The President’s Message

fall photo edited 6

Greetings everyone and welcome to Fall!

And welcome to a new chapter in the communications for the Moss Bradley Residential Association. For the past few years, this newsletter and accompanying website have been produced and maintained by Carolina and Steve Erke. Before that, by Kelly Kolton. As life is forever moving and changing, so it has for the Erke’s who we thank for their years of dedication to enhancing the communication of our membership. We wish them well with their business ventures.

As one chapter closes, another begins. I’d like to introduce all of you to our new “team” that will handle a variety of communications for our organization.

Colleen Johnson and Mary Ann Armbruster will be handling the responsibility of producing the monthly newsletter and Sarah Gruber will manage our Facebook page. We thank them for stepping up and taking on these responsibilities. It’s an important role they all play in our organization.

This summer has been atypical as we usually take a hiatus from membership meetings and board activities. However, this summer brought us a number of items that involved both entities.

The most notable, Washington School, called for two special membership meetings to review and ultimately accept the plan from Sam Mach and his wife, Thai Lam Phung, for a Buddhist Temple to inhabit the former school.

On Tuesday, September 8th, City Council approved the sale and authorized the City Manager to draft and execute the purchase contract. Mr. Mach now must perform his due diligence and close on the property.

We will continue to work with the city and Mr. Mach on the establishment of the temple. I know we all hope for this to be a success and add another layer to our already diverse neighborhood.





Message from Councilman Chuck Grayeb

Happy Autumn ! I hope all of you had a most enjoyable Summer.chuck-grayeb

A Buddhist Temple is coming to the Washington School Architectural Gem. I pray that this will be a lasting legacy for our Neighborhood, Community and State.

We will continue to monitor traffic through the entire West Bluff and make adjustments as the optimizers   continue to improve traffic flow through four key intersections.

We remain on high alert as it relates to recent criminal activity where some Bradley students were robbed. We also will continue our efforts to form an even stronger town/ gown relationship. I communicate directly with BU students and administrators whenever a problem arises. In turn, the City of Peoria is always anxious to affirm our enduring commitment to a successful Bradley University.

We continue to work on revitalization of our adjacent commercial corridors and are drawing more members of the creative class to West Main Street. We are hoping to secure a green settlement with the EPA and be able to do some infrastructure improvements in our D2 neighborhoods. We are hoping we secure a grant for a new City permeable lot abutting Main and University.

Speaking of green, doesn’t our Greenway look great!

I look forward to seeing all of you at upcoming MBRA meetings. In our City, gun violence continues to plague us. After a relatively quiet year, we had several homicides in just a few days. When I first ran for office in the early Nineties we had 25 in one year. We are at 13 at this writing. Our people are united against violence and criminality. We will prevail and have already solved a number of these homicides.

Finally, we are really fortunate to have Councilor Jensen leading and helping all of us. I rely on her advice and help every single day.

Finally, if you see any of our city workers out and about, say “hello” and let them know how much we appreciate their work.

Best wishes,


We Need Your Help

Years ago, MBRA had a number of committees which, over time, have become non-existent.  The board wishes to revitalize this structure and has instituted 3 committees: Communications; Social; and Welcome.

The Communications committee will be responsible for the internal and external communications of the organization including the newsletter, MBRA website, Facebook, email communications and other items as determined by the committee.  Current members of this committee include Colleen Johnson, Mary Ann Armbruster, Sarah Gruber, Alicia Butler and Brian Buralli.

Initial responsibilities for the Social committee will be assistance with and planning for a number of regular events: Membership meeting social, 4th of July Celebration, Annual Meeting & Potluck, Annual Holiday Party & Potluck. Other social activities will be established and planned by this committee.  Current members include Deborah Dougherty and Alicia Butler.

The Welcome committee will be responsible for identifying and welcoming new members to the neighborhood.  They will also be responsible  for communicating information regarding events within the neighborhood, and of course, the value of a membership within MBRA.  Other welcoming activities and materials will be developed by this committee.  Current members include Matt Kindred and Remy Winget.
We would love to have you be a part of any one of these committees and ask you to join us.  You can do so simply by emailing us at or notifying any board member at any upcoming membership meeting.

Thru the Windshield… how do we look to those passing by?

