Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Algonquin Urges Shoppers To "Bring Your Own Bag" In October

Today's the first day of Bring Your Own Bag Month in Algonquin with a dozen big stores signed up to support it and more likely, according to organizers.

The Village of Algonquin and the BYOBag Committee of the Environmental Defenders of McHenry County: plan a conservation effort in the Village all through October to reduce the use of plastic shopping bags by promoting the use of reusable ones.  "We did a survey over the weekend," said BYOB organizer Cynthia Kanner, "and we'll do another one next month at the same sites to see if the program had any impact."

Odds are, she said, it will.  "When we asked people if they shopped with reusable bags some of the said they'd forgotten them and ran back to their cars to get them," said Kanner.

Participating stores will have banners and signs to remind customers to carry reusable bags.  On Algonquin's East Side, the stores so far include Butera, Jewel/Osco, Dollar General and Walgreens.  Stores across the river include Joe Caputo's, Trader Joe's, Best Buy, Walmart, Target, Meijer, Jewel, and Cardinal Wine & Spirits.

The BYOB people also have survey going online.  It's located at: www.byobagsurveydefenders.org

In the pic: Environmental Defenders of McHenry County volunteers hope to enroll more Algonquin businesses in the BYOB program.

THIS WEEK'S HEADLINES

scroll down for stories
Algonquin Urges Shoppers To "Bring Your Own Bag" In October
Tomaso Breakfast Planned Saturday In Huntley
LITH PD Women's Safety Series Begins Next Week
Appellate Judges Rule State Owes Workers For Raises Promised
Quinn Claims Obamacare Credit, Campaign Blasts Rauner Video
Obituaries
Police Blotters
Huntley PD Equips With Heroin Overdose Rescue Kits
Local Rotary To Bring Fall Carnival To Lake In The Hills
LITH Free Document Shredding Planned Saturday
Sponsor Charges GOP Had Plenty Of Input On School Aid Bill
Rauner Warns Against "Dark Of Night" Tax Increase
Obituaries
Police Blotters
U of C Confucius Institute Shutdown Won't Effect D158 Program
Autumn Leaves:  The Reason They Call It Fall
Algonquin Plant Workers Harvest Garden For Food Pantry
Durbin, Kirk Call For FAA Sabotage Investigation
Police Blotters
Algonquin Main Lib To  Close Wednesday Through Friday For Paving
Huntley Fall Fest Heads Into Final Day
FEN May Be Bigger Than Two Thirds of Chicago Area Weeklies
LITH Board Honors Eagle Scout For Bark Park Agility Course
Local Church Kids Prepare School Kits For Overseas Students
Huntley Businesses Support HHS Athletics Program
Foreign Buyers To Rove State Monday In Annual Grain Tour
McHenry County Indictments
Police Blotters
Algonquin Township Assessments Appeals Deadline Oct. 24
Indian Summer Day Expected For Huntley Fall Fest Saturday
Huntley High Announces Latest College AP Scholars
Some Saturday Flights Still Canceled After Friday Chicago Shutdown
Latest Claim: Blago-Appointed Burris Asked For Bribe
Obituaries
Police Blotters
McHenry County Unemployment Drops To 5 Percent Mark
Ninth Huntley Fall Fest All Dressed Up, Ready To Go
Huntley Board OK's Plan To "Button Up" Historic Hotel
News Report Finds Rauner Investment Firm Bought Dozen Duds
Police Blotters
KDOT Recommends Full 4-Lane Longmeadow Bridge Near Algonquin
ALFDP Board OK's Independent Pensions Study
Fall Drug Takeback Event Saturday At Local PD's
"No Retaliation" Claimed In Latest Treasurer's Office Scandal
IDOT "Staff Assistant" Firings Put On Hold Until Judge Decides
Police Blotters

Tomaso Breakfast Planned Saturday In Huntley

Huntley's American Legion will hold a Carl Tomaso Celebration of Life breakfast Saturday at the Legion Hall starting at 9 am.  A $10 donation gets a heaping breakfast buffet featuring scrambled eggs, bacon, sausage, biscuit 'n' gravy, fresh fruit salad, juice, coffee and deserts.  It'll also help support Operation Comfort Warrior for "nonessential" items and recreational activities of patients at military hospitals and transition units.

Reservations for the breakfast honoring Huntley's late sparkplug Village Manager are available here: http://www.huntley.il.us/documents/CelebrationBreakfast2014.pdf

In the pic:  "Coach" Carl Tomaso

LITH PD Women's Safety Series Begins Next Week

A free three-week program about the threats and safety challenges women face today will begin in a week at Lake in the Hills PD's Safety Education Center on Crystal Lake Road.  The three sessions next Wednesday, Oct 15 and 22 will be from 6:30 to 8:30 pm except the last which will run until 9:30.

Areas to be covered will include social/personal safety, social media safety, domestic and dating violence, sexual assault and stalking and defensive tactics.  Since some of the material includes "sensitive" topics, signups are limited to women 17 and older.  To reserve a seat email LITH Deputy Chief Mary Frake at mfrake@lith.org or Sergeant Sean Feely at sfeely@lith.org

Appellate Judges Rule State Owes Workers For Raises Promised

In a decision announced Tuesday the Illinois First District Appellate Court ruled the State has to pay another $62 million it owes employees of five agencies even though the Legislature didn’t set aside enough money for it.  A promise is a promise, concluded the three judge panel.  "If the State seeks to make the contract contingent on appropriation, it must make that contingency explicit in the contract," wrote Judge P. Scott Neville.

Over a year ago an independent arbitrator ruled the State had to to pay $112 million in raises to employees of  the departments of Corrections, Public Health, Juvenile Justice, Natural Resources and Human Services after the General Assembly had balked because the State didn't have enough money.  This Summer legislators passed a supplemental appropriation to pay the July 2011 to July 2013 wage hikes but that still covered less than half the total bill.

"Today's decision is a win for working men and women who serve all the people of Illinois, caring for the disabled, keeping prisons safe, maintaining our state parks and much more," said AFSCME Council 31 executive director Roberta Lynch. "A contract is a contract, it means what it says, and no employer—not state government or anyone else—can unilaterally withhold wages owed."

Quinn Claims Obamacare Credit, Campaign Blasts Rauner Video

Governor Pat Quinn took the credit Tuesday for 52 percent more residents than expected signing up during the first year of ACA Obamacare enrollment in Illinois. “Today, more than 685,000 people have access to healthcare who didn’t have it just one year ago," said Quinn during an appearance at a medical facility in Chicago's Pilsen neighborhood.

The bulk (468,000) of the enrollments were new Illinois Medicaid signups, however, and Tuesday the Chicago Sun-Times uncovered a March smartphone video of  Quinn's GOP opponent Bruce Rauner telling Lake County conservatives he'd have vetoed the expansion if he'd been governor.  "We have a massive problem in our Medicaid system in Illinois," said Rauner in the recording from November. "It’s full of corruption and abuse, and we are facing a problem that will dwarf our pension problem in about four or five years with our Medicaid system."

The Quinn campaign seized the video as another excuse to beat up Rauner. “Just like Rauner’s other heartless proposals, like eliminating the minimum wage and slashing funding for public schools, Rauner’s plan to deny healthcare coverage to those who need it the most would hurt working families,” said Quinn campaign spokeswoman Brooke Anderson.

Obituaries

Wilma Jean Cooley, 90, of Algonquin died Monday at Sherman Hospital in Elgin.  Funeral Services will be private.   

Leroy Barry Wilson
, 90, of Lake In The Hills died Saturday at Advocate Sherman West Court in Elgin.   Funeral services will be private. 

