The Northwest Herald Editorial Board offers this week’s thumbs up and thumbs down:
Thumbs down: To the labor situation at McHenry County College. The negotiation process between instructors and the college has lasted roughly 19 months, with no sign of a settlement. Full-time faculty members filed a letter of intent to strike Thursday, and trustees were asked to join negotiations. Cooler heads need to prevail to end this marathon of increasingly frustrated talks before a strike happens.
Thumbs up: To Woodstock resident Lou Ness for planning a 750-mile walk to Washington, D.C., to raise awareness for poverty. Ness was fired in 2004 from Turning Point after allegations she mismanaged funds but has decided to keep a positive attitude and do what she can. She now is the executive director of Rockford-based Shelter Care. She is planning to stay at churches where she can and walk 15 miles per day en route to her destination.
Thumbs down: To the Fox River Grove Village Board, for voting 4-2 against a plan for a proposed 120-foot cell tower at the Norge Ski Jump. AT&T, which wants to build the tower but will share it with other service providers, said the tower is needed to keep up with increased demand of data and voice use on cellphones. But many residents complained that a new tower would negatively affect property values, and so the board caved. NIMBYism all over again.
Thumbs up: To Illinois for leading the nation in LEED-certified buildings. The LEED acronym stands for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design. LEED certificates are awarded to private and public buildings that use recycled materials, are located on sustainable sites, and are energy and water efficient. There are 14 LEED-certified buildings in McHenry County. Environmentally friendly development is a trend we encourage.
Thumbs up: To Lukas Bettich, a Crystal Lake sixth-grader at Richard Bernotas Middle School who is one of only 100 fourth- through eighth-graders in Illinois selected by the National Geographic Society for the final round of the 2014 Illinois State Geographic Bee. The state final is April 4. The winner receives a trip to Washington for the National Geographic Bee final, where a $50,000 scholarship awaits the winner. Good luck, Lukas.