$10 Million More to “Expedite” Randall Road Right-of-Way Purchases

Next Wednesday, the McHenry County Board’s Transportation Committee has before it a request to authorize another $10 million  for “the acquisition of right-of-way for the Randall Road widening and resurfacing capacity improvement project.”

$5 million was previously appropriated in February of 2014.

Randall Road on Tuesday, June 24, 2014, about noon.

Randall Road on Tuesday, June 24, 2014, about noon.

“The acquisition of land is being funded through County funds at 100% in order to expedite the land acquisition process,” the explanation being put before the committee explains.

Anna May Miller

Anna May Miller

$5,750,000 will come from the RTA Sales Tax Fund (funded by a tax imposed by the Illinois General Assembly with no political cost of County Board members which could replace property taxes spent on law enforcement) and $4,250,000 from the Marching Fund, supported by property taxes.

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The widening of Randall Road beyond its intersection with Algonquin Road was an issue in the recent Republican Primary Election. Chairwoman of the County Board Transportation Committee, Anna May Miller lost her race for re-nomination.


$10 Million More to “Expedite” Randall Road Right-of-Way Purchases — 30 Comments

  1. I think we need to get a picket line going at that intersection.

    This is one of the most ridiculous and UNNEEDED Projects in this county!

    VOTE NO!

    Or like Miller Clan, your days in politics will be numbered too.

  2. As a taxpayer in this County, I vote for a moratorium on ANY increase in funding for Randall Rd. until the new County Board is seated.

    I fear Anna May will try to fulfill all of her promises to Local 150, Rights of Way negotiators, engineers etc. before she completes her term in Nov.

    I respectfully request that the current Board not spend one more penny than already committed for highway projects this year!

  3. This road was more traversable when it was two lanes.

    Lame ducks should not be allowed to carry out their personal agendas.

    The elections apparently did not totally stop this agenda.

    The Transportation Committee should heed that warning.

  4. The following argument will be made to Board members:

    “You already approved this. It’s part of a big plan we passed years ago.”

    This is false.

    That a general, pie-in-the-sky, wish-list plan was passed years ago has NOTHING to do with action being taken now.

    Board members should vote against any plans to spend more taxpayer money on this project until new people are installed after the November election and the entire project is reviewed.

    Board members who are not familiar with how to analyze road projects objectively should demand that the transportation division explain the process, which includes the following key facts.

    (a) if a piece of road has exceeded its capacity, and, if so by how much;

    (b) the actual benefit of any proposed improvement (i.e., how many drivers benefit and by how much;

    (c) the construction cost relative to what other governments pay for roads; and
    (d) the cost per benefited driver.

    If done properly, I believe you will find that:

    (a) this piece of road does not exceed its capacity by a great deal for very much of the day;

    (b) the number of drivers who benefit will be small (only those during rush hour) and the amount by which they benefit will be small (a couple of minutes at most);

    (c) the construction cost (per lane-mile) is a multiple of the average for urban areas in Illinois; and

    (d) the cost per benefited driver is a multiple of what any person using a toll way would be willing to pay (i.e., the taxpayers are subsidizing a boondoggle).

    If I’m wrong and the road really is far beyond capacity, the number of benefited drivers is large and the time saved substantial, the construction cost is reasonable, and the cost to each benefited driver is small — then I will support this project.

  5. It’s only taxpayer money, why should the soon-to-be defenestrated Empress Anna I give a hoot in hell?

  6. source: http://www.mchenrycountygis.org/Athena/#

    SW corner Randall and Algonquin: PIN 19-30-400-023
    assessed $342,345 tax $39,087
    sales: 2004: $4,616,854
    2004 $5,197,000
    2011 $5,176,000

    SE corner Randall and Algonquin: PIN 19-29-301-019
    assessed $2,482,198 tax $283,416

    NE Corner Randall and Algonquin: PIN 19-29-151-021 and adjacent to north: PIN 19-29-151-015
    19-29-151-021 assessed $393709 tax $66,551 sales: 2003: $600,000 2014: $4,475,000

    19-29-151-015 assessed $210,000 tax $24842
    Sales: 1998: $407,290, $450,000, $1,411,500, 1999 $1,325,000 2004:$171,875,$171,875,$171,875,$687,500,$171,875

    NW Corner Randall and Algonquin: PIN 19-30-200-016
    assessed $2,035,358 tax $240,654

  7. Anna Miller does not unilaterally decide what road projects get moved forward.

    What a smug bunch.

