Monday, April 19, 2010



If you live in District 6, you can be proud of your County Board Representatives: Mary McCann, Dan Ryan, Randy Donley and Ersel Schuster. On Thursday at the Committee of the Whole Meeting for the County Board, the District 6 Representatives stood united and presented a MINORITY REPORT in their objection to the proposed McHenry County Land Use Plan as is and introduced five amendments that effectively FIX most of the problems. In an impressive show of representative unity, they jointly spoke for their constituents on the issues of farmland preservation, water recharge protection and compact, contiguous development.

Among other things the amendments require that the Sensitive Aquifer Recharge Areas map be used in future rezoning decisions (Fourth Amendment) and that the productivity of farmland be determined by use of the entire LESA assessment tool rather than just by the LE score of the soils (Third Amendment). The Fifth Amendment offers a much more reasonable map for Future Land Use than the currently recommended one in the Plan.

THESE PEOPLE NEED OUR SUPPORT NOW. Not all the other members of the County Board were thrilled with these amendments. In fact, some are downright opposed and working to prevent them from even reaching the floor.

IT IS TIME TO CALL ALL COUNTY BOARD MEMBERS AND TELL THEM YOU WANT THE AMENDMENTS TO PASS IN THEIR ENTIRETY! Call District 6 members to thank them. Call the others to tell them you support District 6 amendments. Go to the ALAW web site for the Minority Report and list of County Board members contact information.

Thursday, April 1, 2010


Comments are posted on the 2030 web site at

At their March 18 meeting, Planning And Development committee did NOT review any of over 300 public comments, indicating that they had heard it all before, and weren't interested. Chair, Tina Hill had said she planned to revisit some technical comments at the next meeting at the April 1 meeting. APRIL FOOLS! NO DISCUSSION OF COMMENTS, THE JOKE'S ON US. WONDER HOW MUCH TAX $$ WENT INTO THOSE WASTED PUBLIC MEETINGS THAT WE ALL DILIGENTLY ATTENDED? Time to call your "other" county board members. They will vote at the County Board Meeting on April 20. Click here to find the list on the ALAW web site.
The following County Board members are on the P&D Committee: Lynn Orphal, (815) 455-0303; Mary Donner, (815) 459-5954; Tina Hill (Chair), (815) 347-4222; Marc Munaretto, (815) 385-5590; Sue Draffkorn (815)653-6057; Randy Donley, (815) 790-9435; Ersel Schuster, (815) 338-2207.

Thursday, February 11, 2010


Below you will find the dates and locations of the public comment sessions for the McHenry County 2030 Land Use Plan. This is the last opportunity the public will have to comment and suggest changes to the plan. The entire press release from the county follows. If you have concerns about your property or the consequences of the plan in general, please make a point of getting to one of these meetings to say so. The P&D Committee of the County board has been much more receptive to public comment than the Planning Commission was, and will make some final changes based on your comments during these sessions. Make sure they know what YOU want changed. This is your plan for the next twenty years.

Monday, March 1 at McHenry Township Town Hall, 3703 Richmond Rd., Johnsburg, 5:00 – 7:00 p.m.
Tuesday, March 2, at Harvard Junior High School Music Room and Cafeteria, 1301 Garfield St., Harvard, 5:00 – 7:00 p.m.
Wednesday, March 3, at MCC Lobby near Conference Center and Cafeteria and Large Breakout Room, 8900 US Hwy 14, Crystal Lake, IL 5:00 – 7:00 p.m.
Thursday, March 4, Marengo High School Teacher work room and study hall, 110 Franks Rd., Marengo, 5:00 – 7:00p.m.
Saturday, March 6, McHenry County Administration Building Rooms A,B,C, 667 Ware Rd., Woodstock, 9:00 a.m. – noon.

Comments may also be submitted via email to or in writing to: McHenry County 2030 Plan, Department of Planning and Development, McHenry County Government Center, 2200 North Seminary Avenue, Woodstock, IL 60098. All comments must be received by 4:30 PM, Monday, March 8, 2010.
The P&D Draft 2030 Plan February 2010 document is available to review on the 2030 Plan website: It will also be available for review at The McHenry County Board Planning and Development Committee will be conducting the final public review meetings on the McHenry County 2030 Comprehensive Plan during the first week in March.
Participants may arrive at any time during the open house style meetings. A short overview presentation will be provided every 30 minutes. Participants will also have an opportunity to review the Plan and engage in one-on-one discussion with members of the P&D Committee. Participants will be able to submit verbal and written comments during the meetings.
local libraries and at the McHenry County Department of Planning and Development. A limited number of printed Plans will be available for distribution on a first come first served basis at the Department of Planning and Development. Please call (815) 334-4560 ext. 1 to ensure availability.
An analysis of potential areas to change on the future land Use map and comments from the County Board members representing District 6 will also available on the 2030Plan website.