Police Blotters

The filing of charges is not proof of guilt. A defendant charged is presumed innocent and is entitled to a fair trial in which it is the state’s burden to prove his or her guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.  For individuals subsequently found not guilty or nolle prossed, FEN will add a notation here upon submission of a court record.
Lake in the Hills
September 30
0936 HRS ALGONQUIN RD. & PYOTT RD.  DRIVING WHILE LICENSE SUSPENDED.  WORTHINGTON, CLIFORD,  M/W 50 YEARS OF AGE, 15N350 ROUTE 25,  EAST DUNDEE.  CHARGES: Driving While License Suspended and Improper Lane Usage.  TURNED OVER TO MCHENRY COUNTY JAIL.
0541 HRS ROUTE 31 & TRINITY DR. INFORMATION FOR POLICE.  Contact with a registered sex offender.
1307 HRS 0 BLOCK OF MIDDLEFIELD CT.  THEFT.  Two extension ladders taken.  TURNED OVER TO INVESTIGATIONS.
1352 HRS 3000 BLOCK OF RONAN DR.  HARASSMENT BY PHONE.  Harassment by phone.  FAIL TO FILE.
1422 HRS 220 N.  RANDALL RD.  (MORETTI’S).  BURGLARY TO A MOTOR VEHICLE.  Briefcase and miscellaneous papers taken from locked vehicle. Passenger side window was broken.
1427 HRS 1300 BLOCK OF JEFFERSON ST.  INFORMATION FOR POLICE.  Attempted to serve an Order of Protection. A rifle and machete were secured and entered into Evidence.
1500 HRS 323 N. RANDALL RD. (FUNKY MUNKY).  THEFT.  Theft of a $500 chair from the front of the store.  TURNED OVER TO INVESTIGATIONS.

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Huntley PD Equips With Heroin Overdose Rescue Kits

All of Huntley PD's patrol and community service officers will be equipped with narcotic overdose kits starting Wednesday, according to a Monday announcement.  "The impact of heroin is no longer exclusive to the inner city of Chicago," said Deputy Chief Mike Klunk who said it's becoming a problem in, "those nearby suburbs such as ours in Kane and McHenry Counties."

"Kane County reported seven  heroin related deaths in 2010," Klunk said. "That number increased exponentially to 26 in 2012," he said.  Klunk said there' haven't been any in in Huntley yet but added, "We've had several overdoses where the kits would have been useful."

According to Klunk the first group of officers trained to use the kits has already been on the streets for a week.  Each drug kit contains two doses of nasal-sprayed Narcan, an opioid antagonist.  That's a substance that binds to the same internal receptors as heroin and morphine but without those drugs' nasty side-effect of sometimes making victims forget to breathe. 

"The availability of Narcan helps first responders increase the chance of survival of an overdose patient," Klunk said.

In the pic:  HPD overdose kits administer Narcan through the nose.

Local Rotary To Bring Fall Carnival To Lake In The Hills

The  Lake in the Hills Rotary Club this morning formally announced a Fall Carnival in the ex-Dominick's parking area on Randall Road in two weeks.  The LITH Board OK'ed the event from October 10 through  12 two weeks ago.  It'll be the first time for LITH Rotary to sponsor a Fall Carnival.   Besides the carnival rides and games, during the day, there'll be facepainting for children and Jacobs High School (Rotary sponsored) Interact students dressed up as kid-friendly characters.  Local cucurbit center Dave’s Pumpkins will provide Fall decorations as well as pumpkins available for purchase.

Proceeds from the carnival will help support the club's community organization efforts and local needs like the visits it sponsors by the NIFB Mobile Food Pantry.

LITH Free Document Shredding Planned Saturday

Saturday will be doc shredding day again  for Lake in the Hills residents at LITH Village Hall.  From 9 to Noon villagers can bring any paper documents that they would liked to have professionally confettied by local LITH records destructor AMS Store and Shred.  Telltale papers will go into 95 gallon AMS totes and then be locked up.  At the end of the day, company workers will take the secure totes back to their facility for a run through the form's industrial shredder.  It's the sort of thing AMS does for a living but Saturday for LITH residents there'll be no charge.

Sponsor Charges GOP Had Plenty Of Input On School Aid Bill

The State Senator behind a plan to revise Illinois' school aid funding formula lashed out Monday at a Republican resolution backed by McHenry County State Reps. opposing it.  State Sen. Andy Manar.  "Illinois cannot have an island of well-funded schools," he said, "and an ocean of others that are not."

Manar spend about half of a 20-minute news conference in Springfield reviewing in exhaustive detail the history of SB 16 which passed the Senate this Spring but was never made it to a vote in the House.  He derided what he said were GOP claims the bill "just fell out of the sky and onto school districts." 

Nevertheless,  a House Resolution entitled "Don't Pass SB16" co-sponsored by Mike Tryon, Dave Mcsweeney and Barb Wheeler now has 17 other sponsors including two Democrats.  State Rep. Ron Sandack (R-Downers Grove) introduced the resolution two weeks ago complaining, “In its current form, SB16 strips the districts in this area of most of their general state aid dollars and channels most of the money to the Chicago Public School System.”

House GOP leaders like Jim Durkin (R-Westmont) fear Democrats will force a revised measure through their chamber after the November Election.   Durkin especially worries House Speaker Mike Madigan may try to offload the State's teacher pension costs onto local school districts.  "Homeowners in the suburbs and downstate will need to brace ourselves for the massive property tax increases," if that happens, he said.

In the pic:  State Sen Andy Manar defending his school aid plan Monday.

Rauner Warns Against "Dark Of Night" Tax Increase

Republican governor candidate Bruce Rauner Monday called on State legislative leaders to refuse to hear any proposals on taxes until after a new set of lawmakers take office in January. “Do not allow folks to take a tough vote and then get sweetheart deals and sweetheart jobs,” he warned at a Chicago bakery photo op.

Rauner admonition came after Gov. Pat Quinn last week told the Arlington Heights Daily Herald he'd push lawmakers to renew his soon-to-fall temporary State income tax increase.  “It’s going to happen in 2014, in November and December,” Quinn told the newspaper. “The legislature comes back in Nov. 19, and they’re going to have to take a look at what I proposed and realize that that is the best way to go."

Democrats raised the personal income tax rate from three percent to five during the January 2011 lame duck session only hours before new lawmakers were sworn into office.  “Do not put through an income tax hike on working families in Illinois and small businesses everywhere in the dark of night, quickly with General Assembly members who are not going to be serving,” Rauner said.

Later Quinn said Rauner's plan to let the increase expire was, “irresponsible.”

In the pic:  Rauner and running mate Evelyn Sanguinetti  at a Chicago bakery for some reason Monday.

Obituaries

George H. Finzel, 88, of Huntley died Sunday at Autumn Leaves in Crystal Lake.  Visitation will be Wednesday from 4 to 7 pm with a 6:45 wake service at the James A. O'Connor Funeral Home, Huntley and will continue Thursday at St. Mary Church, Huntley from 9 am until a 10 o'clock Mass of Christian Burial.  Interment will be in St. Mary Cemetery, Huntley.

 Finzelwas born in Hampshire on June 19, 1926, the son of Henry and Dorothea (Gehringer) Finzel. On Feb. 26, 1949, he married Yolanda Gavanus in Huntley.  He is survived by his wife; children, Ronald (Estelle) Finzel of Casa Grande, AZ, Jean (Todd) Turner of German Valley, IL, Joan Rasmussen of Elgin and Steven (Annamaria) Finzel of Woodstock; grandchildren, Heidi, Joshua, Tobi, Jamie, Julie, Alicia and Stephanie, sister, Marie (Don) Herschlag.

He was preceded in death by his parents and sisters, Margaret (Joseph) Hemmer, Cora (Harold) Herrmann, Amelia (Fred) Robbins.

In lieu of flowers, memorials in his name may be directed to Alzheimer's Association, St. Mary Church or to Heartland Hospice.

Lenora Ebert Eineke, 92, of Belvidere Il., formerly from Algonquin, died at her home Sunday.   Visitation will be Wednesday at the Laird Funeral Home in  Elgin from 4 to 8 pm, continuing Thursday.at St. John's Lutheran Church, Algonquin, from 10 am until a service at 11.  Interment will be at Lakewood Memorial Park in Elgin.

