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Archive for the ‘LeCompte/Anderson Commercial Horse boarding amendment’ Category

OBH Capture

As previously reported, Brian Cecola has likely won the race for Village President (See “Cecola headed for victory in Barrington Hills president race”).

Here are the unofficial results for Village Board of Trustees:

  • David Riff  445
  • Thomas W. Strauss 428
  • Laura S. Ekstrom 467
  • Robert M Zubak 366
  • Brent Joseph Burval 349
  • Paula Jacobsen 389

County totals are seen below:

Cook

Cook County

Kane

Kane County

Lake Results

Lake County

McHenry Resilts

McHenry County

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OBH 1

Spring just sprung, and many find ourselves in the biennial rite of Village elections season. It is recognizable from campaign signs dotting the countryside to complete strangers ringing the door or gate bell of our five-acre sanctuaries from masked humanity saying, “Howdy Neighbor,” causing you to wonder what unannounced circumstances you’re in for.

For the uninitiated, it will be an opportunity to meet a neighbor.  For others it represents something akin to an unsolicited sales pitch trying to convince you to vote a certain way.  If it’s the latter, you’re likely encountering a “special interest club” member.

Some of these club members can be the nicest people you’ll ever meet.  Others, however, might say anything to sway your vote, and we’ve heard a lot of the classics.  Either way, these club members manage to get eighty to ninety percent of their membership roster to the polls; thus, the reason for our request for all residents to take the time to vote. Here are our reasons:

  • Four years ago, at the height of the special interest club’s campaign frenzy, current Village President Marty McLaughlin tied for McHenry County votes against his competitor. His winning margin was only 65 votes.
  • In this same election, two special interest club members won by just three and four votes, and they’re both running again as a ticket, despite the fact one has missed a quarter of Board of Trustees meetings (a years’ worth).

Currently, the special interest club is fronting four of their Cook County members as candidates who would represent a majority of seats on our Village Board of Trustees.  We believe it important the county be mentioned since most of their interests in running is county centric, such as the revival of commercial horse boarding conflict and wanting to have more control of the Forest Preserve of Cook County’s Horizon Farms on top of the extensive trail system.

Leading this group is the current president of the Barrington Hills Park District who is running for Village President.  Transparency is not in his vocabulary, nor is fiscal responsibility or expense reduction.  In fact, our Park District has seen a 17% increase in levies under his watch, and three month ago he asked what the legal limit was for raising the 2021 levy prior to the required formal hearing – and he then approved that maximum raise.

Contrast that with the repeated seven levy decreases we’ve experienced along with many other financial benefits our village has experienced in eight years.  Benefits such as lower taxes, vastly improved roads, legal expenses that are a small fraction of what they were under the prior village president, just to name a few.

The way to continue the positive progress Barrington Hills has benefited from is to elect candidates with the values instilled by Martin McLaughlin and Colleen KonicekHannigan when they first took office eight years ago.

To accomplish that, all residents reading this need to make every effort possible to vote. We’re confident Brian Cecola is up for the challenge to serve as President as are David Riff, Tom Strauss and Laura Ekstrom to serve as Trustees. They not only have our endorsement, but also the endorsements of those with the highest regard of most residents; Marty McLaughlin and Colleen Konicek Hannigan.

So yes, if you want to continue the positive momentum we’ve enjoyed for eight years, please take the time to vote!

Early voting times and locations can be found here.

Related: We’ve Been Clubbed by Commercial Horse Boarding

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There are a number of exceptionally qualified candidates running for office in the upcoming Consolidated Elections April 6th.    

Following is a summary of candidates running for various offices in the order they appear on the ballots for those offices. The Observer has noted those candidates we endorse with a check mark.

Early voting is available to registered voters now through Election Day.

Pres VBH

Trustee VBH

220 VBH 1

HC VBH

BAL VBH

BHPD VBH

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Fast Tines 1

Political committees must abide by Illinois State Board of Elections transparency rules.

Earlier this week, we posted some helpful reminders to area political candidates of their campaign reporting responsibilities with the Illinois State Board of Elections (ISBE).  This will be our second (in what may become a series) posting of helpful hints on campaign transparency due to one (apparent) repeat offender.

The ISBE rules clearly state:

“Any committee that makes an expenditure for any kind of communication directed at voters and mentioning the name of a candidate in the next upcoming election must ensure that the communication clearly identifies the committee as having paid for it. This applies to any committee that pays for any part of the advertisement, including its production and distribution.” 

