Local

McHenry County Board to vote on reducing its size

The McHenry County Board, led by Chairman Jack Franks, will vote Tuesday evening whether to reduce its size by 25 percent.
The McHenry County Board, led by Chairman Jack Franks, will vote Tuesday evening whether to reduce its size by 25 percent.

The McHenry County Board will vote Tuesday evening whether to reduce its size by 25 percent.

If approved, the resolution will eliminate six seats from the County Board, reducing its size from 24 members to 18. It will take effect with the 2022 election, in which all seats are up for election because of redistricting after the 2020 U.S. Census.

Almost 80 percent of McHenry County voters who cast ballots in the 2016 election supported an advisory referendum asking whether the County Board’s size should be reduced.

“This is government doing the will of the people,” said County Board Chairman Jack Franks, D-Marengo. “Taxpayers want their governments to be leaner and do more with less. This County Board for years has asked its staff to cut back, and we’ve been asking the same of school districts and other taxing bodies. We have to lead by example.”

Board members last month approved two binding referendums for the Nov. 6 ballot that, if approved by the voters, will impose term limits on County Board members and the chairman.

Franks thanked the members of the Ad Hoc Committee on Governmental Consolidation for their work on the size reduction and referendum initiatives. Those members are Kay Bates, R-McHenry; Joe Gottemoller, R-Crystal Lake; John Jung, R-Woodstock; Don Kopsell, R-Crystal Lake; Donna Kurtz, R-Crystal Lake; Mary McCann, R-Woodstock; Bob Nowak, R-Algonquin; Chris Christensen, R-Cary; and Mike Skala, R-Huntley.

Franks thanked Gottemoller, who as the previous County Board chairman spearheaded putting the advisory referendum on the 2016 ballot, for jump-starting talk of reducing the board’s size.

The County Board meeting will start at 5 p.m. in the County Board conference room of the McHenry County Administration Building, 667 Ware Road, Woodstock.

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