Archive for the ‘Cook’ Category


Workers remove unwanted items during the separation process at Groot Industries material recovery facility in Elk Grove Village. (Paul Valade | Staff Photographer)

Despite the contributions you make to the health of the environment every time you slip your plastic milk cartons and food containers into the recycling bin, there’s something you should know: More than 90% of the plastics used in Illinois ends up in landfills.

The causes are varied and complex, but the solution, environmental advocates and government authorities say, requires a blend of changing personal habits and revising public policies.

Plastic can take anywhere from hundreds to thousands of years to decompose, and it is slowly adding up in natural areas around the world. Rather than decomposing, studies show, plastic breaks down into microplastics — pieces smaller than 5 millimeters — and infiltrates our food, water and air.

As of 2015, Illinois’ plastic recycling rate is 8.1%, according to a state-commissioned waste report.

Below are specific guidelines by county.

Read the entire Daily Herald story here.

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FutureThe following was posted to the Village website today:

“The Forest Preserve District of Cook County (FPDCC) hosted an open house on Tuesday, June 14th regarding Horizon Farm, the area’s newest forest preserve.  The evening began with a presentation by the Preserves reviewing the planning efforts underway that have included input from community stakeholders.

FPDCC is working hard to preserve and restore vital natural areas that are especially important to native grassland birds. The short-term plan presented involves opening several trails on the property in the fall of this year.  There will be some gravel trails and mowed grass trails, in line with the Forest Preserves’ mission of all trails being open to everyone (dog walkers, equestrians, bikes, etc).

A Barrington Hills resident commented on how happy she was with the work done to remove the derelict buildings on the property, restoring it to natural space.

The Forest Preserves District of Cook County is seeking input from residents on how they would like to see the property used as they continue to plan for the opening of the trails and future uses of the property. Please see the current draft maps below and send any feedback to Planning@cookcountyil.gov.”

The Horizon Farm 2022 opening plan can be viewed and downloaded here.  The future plan ideas can be found here.

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Early Voting

Following are the nearest locations for residents to vote in the primary elections by county:

Cook: 112 Algonquin Rd, Barrington Hills.  All other Cook County locations can be found here.

Kane: 102 South Second St, West Dundee.  All other Kane County locations can be found here.

Lake: 23860 North Old Barrington Rd, Lake Barrington.  Other Lake County locations can be found here.

McHenry: 3702 US Hwy 14, Crystal Lake.  For other locations, click here.

The 2022 General Primary election is Tuesday, June 28th.

Residents venturing over to Lake Barrington’s Village Hall should make a point of saying hello to Peggy Hirsch, who is arguably the finest Village Treasurer Barrington Hills has ever had. Those who follow Village matters since her departure last year recognize she’s sorely missed.

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The Riding Club of Barrington Hills (RCBH) recently released their April newsletter.  Topics covered this month include:

  • State of the trails
  • Saturday morning trail rides
  • 4th of July parade
  • What’s happening at the Park District, and
  • Forest Preserve

A copy of the RCBH newsletter can be viewed and downloaded here.

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Donlea Flooding

What follows was posted earlier this week to the Village website:

“Due to the flooding that closed Donlea Road for part of 2019, the Village of Barrington Hills has partnered with the Cook County Department of Transportation, which owns and maintains the road, to investigate the cause of the flooding. The investigation is still ongoing, but provided below is a status update:

An extensive site visit was completed in the fall of 2021, where no immediate cause of the flooding was located.  Following this, a drain tile investigation was conducted, and again, no immediate issues were found. The next step in the project is for surveyors to complete a topographic survey of roadway cross culverts on Donlea Road, Lake Cook Road and Steeplechase Road.  We anticipate this work to be completed in the next several months.

In the coming months, a geotechnical consultant will complete soil borings in select locations. The soil borings will help identify the hydrology patterns in the tested area.

We anticipate these to be the last major steps in the study after which a report will be finalized and published.

For questions or concerns, email village@vbhil.gov.”

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The McHenry County Conservation District introduced a bison grazing area in December at Pleasant Valley Conservation Area in Woodstock. Could Horizon Farm be next?

