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JB Pritzker’s ten-page plan of, “A Public Health Approach To Safely Reopen Our State,” can be viewed and downloaded here.

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The Barrington Countryside Fire Protection District is planning to build a third fire station at 1004 South Hough Street

The Barrington Countryside Fire Protection District (BCFPD) is once again trying to acquire a property to build a third Fire/EMS station in a location that makes no sense whatsoever.

A little over a year ago, BCFPD tried to locate a Fire/EMS Station between the Barrington Middle School, Prairie Campus and the Barrington Early Learning Center on Dundee Road (Rt. 68) just east of Barrington Road. Thankfully that location was rejected after Barrington School District 220 and many residential neighbors spent considerable time and expense convincing Cook County Zoning that the location was completely inappropriate.

Now having been rejected at the Dundee Road location, the BCFPD is trying yet again to locate a Fire/EMS Station in an inappropriate location – 1004 South Hough Street (a map of the location can be viewed here). The property they have under contract is in unincorporated Cook County, zoned R-3, single family residential. The property is completely surrounded by single family homes. What BCFPD is attempting to do is not permitted under the property’s current zoning; in order to build in this residential neighborhood, the BCFPD must obtain a zoning variation from Cook County.

Zoning laws exist to protect all of us from changes like these. Like you, I live in this community because of its respect for peace and quiet, through our zoning laws and our shared respect for those laws.

Along with ALL of my neighbors, I am opposed to locating a fire station directly next to our homes. The 24 hour operations with increased noise, emergency vehicle traffic and 24 hour lighting is absolutely out of place for a residential area.

As taxpayers, we should question the need for adding a third station. Spending taxpayer funds does not seem to be an issue for the BCFPD Trustees. BCFPD says they respond to approximately five calls per day which they currently handle from two locations. That’s between two and three calls a day per station. And they need a third station?

I respect and honor our dedicated first responders, so if they truly need another station, let’s take them at their word. However, in their application to the Cook County Zoning Board, they reference the need for this third station location primarily to enable them to provide coverage for Inverness, South Barrington and Willow Creek Church, plus certain unincorporated areas of Cook County within their coverage area. There are eight Fire Stations within a five mile radius of this proposed location.

There are acres upon acres of vacant land without homes immediately adjacent much closer to BCFPD’s stated primary coverage areas along Barrington Road between Dundee Road and the I-94 tollway. Why would BCFPD choose yet another inappropriate location when there are many, many possible locations south along Barrington road, if needed? Locations that could easily work and would not be disruptive to families who purchased their homes in a residentially zoned area with the expectation they would be able to enjoy a peaceful, residential setting to live and raise their families.

Sincerely,

Tom McGrath

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Cook County Commissioner Kevin B. Morrison

Cook County Commissioner Kevin B. Morrison and State Rep. Michelle Mussman will host a COVID-19 virtual town hall at noon Friday to discuss the county and state’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic and the resources available to residents and businesses.

The meeting will be live streamed on their Facebook pages and abit.ly/2VppIC1. Residents can submit questions beforehand to District15@cookcountyil.gov.

Morrison’s 15th District includes Barrington Township, and his contact information can be found here. He is a voting member of the Forest Preserve District Board which oversees Crabtree Nature Center, Horizon Farm and Spring Lake preserves.

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“I’m not sure what the address is … ,” one person said. “I’m scared. … Can you see my location? Please come. Please, please, please.”

A review of 911 calls made on the night of a fatal Barrington Hills rental home shooting in early March offers a glimpse into the chaos of the night as party-goers called for help as they reported hiding in closets, bathrooms and other areas in and outside the sprawling house.

The 20 minutes of audio, which Pioneer Press received through a Freedom of Information Act request from Barrington Hills police, features 911 dispatchers fielding about two dozen calls. They were mostly from panicked party-goers, following early-morning gunfire March 7 in the 300 block of Old Sutton Road.

The emergency calls began with dispatchers asking for the address of the incident. Most who had dialed 911 didn’t immediately know where they were and said they had to check. A number of callers were hoping dispatchers could get the location using information from the callers’ cell phone.

Read more from the Chicago Tribune/Pioneer Press here.

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J.B. Pritzker listens intently in the background as Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot dictates policy in Springfield.

Dr. Brian Harris, Superintendent of 220 schools, issued the following update Friday shortly after J.B. Pritzker announced Illinois public and private schools would closed for the remainder of the school year: 

“Dear Barrington 220 Community,

This afternoon Governor Pritzker canceled in person classes at all Illinois schools for the remainder of the 2019-20 school year.

Given the current public health crisis and the need to put everyone’s health and safety above all else, I’m sure this news does not come as a surprise. However, I share your disappointment, as I know many of you, including myself, were holding out hope that somehow our students and staff would be able return to our school buildings before the end of the year.

I know this announcement brings forth many questions about how to pick up items left in our school buildings, summer school, BHS graduation and other big end of the year events, just to name a few. Please know the district has been working on a plan for all situations. More information will be coming from your school principal on these topics and many others over the next few weeks.”

What we cannot begin to comprehend is why Pritzker chose Friday afternoon to devastate the moral of thousands of students, teachers and parents. 

He makes his daily update addresses each afternoon, so what harm would have come from announcing the news today instead Friday? The answer is none, and that’s inexcusable. 

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Barrington Hills officials say they plan to seek reimbursement from the owners of this house on the 300 block of Old Sutton Rd for police costs related to a murder investigation.

Barrington Hills officials may seek reimbursement from a property owner, an online home rental service and others for police costs related to a fatal shooting last month during a house party they say violated village code.

Police spokesman William Walsh said no new information has surfaced regarding the killing of Sean B. Patton, 28, of Chicago, during the March 7 party on the 300 block of Old Sutton Road.

Walsh said three other men suffered gunshot wounds, but their injuries were not life-threatening.

Officials said the home was advertised for rent on multiple online marketplaces before the shooting.

Barrington Hills zoning regulations don’t allow for the use of a residential property for commercial purposes, such as short-term rentals for lodging and special events. That’s why the reimbursement of the police expenses should be sought, said Trustee Brian Cecola, who chairs the village board’s public safety committee.

Read more here.

Related: March Board of Trustee meeting recordings released

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Editorial note: According to the most recent data from the Illinois Department of Public Health, 28 people in all of zip code 60010 (population 46,350 in 2017) have tested positive.

Zip code 60010

Slightly more than 4% of the residents of suburban Cook County and the five collar counties who tested positive for the coronavirus have died.

Of the 11,745 people who contracted the disease in suburban Cook County and in DuPage, Kane, Lake, McHenry and Will counties, 473 have died as of Tuesday. That’s more than half the deaths statewide, according to the most recent data from health departments in each of those counties and the Illinois Department of Public Health.

The suburban death rate from the virus is slightly higher than the state rate of 3.7%. However, less than 1% of the state’s population has been tested, and only about 20% of those tested are confirmed cases, according to IDPH figures.

Read the full Daily Herald story here.

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