Tue October 19, 2010
By Cameron Bren
WNIJ Listening Area – Nov. 2 Ballot Referenda
Kishwaukee Community College
A Kishwaukee College Bond Measure seeks to create a $52.6 million bond in order to help with college building renovations, technology upgrades to the buildings as well as repairs to the parking lots. The measure will appear on the ballots for Boone, DeKalb, Kane, LaSalle, Lee, Ogle & Winnebago Counties.
College of DuPage
An Improvements Referendum measure will ask voters to allow the College to make capital improvements to the campus buildings, the library, arts center and gymnasium. This would not increase taxes in the district area, but would continue current school levies. School officials see this as the best way to ensure competitiveness of the school and maintain the level of programs for students.
The Garden Prairie Light District is seeking an additional 0.06987 percent above the limiting rate for levy year 2009.
Cherry Valley is trying to pull even with the Rockford and Machesney Park sales tax rates. The village is seeking a 1 percentage-point sales tax increase, which would bring the rate up to 8.25 percent. Officials say the tax bump would help pay for capital improvements and prevent them from having to make cuts to police and public works departments.
Poplar Grove is asking to levy a new property tax for police protection purposes and have an additional tax of 0.6 percent of the equalized assessed value. That would be an estimated additional $199.98 for single-family residences valued at $100,000.
A Batavia City Recreation Center Bond measure seeks approval of a $20 million bond which would be used to construct a new city recreation center. Although no complete plan for the center has been drawn up, ideas of businesses which would go in the center have been talked about. A gym housing an indoor pool and track has already been agreed on. Opponents do not feel that public funds should be used to support businesses that are in competition with other local businesses. Officials noted that the bond would not raise taxes, just continue current tax rates. The main proposed project is a lap pool for the new center, but opponents have noted that such a pool is not family friendly, and due to incomplete plans, voters do not really know what they will be voting on.
A Yorkville City Trail Bond Measure will ask voters if they want to allow the city to borrow $1 million in bonds in order to help the city construct walking and biking trails throughout the area.
A Cary School District Bond Measure will seek to create a bond of $15 million in order to help balance the budget, support school programs and ensure teacher salaries. This is one of the worst school districts in terms of financial stability in the state. The bond would ensure that the state would not take over the school. The bond could also better support the needs of the students it services. Average homeowners in the district will pay about $85 extra a month in property taxes to pay for the bond if it is approved. The district already cut around $6 million from its budget and stated that a similar amount would still need to be cut even if the bond is approved. A group in favor of this measure has been formed to help promote and educate voters about the issue. The group is called Cary CARES and is led by two parents of children who go to the school. They feel that the school needs the money and that the financial impact for homeowners is small in comparison to the benefit the school would receive. They plan to do whatever they can to educate voters about the issue and help with supporting the measure passes.
A McHenry High School District 156 Levy Increase measure seeks to add a tax of $.60 per $100 of assessed property in the area to the current property tax rate in order to help pay for programs and operational costs of the district. On average, homeowners in the area would pay an additional $400 a year in taxes if this is approved.
A McHenry High School District 156 Bond Measure seeks to create a bond in the amount of $70 million in order to help pay for the construction of a new high school in the district.