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Archive for the ‘Topics Of Interest’ Category

Homecoming

The 2022 Barrington High School Homecoming parade is tomorrow morning:

“The BHS Homecoming Parade gets underway at 10:15am on Saturday, Oct. 1. All participants will leave from the METRA Station and march down Main Street to BHS. Alumni floats line up behind all the high school student entries, with the exception of the 50th Reunion Class which will take their place in the front of the parade.”

Since resurfacing construction continues along the most of the parade route, trust us when we write there is little that cannot be accomplished in downtown Barrington before 9:00 AM. So, unless you’re participating in or viewing the festivities, we strongly suggest getting an early start tomorrow.

A list of 2022 Homecoming activities can be found here. Enjoy.

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ethics

Last Winter, the Village of Lake Barrington published the following in their seasonal newsletter:

Lake Barrington’s Ethics Commission

Did you know that the Village has an Ethics Commission? The independent commission adds to the overall transparency of our government and serves to investigate complaints alleging violations of the Ethics Chapter of the Village Code. We are proud to report that this 3-member Commission has never once had to meet regarding a violation!”

Their Municipal Code actually devotes a chapter to ethics, and the main page of their website contains a link to, “Report a Concern.”

As previously chronicled in this publication, if one searches our Village Code, keying in the word “ethics,” the result reads, “No Matches Found.”

Our Village needs an Ethics Commission.  How else could parties involved in complaints present their respective cases to determine if ethics violations did, or did not, occur? Listed below are typical practices that might arise in our Village, and in our opinion, may warrant investigation, understanding that there are no implications as to guilt or innocence of any on the list:

  • Should expensive legal battles, possibly precipitated by actions of elected and appointed Village officials, be investigated?
  • Should the hiring and retention of Village paid staff positions by elected family members be investigated?
  • Should contracts with vendors who maintain personal and professional relationships with elected Village officials and their families be investigated?
  • Should the solicitations of funds and hand selection of vendors by family members or close friends of elected Village officials, absent oversight by appointed Village committees, be investigated?

For these and other reasons, our Village needs to appoint an Ethics Commission to act as ombudsmen, when any question of potential maladministration or ethics violations is considered or occurs.

Candidates for this proposed commission could come from existing appointed Village bodies, ones whose objectivity would be unquestioned.

The perfect candidates for this roll are the incumbent members of the Board of Heath.  They are highly qualified, underutilized, and would prove to be an effective force in maintaining ethical governance of the Village of Barrington Hills.

Related:Our predominantly pusillanimous Village Board (Part 1),” “Our predominantly pusillanimous Village Board (Part 2),” “Better Government Association Commends Passage of Chicago Ethics Ordinance–Sees More to Do,” “What happened to ethics reform in Illinois government? Why watchdogs have some hope,” “Meanwhile, One Barrington Hills makes amends, extinguishes website and turns the volume down,” “Learn from your (big) mistake, Laura, Bryan, Dave and Tom,” “Agreed

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BCB

Buffalo Creek Brewing co-owners Josh Czarnik, left, and Mike Marr, right, pose with Alex Bersin during the brewpub’s 2019 Oktoberfest. The fest returns this weekend to the Long Grove brewery.

Goebbert’s Fall Festival: 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily through Oct. 30 at Goebbert’s Pumpkin Patch 40 W. Higgins Road, South Barrington, goebbertspumpkinfarm.com. Both locations offer animals, corn stalk mazes, wagon rides, pig races, fall food, produce and more. South Barrington offers a duck derby, giraffe barn, a magic show, pony and camel rides, a pumpkin-eating dinosaur and a haunted house. Tickets are $18 on weekdays, $22 on weekends and holidays; $12 seniors; free for kids 2 and younger.

Randall Oaks Fall Festival: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily through Sunday, Oct. 30, at Randall Oaks Zoo, 1180 N. Randall Road, West Dundee. Weekend activities include pedal tractors, pumpkins for sale, and on weekends, hayrides for $3 and animal shows. $4.25 for residents, $5 for nonresidents, and free for kids 1 and younger and U.S. military with ID. dtpd.org/randall-oaks-zoo.

Buffalo Creek Brewing Oktoberfest: Noon to 11 p.m. Friday, Sept. 30; 9 a.m. to 11 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 1; and 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 2, at Buffalo Creek Brewing, 360 Historical Lane, Long Grove. Family-friendly fest features traditional beer and food, Bavarian music, open-air performances, competitions and more both indoors and outdoors. Free admission. buffalocreekbrewing.com.

Bushel of Apples Fall Fest: 3-9 p.m. Friday, Sept. 30, and 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 1, in Paulus Park, 200 S. Rand Road, Lake Zurich. Phase Three Brewing Company releases their Bushel of Apples collaboration with Affy Tapple. Family-friendly activities, live music, food trucks and a fall photo booth. $5 donation for a wristband and free entry for kids and those not drinking. Benefits Gigi’s Playhouse. (847) 749-6639, info@phasethreebrewing.com or phasethreebrewing.com.