Well, residents are now receiving a mailing from a candidate committee (a portion pictured below) that does not appear to adhere to these rules. We previously noted that this candidate’s campaign committee signs display no state mandated committee identification either.  

DK Violation

A campaign mailers sent to residents recently does not disclose the campaign committee that paid for it.

Common sense dictates that if one is running for elected office that every opportunity for campaign advertising with the candidate’s name on it would be maximized, especially when it comes to taking credit for who paid for it (at least one would think that).

This particular candidate, however, either fancies himself as a rebel, or perhaps isn’t taking this election as seriously as he should considering the high office he’s seeking.  Another possibility is much more troubling, however, and that is he may not wish to disclose who is actually paying for his advertisements.

Related:Some helpful campaign tips for area candidates

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Village HallThe Daily Herald has published profiles of the two candidates running for Village President.  In ballot order, click on any of their names to read the bio they wrote for submission:

Election Day is April 6th.

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The December 9, 2020, Park Board Meeting will be held via video conferencing at 7:00 PM. A phone number and access code is available to the public for anyone who would like to observe or comment during the meeting.

The agenda (seen here) includes, “Approval of the November 2020 Park Board Meeting Minutes,” but they are not provided to residents to review. Also on the agenda is, “Tax Levy Ordinance 12-09-2020-01,” but this too seems unavailable for public inspection. This has been standard practice for as long as anyone can remember. The District seems to believe the less people know the better it is for them.

Instructions to conference in to the meeting are:

Video Conference: Please click on this Link on December 9, at 7:00 p.m., in order to join the video conference. https://cdwmeet.webex.com/meet/drewmcm Please follow the prompts to join.

Phone Access: If you would like to join by phone, rather than by computer, please call this number on December 9, at 7:00 PM
312-535-8110
Enter this access code and hit the # symbol.

Access code 927 291 240 #
If you choose to dial in, rather than use a computer, you may not be able to see onscreen visual aids.

If you accept this meeting invite and it is on your phones digital calendar, you can click the phone number in the “location” bar … your phone will automatically dial in, and automatically enter the code.
There will be a recording of the meeting, in compliance with Illinois regulations … I will provide a link and a password to the recording after the meeting.

Meeting Agenda: The Park District will also take public comments by email or written submission and will read those comments at the public meeting. Submit by email to: office@bhillsparkd.org

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The Equestrian Commission is scheduled to meet on Monday evening at 6:30 PM.  The commission has not met in nearly a year.  On the agenda are several items, including discussions on Fencing and Horse Boarding Regulations.  However the most interesting item seems to be something called the Illinois State Farm Nuisance Act Presentation.  We researched this topic, and apparently it is legislation that has been promoted by the Horsemen’s Council of Illinois and local Equestrienne Elaine Ramesh.  The legislation has already passed the Illinois Senate and House, and, from what we can tell, it is awaiting the Governor’s signature.

It would add the keeping of horses and horse BOARDING to the current state law which protects existing livestock farms from being lawsuits on the basis of nuisance.  The original law was intended to protect actual agricultural farms from being sued as a nuisance by neighbors because of odors, dust or noise generated by the routine performance of farming chores, but it seems as though the activists in the Horsemen’s Council are using this to bypass local zoning ordinances, such as ours in Barrington Hills.    Horse boarding in our view is NOT agricultural, as there is no agricultural product which is generated. We would strongly urge residents to attend this meeting.

At the time of publication, only the agenda was available here, but no meeting packet materials were posted.  The Trustee Liaison to the Commission is newly elected Trustee Paula Jacobsen.

CORRECTION:  Michelle Maison is still the liaison to the commission.

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From the Horsemen’s Council of Illinois Facebook page

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vote Both major regional newspapers recently released the responses to their Candidate Questionnaires.

Here are the trustee candidate questionnaires published in the Northwest Herald.

To read village president candidates’ answers to the Northwest Herald’s questions, click here.

The link to the Daily Herald’s village president profiles is here, and the trustee candidate profile link is here.

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audio_tape_revox_pr99-203 Audio recordings from the February 21st Meeting of the Zoning Board of Appeals have been posted to the Village website. To access the main menu of recordings edited by agenda topic, click here.

The meeting began with a public hearing for a special use permit for expansion of an existing artificial lake at 153 Algonquin Road.  Several neighbors expressed concerns about potential impacts to their properties.  The hearing was followed by  a unanimous vote to recommend the special use permit to the Board of Trustees.  The hearing can be heard here.

