CL City Council Gets Earful from Library Referendum Opponents – Part 1

From a Friend of McHenry County Blog who was at the Crystal Lake City Council meeting Tuesday night:

Sign posted by opponent to the Crystal Lake Library $30.1 million bond advisory referendum.

Sign posted by opponent to the Crystal Lake Library $30.1 million bond advisory referendum.

On balance, last night’s CL City Council meeting went well.

We [library referendum opponents] had several public speakers during the public comment section.

I went first (see article tomorrow], followed by another man who lead with something like:

The dictionary defines corruption as . . and then proceeded to assert that the Library Board was corrupt in their actions of misinformation and use of taxpayer funds and by extension the City Council was corrupt for permitting.

He, raised the issue of the $8K donation to the campaign by the architect as a pay for play, etc. etc.

[See “CL Library Architect Donates $8,000 to Library Yes Committee.” Unreported in the Northwest Herald.]

At the end, the Mayor [Aaron Shepley] responded with,

“Isn’t America great, anyone can say anything they want and spin information any way they want even if its not true?”

and then he began continued a load voice with a bit of a tirade.

I raised my hand with to reply to two of his comments and he looked at me and said,

“and I don’t want to hear anything more from you either,”

>and continued on.

He pulled it together long enough for 2 more older men to come up and speak against the referendum

  • one a volunteer at the Library who was against and called out concerns about the process
  • the other a guy on a fixed income who basically asked the that the bond’s not be issued as he can’t afford a tax increase.

After the second speaker, the mayor started scolding again.

The Important part though was when he ranted, in part,

“We have the right to issue these bonds at any time.  Do you really think we would’ve gone to the trouble of a referendum if we weren’t going to listen to the result?  We’re not going to issue the bonds.  Now we have to go back to the Library and figure out what we’ll do next.”  I replied “Thank you.”

When another person got up to speak, the mayor, said loudly, “I don’t want to hear any more about this issue.  We’re moving on to Council business.”

All of us except the final person (who was part of my group) left.

I can only hope that

  1. someone from the newspaper was there to capture the mayor’s tirade and/or
  2. that the discussion is captured in meeting transcript or minutes, because it would be a good thing to have for future reference.
Election results of the Crystal Lake Library bond referendum.

Election results of the Crystal Lake Library bond referendum.

Blue is "Yes," green is "No" and brown is a tie vote.

Blue is “Yes,” green is “No” and brown is a tie vote.

= = = = =
Tomorrow: Library referendum opponent Sally Munn’s comments to the Crystal Lake City Council.


CL City Council Gets Earful from Library Referendum Opponents – Part 1 — 19 Comments

  1. I would like a new library but I voted no for the referendum.

    Mainly because we too can not afford the tax increase but also because I think 30 million is an unrealistic amount to spend.

    I believe they are getting this figure from a “I want” wish list rather than a “I need” real world list.

    I also think it is totally unprofessional for the architect to donate any money towards this campaign.

    Possibly the library board can rework the plans and reduce the amount needed by 10 million or more?

    To help with one issue they made a big deal about (handicap access) the city can make the entire side of the street in front of the library (where there is a ramp) all handicap parking spots.

    That way the parents from the school won’t keep taking up all the parking spaces there.

  2. Also anyone can request a DVD copy of the meeting from the city.

    I believe the cost is a dollar or two.

  3. “The Royals” sure get bent out of shape when the servants speak up!

  4. They’re taking their cues from the crybaby Liberals that can’t accept the election results!

  5. I was at the meeting on another matter, the mayor was despicible toward the citizens that spoke up.

    The citizens were very respectful.

  6. $30,100,000 is principal.

    Add estimated interest to the principal amount, to get the true cost of the proposed library.

    Did the city, library, or referendum committees ever reveal the interest amount?

  7. Wow!!!

    Now that is the absolutely difinitive definition of a first class A Hole!

  8. But apparently, others can see through his agenda, and don’t trust him to abide by a referendum.

    What do you expect from someone who endorsed tax-and-spend Lyin’ Jack Franks?

    He ought to start worrying about how he’s going to fund the police and fire pensions that are currently overextended already, before he spends our money on a soon-to-be rendered electronically obsolete local “gem” that is two blocks from his house.

    Is snapping at concerned citizens part of “the plan” Aaron?

  9. By the way…I can find and read any book from that library electronically for a hell of a lot less than the $131.00 amount that the expansion would raise my taxes, and save gas doing it.

    Thanks CPL, it’s been nice, but you are OBSOLETE now.

  10. The Library Board & Shepley are being


  11. So the city of Crystal Lake videotapes it’s board meetings?

    But does not post the videotaped meeting on its website?

  12. Call and request a copy of the meeting or submit a FOIA for it if you want to see what happened. I hear that the library board intends to put another referendum on the ballet in April for this.

  13. Allen, once again your lack of understanding amazes me.

    All public organizations have guidelines for public comment.

    Perhaps CL was following their guidelines.

    You just don’t get much.

  14. The City of Crystal Lake videotapes all its board meetings?

    But does not post the videotapes on its website?

  15. Hey, LTRESIDENT, I’m sure you can read your ebooks for less than the cost of a new library, but can you take a class on saving photos to the cloud, a class on learning to use your new edevice, get a professional to help you find some detailed information (not just a list of paid for google results), take your grandkids to see Mrs. Claus or several Storytimes with other community kids, or check out 10 or 15 of those big beautiful picture books every week that kids love to look at but burn through in 10 minutes or so?

    My point, in case you’re missing it, is that libraries are much more to a community than a place to get books and movies.

  16. Hey, Jgkm6, sure $30M is a lot of money, but libraries are expensive buildings to build and even more expensive to fill with updated, modern tech.

    Everything I learned about their proposal showed this was the minimal building possible which could still provide what the community members themselves said they need.

    Want vs need is a tough one, but have you visited other city’s libraries and seen what they enjoy, what they expect?

    Did you educate yourself about this?

    Attend any talks, or participate in the sessions, or read the FAQs on the web site?

    The handicap access is about everyone’s access.

    Try those steps in the winter or with a stroller and a toddler.

    Even 10 parking spots on Paddock would still force handicapped citizens out onto the road and then down the street to get to the ramp.

    The only way to get the entrance on ground level (and fix a bunch of other structural problems) is to build a new building.

  17. I wonder why a parking lot entrance could not be made in the meeting room to the east of the steps.

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