Eineke was Born in Alden to Walter and Freida (Hass) Ebert on April 10, 1922. She married Arthur Eineke on Jan 2, 1942.  She is survived by her children, Gene (Char) Eineke of Algonquin, Garland (Beverly) Eineke of South Elgin, Glenn (Christine) Eineke of Kirkland, and Geri (Randall) Clark of Belvidere,  12 grandchildren and  stepsister Peggy (William) Bodmer of Pemoke, GA.  She was preceded in death by her husband, 13 brothers and sisters, Grace (Reuben) Schultz, Ruth (Henry) Radloff, Melvin (Edna) Ebert, Donald (Catherine) Ebert, Mark (Ruth) Ebert, Jeanette Ebert, Hazel (Richard) Henning, Laurence Ebert, Walter Ebert Jr., Leslie (Peggy) Ebert, Lyle (Marvel) Ebert and Norman (Wanda) Ebert, stepbrother Thomas O'Neil, and grandson Kevin Eineke.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to St. John's Lutheran Church in Algonquin.

Police Blotters

The filing of charges is not proof of guilt. A defendant charged is presumed innocent and is entitled to a fair trial in which it is the state’s burden to prove his or her guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.  For individuals subsequently found not guilty or nolle prossed, FEN will add a notation here upon submission of a court record.
Lake in the Hills
September 29
0649 HRS 1300 BLOCK OF CUNAT CT.  CHILD ENDANGERMENT.   MCNULTY, RACHEL L.,  F/W 23 YEARS OF AGE, 1380 CUNAT CT. UNIT 1B,  LAKE IN THE HILLS.  CHARGE: One Count of Child Endangerment.  RELEASED ON BOND.
1310 HRS 100 BLOCK OF WOODY WAY.  INFORMATION FOR POLICE.  Contact with a registered sex offender.
1436 HRS 800 BLOCK OF E. OAK ST. BURGLARY FROM MOTOR VEHICLE. Global Positioning System and $50 in change taken from vehicle.  TURNED OVER TO INVESTIGATIONS.
1604 HRS 700 BLOCK OF WHITE PINE CT.  SUSPICIOUS INCIDENT.  Items left on complainant’s vehicle.
2306 HRS 0 BLOCK OF SHOAL CREEK CT.  DOMESTIC.  Husband vs. Wife. Verbal only. One prior.  Male subject served Full Emergency Order of Protection.
Algonquin
September 26
13:55pm A 13 year-old male from Algonquin was charged with Battery. He was taken into custody at his residence. He was referred to the Tri Area Court for Teens and released to his mother.
13:55pm Villa, Rosa, DOB: 08/29/75, of 711 Southwind Dr., Carpentersville, was charged with No Valid Driver’s License and Improper turn at Intersection. She was taken into custody at Route 31 and Main St. She was released with a Notice to Appear 10/29/14 in McHenry County.
20:55om A 17 year-old female from Algonquin, was charged with Possession of Alcohol, she was taken into custody at APD. She was issued a Notice to Appear with a court date of 10/29/2014 in Algonquin and released to her parents.
September 27
09:04am Barraza, Melissa, DOB: 04/09/96,k of 601 Brook St., Elgin, was charged with Obstructing a Police Officer, Criminal Trespass to Residence, Unlawful Possession of Cannabis and was wanted on a warrant out of McHenry County for Battery. She was taken into custody at 1340 Ivy Ln. She was unable to post bond on any of the charges and was transported to the McHenry County Jail.
16:07pm Cour, George J., DOB: 01/21/50, of 13165 Michigan Ave., Huntley, was charged with DUI, DUI BAC Over .08, Leaving the Scene of an Accident, Transportation of Alcohol and Failure to Reduce Speed. He was taken into Custody at Algonquin Rd and Randall Rd. He was released after posting $100 and his DL with a court date of 11/06/14 in McHenry County.
19:54pm Croson, Jacob T., DOB: 08/08/95, of 350 McHenry Ave., Woodstock, was charged with Unlawful Consumption of Alcohol and Unlawful Possession of Drug Paraphernalia. He was taken into custody at 100 E. Algonquin Rd. He was issued a Notice to Appear with a court date of 10/29/2014 in Algonquin.
September 28
07:58am Lucio, Robert Lee, DOB: 07/20/95, of 2917 Talaga Dr., Algonquin, was charged with Zero Tolerance, Failure to Reduce Speed and Unlawful possession of Alcohol by a Minor. He was taken into custody at 2909 Talaga Dr. He was released with a Notice to Appear 10/28/14 in McHenry County and a Notice to Appear with a court date of 10/29/2014 in Algonquin for the Unlawful Possession of Alcohol.
Huntley
September 22
A 16 year-old boy from Huntley was charged with possession of drug paraphernalia at Huntley High School. The juvenile was released to his mother and will be petitioned into McHenry County Juvenile Court.
A delayed battery report was taken in the 10500 block of Casselberry North. The victim states a cup filled with liquid was thrown at him from the window of a moving vehicle.
September 23
A 18 year-old man from Bloomingdale was arrested for distribution of harmful material stemming from an incident in the 11400 block of Bethel Ave. The man was a juvenile at the time of the offense and will be petitioned into McHenry juvenile court.
Sondra S. Bosket, age 43, of 11900 Cape Cod Lane, Huntley, was arrested for domestic battery at her residence. Ms. Bosket was transported to McHenry County Jail to await bond call.
September 24
A theft report was taken at a store in the 12300 block of Rt. 47. A merchandise vendor reported that his iPad was stolen while making a delivery.
Nikolas B. Clinge, age 19, of 314 Harvest Gate, Lake in the Hills, was arrested for driving with no valid driver’s license and loud muffler. Mr. Clinge posted bond and was released with a McHenry County court date of October 10, 2014.
September 25
Bobbie Jean Haefke, age 39, of 20505 Demings Dr., Marengo, was arrested for driving while license suspended and display of expired registration. Ms. Haefke posted bond and was released with a McHenry County court date of November 7, 2014.
Jeremy G. Stokes, age 24, of 11602 E. Main St. Upper, Huntley, was arrested on an outstanding McHenry County warrant for domestic battery. Mr. Stokes was transported to McHenry County jail to await bond call.
A theft report was taken in the 13100 block of Cold Springs Dr. An iPad along with its case and charger were reported stolen from the residence.
A 14 year-old boy was charged with criminal damage to property stemming from an incident that occurred in the 10700 block of Santa Fe. The juvenile was released to his parents and will attend peer jury.
September 26
A theft report was taken at a store in the 9900 block of Rt. 47. The victim states that her phone was stolen while shopping in the store.
A theft of a cell phone report was taken at Huntley High School. A student stated that her cell phone was stolen during the school day.
September 28
A criminal damage to property report was taken in the 11700 block of Powder Park Rd. Two trucks had their windows damaged.
A criminal damage to property report was taken in the 10500 block of Casselberry North. A window screen was damaged.
Juan G. Arellano, age 21, of 10767 Oregon Trl., Huntley, was arrested on an outstanding McHenry County warrant for mob action. Mr. Arellano posted bond and was released with a McHenry County court date of October 9, 2014.
Gino Adrian B. Jansalin, age 22, of 3743 Sonoma Circle, Lake in the Hills, and Carla M. Solomon, age 22, of 10665 Grand Canyon, Huntley, were both charged with retail theft at a store in the 12300 block of Rt. 47. Both subjects were released with a notice to appear in McHenry County court on October 27, 2014.

Monday, September 29, 2014

U Of C Confucius Institute Shutdown Won't Affect D158 Program

Officials this morning said the University of Chicago's shutdown of its Confucius Institute program will not affect on D 158's allied Chinese language Confucius Classroom.  Negotiations about renewing the U of C's program broke down late Thursday after months of criticism that the Confucius program is really a People's Republic of China propaganda effort.

"Ours is through Michigan State University," said Board of Education President Don Drzal.  "It won't affect us."

At the U of C  more than 100 professors signed a petition in April charging the University didn't have enough control over hiring and training Confucius teachers and calling for the program's shutdown.  In June, the American Association of University Professors called on universities to either renegotiate Confucius contracts or shut the programs down.

The Confucius Institute program is overseen by Hanban, the Office of Chinese Language Council International, but that's "affiliated" with the People's Republic's Ministry of Education.  Charges of Manchurian Candidate-style brainwashing are missing but academic critics complain so's any mention of Chinese problems like the continuing occupation of Tibet, suppression of the Falun Gong religious sect and anti-democracy events like the Tiananmen Square massacre 25 years ago.  “North American universities permit Confucius Institutes to advance a state agenda in the recruitment and control of academic staff, in the choice of curriculum, and in the restriction of debate,” read the AAUP's statement.

