Comments from Cary Grade School Board President Scott Coffey on the McHenry County Conservation District:
This relates to my post in Part 7 regarding the excessive number of acres under management by the County.
The (shrinking) population of the County cannot afford the operating cost structure necessary to support this 70% increase in acreage.
It should have probably stayed at its 2001 level of 14,902 acres.
The County should begin to look at divesting itself of a lot of its excess holdings in order to reduce its operating cost structure that exists today and use the proceeds to abate and/or defease the outstanding debt that currently burdens the taxpayer.
That debt service burden currently stands at $11.7 million/year.
The County should begin the process to force-rank its properties based on marketability and value.
The secondary benefit would be the longterm incremental property tax revenue that would come with any new development from the divested property.
The County should work with the local municipalities/school districts/etc. to formulate a plan
regarding each targeted property and its potential effects on each community.