Stories by the Campfire: 6:30-8 p.m. Friday, Sept. 30, at Randall Oaks Park community shelter, 1180 N. Randall Road, West Dundee. Cowboy Randy Erwin sings and tells stories of cowboy life and demonstrates rope tricks. Free. dtpd.org.

Algonquin Harvest Market: 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 1, at Main Street Algonquin, 220 S. Main St., Algonquin. A wide variety of vendors including farm-fresh produce and crafts, food, entertainment, giveaways and more. Free admission. AlgonquinHarvestMarket.com.

Fall-A-Palooza: 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 1, at Lions Park, 1200 Silver Lake Road, Cary. Annual Cary Park District event featuring hayrides, pony rides, petting zoo, crafts, pumpkin patch, DJ, Touch-A-Truck, trick-or-treat trail and more. $13 for kids 3 and older; free for adults and infants. carypark.com.

Northwest Celtic Fest: 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 1, at Now Arena, 5333 Prairie Stone Parkway, Hoffman Estates. Celtic-themed event features family-friendly activities such as Celtic music, children’s games and activities, a Celtic Marketplace, animal meet-and-greet opportunities, Celtic-themed food and drinks and more. Free admission and parking. facebook.com/NWCelticFest.

Fishing Derby: 7:45 a.m. to 12:15 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 2, at Fabbrini Park, 1704 Glen Lake Road, Hoffman Estates. Bring poles for the annual catch-and-release fishing derby. Participants have three hours to catch as many fish as possible for awards and prizes. All children must be accompanied by an adult. Fishing rods can be borrowed for derby. Registration required. Fee per person. heparks.org.

More opportunities can be found here.

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FP Tax Hike

Cook County property owners would be asked to pay about “$1.50 more a month in taxes” toward the preserves, which became a haven during the pandemic

A referendum on the ballot this November will ask Cook County voters for a property tax hike to support and grow the county’s vast forest preserves.

The referendum in the Nov. 8 general election would ask property owners to contribute on average about $1.50 more in property taxes per month toward the preserves, or around $20 a year. About $3 to $4 of a homeowner’s current property tax already goes to the forest preserves each month.

The question before voters comes as the forest preserves became a haven of green space during the pandemic. The number of visitors skyrocketed as people sought a respite from sickness, isolation and boredom. The county’s forest preserves are one of the largest in the U.S., with nearly 70,000 acres of natural areas where people can hike, fish, bike, camp and even zipline. There are nature centers, and a massive set of stairs where exercisers flock that take your breath away.

“If there is a silver lining in a really difficult time for everybody, it’s that people were able to get out and rediscover nature,” said Arnold Randall, general superintendent of the Forest Preserves of Cook County.

County officials and more than 150 organizations also tout the environmental benefits of the preserves, such as absorbing rainwater during storms and creating cleaner air.

Jean Franczyk, president and CEO of the Chicago Botanic Garden, which sits on forest preserve district land, lays out what’s at stake: “A set of green lungs for the region.”

If approved, officials estimate the tax increase would generate just over $40 million in additional funding a year. They say the extra cash would help the county address ambitious goals, like acquiring nearly 3,000 additional acres to protect it from development, restoring some 20,000 more acres over the next 20 years and paying for workers’ pensions.

Read more here.

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WNV

The Lake County Health Department announced Tuesday that they have identified the first human case of West Nile virus in Lake County in 2022.

Lake County Health Department spokeswoman Emily Young said the case was found in a Lake County man, who is in his 60s.The man became ill in early September.

The Illinois Department of Public Health reported on August 30 that the first human case and death of West Nile virus in Illinois for the year was a Cook County resident in their 70s who became ill at the beginning of August.

West Nile virus was a contributing factor in the Cook County resident’s death and laboratory testing at the CDC confirmed the diagnosis.

“Take precautions to protect yourself from mosquito bites and West Nile virus,” said Mark Pfister, the Lake County Health Department’s Executive Director. “Even as the weather gets cooler, mosquitoes will remain active until the first hard frost,” Pfister said.

Read more here.

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Hart Bridge

Construction crews continue working on a new Hart Road bridge over Flint Creek in Barrington. The road remains closed until early November. (Paul Valade | Staff Photographer)

Crews are making progress on the Hart Road bridge project in Barrington.

The road was shut down last June between Lake Cook Road and Northwest Highway. The Lake County Division of Transportation $3 million project consists of removing three aging metal culverts and replacing those with a bridge over Flint Creek.

An 8-foot-wide bicycle and pedestrian path will also be added to the structure.

There is currently no through traffic on Hart Road from Northwest Highway to Lake-Cook Road (Main Street), though local traffic will be allowed on either side of the creek.

The closure impacts nearby Barrington High School. Access to the school and the athletic complex can be made from Lake Cook Road.

According to Lake County’s Sept. 12 update, current work includes pouring concrete on the south approach slab, north side excavating and grading the approach footing and building the road base on the south side of the bridge. Wetland plants were also planted along the creek.