Huntley along with Barrington and Lake Forest are among a handful of Illinois school districts with middle and high school Confucius classrooms.  D158's been offering Mandarin language instruction since 2008 but joined Confucius program three years ago.  When FEN spoke with Superintendent John Burkey about it earlier this Summer he said, "We provide the curriculum.  They just provide the instructor."

In fact, as far as D158's Confucius Classroom's concerned, if there's any propaganda going on in Huntley, it might work the other way around.  One of the projects Confucius Classroom students have been working on is translating Village Economic Development materials to lure Chinese businesses to locate there.

In the pic:  In contrast to the University of Chicago, Valparaiso University of Chicago celebrated the 10th anniversary of Confucius Institutes Saturday.

Autumn Leaves: The Reason They Call It Fall

Free leaf collection through Dec. 15 will begin Wednesday for Algonquin residents.   During the same period, the Village's new waste hauler, Groot, will provide free pickup of branches, too.

All leaves have to be in standard paper yard waste bags or reusable 32-gallon trash containers clearly marked with a big red "X" to indicate yard waste. The branches have to be tied in bundles not more than four feet long and two feet in diameter. Grass clippings and other yard waste (such as sod, dirt, or woodchips) will require a collection sticker.

Tuesday will be the final day for Algonquin Village refunds on leftover Waste Management stickers.  Village Hall will remain open until 7 pm Tuesday to provide immediate refunds for up to individual stickers or 4 complete sheets.  The Village will accept quantities even larger but the refunds will be in check form to be  mailed in late October.

In Huntley leaves are included in the monthly service fee for yard waste materials through Nov. 30.  However, Huntley Public Works Department's semi-annual curbside tree branch pickup was due to begin today. This week the department will pick up branches north of Kreutzer.  Next week will be the ones to the south.  Branch collection crews will only make one pass in each neighborhood  but there'll be a one time only Saturday drop off for residents  Oct. 11 at the Public Works facility on Donald Drive from 8 am to Noon.

Lake in the Hills landscape waste (grass, leaves and branches up to 3.5 inches in diameter) will continue to be picked up on normal waste collection days through November 30.

Algonquin Plant Workers Harvest Garden For Food Pantry

Workers at Algonquin's Wastewater Treatment Facility plan to make another delivery Tuesday to the Algonquin Lake in the Hills Interfaith Food Pantry from the garden they've been tending at the plant all Summer.  "[Chief Wastewater Operator] Ed Brown and his team at the Wastewater Treatment Facility have once again done an outstanding job this year," said Utilities Superintendent Andy Warmus.  "We have reached approximately 1,200 pounds of veggies to date, surpassing last year's total of 900 pounds."

Wastewater workers volunteer to take care of the garden on their lunch hours.  This is the third year the Algonquin workers have cultivated a garden to benefit the Food Pantry.

Durbin, Kirk Call For FAA Sabotage Investigation

Illinois Sen. Dick Durbin said Sunday he'll call for an investigation into how a contract employee could sabotage an FAA control center shutting down flights to both Chicago airports.  Sen. Mark Kirk said he wanted an immediate review of the FAA screening procedures and a report within 30 days about how to fix them.

Brian Howard, 36, of Naperville set fire to the regional control center in Aurora Friday forcing cancellation of more than 2,000 flights. Durbin said FAA Administrator Michael Huerta told him that 23 of 29 computer racks were damaged, and the FAA said Sunday that it would have to replace the entire central communications network at the center.

FAA spokeswoman Elizabeth Cory said improvements were expected on today bit the the system still wouldn't be fully functional.

The Aurora facility handles planes at high altitudes passing through Chicago air space as well as those beginning to approach or finishing a departure from from Ohare and Midway. Its responsibilities have been transferred, for the time being, to centers in Cleveland, Indianapolis, Kansas City and Minneapolis.

Police Blotters

The filing of charges is not proof of guilt. A defendant charged is presumed innocent and is entitled to a fair trial in which it is the state’s burden to prove his or her guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.  For individuals subsequently found not guilty or nolle prossed, FEN will add a notation here upon submission of a court record.
Lake in the Hills
September 28
0130 HRS 5400 BLOCK OF CHANCERY WAY.  DOMESTIC BATTERY.  BOND, BRITTANEY E.,  F/W 22 YEARS OF AGE, 5461 CHANCERY WAY, LAKE IN THE HILLS.  CHARGES: Two Counts of Domestic Battery.  TRANSPORTED TO MCHENRY COUNTY JAIL.
0438 HRS 00 BLOCK OF W. OAK ST.  DOMESTIC BATTERY.  UNZUETA, OSVALDO,  M/W 30 YEARS OF AGE, 8 W. OAK ST.,  LAKE IN THE HILLS.  CHARGES: Two Counts of Domestic Battery. TRANSPORTED TO MCHENRY COUNTY JAIL.
1608 HRS 9341 PYOTT RD. (BARBARA KEY PARK).  UNLAWFUL PRESENCE IN A PUBLIC PARK.   UNGER, MATTHEW R.,  M/W 32 YEARS OF AGE. 1103 ASH ST.,  LAKE IN THE HILLS.  CHARGE: Unlawful Presence in a Public Park.  RELEASED ON BOND.
2049 HRS 3000 BLOCK OF BALDWIN LN.  DRIVING WHILE LICENSE REVOKED.  GABBERT, JAMES, M/W 31 YEARS OF AGE, 1125 WINDSLOW CIRCLE,  CRYSTAL LAKE. CHARGES: Driving While License Revoked and Unsafe Backing on a Roadway.  RELEASED ON BOND.
1326 HRS 600 BLOCK OF ANDERSON DR.   DOMESTIC.  Ex-Girlfriend vs. Ex-Boyfriend. Verbal only. No priors.
1337 HRS 1000 BLOCK OF BRITTANY BEND.  CRIMINAL DAMAGE TO VEHICLE .  Damage to rear window of vehicle.  TURNED OVER TO INVESTIGATIONS.
1421 HRS 1100 BLOCK OF SWEETWATER RIDGE.  BURGLARY TO MOTOR VEHICLE.  Global Positioning System taken from vehicle.  TURNED OVER TO INVESTIGATIONS.
1955 HRS 2600 BLOCK OF STANTON CIRCLE.  INJURY ACCIDENT.  Three vehicles. Male, 24 years of age, numerous injuries.  Transported to Advocate Condell Medical Center.

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Algonquin Main Lib To Close Wednesday Through Friday For Paving

Algonquin Area Public Library District's Harnish Main Library building, parking lot, and drive-through window while the parking lot undergoes what officials call "a much-needed renovation" will be closed Wednesday, through Friday.  Assuming the weather cooperates, the Main Library will reopen Saturday.

In the meantime, due dates for checked out materials have been adjusted to accommodate the closure and hold pickup deadlines will be extended to work around it, according to library officials.   Full library services will be remain available at AAPLD's Eastgate Branch Library and the District's website (www.aapld.org) will still be online.

Huntley Fall Fest Heads Into Final Day

Huntley's Ninth annual Fall Fest heads into its final day today with a good weather forecast and Free Admission.  The Fest opens today at 11 am with lots of kids activities, the craft show and business expo, model train display, book sale, scarecrow contest, hay rides and, from 1 to 1:45 pm a Culver's Ice Cream eating contest.

Headliners on the Main Stage include this afternoon include the Serendipity all girl band and Chicago-based 7th Heaven, number one on the Midwest Billboard charts twice in the past two years.

Fall Fest ends will close out this year's celebration at 5 pm.

FEN May Be Bigger Than Two Thirds Of Chicago Area Weeklies

A search this week for current Illinois newspaper circulation figures revealed that if the First Electric Newspaper were published on newsprint it would be larger than two thirds of the weeklies in the Chicago area.

The search was for an acquaintance trying to quantify dwindling print newspaper circulation, numbers hard to come by since the former Audit Bureau of Circulation stopped providing free reports two years ago.  FEN eventually found a July report from Schaumburg media broker USSPI.  While there's an apples to oranges element comparing online and print newspapers, the report shows FEN's most recent 5,500 readers per week is greater than the claimed circulation of 47 Chicago metro area weeklies and close to two more in the 70-title total.