By Marjorie Klise

Some summer questions/observations:

We have lost many of our beautiful large trees in the last few years. They are so vital to the character of our neighborhood. Is there a re-planting plan in place?

Have you noticed the presence of new young families? Children out playing? Welcome, all! We need your fresh ideas….and your strong bodies.

Are we more comfortable with the new traffic pattern at the Main and University intersection? The water gardens looked poorly this spring but perked up and came alive by summer. Good ecological message as well as a visual plus.

Is the corner of Bradley and Duryea looking particularly icky of late?

The lot at Union Hill and Moss had great promise as the owners planted prairie flowers and grasses and planned new construction. We are hoping things progress in the months ahead to make that area an inviting entrance to our neighborhood.

Speaking of Union Hill….will we ever get the ‘green wall’ we were promised when the wall went up? And what about the new trees that were going to replace all those we lost to the parking lot?

Harry’s Garden looks so nice. Thank to Norma and Ray. Can we take some time to tell some ‘Harry” stories sometime soon?   What a guy!

And now, do you want to hear the best story of the summer? Just to acknowledge that we are a special people? Well, there was an important neighborhood meeting scheduled to discuss a possible major investment in the area. Mrs. and Mr. X planned to attend. They knew it was important. Their hair was combed, the car was ready, and then the phone rang. The doctor delivered great positive medical news! So they turned back and popped the champagne cork and stayed home to celebrate. We applaud their choice.

We know our priorities!

A Tenants Rights – Part I

excerpted from findlaw.c­­om

A tenant has a right to live in a habitable rental property, but what about cosmetic or minor problems that an apartment or rental house has. What repairs are landlords forced to repair, and what kinds of repairs may a landlord ignore?

Landlord repairs: What must a landlord fix?

Even if it is not in your rental agreement or lease, your landlord is required to keep your building and unit in a habitable condition. This means that your landlord must ensure that the building is structurally sound, provide hot and cold water, ensure that the roof is not leaking, and keep the plumbing, electrical and heating systems all in safe operating condition. Also, if a rental property has become infested with pests, landlords must often pay for an exterminator, unless the infestation was caused by your wrongdoing or poor housekeeping.

Landlord repairs: What does a landlord not have to fix?

There are minor problems that a landlord is not required by law to fix. These minor problems may include things like dripping faucets, running toilets, small holes in carpet, grimy grout or torn window screens. Even though these problems may be annoying for you, the tenant, to live with, your landlord may not be under any obligation to repair these issues.

There are only a few occasions when minor repairs may be required to be fixed. If the terms of your lease agreement state that the landlord will fix any of the problems you are having, then the landlord is under a legal duty to do so. In addition, if your landlord ever promised you a repair, either in writing or by talking with you, you may be able to hold your landlord to that promise. Lastly, state and local building codes, as well as state landlord-tenant laws may require your landlord to make repairs that would otherwise be a repair left to the landlord’s discretion.

Tips to get your Landlord to make Minor Repairs

There are a number of strategies that tenants can employ to get their landlords to make minor repairs. While tenants that are faced with uninhabitable conditions may elect to withhold rent or repair the problem themselves while deducting from the rent, tenants faced with only minor problems may get into trouble by doing the same thing.

Here are some tips to get your landlord to make minor repairs.

Put it in writing.

Landlord repairs of minor problems are taken care of more often when the request for the repair is made in writing. This is true for a number of reasons. First, by putting your request in writing, you give your landlord time to consider the request and how the repair might benefit him in the future.

Second, requests in writing give you the opportunity to lay out a convincing argument, point by point. Making a persuasive argument can lead you to your desired result. Also, you can show how a fix would benefit the landlord. For example, a running toilet can double or triple a water bill for a month, and making a $15 repair is much better than seeing a $200 increase on the monthly water bill.

Lastly, by putting your request in writing, you are can show the landlord the potential for injury caused by a minor problem. If you tell your landlord face-to-face that you are afraid that someone may trip and fall in the bathroom because of a loose tile, your landlord may become defensive and standoffish. However, by putting your concerns in writing, you can show the landlord that you are, in fact, on their side and that the repair will be in the best interests of the landlord.

Need help?

Code Enforcement Division at City Hall – (309) 494-8654

Next month – Problem Resolution