More here.

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Coyote

This coyote is recovering at Flint Creek Wildlife Rehabilitation in Barrington after being struck by a car, lodged in its grille and dragged early Sunday morning. (Courtesy of Flint Creek Wildlife Rehabilitation)

A coyote that was struck by a vehicle, dragged across pavement and trapped for more than two hours in the car’s grille may survive its injuries after being freed by Lake County officials Sunday morning.

The coyote’s rear right foot was mangled after it was dragged across the pavement, but those taking care of him remain hopeful he’ll pull through.

“He is missing parts of his toes, but shockingly he has no broken legs,” said Dawn Keller Monday afternoon. “He is on pain meds, anti-inflammatories, antibiotics and vitamin shots. And we’re using other products to try to stave off infection and keep him comfortable.”

Keller, the founder and director of Barrington-based Flint Creek Wildlife Rehabilitation, said Lake County officials told her the coyote was struck by the car around 5 a.m.

Keller said the driver of the car knew an animal was hit but the driver decided not to stop and investigate, and upon returning home did not take a look at the front of the car to see if it had been damaged by hitting the animal.

Had the driver looked, the coyote would have been seen pinned into the car’s grille but still holding on to life.

Instead, it was a neighbor who noticed the suffering coyote and alerted authorities, who arrived at around 7:30 a.m., Keller said.

Read more here.

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Long Grove

A box truck became struck the Long Grove Covered Bridge near Robert Parker Coffin Road and Schaeffer Road in Long Grove on Monday. | Photo: Chatter Box of Long Grove

A box truck was heavily damaged after it hit the historic bridge in Long Grove Monday afternoon. The bridge has been hit over 30 times now.

The white Chevrolet box truck hit the bridge, located at Robert Parker Coffin Road and Schaeffer Road in Long Grove, around 1 p.m. Monday.

The truck appeared to be traveling eastbound on Robert Parker Coffin Road when it struck the bridge’s canopy.

The bridge suffered visible damage. The truck’s windshield was shattered, the cab was pushed downwards and the middle section of the truck was also damaged.

The bridge was formerly named the Long Grove Covered Bridge.

It was renamed on Thursday to the Robert Parker Coffin Bridge, named after Robert Parker Coffin, who designed the bridge cover.

The Chatter Box of Long Grove, which is located down the street from the bridge, told Lake and McHenry County Scanner that the box truck driver was uninjured.

More here.

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220 Books

Just last week in Barrington, the school board voted to keep “Flame” and “This Book Is Gay,” two books about gender and sexuality. In a 4-3 vote, the board ultimately accepted a recommendation by a school advisory committee of experts to keep the books after determining they didn’t meet the standard for obscenity and pornography.

A glass shelf displaying some of the most notable challenged books in the country adorns the entryway of the Chicago Public Library’s Lincoln Belmont branch. The books are surrounded by yellow tape and red signs that inevitably steer the attention of those who walk inside to the titles that have been banned, or attempted to be banned, in other libraries across the country.

But instead of taking the books off the shelves, visitors at the library were invited — in celebration of Banned Book Week 2022 — to learn about each one of them and encourage discussions about the topics for which they were banned. City Lit Theater Company joined the efforts by presenting a theatrical display of iconic banned and challenged books, allowing people to make their own decision on whether to read them.

Last week, city and Chicago Public Library officials declared Chicago a sanctuary city for those stories, by establishing “Book Sanctuaries” across the city’s 77 distinct community areas and 81 library branches. That entails a commitment to expand local access to banned or challenged books through library programming.

Meanwhile, attempts to ban books across the country — including in suburban Illinois — are escalating at a rate never seen since the American Library Association began tracking data more than 20 years ago, according its most recent report.

Just last week in Barrington, the school board voted to keep “Flame” and “This Book Is Gay,” two books about gender and sexuality.

In a 4-3 vote, the board ultimately accepted a recommendation by a school advisory committee of experts to keep the books after determining they didn’t meet the standard for obscenity and pornography.

Erin Chan Ding, a board member, said the removal of the books could potentially impact young people that could identify as LGBTQ students. And though the books may have strong imagery and words, it should be up to parents if their children read them.

In August, Barrington school board members also voted to keep “Gender Queer” in the Barrington High School library.

“We’re making these books available, but we’re not actively incorporating the books that were challenged into the curriculum,” said Chan Ding, a mother to an eight and a fourth grader.

As a mother, she said, she understands that some parents question the books and want to prevent access to them. “I have empathy for parents who disagree with our decision and I acknowledge and fully recognize that there’s a full spectrum of opinions. … It is a parent’s responsibility and role to do what is best for their own child but that doesn’t mean restricting access to other people.”

Read more here.

Related: District 220 posts April 2023 Election Candidate’s Guide,District 220 Board of Education meets tonight

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9.22 BOT

Our Village Board of Trustees will be conducting their regular monthly meeting beginning this evening at 6:30 PM. A copy of the agenda can be viewed and downloaded here.

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