Indeed, FEN's "circulation" may be even greater than its meter count indicates.  FEN's service adds up visiting Internet addresses and it was only this week that FEN's often obtuse publisher finally realized that what looks like an unusual number of people reading FEN several times a day might actually represent a bunch of people in the same office reading FEN from a single Internet access point.

The Internet was never planned with local journalism in mind.  FEN's an experiment to figure out how to make it work, anyway.

In the pic:  Based on a neighboring state's contest that FEN's editor recently judged, the First Electric Newspaper's not a bad weekly, either.

LITH Board Honors Eagle Scout For Bark Park Agility Course

The Lake in the Hills Village Board this week recognized Crystal Lake Scout Colin Braun for his Eagle Scout project in LITH's Bark Park. Braun and some helpers from Troop 132 built a dog agility course including jumps, a dog walk, A-frame and teeter at the park with about $1,000 in cash contributions and materials donated by local businesses.

In regular business the Board OK'ed a ground sign on Rakow Road for Riggsby Construction, just not as low as the Planning and Zoning Board had hoped.  According to reports, McHenry County's Division of Transportation wouldn't allow removal of barbed wire from an interfering fence so the sign wouldn't be so high.

In the pic:  Eagle Scout Colin Braun

Local Church Kids Prepare School Kits For Overseas Students

Kids at the Congregational Church of Algonquin worked this weekend to complete 70 bags for School Kits for School Kits to give children in impoverished schools, refugee camps or other difficult settings some of the basic tools for learning.  The congregation held sewing parties and brought in the necessary supplies for the kids to pack.  "It provided a great teaching opportunity about the children that were to receive our bags," said organizer Sally Cope.

In the pic:  Among those making and packing School Kits at the Congregation Church of Algonquin were  Macy Barham, Ella Barham, Adrian Albandia, Jessica Thornsberry and Madison Thornsberry.

Huntley Businesses Support HHS Athletics Program

Local businesses contribute more than most residents realize to schools in the area.  Case in point:  Huntley 7-Eleven business owner, Mohammed Hussan, recently contributed a  $711 check to support Huntley High School's athletics department.

“The coaches and student-athletes are extremely thankful for this kind gift which will be used to enhance the varsity athletics program,” said Athletics Director Chris Rozanski.

Foreign Buyers To Rove State Monday In Annual Grain Tour

Buyers from nine countries will travel to Illinois Monday to shop for grain and grain-related products in the Illinois Department of Agriculture's annual Grain Tour.  The five-day event will include stops at the Archer Daniels Midland plant in Decatur a storage bin plant in Assumption, an ethanol plant in Hennepin, a grain company near Wilmington, the Chicago Board of Trade and Chicago Mercantile Exchange.

Ag officials report the state is the largest producer of soybeans in the U.S. and the nation's second-largest producer of corn and say nearly half of both is exported every year.

The department helps Illinois farmers, agribusinesses, food companies and other agricultural entities develop and expand markets for agricultural products worldwide.  That, spokesmen say, is why the Illinois Department of Agriculture maintains offices not only in Chicago and Springfield, but in Canada, Mexico, Hong Kong and Belgium, too.

In the pic:  The annual grain tour is one of several sponsored each year by the Illinois Department of Agriculture.  This shot's from the Dairy Tour.

McHenry County Indictments

A McHenry County Grand Jury returned indictments this week against the following individuals:  The charges against these defendants are merely allegations against them.  The defendants are presumed innocent of any crime until proven guilty in court. For individuals subsequently found not guilty or nolle prossed, FEN will add a notation here upon their submission of a court record.

CHRISTIAN P. LARSEN, DOB:  07/07/1953, 59 HILLTOP DRIVE, LAKE IN THE HILLS.  THEFT. --McHenry County Sheriff's Office

MAZIN M. AWWAD,  DOB:  08/22/1991, 1418 GRANDVIEW COURT, ALGONQUIN.  ARMED HABITUAL CRIMINAL, UNLAWFUL POSSESSION OF A WEAPON BY A FELON, POSSESSION OF FIREARM WITHOUT FOID, POSSESSION OF AMMUNITION WITHOUT FOID, UNLAWFUL POSSESSION OF CANNABIS. --North Central Narcotics Task Force

JOHN P. REDMOND, DOB:  03/27/1961, 2049 JARVIS AVENUE, CHICAGO.  AGGRAVATED BATTERY. --Woodstock PD

NICHOLAS R. PORCAYO, DOB:  08/09/1996, LKA:  641 RIVER HAVEN DRIVE, DUNDEE.  BRANDON O. MENDEZ, DOB:  12/22/1994, 165 HICKORY STREET, CRYSTAL LAKE.  INTIMIDATION, CRIMINAL TRESPASS TO RESIDENCE. --McHenry County Sheriff's Office

BRIAN L. THUROW, DOB:  07/19/1990, 905 RANDALL COURT, MARENGO.  AGGRAVATED CRIMINAL SEXUAL ABUSE (THREE COUNTS). --Marengo PD

MELISSA R. OHLSON, DOB:  12/02/1977, 230 E. DONOVAN, WOODSTOCK.  RETAIL THEFT. --Crystal Lake PD

LORALI M. RICHARDS, DOB:  04/05/1994, 101 SUNSET DRIVE,  CRYSTAL LAKE.  JAIMIE L. KING, DOB:  08/17/1983, 4809 N. QUEEN ANNE ROAD, WOODSTOCK.  RETAIL THEFT. --Crystal Lake PD
  
JEFFREY J. SACHS, DOB:  12/18/1992, 6209 SANDS ROAD, CRYSTAL LAKE.  BURGLARY, THEFT. --Island Lake PD

PAIGE M. PICKENS, DOB:  09/06/1986, 27685 GREENWOOD, SPRING GROVE.   UNLAWFUL POSSESSION OF A CONTROLLED SUBSTANCE, DRIVING UNDER THE INFLUENCE (TWO COUNTS), UNLAWFUL POSSESSION OF CANNABIS. --McHenry PD

SEBASTIAN G. HOMUTH, DOB:  02/26/1994, 2808 CHERRY DRIVE, WONDER LAKE.  UNLAWFUL POSSESSION OF A CONTROLLED SUBSTANCE (THREE COUNTS), UNLAWFUL POSSESSION OF CANNABIS. --McHenry County Sheriff's Office

Police Blotters

The filing of charges is not proof of guilt. A defendant charged is presumed innocent and is entitled to a fair trial in which it is the state’s burden to prove his or her guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.  For individuals subsequently found not guilty or nolle prossed, FEN will add a notation here upon submission of a court record.
Lake in the Hills
September 27
1730 HRS DENNIS AVE. & ALGONQUIN RD.  DRIVING WHILE LICENSE SUSPENDED.  JUVENILE M/W, 17 YEARS OF AGE, ALGONQUIN.  CHARGES: D riving While License Suspended, Possession of
A Controlled Substance, Possession of Cannabis, Possession of Alcohol by a Minor, Improper Display of Registration, and Operating an Uninsured Motor Vehicle.  RELEASED TO PARENT.
2003 HRS 3800 BLOCK OF WILLOW VIEW DR.  CRIMINAL TRESPASS TO LAND.  LONGMEYER, JEFFREY,  M/W 35 YEARS OF AGE, 1673 LINCOLN MEADOWS,  SCHAUMBURG. CHARGE: Criminal Trespass to Land.  TRANSPORTED TO MCHENRY COUNTY JAIL.
0042 HRS 00 BLOCK OF SHOAL CREEK CT.  DOMESTIC.  Husband vs. Wife. Verbal only. No priors.
0856 HRS 00 BLOCK OF BIRKDALE CT.  DOMESTIC BATTERY.   Husband vs. Wife. No Priors.  FAIL TO FILE.
1005 HRS 1200 BLOCK OF BURR ST.  DOMESTIC.  Ex-Boyfriend vs. Ex-Girlfriend. Verbal only. Three priors.
1418 HRS 1115 CRYSTAL LAKE RD.  (LITH PD).  ASSIST OTHER POLICE AGENCY.  Prescription medication take back day.
1524 HRS 4500 W. ALGONQUIN RD.  (7-ELEVEN).  FOUND ARTICLE.  Credit card found. Returned to owner.
1806 HRS 9358 VIRGINIA RD.  (FOCUS MARTIAL ARTS & FITNESS).  ASSIST AMBULANCE.  Male, seven years of age, possible broken arm.  Transported to Sherman Hospital.
1953 HRS 1300 BLOCK OF CUNAT CT.  DOMESTIC BATTERY.   Boyfriend vs. Girlfriend. No priors.  FAIL TO FILE.