  8. So if total assessed value of 4 corner lots is around $15 million, and the two biggest (NW and SE corners) are 6.77 acres and 9 acres respectively and no one is suggesting that the whole 16 acres is being purchased…

    How do they need $10 million MORE than whatever agreed purchase price was negotiuated at the cost of $600,000 to private real estate negotiators to broker the deal before today?

    And does anyone else recall the disturbing meeting in 2014 where a report was presented by paid consultants showing the prices of property jumping 25% in the few years when everyone else’s property values were crashing?

    And the consultants predicted the prices would rise another 20% and that happened (AT LEAST 20%) and now they want another $10 million for property purchase?

    I hope Board members will do their due diligence before voting to spend $10 million ADDITIONAL OPM on land assessed at far less than that.

    (The $10 million is EXTRA, right?)

  9. The Mrs.:

    You obviously have never attended a MCDOT committee meeting.

  10. Thanks for the details, Susan.
    he board should also note the corresponding and permanent loss of tax revenue from any property acquired through this most impractical of efforts.

    Like many others, I simply add a few extra minutes to my expected commuting time when passing through that stretch during peak times.

    No big deal.

    Maybe add a right turn lane southbound at Miller and call it a decade.

    Then start paying attention to the traffic mess brewing in FRG with the planned riverside complex.

  11. It’s only a meter of time before gas bag gasser starts complaining about this.

    Talk to the mayors they want it.

  12. I agree that this is not a needed project.

    We don’t need to spend tax money, which comes out of our pockets, on this.


  13. Why isn’t Alg and LITH elected official’s not rammed on when they are the people putting the most pressure on McDOT and Trans committee to do some thing to improve the intersection there?

    IMO, stop those elected officials from whining constantly and the county officials will be glad to spend the $$$$ else where to get reelected.

    It’s really time Randall and Rakow (sp) be turned over to CL, LITH, and Alg as their road to maintain.

    They benefit the most and have plenty of $$$$ to waste also apparently.

    Alg talking of downtown revitalization, at least 50% waste of $$$$ would be my guess.

  14. Woodstock Resident, the mayors have their own agendas and want you and I to pay for their pet projects.

    Your utter ignorance is showing again.

    If Board member Gasser speaks out against it, it most likely because it’s not in the taxpayers interest.

  15. In 1963 US14 was rerouted around Woodstock.

    At that time the state Of IL and Wis should of considered ROW purchases all along the US14 corridor or should it of happened as it did?

    Had US14 been 4 lane at least from FRG to Woodstock much earlier in history, would it cost as much as the on going widening since the 80s till now cost as much?

    We lost population, housing prices took a big big dive.

    Now the tread is reversing, even with high property taxes, population up a tad, prices of houses starting to recover some of what was lost.

    Get out your Crystal Ball negative dudes, ya sure it isn’t bad Windex clouding your vision? 🙂

  16. “WR” You are way off base.

    Just because the Mayors want it, does not mean it is appropriate.

    So, clam up!

    Follow the money.

    A full financial disclosure to the tax payers is warranted.

    How much are the Local 150 boys getting?

  17. Nob, the area is largely saturated with homes and so what does your own crystal ball show you?

    While you’re using mysticism to draw judgments and craft unhelpful comments, the reasoned among us prefer to use facts and data.

    Steve Wilson’s approach is a nice example.

    Additional housing growth–whenever in the far future it will happen–will occur further west, out along the Rt 47 corridor.

    It will continue until such time as it’s advantageous for developers to buy up property east of Randall and convert it to high density housing.

    That could be 20 years away, maybe longer, given the state of affairs in Illinois.

    The securing of a ROW along the Rt 14 corridor was a prudent move, but Randall Road is not Rt 14 in the 60’s.