The next agenda item had been scheduled to be a vote on the special use permit for a proposed boathouse for a residence on Hawley Lake, which had been the subject of a public hearing in January. Chairman Dan Wolfgram informed the ZBA that the petitioner’s request had been withdrawn.

Discussion then turned to a number of topics that the ZBA had begun to consider at last month’s meeting and had determined merited future deliberation.  Village Administrator Bob Kosin began with a description of the process by which a zoning complaint may be registered with the village, and then reviewed the staff procedures to review the complaint and determine if a violation had occurred.  True to form, Kosin’s explanation was difficult to follow at times due to his “unique” style.  Kosin’s narrative can be heard here.

Next, the board considered the matter of who can submit an application for a text amendment to the village’s zoning code.  In recent years, a somewhat vague part of our code has been interpreted to allow any resident potentially affected, directly or indirectly by a zoning matter, to be able to propose a text amendment change.  In the case of commercial horse boarding, this lead to numerous dueling proposals which took up an inordinate amount of the ZBA’s time, not to mention taxpayer money.  Members seemed to be in agreement that a better process might be for residents first to bring up their suggested amendment changes with either a Board of Trustees member or a ZBA member.  The topic was referred to the ZBA’s trustee liaison Colleen Konicek-Hannigan who will present the idea for discussion at an upcoming BOT meeting. That section of the discussion can be heard here.

The ZBA also mulled over the need for either a special use permit or special event permit for residences which play host to numerous and/or large private charitable events.  Members felt that charity events are a hallmark of the generosity of the community, and any efforts to create a more formal permitting process should not be done with the idea to curtail or discourage such events.  As is the case with many issues debated by the ZBA, a balance between the individual property rights of one resident must be balanced with the neighbors’ rights to peaceful enjoyment of their homes. Members decided that they should begin attempting to draft language for review at a future meeting. That portion of the dialogue can be accessed directly by clicking this link.

Finally, Zoning Board members considered the pros and cons of regulating the length of time that contractors’ advertising signs might be allowed to be displayed at a home, and whether or not there needs to be a limit placed on the height of building structures.  Those topics may be found beginning here.

 

 

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The Observer takes a look back at another year gone by, as we present the most frequently read news stories and editorials for 2016. Click on any title to read and revisit stories from this past year.

August 30th Zoning Board public hearing recordings published

Our most read and most commented upon story of 2016, this article summarized the August 30th Zoning Board meeting which concluded the public hearings on the latest text amendment proposal for commercial horse boarding codes.

WARNING: Beware of phantom developers!

This story discussed a fear-mongering letter that was mailed to residents throughout the  village, containing unsubstantiated claims of Barrington Hills once again being imperiled by greedy developers.

Why Anderson II must go

In October, the Observer reviewed the myriad of flaws in the Anderson II commercial boarding ordinance and explained the importance of reinstating boarding under the Home Occupation Ordinance.

There they go again

Despite the misinformation repeated at many recent meetings, archived Village Board minutes from 1960 show that village leaders then did not approve of commercial equestrian activities on residential properties, having shut down a riding school for being in violation of village code.  This feature also drew the second most comments of any story for 2016.

June Village Board Meeting Recordings Released

Our review of the Board of Trustees June meeting covered several topics, but focused primarily on the ongoing delays with the reconstruction of the Cuba Road Bridge (now known as Veteran’s Crossing Bridge).  The article highlighted the lack of proper oversight of the project by Gewalt Hamilton, as well as some confusing explanations of the situation by Village Administrator Bob Kosin.

Here we go again

As the Zoning Board of Appeals was about to begin a review of the commercial horse boarding code, the Observer dispelled a long list of oft-repeated fallacies, fictions and lies concerning equestrian activities and horse boarding in this column from July.

Candidates file for April 2017 Village Elections

The title speaks for itself in this most recent top story, highlighting the high level of resident interest in our village government.

Park District to begin charging user fees for Riding Center

The July announcement by the Park District of its intention to set up a fee structure for resident and n0n-resident users of the Riding Center drew a large audience.

Documents added to ZBA horse boarding code hearing package

In the days leading up to the August 30th ZBA meeting, readers were eager to review the 291 pages of documentation that had been submitted to the Zoning Board in the form of court documents, resident and Village official emails, affidavits, Village engineering and Illinois Environmental Protection Agency reports and form letters.

 

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