A broadband communications firm got the okay form Village trustees to install transmitting equipment on the Village water tower. A five-year lease agreement was signed.
Kirk Zoellner, assistant village administrator, said the five-year lease agreement with Cygnus Communications, 19635 97th Ave, will annually bring in $2,400 in rent, with payments increasing by 5 percent each successive year. "It's automatically renewable in five-year increments up to a total of 20 years."
A year ago, Cygnus moved to town. The 10-year-old company has numerous similar agreements with municipalities from Mokena to Chebanse in Iroquois County, according to Joe Fratantoni, operations manager at Cygnus.
"We deliver broadband service, using DSL or wireless"
Fratantoni added that working with the Village of Mokena was a positive experience. They really went out of their way to encourage a small business to come to town."
Zoellner went on to explain the benefits of this partnership of allowing Cygnus to install three or four small pieces of transmitting equipment on the water tower located north of 191st Street, near the Hickory Creek Metra station.
- Non-tax revenue taken in through the agreement can be directed to core services for Mokena residents such as police protection and street maintenance, lessening dependence on taxes.
- Mokena businesses will be able to explore new wireless internet options through Cygnus' location of its equipment within the community.
Cygnus, a company started by Manhattan native Eric Hiller while he was still in high school will be able to successfully expand its footprint in the community and throughout the area. Hiller last year moved its headquarters from Joliet to Mokena, said Zoellner.
Mokena already receives over $222,000 annually in lease payments from a total of six larger, more traditional cellular service providers with antennas and equipment located at four other Village sites, said Zoellner
"A 1998 ordinance governs policy on the siting of wireless communication antennas and associated wireless equipment within Mokena's corporate limits," Zoellner said. That ordinance helps Mokena control the location of antennas and equipment within the community while also providing reliable new non-tax revenue streams to support day-to-day Village operations.
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