To the Editor:
Recently, the McHenry County Conservation District board announced that this would be the last year of the Trail of History.
It noted budgetary constraints as a reason, with the event costing approximately $18,000.
Meanwhile, the MCCD continues to buy flat, productive farmland – which is then basically used to grow weeds. This not only spends MCCD money, but it also takes properties off the tax roll, which negatively impacts other local government budgets.
I believe that rather than scrapping a family and community favorite, the MCCD would be better served to stop buying productive farmland.
Even renting the land to area farmers would be a better option – at $200 per acre for farmland lease, MCCD would be able to cover the cost of Trail of History with a mere 100-acre farm. (It is not uncommon to see $300-$350 per tillable acre leases in northern Illinois, per John Greene Land Company.)
The MCCD should reconsider ending an enjoyable and educational local event.