Monday, February 1, 2010

2030 Plan Going Out to Public for Comment Again

The Planning and Development Committee of the County Board has finished its review of the 2030 plan and will be setting dates and locations for the final public viewing soon. P&D was much more responsive to public comment than the RPC was. They agreed to reduce the population projection from 540,000 to 495,000 and have kept to that in spite of pressure to restore the larger number. Map changes that reflect the reduced population will be made AFTER public comment rounds. Suggestions and requests will be considered. It is very important that we have a good turnout at these sessions. This is your last chance to be heard before the plan goes to the county board for a vote. We will post here as soon as we know when and where.

Check out the ALAW web site for information on the Conflicts Disclosure Ordinance before the County Board. All but seven of the county board candidates have filed voluntary disclosures of their interests with ALAW. All the disclosures are posted.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Update on 2030 Plan Progress and Disclosure Ordinance

The 2030 Plan is still under review in the Planning and Development Committee of the County Board but almost completed. As soon as dates for public review and comment are set, we will post those. Map changes necessitated by the population reduction will not be undertaken until public review is completed, so that any individual concern that can be resolved with a map change can be addressed. So, do not let the fact that this has gone on for so long discourage you. If you have an issue with the plan and the map please attend the public review and make yourself heard. It may seem like we are not making progress at times, but in the long view, some good things have been accomplished. Don't underestimate the power of public input. The next P&D meeting is January 21, 2010 at 8:30 am.

The ALAW Disclosure Ordinance is still awaiting an opinion from the States Attorney's office. But several candidates for County Board in the Feb 2. primary have voluntarily filed disclosure statements with ALAW. The view these and keep updated on the ALAW Disclosure ordinance go to the ALAW web site through the link on the right or

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

ALAW Presents Conflict of Interest Ordinance to County Board

To: County Board Chair Kenneth Koehler, Honorable County Board Members:
From: Alliance for Land, Agriculture and Water (ALAW)
Re: Restoration of the Public Trust

“Transparency in Government” has become a heavily used phrase. It is popping up in the news media, better government groups and in conversations between county residents. Illinois has recently upgraded its Freedom of Information Act and Open Meetings Act. Declarations of openness and transparency are campaign issues for candidates for upcoming elections.

The perception that public officials commonly violate the public trust, by placing personal gain over their duty to their constituents, is insidious and has recently gained momentum here in McHenry County. This creates a climate of distrust, dissatisfaction and speculation that is harmful to all county residents and unfair to those public officials who are brought under suspicion simply by virtue of their office.

We think it is time to put a stop to this. ALAW attorneys researched and compiled pertinent ordinances from other governmental entities in the state and nationwide, and used them as a basis for this proposed McHenry County Economic Interests and Conflicts of Interest Disclosure Ordinance that we present to you today on behalf of your constituents.

Its purpose is to restore the confidence of McHenry County residents in their elected and appointed officials, by clarifying their responsibility of fair and transparent representation in the best interest of their constituents, and by requiring up-front disclosure of economic interests that could result in a conflict.

This ordinance is not intended to replace the current filing requirements under state law
(5 ILCS 4/A), but to enact financial disclosure requirements that require more information than currently required, as permitted by state law (5 ILCS 4/A-101). Nor is this ordinance intended to replace the provisions of McHenry County Board Rules Section 5, Ethics and Conduct, but to enhance and complement that section.

We urge you to consider this ordinance as a preemptive strike against accusations of self-dealing, to view this as an opportunity for McHenry County to lead by example, and to send this ordinance through the proper procedures to expedite its adoption before the February 2nd 2010 primaries.

We understand from talking to a few of you that the proper committee for this ordinance is Management Services. We therefore respectfully request that Management Services place this ordinance on their next agenda.

Thank you for your consideration,
Respectfully submitted,
Emily Berendt,
Alliance for Land Agriculture and Water (ALAW)
PO Box 1021, Woodstock. IL

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

2030 Plan Progress Update/J. Daleiden incites Koehler response

The County Board's Planning and Development Committee has completed one pass at the 2030 draft plan and will be starting to discuss actual changes at their next meeting on December 3rd at 8:30 am.
Committee member Munaretto has identified several paragraphs and policies for reconsideration.
So far we have held on to the population reduction of 45,000 people. We expect that may be raised again in future meetings.
On another note, if you missed J. Daleiden's letter in the Herald you can still find it with a search on the Herald site for "Biased 2030 Plan". AND you can find Mr. Koehler's response in the Herald today under opinions. The comments that follow each letter are important parts of the whole picture. When you are limited to 200 words its tough to tell a story. Unless you are Mr. Koehler and then you get 270 words. It's good to be king....