Peoria City Council meets on a Saturday

By WEEK Producer

August 18, 2012 Updated Aug 20, 2012 at 9:23 AM CDT

PEORIA, Ill. -- There was an unusual sight in Peoria's warehouse district where the city council convened for a rare Saturday meeting.

Instead of getting together in the horse-shoe at City Hall, the council met at 305 Water Street.

The special meeting was described as a workshop to discuss how the council can tackle major challenges and projects moving forward.

Mayor Jim Ardis says the city has made progress in some important areas which they'll continue to focus on.

"What we definitely need to do is continue to focus on the areas where we've made the investments during these difficult times," said Ardis. "A lot of that's in the warehouse district and also some areas in the northern part of the city in terms of road projects."

"We're going to be looking at how we can continue to deliver services with a reduced workforce," said City Manager Patrick Urich, "and how we continue to address the needs of our citizens, from our neighborhoods to our businesses and we're going to continue to work very hard and that's what today is all about."

Urich added that the city is in a much better position than a year ago when it was facing a deficit of over $9 million. This year, that shortfall is only about $750,000.