- Associated Press - Friday, March 27, 2015

BELLEVILLE, Ill. (AP) - Belleville elected leaders are one step closer to a township dissolution that would only require their approval.

The Belleville News-Democrat (bit.ly/1E57EPL ) reports that legislation sponsored by Democratic state Representative Jay Hoffman has won committee approval and advanced to the full House of Representatives.

The legislation allows for township dissolution with majority votes by the Belleville City Council and its township board.

City officials had previously suggested they would follow the model of Evanston. The Chicago suburb sought voter approval and legislative changes before dissolving its township in May.

Most of Illinois’ more than 1,400 townships assess property taxes and handle road maintenance. The Belleville township’s only role is to provide temporary financial assistance to several dozen needy families annually. The local government’s costs typically exceed the amount of aid given.

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