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Helm

Christopher Castillo

A Carpentersville man is facing an animal cruelty charge after his family’s dog was found fatally stabbed in a forest preserve near Barrington Hills.

Christopher Castillo, 23, was charged last month with one count of aggravated animal cruelty, authorities said.

Kane County Forest Preserve Police Chief Mike Gilloffo said the charge stems from a March 25 incident.

Castillo told his parents he was taking the dog for a walk around 4:30 a.m., authorities said. When he did not return by 8 a.m., they reported him missing.

Gilloffo said the family found Castillo’s car, a piece of clothing and the wounded dog in the parking lot of Helm Woods Forest Preserve. One of the family members, assuming the dog was dead, took the animal home.

Police ended up taking the dog to a veterinary hospital, but it ultimately died, Gilloffo said.

Read more here.

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OBH 1

The Barrington Hills Observer wholeheartedly endorses Brian Cecola for Village of Barrington Hills President, as well as David Riff, Tom Strauss and Laura Ekstrom for Village Trustees in the April 6th Consolidated Election.

Early voting starts this morning for the April 6, 2021 Consolidated Elections.  For information on where to cast your ballot between now and Election Day, click on your county below:

We’ll be publishing our official endorsements soon. In the meantime, feel free to use and share the sample ballot below noting our recommendations:

Sample Better

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The Illinois Department of Transportation posted an update last month on the progress of the proposed widening of the IL 25 to 68 corridor of Route 62 in Barrington Hills. A copy of their report can be viewed and downloaded here.

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One of the Fox River Valley Libraries’ newest collections for 2021 is Student Hotspots. These Wi-Fi hotspots will be checked out to students for an entire semester. The hotspots were purchased with CARES Act funds so students have reliable internet service in their home for remote learning. They are now available on a first-come, first-served basis.

Patrons must have a valid student ID and a Fox River Valley Public Library District library card to check out student hotspots. While the library buildings are closed, students or their parents/guardians can simply show a valid student ID during curbside pickup at the Dundee Library, 555 E. Barrington Ave., East Dundee.

Student hotspot loan periods are:

  • Spring semester: Jan. 1 to May 31
  • Summer semester: June 1 to Aug. 31
  • Fall semester: Sept. 1 to Dec. 31

Only one hotspot per household. Student hotspots do not accrue late fees. Student hotspots are not eligible for home delivery.

If a hotspot is needed for a specific semester, patrons can set the hold activation date for the beginning of that semester when placing the hold.

Hotspots can be accessed in the library’s online catalog at www.frvpld.info.

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We searched on Barrington Hills for the results of the presidential election, and the results are depicted above.

Joe Biden won Illinois by nearly 17 percentage points, Sen. Dick Durbin sailed to reelection over Republican challenger Mark Curran and the graduated-rate income tax amendment fell by a wide margin.

The statewide results were mirrored in final tallies from Chicago and the collar counties. Biden defeated President Donald Trump in those areas by a 57.4% to 40.7% margin; Durbin had 54.5% of the vote to Curran’s 38.8%; and Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s proposed income tax amendment fell 53.4% to 46.6%.

But break down the vote behind those apparent landslides into the smallest electoral pieces — precincts — and a more nuanced picture emerges. Solidly Democratic precincts in Chicago’s Lincoln Park neighborhood saw the tax amendment fall by a wide margin. Same story in parts of Libertyville. Pockets of Niles went for Trump but saw Durbin finish ahead in the race for U.S. Senate. Parts of Lake Forest went for Biden but not for Durbin.

Search (HERE) for your address, ZIP code or town to see how your neighborhood compares. The buttons above the map allow you to switch from the race for president, U.S. Senate and the tax vote.

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Infusion of party resources fails to bring big blue wave as Republicans relish results

(Click on image to enlarge)

Illinois Democrats and their financial backers spent big – much more than Republicans – on races for statehouse districts that include portions of McHenry County in this month’s election, but ultimately failed to flip more than one area seat.

