FAQ

We field a lot of calls here at the City of Tuscola!  These are some of the most frequently asked, and easily answered, questions we get by category.

 

If you don't see your question here, feel free to click the "Contact Us" tab to the right of the screen to contact us directly.

 

The City Council meetings are held on the second and fourth Monday of every month beginning at 7:30 p.m. at Tuscola City Hall, 214 N. Main ST.   Should the regular meeting date fall on a City recognized holiday, the meeting will be held on the next business day.  The pending meeting agenda, currently approved minutes, and yearly schedule of meetings is available on the City Council page.

You may stop by City Hall to complete a form to be placed on the agenda.  The form is also available here.   Forms must be returned to City Hall by noon on the Friday prior to the requested meeting. 

 

Members of the public are also invited to speak during the regularly scheduled public comment period that is on each meeting agenda.  Persons wishing to address the council during the public comment portion of the meeting must sign the list  and state his/her name and address at least 5 minutes prior to the beginning of the meeting.  The public comment portion of the meeting is limited to no more than 30 minutes and each registered speaker is limited to 5 minutes of comments. (City of Tuscola Ordinance 2015-O-8)

The City of Tuscola is divided into 4 voting wards for city council representative elections.  To find out what ward you live in click the link and find your residence on the map.  Your ward is the one that corresponds with the color of shading on your property.

 City Ward Map 

Please visit the Community Building page for more information!

First check the Community Building Calendar to see if the building is available.   Then contact City Hall at (217) 253-2112 or by email to info@tuscola.org to actually reserve the building.

Click here to view our Community Building page. There is an additional $50 surcharge for events with alcohol.

The community building is an air conditioned building with an auditorium measuring 68′ x 70′ = 4,760 sq. ft.; occupancy load with chairs only – 475; with tables and chairs – 300. For more details about fire safety and safe use of the this building, see Exhibit B - Community Building Rules.

All trash complaints are  handled by the Tuscola Police Department, 217-253-2351.   For tall grass and weed complaints, call Tuscola City Hall, 217-253-2112.

Complaints can be submitted electronically through our Contact Us page.

All complaints of this type are handled by the building inspector at City Hall, 217-253- 2112. 

Complaints can be submitted electronically through our Contact Us page.

You may contact our City Administrator at City Hall at 217-253-2112 or your council person.  Council members are listed on our City Officials page.

Carbon Monoxide Alarm Detector Act:

Starting January 1, 2007, requires every dwelling unit to be equipped with at least one carbon monoxide detector within 15 feet of every room used for sleeping purposes.  Every structure that contains more than one dwelling unit shall contain at least one detector within 15 feet of every room used for sleeping purposes.  For more information, call the fire department or download the CO Detector Law.

Pickup day for garbage in all of the City of Tuscola is Wednesday.   Advanced Disposal Services request that garbage be placed out for pickup by 6:00 a.m.
If your collection day falls on a holiday, then collection will be the next day. If your collection day falls after the holiday, please put out your trash on the regular day, but note that pick-up may be delayed one day.


Advanced Disposal Services holidays include:  Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Day, and New Years Day.  For more specific information about garbage services please contact Advanced Disposal at 800-369-7404 or 217-345-7404.

Residents are not currently required to use a garbage tote provided by the garbage company.  Garbage totes sold at most hardware stores or home centers are acceptable for use as long as they contain the trash.  If a resident wants to have a tote provided by the garbage coumpany, the resident must call Advanced Disposal (217-345-7404 or 800-469-7404) to rent the tote. Advanced Disposal will bill directly to the resident for the tote rental once a year.

The fee is $12.87 per month, which is included on your water bill.

Advanced Disposal Services at 800-469-7404 or 217-345-7404.

Disposal tickets for large items may be purchased at Tuscola Do-It-Best. The cost is $15.00. Once a ticket is purchased, it should be placed on the item and the item put out on the normal garbage pick-up day.

Yes, Advanced Disposal Services offers curbside recycling to residents located in the City limits of Tuscola. Call Advanced Disposal at 217-345-7404 for more information and rates.

Yard waste may be taken to the landscape waste facility located on the first road south of the railroad track going east off of Prairie Street.   No limbs over 4 inches in diameter and no plastic bags are allowed.  Commercial contractors are NOT allowed to use the landscape waste facility. 

