To the Editor:
Algonquin Township trustee Rachael Lawrence is exactly correct in regards to problems with the road district is rooted in a system which has limited oversight.
This governmental organizational model, which essentially provides for single-person rule with limited oversight, has put Algonquin Township on a run to cost township taxpayers north of $1 million. Argument has been made by trustee Dan Shea that a recall election would solve the issue.
Recall elections are held every four years. Residents of neighboring townships make the claim that they are different since their highway commissioner is an engineer with high qualifications.
The problem with this argument is that holding an engineering degree is not a requirement to be elected to the office of highway commissioner and when this individual decides to end his tenure there is no way to require this certification for election to the post. The former Algonquin Township highway commissioner was defeated in reelection to the post due to perceived lack of accountability and employment of a substantial number of family members by the highway department.
So the voters thought they were getting a more responsive government by voting in a new commissioner. That doesn’t seem to have worked so well. With folding the responsibility of the township highway department into the township government at least in theory should provide some level of checks on this antiquated form of government. The ideal solution would be to move the responsibility for township road system to the county where there is proper oversight and professional staff. Unfortunately, this is not a current option.