Looking for some photos, I found this one of Keely Cat. The mitten was seven years old on March 5th
Archive for the ‘Cat’
Keely cat sits on the landing guarding the upstairs.
I dedicate this post to the memory of my friend Larry Snow, who loved it when I posted pictures of our cat.
As with a number of candidates, former County Board member Lyn Orphal did not answer the ALAW Questionnaire, so you will be denied the comparison answers to its questions provide.
Nevertheless, McHenry County Blog has obtained her palm card and a letter which you can see below. As usual, click to enlarge.
Orphal’s web site can be found here.
In looking at her page on County Board experience, I see no reference to what I shall always remember her for.
To the utter surprise of McHenry County Board Chairman Ken Koehler, she moved to strike all language about the McHenry County Republican Cat Tax from the re-write of the Animal Control Code.
Those who presented the revised ordinance expected to use the money to finance a more elaborate facility in Crystal Lake.
McHenry County Blog ran an almost daily campaign against the McHenry County Republican Cat Tax from house cat Keely’s perspective.
The campaign penetrated the political Establishment enough that ordinance sponsor Tina Hill even referred to her proposal as a “Cat Tax,” before realizing her (what word should I use, “embarrassing,” no, “hilarious” is better; I was laughing too loudly in the audience) mistake.
One of the arguments for the tax was to make certain that all cats were inoculated against rabies…all cats but those most likely to have it, barn cats.
The proposal made no sense and public pressure was so great that Orphal made a last minute decision to offer her amendment to the ordinance.
Now Keely Cat can rest comfortably assured that the McHenry County Republican Cat Tax Collector will not come searching for him.
= = = = =
To refresh people’s memories of this example of over-regulation by local Republicans, I’ll show you the story that I ran before the GOP primary election two years ago. (Please note, “Chainsaw Jack” Franks that you are not the first I have taken on for trying to over-regulate us in McHenry County.):
Remembering the McHenry County Republican Cat Tax Now that County Board Members Are Up for Election
Now that the primary election is but a week away, I’m going to give you a chance to read my article on the McHenry County Board’s 2007 defeat of the Republican Cat Tax.
The folks running for re-election (or, in the case of one running for higher office) who voted to impose the Cat Tax in order to help pay for new animal control shelter on Route 14 in Crystal Lake follow (updated for 2012):
- Mary Donner of Crystal Lake, District3
- John Heisler of Crystal Lake, District 2
- Tina Hill of Woodstock, District 5
- John Jung of Woodstock, District 5
- Ken Koehler, County Board Chairman, Crystal Lake, District 2
- Anna May Miller of Cary, District 1
- Virginia Peschke of Woodstock, District 5
- Sandra Salgado of McHenry, District 4
- Barbara Wheeler of Crystal Lake, running for State Rep. unopposed
The original February 21, 2007, article follows. For some reason Google has removed the original photographs, even though I paid extra to keep the up.
11 Republicans, 1 Democrat Kill McHenry County Republican Cat Tax
If you ever think that your voice can’t make a difference in local government, think again!
Both opponents and proponents of the Republican Cat Tax mentioned they had been lobbied by their constituents.
And some of them used language (“Cat Tax Collector”) that made me know that McHenry County Blog readers had been spreading the word.
The McHenry County Board, stacked 23-1 in favor of the Republican Party, defeated the cat tax backed by County Chairman Ken Koehler (he called it a “fee”) and nine other GOP county board members.
The motion to eliminate the cat tax from the revision of the animal control ordinance passed 12-10 on a motion by Lyn Orphal, seconded by Mary Lou Zierer. Perhaps Republicans have been this split on a board vote before. I don’t follow it closely enough to know. It must be a rarity, however, for a county board chairman not to get his way.
The 11 Republicans voting to kill the Republican Cat Tax follow. (Those in bold face type are on the ballot–updated for the 2012 election.)
- Yvonne Barnes of Cary, a newcomer
- Sue Draffkorn of Wonder Lake
- Randy Donley of Union
- Ed Dvorak of Crystal Lake
- John Hammerand of Wonder Lake
- Mary McCann of Woodstock, just elected
- Lyn Orphal of Crystal Lake
- Nick Provenzano of McHenry
- Daniel Ryan of Huntley, just elected
- Dan Shea of Fox River Grove
- Mary Lou Zierer of Marengo
Newly elected Democratic Party member Jim Kennedy of Lake in the Hills joined this majority of voting Republicans (two were absent) to kill the cat tax.