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Algonquin Township Assessments Appeals Deadline Oct. 24

October 24 is the deadline for property tax assessment appeals for Algonquin Township residents.   The Township reassessment list published in the Crystal Lake Northwest Herald Wednesday.  Township Assessor Bob Kunz said there were only about 800 residential changes this year, around half the number from a year ago.

Homeowners can double check this year's equalized assessed value at: http://algonquin.northwoodsoft.com/display/PropertySearch.asp

Forms and instructions for appealing it are located at: https://www.co.mchenry.il.us/home/showdocument?id=30612

Forms and rules for various property tax exemptions are located here:  https://www.co.mchenry.il.us/county-government/departments-a-i/assessments/forms-and-rules

Indian Summer Day Expected For Huntley Fall Fest Saturday

Huntley's Fall Fest celebration was jumping to a jiving beat Friday evening and National Weather Service forecasters call for mostly sunny skies and clement temps for today's full day of festivities.

The day started with Scouts serving their annual pancake breakfast at the Park District Rec Center cafeteria at 7 am.  The Fest itself opens at 10 with the carnival starting up at Noon.  The day's fun includes scarecrow building, a straw maze, pumpkin "bowling", a petting zoo and pony rides until 5 pm and hayrides from Noon to 4.  The Beer Garden and food vendors start serving at 11 am.

On the Main Stage from 11:45 am will be the Willow Creek Huntley Band, Denny Diamond, the Fortunate Sons, Stache and, after the Fireworks at 8:45 pm,  the Spazmatics.

Fall Fest's full (and it really is) schedule for the day is located here:  http://huntleyfallfest.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=79&Itemid=66

Huntley High Announces Latest College AP Scholars

Huntley High School announced the names this week of the latest crop of AP Scholars who aced  College Board tests.  More than 90 percent of U.S. colleges and universities offer college credit, advanced placement or both for qualifying AP scores.  Last year 638 HHS students took 1,079 AP exams.  The scholars in their categories included the following:

AP International Diploma, granted to students interested in pursuing university study outside of their native country.  Graduated Students: Kaitlyn Moriarty

National AP Scholar, granted for an average score of at least 4 on all AP exams taken, and scores of 4 or higher on eight or more of the exams. Graduated students: Holly Baldacci, James Cannalte, Mark Caridei, Jessica Chalas, Zoe Dowell, Kira Frendreis, Zachary Ott, Max Peterson, Vitoria Reales, Kollin Rott, Jacob Schaefer, Ashley Secreto, Sai Sivakumar, Kyle Sommerfield, Jolie Steinert, Adam Urbanski and Richard Witt. Seniors: Spencer Bingham, Harrison Hochwarter, Jestoni Losbanes and Parth Patel

AP Scholar with Distinction, granted to students who receive an average score of at least 3.5 on all AP exams taken, and scores of 3 or higher on five or more exams. Graduated students: Venecia Alvarez, Michael Bartot, Taylor Brooks, Michelle Caputi, Taylor Carter, Alison Cazel, Collin Chapleau, Nimit Desai, Zoe Detlaf, Christina Driscoll, Anthony Fleck, Mckenzie Fulcer, Tamara Funke, Justin Gulati, Chase Hall, Daniel Janus, Victoria Kazmierczak, Olivia Krewer, Colleen McNeill, Francesca Milone, Esha Munshi, Anthony Nigro, Sarah Palecki, Pooja Patel, Lauren Piell, Kevin Runge, Austin Schofield, Perrin Schupbach, Charlotte Skala, Drake Slater, Kyle Slonka, Megan Sover, Abigail Staab, Nicholas Stuve, Adam Sundling, Tyler Vasconez, Natalia Vilcek, Jade Williams and Arion Yedinak. Seniors: Craig Andersson, Roshni Bhatt, Matthew Clemetsen, Ryan Czarnecki, Corey Denman, Lukasz Janus, Jacob Kohley, Anna Krum, Priya Prasad, Jason Quagliano, Caleigh Roleck and Ewea Tseumah.

AP Scholar with Honor, granted to students who receive an average score of at least 3.25 on all AP exams taken, and scores of 3 or higher on four or more exams. Graduated students: Gwendolyn Bartot, Rebecca Bocian, Jennifer Carlson, Quinn Dawson, Kevin Doyle, Sarah Kapolnek, Kristen Kostecki, Savannah Lincoln, Patrick McGee, Vonn Navarro, Caitlin Ong, Kora Rea, Alexander Reiter, Daniel Rios, Jazmine Rosales and Riley Wicks.  Seniors: Brennan Bell, Samantha Byrne, Julian Castro, Jessamine Clavero, Jasmin Dhillon, William Elke, Brian Gavilan, Elijah Green, Linda Haddad, Rachelle Jacobs, Allison Masek, Nicholas Mihaiu and Thomas Plante. Juniors: Matthew Cannalte, Mukhil Murugasamy and Polina Poznyak.

AP Scholar, Granted to any student who has earned a 3 or higher on three or more AP exams. Graduated students: Edward Best, Peter Campbell, Armando Canales, Amanda Cazel, Jeffrey Chan, Jordan Francisco, Matthew Frederick, Hiam Hafizuddin, Erin Lyman, Sarah Lyons, Brittany Mathis, Haley McCartney, Stephanie Newman, Kishan Patel, Laura Pilat, Emma Plansky, Zoe Quezada, Shealynn Robinson, Frederick Robles, Angelica Rodriguez, Jantzen Rosales, Hannah Rosso, Daniel Scerbicke, Aparna Sivasankaran, Britni Siwuda, Vivek Verma, Megan Wilson, Alvin Wong and Katie Zornow.  Seniors: Emily Aldridge, Sarah Belch, Emily Benz, Scott Browne, Louisa Collazo, Samuel Costa, Caitlyn Jezowit, Chad Juergensen, Stephanie Kominiak, Emily Krebs, Neil Maniar, Tia Morser, Alex Pertzborn, Andre Sarrol, Joshua Simons, Jeremy Soriano, Robert Stockwell, Joseph Stuve, Shannon Walsh and Taylor Wendt.  Juniors: Keili Herron, Nathaniel Monis, Adam Reckamp, Jack Sover, Zachary Swim, Charles Vavrick, Tyler Watkins, Alexandra Ziolkowski and Jason Zobott.

Some Saturday Flights Still Canceled After Friday Chicago Shutdown

Airlines encouraged passengers to check online for flight status before heading to the airport this weekend after a disgruntled or simply crazed contract employee set fire to an FAA facility in Aurora Friday morning.  The blaze shut down flights to and from both Chicago airports.  Abut 2,000 were cancelled Friday and some airlines canceled flights scheduled today, too.

Authorities said Brian Howard, 36, of Naperville was charged Friday with felony destruction of aircraft or aircraft facilities.  A relative called 911 Friday morning after Howard, an FAA contract maintenance technician, posted a suicidal Facebook entry but no one could locate him until he'd poured gasoline over FAA wiring and set it afire.  According to a criminal complaint Friday, Howard was trying to cut his own throat when paramedics found him.

Friday's incident was the second Chicago flight shutdown this year.  In May more than 1,100 flights were canceled after a bathroom fan overheated and spread smoke at a regional radar facility in Elgin.

In the pic:  Skies were clear in the Chicago area Friday, not only of clouds but airplanes, too.

Latest Claim: Blago-Appointed Burris Asked For Bribe

The defense attorney in a federal illegal lobbying case charged Friday that Roland Burris, who filled out the remainder of Barack Obama's Senate term after he became president, tried to “shake down” a suburban businessman in return for a $250,000 a year financial consultant's job.

