Starting behind the Algonquin Public Works Building, Governor Bruce Rauner thanked volunteers filling sandbags, announced that Cook County was being added to the list of counties declared disaster areas and, then, moved to the street next to the Fox River.
In his widely-covered press conference, the Governor said he “may be calling for evacuations,” but would be relying on local officials’ opinions.
“There is potentially very serious flooding coming to communities in the Fox River Valley.”
McHenry County Board Chairman Jack Franks thanked the volunteers who were filling sandbags behind the dignitaries lined up behind the microphones.
Having been through the flooding in 2013, Algonquin Village President John Schmitt explained, “We’ve gotten better and better in managing the response.”
He said that over 25,000 sandbags had been filled.
And that the Village had been “working around the clock the last five days.”
Congressman Peter Roskam expressed “incredible sense of gratitude for those folks who have come out to help their neighbors.
State Rep. David McSweeney thanked the Governor for his strong leadership.”
State Senator Dan McConchie pointed out that “the water may have receded from your neighborhood, but there are plenty of [people] who need help.”
Rep. Alan Skillicorn, whose district contains Fox River waterfront property in Kane County was the final elected officials to step to the microphones.
McHenry County Emergency Agency David Christensen told the reporters that the flood is expected to crest Tuesday.
In answer to a question about which part of the Fox would flood first, Christensen pointed to Holiday Hills.
He said that 818 homes were affected in 2013.
The press release the Governor released today is below:
County to State Disaster Proclamation for Flooding
State Emergency Operations Center Continues to Support Communities Battling Flood Waters
ALGONQUIN – Governor Bruce Rauner today added Cook County to the state disaster proclamation for widespread flooding. Governor Rauner announced this action while touring flood fighting efforts and impacted residential areas in Algonquin with community, state and federal elected officials.
On Friday, Governor Rauner issued a disaster proclamation for Kane, Lake and McHenry counties.
“With flood waters impacting communities in Cook County, I’m adding the county to the state disaster proclamation to ensure we provide responders the resources they need to continue protecting public health and safety,” Governor Rauner said.
A state disaster proclamation makes a wide variety of state resources available that can help communities respond and recover from flooding.
Such resources include sandbags, sand, pumps, trucks and other heavy equipment, and other assistance to ensure public safety.
The State Emergency Operations Center (SEOC) in Springfield was activated Friday to coordinate requests for state resources to support communities battling flood waters. The SEOC will remain open until the threat has passed.
To date, the state has provided 350,000 sandbags to Lake County and 100,000 sandbags to McHenry County.
On Monday, 50,000 sandbags will be delivered to Kane County.
In addition, the state is staging 350,000 sandbags in northern Illinois for quick deployment to communities.
Agencies staffing the SEOC include the Illinois Emergency Management Agency, Illinois Department of Transportation, Illinois Department of Natural Resources, Illinois Department of Public Health, Office of the State Fire Marshal, Illinois Environmental Protection Agency, Illinois State Police, the American Red Cross and the Federal Emergency Management Agency.
For updates on the current situation, visit the Ready Illinois website at http://www.ready.illinois.gov.