Get down, Catkins. I’m writing a story.
Don’t worry, you’re safe now from the McHenry County Republican Cat Tax Collectors.
I’ll scratch your chest and neck later.
Those voting in favor of the Cat Tax ordinance, which would require rabies inoculation, plus the fee (which even a supporter slipped and called a “cat tax”), couched their arguments primarily toward being fair to both dog and cat owners, plus getting ahead of the spread of cat rabies, which is in Pennsylvania.
Those voting in favor of imposing the Cat Tax Hike were all Republicans. Their names follow (those on the ballot shown in bold face type–updated for the 2012 election):
- Ken Koehler, County Board Chairman, Crystal Lake
- Marie Chmiel of Crystal Lake
- Mary Donner of Crystal Lake, just elected
- John Heisler of Crystal Lake
- Tina Hill of Woodstock
- John Jung of Woodstock
- Anna May Miller of Cary
- Virginia Peschke of Woodstock
- Sandra Salgado of McHenry
- Barbara Wheeler of Crystal Lake
= = = = =
Here, minus Chairman Ken Koehler, are those who attended the Cat Tax County Board meeting. (Click to enlarge.)
Koehler is pictured in profile on top, while Lyn Orphal, the Crystal Laker who made the motion to kill the McHenry County Republican Cat Tax is just below.
Keely cat is shown relaxing after the death of the McHenry County Republican Cat Tax Collector ordinance.
A press release from State Senator Pam Althoff:
Althoff animal ID bill signed into law
CHICAGO – Legislation aimed at helping owners reunite with their lost pets has been signed by the Governor, according to State Sen. Pamela Althoff (R-McHenry), the sponsor of the bill.
Senate Bill 1637, which passed the General Assembly without opposition, encourages animal control facilities to adopt “best practices” that go beyond simply scanning a pet for microchips in order to identify the animal’s owner.
Under current law, when a dog or cat is impounded they must be scanned for the presence of a microchip.
Althoff’s legislation requires animal control facilities to also examine pets for other methods of identification, including ID tags, tattoos, and rabies license tags. The bill also requires the scan and examination to occur within 24 hours after the dog or cat is impounded.
“For many households, pets are like members of our family,” Althoff said. “When one of our furry companions is lost, we want to make sure everything possible is being done to bring them home. Unfortunately, many families have a false sense of security that microchipping their pet guarantees it will be found, when it’s far more complicated then that.”
Althoff noted that Illinois counties use a variety of scanner to scan the chips, which are made by various manufacturers and may use different frequencies. This means a pet microchipped in one area might not be identified when it’s scanned in a different region, which makes checking them through other methods even more crucial.
“Fortunately, we have some county animal control facilities who are already taking these extra steps to get pets back home. We pushed for this bill to ensure that all counties adopt these best practices, and commend Sen. Althoff and Rep. David Reis for their leadership on this issue.” said Steve Hayden, president of the Illinois Federation of Dog Clubs and Owners.
Under Senate Bill 1637, animal control facilities would also be required to try to reach owners by telephone and email, in addition to mailed notices as they are currently obligated. If the animal has been microchipped and the primary contact cannot be located or refuses to claim the animal, the facility’s administrator should then attempt to contact any secondary contacts listed by the chip manufacturer prior to adoption, transfer, or euthanization.
The measure also encourages the facilities to scan and examine pets a second time for the presence of a microchip and other identifying characteristics prior to any transfer or euthanizing of the animal.
“The fact is, by taking some very easy and common-sense steps, animal control facilities can really increase their success rate at reuniting lost pets with their owners and save their lives in the process,” Althoff said. “As anyone who’s lost a pet can tell you, it can be a very traumatic experience for families, and children in particular. They should be comforted knowing that the animal control facilities in their area are doing everything they can to reunite them with their pets.”
In addition to passing the legislation, Sen. Althoff and the Illinois Federation of Dog Clubs and Owners are working with groups such the American Kennel Club Companion Animal Recovery to continue the fight to ensure lost pets are reunited with their owners. The organizations have agreed to donate 10 scanners for animal control facilities in need to minimize the financial burden facing them.
It really is a miracle that not more people were killed. One of Denny’s golfing buddies, age 75, had his whole house disappear and all that was left was his car in his driveway. He was thrown around in the tornado and deposited on his front yard. His wife had a sudden illness and died in Feb. Now he is wondering why God has kept him around.