Burris was supposed to be a witness against C. Gregory Turner, due to go on trial next week on charges he illegally tried to get the U.S. government to lift economic sanctions on Zimbabwe's brutal dictator Robert Mugabe.  Turner’s attorneys Friday asked U.S. District Judge Elaine Bucklo to keep Burris from testifying because they said he might be working with Turner prosecutors to avoid his own prosecution.

Rod Blagojevich appointed Burris to the Senate after the now-imprisoned former govenor already been arrested on charges of trying to sell the seat to the highest bidder.   Senate leaders tried to block the appointment and in 2009 the Senate Ethics Committee found that while Burris hadn't violated the law he'd given investigators  "incorrect, inconsistent, misleading or incomplete information” about his contacts with Blagojevich aides.  Burris declined to try for the Senate in the following year's election.

In the pic:  Roland Burris

Obituaries

James J. "Turbo" Biard, 38, of Huntley died Wednesday at Sherman Hospital, Elgin.  Visitation will be Monday from 4 to 8 pm. in the Laird Funeral Home, Elgin.  Funeral Services will be held t here Tuesday, Sept. 30 at 11am.  Burial will in St. Adalbert Cemetery, Niles.

Biard was born Feb. 22, 1976, in Chicago, the son of Robert and Karen Kozlowski Biard. Surviving are his parents of Elgin; sister, Elyse Biard, and brother, Christopher (Ginny) Biard.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be given to the Animal House pet shelter, Huntley.

Police Blotters

The filing of charges is not proof of guilt. A defendant charged is presumed innocent and is entitled to a fair trial in which it is the state’s burden to prove his or her guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.  For individuals subsequently found not guilty or nolle prossed, FEN will add a notation here upon submission of a court record.
Lake in the Hills
September 26
0422 HRS CARLEMONT DR. & VILLAGE RD. NO VALID DRIVER’S LICENSE.  CLINTON, ANTONIA C.,  M/B 23 YEARS OF AGE, 12 WALNUT GROVE CT.,  LAKE IN THE HILLS.  CHARGES: No Valid  Driver’s License, No Insurance, No Registration, and Failure to Signal.  RELEASED ON BOND.
2220 HRS HANSON RD.  & HARNISH DR.  SPEEDING.  JUVENILE, M/W 16 YEARS OF AGE, ALGONQUIN.   CHARGES: Speeding 35 miles per hour over posted speed limit.  RELEASED ON BOND.
0919 HRS 8400 BLOCK OF SOUTH ROUTE 31.  INJURY ACCIDENT.  Two vehicles. No transport.
1741 HRS 1100 BLOCK OF PRIDES RUN.  DOMESTIC.  Parents vs. Daughter. Verbal only.  Female, 14 years of age, needing an evaluation.  Transported to Sherman Hospital.

Friday, September 26, 2014

McHenry County Unemployment Drops To 5 Percent Mark

McHenry County's unemployment rate in August hit the 5 percent point that many pre-recession economists thought represented the "full employment" level not counting workers momentarily between jobs.  The .7 percent drop from July, however, actually came from 1,087 fewer McHenry County residents holding a job while 1,259 more stopped looking for one, according the the latest report Thursday from the Illinois Department of Employment Security.

Illinois unemployment rate fell .3 percent to 6.7 percent in August while the U.S. rate dropped .2 percent to 6.3 percent.   Those rates and the McHenry County rate were all unadjusted for normal seasonal variation.  The adjusted rates were 6.7 and 6.1 percent, respectively.  IDES doesn't adjust rates at the county level.

IDES Director Jay Rowell blamed Baby Boomers for the state's shrinking labor force. “It is not surprising that fewer people are looking for work given retirement trends, although it does underscore that more needs to be done to give the long-term unemployed the skills necessary to secure meaningful employment,”  he said.

Locally, Crystal Lake's August unemployment rate fell .4 percent to 5.6 percent  with slightly fewer jobs but disproportionately still fewer unemployed.  Algonquin and Lake in the Hills posted .9 and .8 percent unemployment rate decreases respectively to  5.1 percent but the rate came primarily from people dropping out of the workforce.  McHenry had the lowest unemployment rate in the county, 4.9 percent as employment of residents there remained relatively strong while about 130 people there looking for jobs in July stopped trying.

                           UNEMPLOYMENT (unadjusted)             
               REVISED   Jul 2014      PRELIMINARY Aug 2014               
               LABOR     UNEMPLOYED    LABOR    UNEMPLOYED  Aug 
               FORCE     NUMBER RATE   FORCE    NUMBER RATE 2013   
U.S. (X1000)   157,573   10,307 6.5    156,434  9,787  6.3  7.3
ILLINOIS     6,607,524  464,240 7.0  6,521,582 436,283 6.7  9.1    

MCHENRY COUNTY 175,809   10,014 5.7    173,373   8,755 5.0  7.6   
LAKE COUNTY    375,533   25,157 6.7    366,769  25,263 6.9  8.3
DUPAGE COUNTY  535,132   29,566 5.5    528,641  26,663 5.0  7.5 
KANE           279,803   17,413 6.2    275,609  15,081 5.5  8.1
 
ALGONQUIN       16,943    1,012 6.0     16,665     848 5.1  7.4  
LITH            17,050    1,004 5.9     16,794     861 5.1  7.7   
CRYSTAL LAKE    21,967    1,311 6.0     21,721   1,212 5.6  8.1     
MCHENRY         15,229      868 5.7     14,994     735 4.9  7.2  

Ninth Huntley Fall Fest All Dressed Up, Ready To Go

The tents were pitched and the flags were flying above Deicke Park Thursday evening in preparation for this afternoon's open of Huntley's ninth annual Fall Fest celebration.  The Fest began in 2006 as a one day event but since then volunteer organizers have expanded it into a three-day festival of Autumn including a full carnival.

Today's schedule starts at 4 pm when the carnival opens for special needs kids and food vendors and the beer garden start serving customers.  The Carnival opens to everyone at 5 pm while the  Billboard and MTV award-winning band  band HiFi Superstar will take the main stage at 5:45.  They'll retire at 8:15 to be replaced by 80's cover band Hi Infidelity from 9 pm until Fall Fest's close at 11.

The full Huntley Fall Fest schedule for the weekend is located here:  http://huntleyfallfest.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=79&Itemid=81

Huntley Board OK's Plan To "Button Up" Historic Hotel

The Huntley Board Thursday formally awarded a "cost not to exceed" $70,000 job to re-side the Village's Hackett House original hotel to a new contractor.   The Board had previously handed the job to another company but, as Mayor Chuck Sass put it, "they never showed up."

Plans are still open on what exactly to do with the historic structure on Main Street at the UP tracks.  Village Manager Dave Johnson told FEN the important thing while discussion continues is, "to get it buttoned up before the Winter."

Trustees set Nov. 20 as the date to have a final draft 2015 Huntley budget ready and Dec. 11 for public hearings on the budget and property tax levy.

In routine business, the Board gave Centegra Health Systems another 30 months to finish officials plans for the new hospital and medical offices under construction at Algonquin and Haligus roads.  The McHenry County Division of Transportation still hasn't approved a new access point, mostly for ambulances, off of Algonquin.

In the pic:  The Hackett House

News Report Finds Rauner Investment Firm Bought Dozen Duds

A Lee Enterprises newspaper report Thursday found the company Republican governor candidate Bruce Rauner used to head bought 12 companies that went bankrupt.  According to the report, nursing home chain Trans Healthcare in a federal bankruptcy court in Florida this week is only the latest disaster for private equity firm GTCR.

"It's no wonder why so many Illinoisans are frightened about the prospect of Bruce Rauner bringing his slash-and-burn approach that destroyed so many companies to state government,"  Quinn campaign spokeswoman Brooke Anderson told Lee's reporter.

Rauner stepped down as CEO at the private equity firm two years ago.  Spokesman Mike Schrimpf said it's had more investment wins than failures.  "Most of GTCR's investments were successful, but some did not work out. That's the nature of investing," he said.

