A note from Rosemary Kurtz:
This is what I was about to say at the City Council meeting September 18, 2007, when the Mayor decided that he did not want to listen to my interview with the McHenry County Soil and Water Conservation District director, Ed Weskerna. Whatever I do, it is to inform and to educate. The results of research help others in their search for workable solutions.
Good evening. At the last City Council meeting it was such a relief to hear council member, Ellen Brady Mueller introduce the subject of funding: how to fund the costs of Inspection and Enforcement on construction sites. It was reassuring to see the other Council members strongly support the idea of “doing the Job right.’
I interviewed Ed Weskerna of the McHenry County Water and Soils Conservation District regarding Erosion Control on Construction sites. He explained that when there is a violation, he writes up Non-compliance forms for the Developer and sends copies to 4 entities:
- the EPA,
- the Illinois EPA,
- the Army Corps of Engineers, and
- the City of Crystal Lake.
Some municipalities don’t want to enforce, so consequently, there is no Stop Work Order issued. For instance, Huntley deliberately ignores the reported violations by the Developer. Other towns don’t have the staff with expertise, experience, and knowledge to give them enough confidence to issue a stop work order.
According to Mr. Weskerna, our current Ordinance is not being enforced. He has notified Crystal Lake, but CL does not follow through with stop work orders. The enforcement must come from the local government. Otherwise, the Developer causes soil erosion and messes up water treatment for infiltration, such as is the case with Bryn Mauer on Rte. 176.
Concerning this development, within 18 months Ed Weskerna reported 7 violations to the Developer and the 4 official entities: EPA, IL EPA, the Army Corps Of Engineers, and the City of Crystal Lake.
Here is a conversation that relates to the lack of action.
The setting is out in the field with Weskerna and the Developer. The Army Corps asked a CL engineer,
“What are you guys doing to remedy the Developer’s violations?”
The reply was,
“We’re following the Soil and Water District lead.”
“That is not an answer. The Soil and Water District is advisory. They identify the violation. It must be addressed with a stop work order by the enforcement agent of the City.”
This Council can write up all sorts of Mandates; but it takes GUTS for the City engineer to enforce the Ordinance. Ladies and Gentlemen, the above is a good example of why so many of us in Crystal Lake are “scared to death” of any new Ordinance. There is great lack of Enforcement now.