2010 Referendum Predicted For MCC, District 300 & District 200 Tax Hike Firm to be Hired by McHenry County College

In the “Here we go again” category, we have the St. Louis firm UNICOM-ARC being hired tonight for $215,000 to prepare the way for a tax increase or passage of a bond referendum.

These folks have not only run the campaign for District 300 in Carpentersville, but the one in Woodstock for District 200.

You deserved to read the whole memo from MCC President Walt Packard:

Request to Purchase
Community Engagement Services


McHenry County College has an opportunity to receive community input and feedback through a formalized community engagement program. The goals for this effort include providing more detailed information about MCC to the community at large, and collaborating with community members to gather input that will help inform the College as it revises its strategic plan and sets a strategic vision for the future.

The engagement program will have an initial proposed timeframe of 14 months.

Expected components of the engagement program include

  • organizing a community-led facilitating committee,

  • conducting opinion research,

  • hosting information sessions for the community, and

  • leading workshops to gather community input.

Proposals were received from the following agencies for community engagement services:

  • UNICOM-ARC – $168,750.00 – $215,000.00

  • Fleishman Hillard – $238,000.000 – $280,000.00

  • Fairbank, Maslin, Maullin & Associates – Did not respond with proposal by deadline

The estimated fee from UNICOM-ARC includes the following:

  • Planning and development fees – $8,000.00 per month ($112,000.00 total)

  • Travel expenses – $1,000.00 per month ($14,000.00 total)

  • Initial 500-sample opinion survey – $22,750.00

  • Promotional video production – $20,000.00

  • Collateral development and printing – not to exceed $46,250.00

This expense is budgeted in the Institutional Account in the Education Fund.

Wouldn’t be great if a local educational tax district planning a tax hike or a bond referendum would be forthright and say,

“We can’t do this ourselves without violating the election interference law and we’re too lazy to convince someone else to pay for the ground work, e.g.,

  • survey research

  • campaign video that doesn’t explicitly say, “Vote Yes!”

  • campaign pieces that don’t explicitly say, “Vote Yes!”

that needs to be done to pass a referendum?”

In the next millennium maybe.

And, fourteen months from now.

That’s right before the 2010 primary election, isn’t it?

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