Cunningham resigns as McHenry Township trustee

McHenry Township Republicans poised to recommend replacement

It’s official: Bill Cunningham has resigned as a McHenry Township trustee.

Township officials will spend the next 30 days vetting candidates interested in replacing Cunningham, who sold his Wonder Lake home to move into a new one in Wisconsin.

The McHenry Township Republican Central Committee already is angling to put forth a recommendation on who the Township Board should appoint to the vacant seat.

Committee Chairman Eric Sivertsen said the party is looking for a candidate that adheres to the Republican platform: “Conservative fiscally and socially.” Experience in McHenry Township and McHenry County politics is a plus.

McHenry Township Republicans met Tuesday to discuss the selection process, Sivertsen said.

The central committee plans to interview candidates, put together a list of possible replacements and bring the list to the party board and the 34 precinct committeemen in the field for a final vote.

McHenry Township Supervisor Craig Adams plans to publish a job description, questionnaire and solicitation Monday seeking interested candidates. After a series of interviews with township officials to whittle down the number of candidates, the board will vote on Cunningham’s replacement.

A member of Trustee Bob Anderson’s Tax Revolt slate, Cunningham was one of the supporting votes that pushed a binding referendum onto the November ballot asking voters whether the highway department should be eliminated. Cunningham also voted to slash the salaries of McHenry Township officials by more than half.

Cunningham sold his Wonder Lake home in May, according to property records. Cunningham could not be reached for comment.

On June 20, Cunningham dropped off a handwritten resignation letter to Adams.

“I WILLIAM P. CUNNINGHAM AS OF 12PM JUNE 20th 2018 RESIGN AS TRUSTEE OF MCHENRY TOWNSHIP,” the notice read in capital letters. Township officials met at a special meeting Thursday to accept the letter.

A friend of Cunningham, Anderson said the trustee’s decision to move was driven by a story eating up many McHenry County residents: high taxes.

“It’s a shame that our state is in this situation where they think their only option is to flee,” Sivertsen said.

This is not the first time a McHenry Township trustee has left his post early. In 2016, McHenry Township Trustee Doug Carlile resigned to move to Indiana.

“He got remarried and his new bride was living in Indiana and working as a head nurse at a hospital there,” Adams said in an email. “He had a sales job and could work from any location in the Midwest. Therefore, it made the most sense for him to move to Indiana so as not to disrupt his new wife’s career.”

Adams said Cunningham should not have run for office if he knew he would be leaving the state.

“I’m a little disappointed in Mr. Cunningham,” Adams said. “He had to know he was leaving when he was running.”

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