Finances will determine whether the village will install additional streetlights on East Waterloo Street before 2012.

Finances will determine whether the village will install additional streetlights on East Waterloo Street before 2012.

Members of village council's service committee have discussed the issue since the beginning of the year. Village public works director Matt Peoples estimated the addition of about 10 decorative streetlights, similar to others in the downtown area, would cost approximately $115,000.

"A project like this does make a lot of sense," he said. "However, it's quite a bit of money."

Finance director Nanisa Osborn, in her latest report to council, said budget reductions could be on the horizon.

"Income tax revenues are not where we would like for them to be," the report said. "I have advised caution to all department managers on spending and we will continue to watch very closely for another month before recommending formal budget reductions, should they be necessary."

Councilwoman Leah Turner initially brought the request for streetlights to the service committee. She said East Waterloo Street residents rely mostly on their porch lights for illumination.

"They feel it's pretty dark out on their street," Turner said. "I'd just like to see it lit up."

Peoples said the village has received no complaints from residents about lack of lighting.

"They didn't complain," Turner said. "They just said it would be awfully nice to have more lighting out there."

She said improving the lighting in one village residential area would prompt studies for similar projects in other areas. She said for now, the best solution is to continue to research the situation.

"Right now, we've got to be conservative, in my opinion," she said. "I've not been really pressing it because I don't want to pressure our village offices. We're going to have to take this step by step."

According to information from South Central Power Co., there are two 30-foot streetlights on East Waterloo Street, spaced about 150 feet apart.

Village engineer Steve Farst said the street likely meets the lighting and engineering standards. He said opinions matter, however.

"If the concern is the area is too dark then it's something you want to program for improvement," he said.

Mayor Michael Ebert said last week the streetlights should be discussed by all council members at their March 30 meeting at 6:30 p.m.

Improvements to Waterloo Street currently are scheduled for 2012 in the village's five-year capital improvements plan.

ebrooks@thisweeknews.com