To the Editor:
Right now, the discussion surrounding the ICE contract isn't about our county's morality or what should be done, but it instead comes down to money.
Where will the funds come from if we end the contract? It is an important question to be sure, because that money serves our community. In a county where high property taxes are often a dinner table conversation, we've relied on that money to sustain our community programs.
The focus continues to circle around the board members voting on whether we keep the contract with ICE or not, but that is not the only way we lose these funds. For one, ICE could pull out of our county's detention center at any time.
At this time, there is no contingency plan in place for if and when this occurs. To count on an outside agency, an organization that is secretive in its accounting, without any type of contingency plan, lacks foresight on behalf of this community.
With all of the lawsuits being filed against various ICE detention centers throughout our nation for egregious acts of abuse, the board doesn't have a current plan for what would happen to our county.
if McHenry County's detention center was hit with a lawsuit, with multiple lawsuits, can they guarantee that by continuing business with ICE we will not be met with legal action against our county?
If they can't, we have no business continuing this contract.
I challenge every board member by asking this question - where else can we get this revenue from?
McHenry County board members, you were voted to this board to be your best and do your best on behalf of all of the county and it's citizens.That means not only envisioning different possibilities, but having the vision, courage, and action to strive toward a better McHenry County.
We need a more permanent, sustainable, and ethical solution to the money we've continued to rely on from ICE. We must do better!