Cat Tax Resurrection Helps Kills Animal Control Facility Add-Ons

I don’t know what it is about my going to McHenry County Board meetings.

Both times I have attended since starting McHenry County Blog, the McHenry County Republican Cat Tax has been considered.

At Tuesday night’s meeting the fiscal conservatives on the board won.

About a year ago about $1.8 million was approved for remodeling. That was on top of the purchase price of $1.7 million.

Then after at least two hours’ consideration the Animal Control folks were told to do the best they could with the $1.8 million, plus whatever interest had accrued.

Just as with consideration of the Cat Tax, the leadership of the county board did not get its way.

First there was an extensive power point presentation by County Administrator Peter Austin.

Seven options, none of which had dollar figures attached, as

First, Woodstock’s Hill moved to allow an 8% inflationary addition to the money available. It failed 13-11.

Next Algonquin’s Marc Munaretto moved to loan the Health Department $733,000 to be repaid from its budget without interest over a ten year period.

Somebody behind me in the audience whispered loudly, “Get the kitties!”

The perceived slight of hand was demonstrated when Wonder Lake’s John Hammerand stood up and took his wallet out of one back pocket and put back into the other.

“Not withstanding my colleague’s financial prowess, he is wrong,” Munaretto responded.

Peschke pointed out that this would mean the Health Department would have to come up with about $70,000 a year.

“I’d like to see how we’re going to do this.”

“I think we can,” added Marie Chmiel. “We can think about the cat registration fee again.”

“Until you tell me you’re going to be able to pay back the $700,000 over the next ten years, (I’m not going to support it),” Mary Donner said.

“If we say we’re going to go something, we’re going to do it,” McHenry County Public Health Administrator Pat McNulty replied.

Earlier he has said, “We could probably accommodate a fee to cover the rest of the cost.”

“If we get the assistance from the county board…in putting a registration on cats.”

I don’t know whether it was the shock of the McHenry County Republican Cat Tax re-surfacing or what, but a vote was quickly taken and Munaretto’s motion got scratched, three to one.

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McHenry County Administrator Pete Austin is seen on top. Below him is McHenry County Board member Tina Hill. Next is Marie Chmiel, another county board member.

Finally, you can see Keely Cat sharpening his claws just in case another McHenry County Republican Cat Tax fight is necessary.

Here’s Northwest Herald reporter Kevin Craver’s take on the meeting. And here is Daily Herald reporter Chuck Keeshan’s article.

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