Indeed, from a financial standpoint GTCR's done pretty well.  Since 1980 the firm reports it's invested more than $10 billion in over 200 companies using other people's money.  Most notably, given the battle for the Governor's office, the other people are investors like the Illinois Teachers' Retirement System and the Illinois State Board of Investment, the largest and third-largest, public pensions in the state.

GTCR uses the money to buy majority control of a private companies it thinks can be run better.  However, differences of opinion are what makes horse races, so sometimes GTCR's been wrong.  One investor's guide observed, "By their nature, investments in privately held companies tend to be riskier than investments in publicly traded companies."

In the pic:  GTCR's headquartered these days in Chicago's 300 N. LaSalle building.


Police Blotters

The filing of charges is not proof of guilt. A defendant charged is presumed innocent and is entitled to a fair trial in which it is the state’s burden to prove his or her guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.  For individuals subsequently found not guilty or nolle prossed, FEN will add a notation here upon submission of a court record.
Lake in the Hills
September 25
1607 HRS 4900 BLOCK OF THISTLE LN. DOMESTIC BATTERY.   DEUTSCHLE, GARY A.,  M/W 40 YEARS OF AGE,  801 W. ALGONQUIN RD.,  ALGONQUIN.  CHARGES: Two Counts of Domestic Battery.  TURNED OVER TO MCHENRY COUNTY JAIL.
Algonquin
September 23
16:11pm Carrasco, Jessica, DOB: 06/01/94, of 88 Harvest Gate, Lake in the Hills, was charged with DWLS and Speeding. She was taken into custody at West End and Edgewood. She was released after posting $150 with a court date of 11/05/14 in McHenry County.
September 25
13:20pm Ball, Lance, DOB: 09/08/64, of 445 W. Inglewood Ave., Chicago, was charged with Fraud, two counts of ID Theft, and altered ID. He was taken into custody at 734 S. Randall Rd. He was transported to the McHenry County jail for bond court.

Thursday, September 25, 2014

KDOT Recommends Full 4-Lane Longmeadow Bridge Near Algonquin

Kane County added an animated video of the proposed Longmeadow Parkway bridge in Algonquin to its community outreach blog Kane County Connects Wednesday.  The video shows the bridge as a four-lane structure, rather than the two-laner that's been planned for the past two years.

Kane County Division of Transportation Assistant Director Steve Coffinbarger said KDOT's "Value Engineering" updates to the County Board's Transportation Committee on the Longmeadow project found doing all four lanes on the bridge at once instead of two now and two later would save money in the long run.  "Construction costs are low now but they're beginning to rise again," Coffinbarger told FEN.  He said new plans call for the Parkway to be four lanes west to Randall Road, then two lanes further west.

Another change is a roundabout included in the Bolz Road access on the east side of the proposed Parkway.  "That's part of our recommendation now," Coffinbarger said.

The Longmeadow video is located here:  http://kanecountyconnects.com/2014/09/longmeadow-parkway-vision-comes-to-life-in-kdots-3d-animated-video/

Other  KDOT Value Engineering recommendations, including narrower lanes and shallower bluff cuts are located here:  http://kdot.countyofkane.org/Longmeadow%20Parkway/VE%20Longmeadow%20Presentation%207-9-2014.pdf

The proposed 5.6 mile Longmeadow Parkway would run from Route 62 across the Fox River south of Algonquin to Huntley Road.  The current cost is estimated at $97 million with about half the construction funding already lined up.  Coffinbarger said KDOT's working on applications for more federal funds.

In the pic:  A computer view eastbound on the proposed Longmeadow Parkway Bridge near Algonquin

ALFPD Board OK's Independent Pensions Study

The Algonquin Lake in the Hills Fire Protection District trustees Wednesday OK'ed hiring an actuarial firm to conduct ALFPD's own pensions contribution study after State officials called for the second major increase in two years.  "They want $147,000 more," said Mullen.  "This year's total [property tax] levy increase was only $167,000"

Mullen told trustees if the District has to add that much more to its current $1.06 million annual pension payment, "we won't have any more money for operations."   Fire District Attorney Brian O'Connor said the law requires pension payments to be based on an actuarial study but, not necessarily, the State's.  "The [State] actuaries work for the Pension Board," Mullen reminded trustees, estimating the cost of an independent study at about $2,500.

Separately, this week the Fire District put out a call for junk car donations so firefighters can practice victim extrications.  "We probably average two a month," Mullen told FEN.  "But [training vehicles] aren't that easy to get," he said.  The number to call to donate a junker is 847-658-8233.  There's usually a tax deduction and "It might even do you some good if you're in an accident, God forbid," Mullen said.

In the pic:  Cracking open a car takes practice, even with the right tools.

Fall Drug Takeback Event Saturday At Local PD's

Saturday will see another chance for area residents to get rid of outdated and unused medications in a safe and sane DEA-sanctioned manner.   Officers at Algonquin, Lake in the Hills and Huntley police will collect and save for safe disposal unwanted and unused drugs at each village's PD headquarters from 10 am to 2 pm.  Only pills and patches will be accepted, though.  DEA won't take liquid medications or hypodermic needles.

The last Drug Takeback event this Spring collected 390 tons of prescription drugs nationally at 6,100 sites operated by the DEA and more than 4,400 state and local law enforcement agencies.
 
In the pic:  Drive-up drug disposal at Huntley PD.

"No Retaliation" Claimed In Latest Treasurer's Office Scandal

Illinois Treasurer Dan Rutherford's office didn’t respond Wednesday to questions about whether it had begun reviewing its timekeeping policies in the wake of a report that found three top staffers, since fired, had falsified their time records.

Logistics manager Patrick Carlson, community affairs and marketing director George Daglas and investment director Ashvin Lad were dismissed in July following the recommendation of the executive inspector general in the treasurer’s office although the report wasn't made public until last week.  The investigation found the three went to baseball games and gym sessions during work hours but covered for each other on the State's computer timekeeping system.  In a response to the report, Rutherford wrote that their behavior left him “appalled and disappointed.”

Two of the three, however, complained they were being targeted for helping in a probe into allegations of Rutherford sexual harassment and political pressure.  The treasurer’s office general counsel Wednesday dismissed the retaliation claims, saying the  inspector general’s office operates independently from Rutherford.

In the pic:  Illinois Treasurer Dan Rutherford

IDOT "Staff Assistant" Firings Put On Hold Until Judge Decides

Lawyers for the Quinn administration agreed Wednesday to postpone firing 58 Illinois Department of Transportation "staff assistants" until a judge has a chance to hear a lawsuit they filed to keep their jobs.
An investigation released last month by the Office of the Executive Inspector General found 255 people had been hired for the posts during the past decade in violation of rules against counting political connections.   Acting Transportation Secretary Erica Borggren said she'd fire the ones who were still held staff assistant slots as part of a “material reorganization."

IDOT spokesman Guy Tridgell said the order simply delays, rather than reverses, Borggren's decision to eliminate the staff assistant position.  However, campaigners for GOP governor candidate Bruce Rauner jumped all over it, anyway.  "That's on top of the other 103 illegal hires he's already refusing to fire," said spokesman Mike Schrimpf.   "Pat Quinn's capacity to break his promises to the people of Illinois knows no bounds," he said.

Police Blotters

The filing of charges is not proof of guilt. A defendant charged is presumed innocent and is entitled to a fair trial in which it is the state’s burden to prove his or her guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.  For individuals subsequently found not guilty or nolle prossed, FEN will add a notation here upon submission of a court record.
Lake in the Hills
September 24
0953 HRS 3300 BLOCK OF SANDSTONE CT.  ASSIST OTHER AGENCY.  Assisted the Department of Children and Family Services.
1226 HRS 00 BLOCK OF HILLTOP DR. INFORMATION FOR POLICE.  Ammunition was turned in to the police department.  Entered into evidence.
1355 HRS 00 BLOCK OF W. OAK ST. INFORMATION FOR POLICE.  Report for insurance.
1407 HRS 2800 BLOCK OF GENEVA LN.  DOMESTIC BATTERY.  Father vs. Daughter. No priors.  FAIL TO FILE.
1857 HRS 00 BLOCK OF CEDAR RIDGE DR.  DOMESTIC BATTERY.  Husband vs. Wife. No priors.  FAIL TO FILE.