I heard the story of a mother who had been trying to outrun the tornado. She stopped when she heard a voice say to pull over and get into the ditch.
She got into the ditch, covering her four year old daughter.
“Wasn’t it pretty?”
Her mother asked her what she meant.
She replied that she saw a lot of butterfly people.
“Did you see the butterfly people in the sky? They were carrying people in the sky.”
They were going into the sky with people and there were a lot around the two of them.
Besides the butterfly story about the mother and child taking safety in a ditch, I have heard of two more.
A mother and child pulled over at a convenience store, gas station.
The door had been locked by the people taking cover inside.
When the tornado had passed, the mother marveled at how unhurt they were.
Her child said it was because there were big butterfly wings covering their car.
The final one I have heard was about a grandfather and grandson in a field.
The grandfather covered his grandson to protect him from the tornado.
Apparently the man did have some injuries, but the child did not.
The little boy told his grandfather that he saw a lot of butterflies around him.
There are so many stories about the place that people took shelter ended up being the only place remaining in their home.
One of Lissa and Brandon’s friends found their cat alive in their rubble of a house after 16 days.
We are amazed with stories of all of the miracles, heroes, as well as tragedies.
Well, that’s what we have been up to.
Love, Ellen & Denny
The fuzzy cat that can’t get enough of scratching under his chin is five years old.
Naturally, there had to be pictures.
First the question was whether Pat Quinn’s proposal was two percent or 67 percent.
When he, Mike Madigan and John Cullerton upped the stakes to 75%, most newspaper folk got the picture. Even they pay taxes and have a personal interest.
Now that the law has been signed lickety-split newspaper people can’t agree on whether it is a 66 percent or a 67 percent increase.
The Chicago Sun-Times, which managed to keep the income tax hike off its front page (appropriate, I guess, since it has favored all income tax increases), says it’s a 66 percent increase.
So does the cartoonist at the State Journal-Register in Springfield.
Only the Chicago Tribune has it right.
67 percent is the increase it headlines on the Chicago Tribune’s front page in the article that tells people how to figure how much more Democrats are forcing them to pay in state income taxes.
I don’t know what you learned about the rounding of fractions to a whole number, but I was taught that if the fraction was more than half to round up.
Three out of four news sources I read today rounded down.
How would convert 66 2/3 into a whole number?
Imagine my surprise to see that the McHenry County Health Department is again floating the McHenry County Republican Cat Tax in its FY2011 “Goals.”
Don’t believe me?
Search for page 246 in the 425 page document.
Besides wondering why the final budget has not been posted, I wonder what part of “No” that the Board of Health doesn’t understand.
You may remember that District 2 County Board Member Lyn Orphal blind-sided Board Chairman Ken Koehler in February of 2007 when she advanced a motion to remove the all references from about the Cat Tax.
But Orphal didn’t win re-nomination. She was replaced by Donna Kurtz and I don’t remember if she had taken a position on the Republican Cat Tax or not.
Looking at the people up for election who supported the Cat Tax, I see all won election. One of the opponents, Democrat Jim Kennedy lost to John Jung, who voted for the tax before he was defeated in 2008 by Democrat Paula Yensen.
Dan Ryan and Yvonne Barnes, both opponents of the Cat Tax, also did not win re-nomination. They were replaced by Diane Evertsen and Robert Novak, neither of whose stands on the issue, if any, I know.
Both Ed Dvorak, who is retiring this year, and Nick Provenzano, who took his place, voted against the Cat Tax.
Maybe the word has been passed to the Board of Health that it’s OK to ask the County Board to impose this tax a second time now that the elections are over and two Cat Tax opponents will not be serving for the next two years.
The vote three years ago was 12-10. Apparently two people were absent.
But twelve votes would have killed the tax hike, if all had voted against Tina Hill’s motion to approve the amendatory ordinance. Ties fail, you see.
It’s unlikely that Koehler has zeroed in on this issue, however.
Keeley Cat isn’t too bothered yet. He doubts many County Board members have even noticed that the Board of Health is planning another assault on the kitties.
= = = = =
Thanks to Gus Philpott, who writes “Woodstock Advocate,” for letting me know of what was in the Health Department’s Goals.
“You dump them out.
“I’ll guard those Legos.”