billing, citizen service requests, and internal and external communications. The in-house city attorney acts as the legal advisor to the city of Olney. The code enforcement officer is responsible for administrating the zoning ordinance, which the city of Olney adopted in 1969 for the purpose of protecting residential neighbor-hoods while encouraging commercial and industrial growth.

The city of Olney owns and operates its own water treatment plant and wastewater treatment facility. The Water Treatment Plant serves an average population of 14,200 people. The average daily consumption of water is 1.7 million gallons. The raw water supply comes from East Fork Lake and has a 5.5 billion gallon capacity. The city has four elevated storage facilities with a total capacity of 2.8 million gallons. The Wastewater Treatment Plant consists of preliminary and primary digesters, secondary (activated sludge with single-stage nitrification) and tertiary (sand) filters. The sewer collection system consists of approximately 45 miles of sewer lines ranging in size from 8 inches to 36 inches.

Police Department
Ever since the city's first constable was appointed in 1847, Olney and its residents have been under the protection of officials who are willing to give their lives to maintain law and order. The Olney Police Department has continued that tradition, striving for excellence in serving the community with professionalism, integrity and compassion and a philosophy of community-oriented policing. Olney policemen are easily recognizable by the white squirrel patch on their shoulders, which has been a department tradition since the late 1950s.

A vital element of the operations of the department, the communications center is a state-of-the-art command and control center that transmits fire department and EMS dispatches as well as handling public works communications. The communications center's systems, many of which are redundant to ensure constant operation, include computer-controlled radio dispatch, computer-aided dispatch, enhanced 9-1-1 and the Law Enforcement Agency Data System network. All telecommunicators in the communications center are LEADS- and EMD-certified.

Fire Department
The Olney Fire Department's protection district includes the townships of Olney, Preston and Madison, an area of approximately 140 square miles. The department is committed to providing fire suppression and prevention, thereby minimizing the loss of life and property for all the residents it serves. The three-fold department motto -"Safety. Service. Protection." - attests to this commitment.

As a combination full-time and paid-on-call department, the Olney Fire Department employs one full-time chief, three full-time firefighters and 32 paid-on-call firefighters. The department's state-of-the-art equipment includes 12 vehicles: three fire engines, three command-unit trucks, a snorkel, three rescue trucks and a tanker. The department also has a dive team with its own dive truck and boat. The city and all areas within the fire district that are 1,000 feet or less from a fire hydrant and five road miles or less from the firehouse have an ISO rating of 5; all other areas are classed as 9.

The department recently expanded and upgraded its facilities with a new fire station and a new regional training facility, making state certification training more readily available for firefighters from the region.