“I think this election showed a lot of the electorate agreed with Republican values and policies, and we don’t necessarily have to spend as much if we’re strong on the policy,” McHenry County Republican Party Chairman Tyler Wilke said.

Despite Republican campaigns being at a huge fundraising disadvantage to Democrats in the three races for the statehouse seats representing the southeast corner of McHenry County, the GOP still put in more effort to hang onto those three local state offices than it has in the past, McHenry County Democratic Party Chairwoman Kristina Zahorik said.

(Click on image to enlarge)

Republican Martin McLaughlin, who handily won election to the District 52 seat over Democratic challenger Marci Suelzer and Green Party candidate Alia Sarfraz, said he thinks the varied geography of his supporters shows there is a conservative tilt among voters in the region visible across jurisdictional boundaries.

McLaughlin earned more votes than Suelzer in each of the four counties – McHenry, Lake, Cook and Kane – that make up his district.

“That’s a good sign that our message cut across the main street communities in the 52nd (House District) and the bedroom communities, and all different kinds of economic and social metrics,” McLaughlin said.

Read more here.

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The opening of the Longmeadow Parkway toll bridge inched forward Tuesday as a Kane County Board committee gave preliminary approval to a multimillion-dollar contract that locks in two discount programs for frequent users.

Even with the discounts, board representatives from the area where the tollway will be located are still not pleased with the project.

The board’s transportation committee voted to give a $7.8 million contract to Texas-based Electronic Transactions Consultants Corp. The company, whose primary owners are based in Italy, would oversee the discount program and manage customer accounts and communication.

The contract is a six-year deal with possible extensions that could see it last up to 10 years. The $7.8 million reflects the full 10-year cost of the pending agreement.

Tolls for most cars will be 95 cents per trip on the bridge over the Fox River. It’s the only bridge over the river in the county that would charge a toll.

Frequent users of the Longmeadow Parkway toll bridge can take advantage of one of two discount programs, depending on where they live.

Read more here.

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Suburban voters already have reportedly cast more than 266,000 early or mail-in ballots ahead of the Nov. 3rd presidential election, with early voting slated to expand across the region starting today.

County clerks are ramping up early voting today, with 17 sites available in Lake County, 11 in McHenry and more than 50 in suburban Cook. Kane County offers seven permanent early voting sites, eight alternative sites and various mobile locations starting today through Oct. 28th.

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After complaints from some suburban and downstate officials seeking greater local control in fighting the coronavirus, Gov. J.B. Pritzker on Wednesday said he would divide Illinois into smaller regions under his reopening plan, separating Chicago and suburban Cook County from other areas not hit as hard by the pandemic.

The governor’s move comes as the state reported another 1,187 coronavirus cases and eight additional deaths from COVID-19. It’s the fourth time this month that the daily caseload has topped the 1,000 mark. The rolling seven-day positivity rate – the percent of positive cases among those newly tested – also crept up to 3.1%, from 2.6% less than a week ago.

The newly reshuffled reopening plan is based on the 11 regions in the state’s Emergency Medical Service regions that are used by state public health officials. Chicago’s collar counties will also be divided into three separate regions under the governor’s updated plan.

The Chicago Democrat cast the retooling as part of a “a more granular approach in this phase of the response to COVID-19.”

Pritzker said the new, smaller regions will give the state more flexibility to combat coronavirus if a locality experiences an outbreak, “to carefully, but deliberately — depending on the severity of the situation — control the spread of the virus while continuing to allow a region to be open to the greatest extent possible.”

Read more here.

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Beginning tomorrow, July 8th, Bolz Road will be closed to traffic between Sandbloom Road and the entrance to the stone quarry for 8 to 10 weeks, weather permitting, to allow construction crews to safely and efficiently construct the new Bolz Road roadway realignment and install new watermain and storm sewer. Traffic will be routed around Bolz Road using Sandbloom Road, IL 62 and IL 25 as shown below:

Motorist are advised to watch for construction workers, construction vehicles entering or leaving the closed roadway, and obey flaggers and other traffic control devices bordering the work zone.

The full KDOT press release can be viewed and downloaded here.

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