    Unlike the widening of Rakow, this is not a project the citizens are demanding.

  18. All those companies involved in the highway industry which contributed to the Miller campaign fund over the years may be looking for a final payback before Anna May leaves office?

    Total is approx. $74,000.

  19. eminclake,

    I agree with Steve’s assessment, but I believe he is down playing future growth, which IMO will occur in the future.

    How much and how fast is of course all guessing, hard to prove either way.

    Safety has to be the first and ruling consideration to avoid large lawsuits that raised property tax like what happened many years ago in Streamwood.

    We have to stop thinking our county will not grow and is still in the 60s.

    Apparently the politicians/people of Alg, LITH, and CL do want this improvement and are putting some pressure to have something done there.

    I already said let them pay for it then, not good enough for ya?

    Questioning, share proof of where you got that number, $74,000?

    Throwing dirt for political gain works, she didn’t get reelected, but will the replacement Chair of that committee be any better, prove that also?

  20. The burden of proof for future growth prediction is on those seeking OPM.

    This County is far in excess of Normal Range Property Tax Rate (unlike the 60’s, when the area was not inordinately burdensome to taxpayers).

    Nob may be confusing Growth with Net Growth.

    There is plenty of monetary incentive (TIF, Enterprise Zone, sales tax abatement, property tax abatement, grants) for New commercial development and new subsidized housing development.

    But the effect of the increased tax burden that places on the rest of the homes and businesses amounts to net loss (as reflected by falling EAV –EAV inclusive of New Property).

  21. Re: Questioning, share proof of where you got that number, $74,000?

    Prove me wrong!

  22. Susan, I see the problem how we are financing road improvements as the biggest problem.

    My solution is cut down on property taxes used, and raise the user fee on fuel, Motor Fuel Tax.

    MFT is just barely enough to maintain what we have, improvement are eating up the $$$$$ and the expense of the other roads.

    Also green vehicles need to contribute more since they don’t use the fuel the same, yet their tires are still wearing out the road.

    Questioning, when asked first to prove something the person is obliged to make/prove their point, if they use your tactic they are waltzing for political gain and have no game.

  23. OK.


    Good logic about shifting tax burden off property tax, but ultimately all spending projects should meet acid tests. Normalized, standardized , objective analytics.

    Like Steve Willson took painstaking efforts to articulate.

    Randall doesn’t pass.

  24. Susan I like Steve and your logic over all, but IMO it’s tad short sighted.


    The need for two left turn lanes for Randall would be plenty in IMO.

    I avoid that area during rush times if I can.

    Made a big mistake and went there on Black Friday two years ago, never again.

  25. Again, Nob is a Miller advocate.

    His agenda falls in line with Democrats’.

    He comes on the blog or NW Herald to throw gas on a fire and step back and watch.

    Don’t entertain the driver.

  26. There is nothing wrong with Randall Rd as it stands.

    The costs do NOT produce benefits.

    After million$ spent, the savings in time will only be 50 seconds off drive time on the busiest time of the busiest day!

    That is not worth raising gas tax, sales tax etc!

  27. An increase in MFUT will only make costs of other goods and services rise.

    We’d just be shifting the cost for wasteful road projects from one pocket to another.

  28. MFT Kelly, yes we pay out of our pockets no matter what.

    I can control my driving habits, grow my own food, even have chickens where I live, but not the assessor and the schools raising our property taxes.

    Landon, throwing rocks here also?

    Wow when did you ever hear a Dem, Debt Enlarging Maniac’s as I like to call them, ever talk about balanced budgets and fiscal responsibility like I do.


    50 seconds is wrong also, the cycle time with turning cycle is longer, plus slowing down speeding up, extra fuel costs.

    Talk to the elected from those towns, they are the ram rods, not me.

  29. This is absolutely ludicrous, all that money to spend and this state is in debt up to its eyeballs..

    All they want to do is make a bigger parking lot than what that road is now a 4lane parking lot.

    What is the point!?…

    who do they owe favors to???

    the maddy gang?

    one has to wonder…

    Vote NO is correct.

    Such waste.

    when does it end?

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