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The Barrington 220 school board has scheduled five community “information” meetings and three open houses in coming weeks to inform the community about the school district referendum question on the March 17 primary election ballot. 

The district is seeking voter approval to borrow $147 million for improvements at all schools in areas such as safety and security, plumbing, electrical, roofing and heating, ventilation and air conditioning. Proposed work also includes construction of a physical education and wellness center at Barrington High School, additional classrooms at the district’s two middle schools, and new classroom space at all elementary buildings for science, technology, engineering and mathematics classes, as well as students with special needs.

The community information meetings are scheduled for:

Open houses are set for:

We will be publishing copies of their draft presentations when they become available once the paid consultants (seeDistrict 220 hires former state lawmaker’s firm to help with referendum”) finish honing their spin. 

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BACOG Turns 50

Janet Agnoletti (pictured third from left at a 2017 Barrington area legislative breakfast) is the executive director of BACOG

The July/August 2017 issue of Quintessential Barrington featured the story of the Barrington Area Council of Governments (BACOG) which this year celebrates its 50th anniversary. When it was formed in 1970, the villages that make up the Barrington area were relatively young in their organization. The exception was the Village of Barrington, incorporated in 1865, the landmark hub around which these newer communities gradually emerged. Barrington Hills and Deer Park incorporated in 1957; North Barrington, Lake Barrington, and South Barrington in 1959; and Tower Lakes in 1966.

While each village would develop its own character, its own sense of place, there was commonality that the location and natural resources of the entire area needed an organization to protect those resources, and provide strength in numbers to counter the pressures of burgeoning development in the northwestern suburbs.

Thus, nurtured into being by enlightened leadership from the Barrington Area Development Council, the Barrington Area Council of Governments met for the first time on April 25, 1970. The Executive Board consisted of the village presidents of the member villages. In 2004, the Council was joined by the supervisors of Barrington and Cuba Townships, representing those unincorporated areas still under county jurisdiction, and thus subject to possible incompatible development pressures.

Read the full Quintessential Barrington article here.

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Hoffman Estates village board members voted 6-1 Monday to approve a tax incentive to spark economic development on 64 acres along the village’s stretch of Higgins Road west of The Arboretum of South Barrington shopping center.

A larger, 185-acre area of the same site at the northwest corner of Higgins Road and Route 59 has been the subject of the concept plan for the controversial Plum Farms mixed-use development that’s been idle for the past 2½ years since a lawsuit was filed over its residential density.

That lawsuit was originally filed by residents of the nearby Regency of the Woods of South Barrington retirement community. After Barrington Unit District 220 intervened in the suit on the side of the residents, the retirement community settled its portion.

Last month, District 220’s own lingering case was dismissed by a judge based on a legal precedent. But at its next meeting on Jan. 14, school the board intends to choose among its options to file a motion for reconsideration, file a notice of appeal or let the judge’s ruling lie, Superintendent Brian Harris said.

Read more here.

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Every year around this time, we reach out to Northwest suburban mayors and village presidents and ask them to tell us something their community accomplished in the year gone by and something they hope to accomplish in the year ahead. Today, we share the accomplishments of 2019. On Wednesday, we’ll tell you what the mayors hope to see in 2020.

Martin McLaughlin, Barrington Hills

The Village of Barrington Hills is on track to, once again, lower the levy, making it the sixth consecutive year. Since 2013, the village Levy has been reduced by more than 24%. We will continue to lead by example, responding to our residents’ desire to see tax relief.

In 2019, the Village of Barrington Hills approved a revitalized Comprehensive Plan, which was recognized by the Barrington Area Council of Governments. The innovative format allows residents and those interested to explore the unique property rights and freedoms available within our 30-squar- mile village.

In conjunction with our continuing efforts to preserve natural habitat and open spaces, the Village of Barrington Hills has been recognized and certified as one of the first Bee Cities in Illinois, which was showcased at The Hills Are Alive Fall Festival this past September with a honey-tasting competition.

Read the full year end summary from the Daily Herald here.

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Ahead of the legalization of adult-use recreational marijuana starting Wednesday, elected officials across the suburbs have been debating whether to allow pot sales within their borders.