 

The landscape waste pile is managed by the City of Tuscola and in NO CIRCUMSTANCES should anyone, not employed by the City, burn or otherwise attempt to manage the debris.

Monday - Friday: 7:00 AM to 5:00 PM
Saturday: 7:00 AM to Noon

No, the City does not pick up yard waste unless it is storm debris.  Storm debris must by placed out by the street shortly following the storm.

No, city codes and state laws do not allow burning of any material within the city or the city’s zoning jurisdiction of 1 1/2 miles.

Exceptions:  Recreational fires (usually for cooking), approved fireplaces and wood burning stoves,  closed furnace incinerators approved by the fire chief,  or environmental burns approved by the fire chief.   

Contact information for the fire chief is available on our Fire Department page.

The park pavilions are on a “first-come; first-served” basis.   No reservations are taken or required.

Call the Tuscola Pool at 217-253-4932.

Pool hours are 12:30 PM to 7:30 PM during pool season. The pool does close due to inclement weather and should the temperature fall below 70 degrees.

Visit our Parks Department page for more information.

Ervin Park shall be open to the public daily from 6:00 AM to 11:00 PM, Sunday through Thursday, and from 6:00 AM to Midnight, Friday and Saturday of each week, throughout the months of April through October of each year. However, the opening and closing of the park may be accelerated or delayed by the City Council, depending upon the weather conditions.

Building permits are needed for all buildings or structures being erected, altered, relocated, or demolished. A Structure is defined as anything constructed, made, or erected; the use of which requires location on the ground, or attachment to something having a fixed location on the ground.  Among other things, structures include buildings, mobile homes, walls, fences, signs, swimming pools, and all masts, antennas, dishes, or other devices designed to receive radio or television signals.  Please visit the Building Department page for complete information regarding building permits.

The Building Inspector at City Hall, 217-253-2112, extension 27.  Applications for all permits as well as other contractor codes, fees, and requirements are available on the Building Department page.

Permit fees may be paid online.

In Residential Zoning Districts:  Main structure:  25’ front, rear, and any street-facing yard. 8’ side yards are required, 10’ from alleys. If the lot or subdivision was recorded before 12/31/53, a 25% reduction of the above setbacks is allowed. 

Accessory Buildings and other structures are not allowed in the front yard setback or street facing yard, except a fence that does not materially impede vision or one not more than 30″ tall. Otherwise, setbacks for accessory structures are 10’ rear and alleys and 6’ side yards (and must be at least 5’ from the main structure) and require a footing and foundation at, or below frost level (32 inches in Central IL) Exception – if 400 square feet or less AND 10 feet or less in height, they may be 3 feet from rear and side PLs and 10 feet from alley PLs, and do not require a footing and foundation below frost level.

 

All other Zoning Districts: Go to the Table & Height & Area Table in the City Ordinances or check with the building official.

Yes, and the permit application is available on our Fire Department page.
Note: The City of Tuscola does not permit or allow “Consumer Fireworks” or “Consumer Fireworks Displays”

ISO 4.

Water taps:

$725.00 for a tap of a ¾” lateral line (from the main) , up to 40 feet, and the meter.  Add $300.00 if more than 40 feet or lateral line traverses a paved street.  Larger than ¾”, will be actual cost of installing the meter and appurtenances.


Sewer taps:

Residential $250.00. Add $40.00 per unit or room for multi-family and motels.

Commercial $300.00.

Industrial $500.00.

An “Application for Municipal Water Service” must be completed and returned to City Hall, 214 N. Main St.  A Driver’s license (or state ID) card is needed to verify the identity of the person applying for service.  If renting, a $100.00 deposit is required.   Applications are available on our Water Department page.

Deposits are returned after twenty-four months of good pay history.  Deposits are also returned when you move out of town, or purchase a home.  Deposits are applied to the customer's account balance or refunded by check to the last mailing address upon termination of service.  Deposits can be transferred to a new account if the customer moves.

All City of Tuscola water and sewer department bills are due on the 10th of the month.   As of the 11th, a 10% penalty is applied.  Accounts not paid by the 20th of the month are subject to disconnection of services.  Services disconnected for non payment will incur an additional $25 fee.

