No Cost-Benefit Analysis on Township Consolidation, Just Data Dump – Part 7

The McHenry County Board’s Township Consolidation Task Force met the Tuesday before last and for the past week I have been trying to let people know what happened.

Yesterday, a bit of the meeting, which was fairly boring, compared to the comments, was related.

Today, we continue with Coral Township Supervisor Roger Naylor.

Naylor, Roger facing right hand upA defender of township government, Naylor said the Task Force “owed it to the voters to provide a better cost analysis.”

He compared it to the merger of two businesses.

Naylor wanted to know the “exposures that exist,” just like the two corporations proposing to merge would.

“We still need an analysis.

“Come up with some money and do a study.

“Then, move on.

“Put out our recommendations.”

McHenry County Board and Task Force member Donna Kurtz said,

“Government is very expensive because nothing ever changes.

“Not to have an open dialogue…is a waste of time.

“This is when we do our best work, when we are considering the reorganization of government.”

Bob Miller

Bob Miller

At this point Algonquin Township Road Commissioner interjected that the voters have the opportunity for change at every election.

“We’re not fighting this going on the ballot.

“We want all the information going to the public.”

Miller pointed out that even if townships are consolidated, “The money doesn’t just go away.  The levy goes on.

“Why in the world would you bring this forward if you’re not getting concrete numbers?

“It is truly speculative, a hope, a prayer.

“It is not concrete that this will service.

“We should be looking for ways to save money.”

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No Cost-Benefit Analysis on Township Consolidation, Just Data Dump – Part 7 — 23 Comments

  1. Kurtz has all the buzz words down pat but is, in my opinion, a divisive force.

    Government is expensive because elected officials (for the most part) do not give the voters the downside of anything.

    Wait until those who support taking federal HUD dollars find a subsidized housing building go up next door to him / her.

    To go along with other legislation implemented by the U.S. Supreme Court this year, they have now decided that the Federal Government can (and will) dictate local zoning.

  2. Why are we advocating spending tax dollars on a study?

    Anyone with a functioning brain could quickly determine that consolidation of Townships will increase salaries and benefits for both the elected and the unelected.

    It would create a perceived need for a newer, bigger, centralized building.

    Cal had the right idea to create a new Township in the south eastern part of the County and then dissolve it but the State has placed a freeze on any new units of government.

    Attention should be paid to the fact the State Legioslature keeps dabbling in Township government and has over time passed legislation to neuter the ‘annual meeting’ and not permit any reduction in the salary of Road Commissioners.

    The State has added other unfunded mandates to Townships such as annual reports which appear to never be reviewed for accuracy.

    As a further expansion of government, now when there is heavy snowfall, even FEMA gets involved and paperwork has to be completed by Townships to get some of your federal tax dollars.


    All this does is increase the employment in the public sector.

  3. Is there anybody out there that wants this consolidation that can prove making biggggggggger gov agencies saves money?

  4. How does eliminating jobs create bigger.

    I want to know why consolidation assumes that every job will remain.

    I say eliminate them not consolidate them.

  5. inish, $2 million is the number the pro side is giving for eliminating the elected and their intimidate staff by Consolidation the first year.

    At best would give us each about a $5-$6 tax break, about .03% of the total property tax we pay.

    The pro side has given no real consideration of future staff reductions, because that would require cuts in service and that looks bad for them.

    If combined, the talk by the pro side would be to get rid of Twh property, centralizing the work force.

    This would increase driving time, which would cause either less work being done, service cut, or increased over time or personnel to keep service at the same level.

    Include increased fuel use to the mix and centralization will offset any gain from reduced elected and buildings.

    Consolidation is a form of eliminate, total Twh elimination would also create bigger less efficient Gov agencies.

    Defeat that long standing fact that bigger gov agencies cost more with numbers and facts, I’m listening.

  6. inish, sorry I forgot to add more likely the work force would unionize and benefits would increase due to consolidation and elimination.

    Union Reps are already circling in for the kill, Fact!

  7. The Pro used the talking point of technology to save $$$$. T

    The Pro side is either ignorant or trying to mislead as technology is already used almost to it’s max.

    Assessors dept personnel will still have to make field checks like they do now, and centralization will again raise costs for travel and lost work.

  8. nob.

    In all seven of cal’s articles you have asked repeatedly to have it proven to you that consolidation won’t make bigger, more expensive government…

    did you ever stop to think that no one owes an explanation to you.

    You’re just one of very few people who are rehashing this subject every day for whatever your purpose is.

    “Just saying”

    Inish, I happen to agree with you, abolition would be preferable.

  9. Inish: The legislature, however, has failed to remove obstacles to abolition, namely, if you abolish all of the townships in a county at once (which now requires a majority vote in 3/4ths of the townships instead of a simple majority in the county), you lose the county board and go to a 3 member Board of Supervisors for the entire county.

    There are 17 counties in Southern Illinois which do this but the are rural with small populations.

    Then the legislature has not given anyone the authority to take over the township functions.

