The Northwest Herald Editorial Board offers this week’s thumbs up and thumbs down:
Thumbs up: To Woodstock for being named one of “5 Midwestern Small Towns to Visit Now” in a recent article on the popular travel website fodors.com. The article praised the historic Square and all it offers, such as the farmers market, La Petite Creperie, the bookstore Read Between the Lynes and the antique store Rare Rubbish. It’s always a win for the community and the county when one of the local municipalities is singled out for something positive.
Thumbs down: To state elected officials, for continuing to fail to come to an agreement on massive pension reform, despite it being crucial to helping resolve Illinois’ ever-growing fiscal crisis. The state’s five public pension systems are underfunded by $100 billion. Every day that number grows by millions. Yet there’s no sign of progress from a committee of 10 representatives and senators who have been working on the issue. Gov. Pat Quinn and the General Assembly have failed public retirees and taxpayers on this issue for years. Sadly, they continue to do so.
Thumbs up: To Brian Floriani and Bernie’s Book Bank for working to get books for underprivileged kids. On Thursday, Floriani was on hand to give 450 students at Meadowdale Elementary in Carpentersville six books apiece. Since 2009, Floriani has given away more than 1.6 million books to children in the Chicago area.
Thumbs down: To the ongoing scandal at Metra. In the most-recent development, former Metra CEO Alex Clifford’s lawyer said his client would like to return to work at the embattled suburban Chicago transit agency and would be willing to rework his overbloated separation agreement to do so. Only in Illinois.
Thumbs up: To the people at the Cary-Grove AMVETS Pearl Harbor Memorial Post 245 and the Fox River Grove Boy Scout troops behind the annual picnic for hospitalized veterans held each year at Lions Park. The event along the Fox River has been held for 26 years and is a small but important way to thank and honor veterans with a cookout and day of fishing. This year it entertained more than 300 vets. It’s a great tradition for the veterans and a perfect way to remind the rest of us about the importance of honoring our veterans.