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Our View: We will miss local watchdog

Published: Saturday, March 8, 2014 5:30 a.m. CDT

The Northwest Herald Editorial Board offers this week’s thumbs up and thumbs down:

Thumbs down: To the death of local lawyer and activist Jane Collins. Our condolences to her family, but a community also loses something valuable when they lose a person such as Collins. She left a legacy of caring for our environment as one of the founding members of the Land Conservancy of McHenry County. Collins also was famous for sticking her nose in local governments’ business, including McHenry County College and Dorr Township, because Collins was one of those unique individuals who understood that it was the people’s business. She was never content to sit back and allow them to work in secrecy. Rest in peace, Mrs. Collins. We hope to carry on your legacy.

Thumbs up: To St. Thomas the Apostle’s Flocknote program. More than 3,000 people have registered for the Crystal Lake church’s messaging system that started with 2013’s Ash Wednesday, creating a level of engagement the church hasn’t seen in years. It’s a forward-thinking initiative that’s helped to raise attendance.

Thumbs up: To Lucas Urbanski and his twin sister, Clare. The Crystal Lake teens went back and forth for 32 rounds this week during the McHenry County Spelling Bee, providing heavy drama for those in attendance at McHenry County College and watching live at NWHerald.com. In the end, Lucas won his fourth consecutive county title, and will head to Washington, D.C., in May to compete in the Scripps National Spelling Bee, televised by ESPN. The Northwest Herald sponsors Lucas’ trip to Washington.

Thumbs up: To the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, which includes McHenry County, for putting opinions online using the Federal Digital System. The website collects opinions from various courts around the country. Opinions are text searchable across the courts, and are uploaded each night and available for free. Those wanting access to opinions from the Northern District of Illinois previously paid a fee. This is a good step for transparency and accessibility of our court system.

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