    Also, with abolition there is no grace period to accomplish the transition.

    It becomes effective immediately after the election.

    That would mean that the entire county board goes home with no on to replace them until the next election.

    Township roads cannot be plowed, and assessments cannot be made until the legislatures votes on a new statute.

    This scares people off from voting for abolition, whether on a county wide basis or for an individual township.

    For consolidation, all of this is spelled out and there is a transition period until the next township election (Spring of 2017), so there would be a full year to reorganize.

  10. Watcher1940, no one owes me an explanation?

    So when I pay my taxes, vote and follow the laws, you think it’s OK board members, elected officials, and the hired gov employees don’t owe me diddly?

    I suppose you they do though right?

  11. Mike W., the rules as you just described at 1:25, even I think should be change.

    I’d think you anti Twh dudes would be all over that just in case.

    Also, if I was y’ll I’d be working on arranging take over of the roads and other services, looking at costs, generally getting info to please, disarm, the pro Twh animals.

    Like I’ve said in the past, which Watch1940 seems to try suppressing, show me the beef and prove it’s worth the price.

  12. Nob: We HAVE tried to change the rules.

    When a legislative task force was convened in the 90’s chaired by our own Rep. Ann Hughes that was specificaally charged to do that, they instead passed a bill to make it harder to abolish the townships.

    Initially they tried to change the signature requirements to require ten percent of the registered voters in EACH township.

    We filed a suit in DuPage County and the judge threw that out.

    But there still remains the provision about the 3/4ths of all the townships in the vote.

    It remains to be seen if that would hold up legally.

    The TOI has every legislator in their pocket.

    Nothing will change in Springfield unless and until someone actually abolishes a township someplace and they have to scramble.

  13. Good job of obfuscation…as always.

    Got to hand it to you, you’re never at a loss for words.

    I was referring to this forum…you overestimate your own importance.

    Do you think if someone could satisfy you we’d see the heavens open and we’d all see the light.

    I have my doubts.

    Your opinion matters very little in the scheme of things.

    Just like anyone else it’s only your opinion.

    I think the word you like is pompous.

    But I’m glad to see you meet your civic obligations.

    Ya Man

  14. If you cant abolish all the townships, why not consolidate them ALL into ONE, all at once?

  15. Susan:

    You can’t do that.

    Under the statutes there is a maximum size.

    We can only combine a maximum of three townships.

    This underscores that the reason townships were established had to do with the technological limitations of the horse.

    Townships were set up in the sizes that they are so you could get Ole Bessie back to the barn at night and give her the oats.

    Also get back to your own family.

    If you had to cover the whole county, or too large an area, you couldn’t do that.

  16. Btw: Some people have questioned where I stand on this whole thing as they have not been able to follow my comments.

    I am not crazy about consolidation and would prefer that we just make it easier to abolish individual townships by citizen petition in each township, or possibly by vote at the annual town meeting, to put a referendum on the ballot.

    This would probably most likely be done in those townships where most of the territory has been absorbed into municipalities.

    However, if the legal impediments to that are not removed, which they won’t be, then i think that consolidation is the next best thing.

    No one is going to forced to consolidate against their will as all townships involved will have to approve.

    The majority will rule, which is as it should be.

    The only ones who stand to lose out would be those township officials who are left standing when the music stops.

    They are doing their level best to stop anyone from starting the song up.

  17. Mike Walkup: Every time you use the ‘ Bessie’ line you lose more credibility.

    Keep it up.

  18. Mike, the horse thing doesn’t work, just make’s it worst.

    You know where I stand, it’s about the costs which I believe you are wrong about.

    Having said that I’m not a fan of any gov lobby groups, or lobby groups at all.

    Jack is pals with Bruce now as hard as that may seem, there are a few more that would agree locally with elimination.

    I would think with the growth of anti gov feelings, if presented now, the laws could be changed in your favor.

    I would think my comment would not be welcome by the pro Twh crowd, but OH Well.

  19. Mike, it’s like the petition drive to cut the county board in half, be proactive and prove your point, I’m listening.

  20. We’ve had hundreds of pension benefit hiking laws that massacred the Illinois Pension Code.

    Certainly if there are outdated township laws a legislator can be found to sponsor improved legislation.

    If it doesn’t pass, or even if it’s not introduced, at least it’s a start, and a case can be built.

    There’s been all sorts of other units of government that have folded, merged, consolidated, etc. in McHenry County over the years.

    There’s no reason real good reason laws can’t be changed and townships consolidated if it makes sense for the taxpayers.

    Of course there’s all sorts of political game reasons.

    But where’s the spreadsheet showing the savings, with the costs to consolidate, and any hiked costs as a result of consolidating?

    A recent township folding is Evanston Township was folded into the city of Evanston.

  21. I think Nob has a point in his/her request for documentation….that is pretty fair and clean as a request..

    Please reflect I am not making a pro or con statement here…regarding the SUBJECT….

    I am just saying he has a right to request the information….It is part of that Freedom thing…

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