The McHenry County Conservation Foundation has received a $36,000 grant from the Illinois Department of Natural Resources to help fund its ongoing restoration efforts at a newly created bison grazing area in Woodstock.

The grant will help pay for the conversion of 90 acres of cornfield into prairie land, and for other enhancements inside the bison grazing area. Late last year, the conservation district partnered with Ruhter Bison to bring six bison to Pleasant Valley Conservation Area.

The bison, which historically played a key role in the ecology of prairies and grasslands, are used as a natural land management tool to benefit breeding birds and other wildlife.

“The bison will do the work of managing the prairie in a far more natural and beneficial way for wildlife,” said Brad Woodson Manager of Natural Resources, McHenry County Conservation District, in a statement in December. “It is so important to prairie habitat to have grazers as another restoration tool in land management. Grazers like elk, deer or bison are essential to enhancing the diversity of a grassland habitat – they help keep the balance of habitat structure and species composition of the prairie. We are looking forward to seeing the result.”

Read on here.

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The Forest Preserve District of Cook County posted the following on Facebook:

“Come learn about the latest site planning efforts for Horizon Farm and share your feedback and ideas with us! There will be a brief presentation at 6:15pm and then Forest Preserves staff will be available to hear from you individually.

A former equestrian estate, Horizon Farm forest preserve covers nearly 400 acres and features meadows, wetlands and small streams, as well as open habitat for grassland birds.

Masks are recommended.

For more information, contact Planning@cookcountyil.gov

The meeting is June 14th at the Barrington White House, 145 West Main Street, from 6-8 PM.

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The Cook County Board of Commissioners voted May 24 to give its members a 10% raise in December, followed by automatic annual pay increases up to 3% each year while working. The board voted 13-4 in support of funding the raises despite concerns from the minority members and civic groups about the promised perpetual raises…

The Cook County Board of Commissioners voted May 24 to give its members a 10% raise in December, followed by automatic annual pay increases up to 3% each year while working.

The board voted 13-4 in support of funding the raises despite concerns from the minority members and civic groups about the promised perpetual raises to politicians during times of economic hardship.

President of the Cook County League of Women Voters Cynthia Schilsky said members of her organization supported the raises for the officials – but not indefinitely. The Civic Federation similarly opposed the automatic pay raise provision.

“We elect these people to serve in their office, and they should be required to be transparent about what they’re saying their salaries are,” Schilsky told the Tribune. “It would be much better, to the point, that they vote on it rather than just have it continue forever.”

Other board members like Sean Morrison voted against the measure, arguing that now was not the time for county officials to be considering pay raises.

“It’s not the type of situation that I think we need to be in,” Morrison told the Tribune after the vote. “We have inflation that’s up. People are paying $5 for gasoline. … I do not believe this is the time for it.”

The cost-of-living adjustment would increase the officials’ salaries by 3% each year or the Chicago region consumer price index – whichever is smaller – without requiring an annual vote. Over the last 12 months, the index has increased 7.2%.

Read more here.

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e-poll Devices

Thousands of new iPad pollbook devices will be available for use by suburban Cook County voters leading up to the June 28 election. | Brian Rich/Sun-Times

Voters in suburban Cook County will be casting their ballots in upcoming elections with the help of new devices that aim to streamline check-in at the polls.

Cook County Clerk Karen Yarbrough announced the purchase of the 4,500 new e-poll devices that will be used in the June 28 primary election.

The equipment uses secure iPad applications to check in voters at every poll location in suburban Cook County, Yarbrough said at a news conference Thursday. That means poll workers won’t need to check in voters by finding their names on bulky paper ledgers.

The devices load each voter’s registration information and verify their signature to ensure they receive the correct ballot.

“We fully expect this new equipment will improve the voting experience for, again, the voters certainly, but also our election judges,” Yarbrough said. “And it’s going to make the process more efficient.”

“One of the great things” about the new, digital system “is that it allows voters to check in in a seamless way,” Edmund Michalowski, Cook County’s deputy clerk for elections, said during the news conference.

First-time voters can register to vote on the new equipment as well, Michalowski said.

Read more here.

Editorial noteExpectations on June 28th..


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Early Voting

Following are early primary voting information links for all Village counties:

The 2022 General Primary election is June 28th.

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