The Northwest Herald Editorial Board offers this week’s thumbs up and thumbs down:
Thumbs up: To the many Veterans Day events across the area in schools, VFW halls, American Legion posts, hospitals and churches over the several days leading up to Monday’s holiday. There are so many wonderful events featuring veteran speakers and large gatherings of heroes that we couldn’t possibly cover them all. It’s clear that we are surrounded by communities who deeply appreciate the sacrifices those who’ve been in the armed services have made for this country. It’s an important lesson to teach our students and evidence of communities that have their priorities in order.
Thumbs down: To the District 47 Finance Committee for recommending a 2.9 percent increase in the district’s tax levy, meaning the owner of a $200,000 home in the district would see a $39 increase in the District 47 portion of the tax bill. The full board still needs to approve the levy increase. Many local taxing bodies have found a way to adjust their budgets to avoid levy increases. District 47 should look for more creative ways to avoid such an increase for taxpayers.
Thumbs down: To state lawmakers who left Springfield on Thursday – again – without passing meaningful pension reform. While we sit and wait for lawmakers to have the courage to pass reform, the state’s unfunded pension liability continues to grow. House Speaker Michael Madigan offered excuses this week and said it’s possible lawmakers will be called back to Springfield before the end of the year to tackle pension reform. We won’t hold our breath.