To have water reconnected due to nonpayment, the amount of the bill is required along with a $25.00 fee.   A $100.00 deposit will also be required, if one is not already on file.

You may pay your water bill at any banking facility in town, or at City Hall, 214 N. Main St.   Should you pay at City Hall, you may pay in person, or use our drop box.   You may also pay online by clicking the Make Payment arrow to the right of the screen or by direct bank payment.

Yes, we take Visa, Discover, American Express, and Master Card. There is a 2.75% (+ .50 if under $100) service charge when using a credit card and you must present a photo ID.  To pay on-line, go to the payments page.

Yes, go to our Water Department page, and download the Direct Pay Authorization Form, and submit the signed form to the City of Tuscola.  There is no fee for this service!

If you are unable to pay the entire bill before disconnection, we can make a payment agreement to defer 1/2 of the total amount due. The agreement must be made at City Hall prior to disconnection of service. The balance of the bill must be paid before the end of the month in which the agreement was made. A customer is allowed 3 payment agreements within a twelve month period. If a customer has a hardship and cannot pay even 1/2 of the bill, we will refer them to a charitable organization to apply for assistance.

Yes, we do not give discounts on the water or sewer portion of your water bill due to the filling of a swimming pool.

You may contact the Douglas County Sheriff’s office at (217) 253-2913. They will page our City Services Foreman.

We have completed installation of autoread meters for all residential and commercial accounts eliminating the need for estimation due to inclement weather. Should there be a mechanical/electronic malfunction at the same time we have inclement weather, meters would be estimated.

Please contact City Hall (253-2112) prior to contacting a repair service. Our sewer department will be able to verify if the problem is on the City’s side or if you need to contact a repair service.

Please view our Boil Order FAQ.

City of Tuscola – Water and Sewer Department: 217-253-2112
Ameren- Gas and Electric: Residential 1-800-755-5000 and Business 1-800-232-2477
Frontier: Land Line Telephone Service 1-877-462-4008
Advanced Disposal - Garbage Service: 1-800-469-7404
Bryant’s Recycling - Rural Tuscola: 217-253-2477
JULIE- Utility Locating: 1-800-892-0123

Call the animal shelter, (217) 253-4921. If it is after hours, contact the City of Tuscola Police Dept. at (217) 253-2351 or the Douglas County Sheriff’s office at (217) 253-2913.

All traffic violations are to be paid at the Douglas County Circuit Clerk’s office (217-253-2352) located in the Douglas County Courthouse.

(217) 253-2813

Go to the  Fire Department  page to download an application form.

ISO 4.

Tuscola is one of 33 communities in the State of IL who have this designation. StormReady communities are better prepared to save lives from the onslaught of severe weather through better planning, education, awareness, and warning systems. In order to obtain the designation the city had to meet stringent criteria. For more detailed information about this designation, visit the National Weather Service “Storm Ready” link.

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Most streetlights should be reported to Ameren CIPS  at 1-888-789-2477 unless it is one of the decorative lights on Main Street. In that case, you would contact City Hall  at(217) 253- 2112.

In 2012, the residents of the city of Tuscola approved a referendum authorizing the city officials to bid and enter into agreements with electricity suppliers to provide electricity to all residential and small commercial residents. The City Council authorized Good Energy as the consultant to bid the electricity to suppliers.   The move initially saved the citizens approximately 30% off the standard Ameren rates.    In November 2017, the City Council authorized an ammendment to the agreement that reduces the rate to $0.056/kwh until June 2019.  The rate is then further reduced to $0.05496/kwh through December 2020.   If residents want to accept this lower cost, while still receiving their billings from Ameren, they don’t need to do anything.

 

If a resident does NOT want to accept the lower cost, and instead wants to choose their own supplier and negotiate their own rates, the resident must mail in an “opt-out” card to Homefield Energy. This card was provided to each resident via the mailed packet of information. Any information a resident needs concerning the opt-out can be obtained by calling Homefield Energy at 1-866-694-1262 or emailing at CustCare@HomefieldEnergy.com.

 

This information will be updated as new information is available. 

 

More Information

Letter mailed to Tuscola residential customers with information:
Electric Aggregation - Letter sent to residents March 20, 2016

Good Energy Consultants

The Committee for Municipal Choice

Homefield Energy information specific to Tuscola customers

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