Local Election

Crystal Lake majority oppose library referendum

Algonquin-LITH fire tax, county board size reduction, among referendums to pass

McHenry County voters saw a number of advisory and binding questions on the ballot on Election Day. Here's a look at how they fared:

County Board size

In a nonbinding advisory referendum, McHenry County residents voted in favor of shrinking the current size of the McHenry County Board.

About 101,353 voters, or 77 percent, voted "yes" and 30,008 voters, or 23 percent, voted "no," according to unofficial results.

Supporters have said the job could be done with less members, and that other similarly sized counties took action to reduce their sizes after the 2010 U.S. Census. Those opposed to the idea argued that reducing the size of the board could put more power into fewer hands.

The next time the County Board would be able to make a change in the number of board members is following the 2020 Census, with changes taking effect for the 2022 midterm election.

Anti-corruption laws

Voters approved of an advisory referendum that would take the power of money out of politics.

About 129,898 voters, or 94.5 percent, voted in favor and 7,594 voters, or 5.5 percent, voted against, according to unofficial results.

Voters were asked whether they support prohibiting politicians from taking campaign money from entities doing business with government; increasing campaign funding transparency; placing limits on how much super PACs and unions can raise and spend; and prohibiting elected officials and their senior staff from participating in lobbying activity for five years after leaving office.

Crystal Lake library

A majority of Crystal Lake voters opposed an advisory referendum recommending the City Council borrow $30.1 million to build a new library. The vote gives direction to council members who have the power to borrow the money without a binding referendum.

About 10,579 voters, or 56 percent, voted "no" and 8,453 voters, or 44 percent, voted "yes," according to unofficial results.

Building and equipping a new library would increase property taxes about $132 per year for the owner of a home assessed at $200,000.

Library supporters want to build a new, 75,000-square-foot facility at its existing 126 W. Paddock St. site, about two times the size of its current 40,000-square-foot home. Supporters argued that the 50-year-old library is inadequate for future technology. Opponents believed the project was too ambitious and expensive.

Greenwood tax

Voters in Greenwood said no to levying a property tax for its roads.

About 123 voters, or 83 percent, voted "no" and 26 voters, or 17 percent, voted "yes," according to unofficial results.

Algonquin-LITH fire tax

Voters accepted a proposal that would raise the property tax rate by 10 cents per $100 in assessed valuation.

About 7,790 voters, or 54 percent, voted "yes" and 6,593 voters, or 46 percent, voted "no," according to unofficial results.

District voters rejected this question in the March primary by a margin of 53 percent to 47 percent. Fire officials have contended the district needs the extra money to balance its budget.

Anti-tax referendums

Voters in three taxing bodies voted "yes" for an advisory referendum to limit local governments' power to collect more taxes.

Cary and Fox River Grove voted "yes" with roughly 91 percent of the vote, and Lakewood voted "yes" with about 92 percent of the vote, according to unofficial results.

Voters in Lakewood, Cary and Fox River Grove were asked whether taxing bodies with any boundaries in village limits should be required to seek voter approval by referendum if they want to increase their levy.

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