In a comment under a reply to a letter that Robert Beltran sent to the Northwest Herald appears this appeal for Beltran’s views to be published…so they are.
Since the Mchenry Blog has elected to distribute Gealow’s NW Herald letter with his permission, I feel it’s only appropriate to distribute my NW Herald retort with my permission:
Where to begin? Perhaps with a point of agreement: yes, I am free to contend Bob Anderson’s campaign is disseminating propaganda disguised as education. Typically politicians have enough honesty to portray their arguments as positions or opinions; in any case, I doubt Mr. Anderson is planning to present the opposing arguments. I would love to be surprised.
While you are technically accurate saying not all present at the McHenry Township 2018 annual meeting voted for the resolution, it is also technically accurate that not all present were electors (registered township voters). And not all electors voted. But all those voting did vote for the resolution. Were you present? Did you vote? If you were not, you were not present to hear the arguments for and against and thereby forfeited your rights both to argue your case and to vote. I might mention that all the electors personally known to me in that room were not employees (though a few were present) and some of the noisiest were not even electors. And please don’t infer that if someone is a township employee, that diminishes his or her rights as a citizen.
Surely you miss the point of the resolution. It was not for the electors to conduct the study; it was for the township Board to do so. Of course the electors have the right to demand it, per 60 ILCS 1/30-20 Sec. 30-25: “Exercise of corporate powers. The electors may take all necessary measures and give directions for the exercise of their corporate powers.”
You may be correct that township counsel erred, with respect to “Roberts Rules,” in ruling that no amendments to the resolution could be offered. If you were there, you could have raised that as a point of order; by not doing so you acquiesced to the ruling. I wish you had; I could have offered an amendment to make the resolution stronger. But your point in no way invalidates the vote for the resolution.
Conducting a cost-benefit study is not my responsibility, and even if I did, I would expect it to be challenged as biased as I am not seen as neutral. And if I did pay for such a study to be done, would the township Board delay the referendum pending the final report? That’s the real issue.
The study should NOT be done using the approach you suggest unless the townships compared have similar attributes in terms of population and its distribution, township v. municipality highway system mileage and fragmentation, topography and climate, for starters. The comparison my wife made was not an attempt to conduct any such study but simply an informational exercise demonstrating that McHenry Township was not out of line in its costs per mile. That is entirely different than a cost-benefit study of whether property owners will see a net increase or decrease in property taxes if the township road district is dissolved.
Ironic that the group wishing to eliminate township road districts has taken the tack of taking over one (Algonquin) to mismanage it as proof road districts should be eliminated. That’s like proving horses are more reliable transportation than automobiles by entering a race between them and pouring sugar into your own gas tank. Perhaps people who don’t like government, don’t understand how it works and want to break it ought not be running it.
Looking at the reasons the State’s Attorney -following a long, expensive grand jury probe- found the former Algonquin Highway Commissioner’s expenditures (which were far less than those so far of his successor) were considered by to be inconsequential would suggest it’s the anti-township crew that is wasting our money.
Finally, no -most voters voted for trustee candidates other than those elected, but the majority vote was split between two other, more rational slates. Even those who did vote for those who were elected were quite unaware that the slate planned to eliminate the township, beginning with its road district. The only slogan they openly expressed was, “Tax Revolt.” Then, as now, they failed to inform voters of their full agenda. And please note, too, that the point of an injunction would be to enforce a vote -not to overcome a loss, as your argument seeks to do.
Nothing in your letter addresses the central point of mine: we need to conduct a study so we know what we are buying. Unless you want the taxpayers to buy a pig in a poke.