YES: Sales allowed

Addison, Antioch, Aurora, Bartlett, Buffalo Grove, Carol Stream, Carpentersville, Cary, Crystal Lake, Des Plaines, Elburn, Elgin, Fox Lake, Fox River Grove, Geneva, Gilberts, Hoffman Estates, Island Lake, Lake in the Hills, Lombard, Mundelein, North Aurora, Oakbrook Terrace, Palatine, Pingree Grove, Prospect Heights, Rolling Meadows, Round Lake Beach, Round Lake Heights, Round Lake Park, Schaumburg, Sleepy Hollow, South Elgin, St. Charles, Streamwood, Villa Park, Volo, Wadsworth, Warrenville, Wauconda, West Dundee, Wheeling, Winfield.

NO: Sales banned

Algonquin, Arlington Heights, Barrington Hills, Barrington, Batavia, Bensenville, Bloomingdale, Campton Hills, Deer Park, Downers Grove, Elmhurst, Glen Ellyn (moratorium until Oct. 26), Glendale Heights, Grayslake, Green Oaks, Gurnee, Hainesville, Hawthorn Woods (moratorium until May 31), Inverness, Itasca, Kildeer, Lake Barrington, Lake Villa, Lake Zurich, Libertyville, Lincolnshire, Lindenhurst, Lisle, Long Grove, Mettawa, Mount Prospect, Naperville, North Barrington, Oak Brook, Park Ridge, Roselle, Rosemont (moratorium until June 30), Round Lake, South Barrington, Sugar Grove, Vernon Hills, Wayne, West Chicago, Wheaton, Wood Dale, Woodridge.

Undecided

Burlington: next discussion Jan. 6; East Dundee: leaning yes, next discussion Jan. 6 or later, vote expected in January; Elk Grove Village: next discussion Jan. 14 or later; Hampshire: leaning yes, vote Jan. 2 or Jan. 16; Hanover Park: next discussion in late January or early February; Huntley: leaning yes, vote Jan. 9; Lakemoor: planning and zoning commission discussion in January, followed by village board discussion expected in February.

Read the full Daily Herald article here.

Editorial note: The names of municipalities that are adjacent to or nearby Barrington Hills appear bolded for reference.

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Buckle up buckaroos, the March 17 220 referendum marketing blitz is about to start.

A guarantee of a safer future for residents, both a failed and a renewed quest for a referendum to upgrade the area’s schools and new faces in local government were among the top 2019 news events for the Barrington area.

School referendum fails, District 220 to try again

After voters rejected a $185 million referendum by Barrington School District 220 in the April 2 election, the Board of Education formally decided to put a scaled back $147 million question on the March 17, 2020 primary ballot.

After the April vote, board members started a four-month discussion evaluating what needs were most important for the district’s elementary and middle schools as well as Barrington High School. They also looked at the best ways to communicate their message.

Board members said a break-even referendum, rather than one which raised taxes, might be more palpable for voters. The $145 million proposal will actually result in district property owners paying less taxes than they are now. Superintendant Brian Harris said the owner of a $500,000 home will pay approximately $76 less for the district’s portion of the tax bill than their current amount.

Read more from the Barrington Courier-Review here.

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The “Rebuild Illinois” capital program “will make roads in every corner of the state safer. A variety of revenue sources will be solely dedicated to fixing our crumbling infrastructure, putting over half a million people to work and revitalizing communities across Illinois,” Pritzker spokeswoman Jordan Abudayyeh said.

What will cost more next year?

• Vehicle registrations jump by $50 for conventional cars and SUVs. Most truck registrations rise by $100.

• Electric vehicle registrations soar to $251 from $35.

• Gas taxes already went up by 19 cents a gallon this year to help pay for the capital program. In 2020, the cost per gallon will increase by the consumer price index effective July 1, 2020. That’s part of an annual adjustment tied to the CPI.

• Parking spaces on lots not owned by state or municipal governments will pay a tax ranging from 6% for hourly, daily or weekly users to 9% for monthly and yearly customers.

• Tax credits for trade-ins when buying a new car or SUV will be capped at $10,000. Pickup trucks, however, are exempt.

Read more here.

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