ALAW Criticized in Letter to the Editor

Another letter to the editor. This time from Attorney Jim Bishop:

Jim Bishop

I don’t know who or what the “Alliance of Land, Agriculture and Water” is, but I find the “politically correct” responses, presented in the McHenry County Blog, of the candidates for the McHenry County Board very amusing.

The vast majority of the candidates answered “yes” or “agree” to the first question:

“Do you agree that new development should be located where infrastructure exists, to minimize the extension of new roads, utilities and services, and protect farmland and water recharge areas?”

To agree with or answer yes to the above question shows that the reader either does not understand the question or ignores history.

To illustrate, I would ask if you would rather live in or near the triangle between

  1. Crystal Lake, Algonquin and Huntley, or the triangle between
  2. Crystal Lake, Woodstock and McHenry or the triangle between
  3. Huntley, Marengo and Hampshire?

Unquestionably area 1) above is located where infrastructure exists, etc, but has required, by far, the greatest expansion of roads, utilities and services, whereas, the areas in 2 and 3 which consist of mostly estate developments requiring no extension of sewer or water, far less extension of gas and electricity, lower density, fewer children per unit for our schools and on and on.

Incidentally, the groundwater of McHenry County is in great shape and if one digs in the right places at the County Planning and Development Department, all of the evidence of this fact is on file. High density development also impedes groundwater recharge by building rooftops, parking lots and pavement, all peculiar to high density development, not estate type development.

I don’t think the “Alliance” knows what they are talking about.


Jim Bishop


ALAW Criticized in Letter to the Editor — 4 Comments

  1. I enjoy this gentleman attorney from Crystal Lake.

    He very much reminds me of two former media hound attorney’s, Geoffrey Fieger from Detroit and Jerry Spence from Jackson Hole.

    Spence would do press on the Cable Networks donning Western Wear and speaking in a very low, very precise he ‘opined’ on the issues he always ‘questioned’ the validity of….very entertaining.

    While Fieger, with his long ‘lochs’ of straight hair would just put it out there and not mix words, like Mr. Spence he too had a way of showing how silly some of the thing’s his clients were forced to give in to.

    We haven’t had an attorney to enjoy in a few years since Mr’s Fieger and Spence’s hay days…

    I believe we need to get Mr. Bishop on Cable to “Represent” the “Peeps” in Da’ County!!!

    Very amusing while making a great point utilizing ‘visualization.’ His appearance although eccentric, is rather ‘captivating’ in his own interesting way.

    I think Im going to start a Blog in a Soap Opera format about McHenry County. I think I have my first cast member!

    (Yes this is meant as a compliment to Mr. Bishop)

  2. “High density development also impedes groundwater recharge by building rooftops, parking lots and pavement, all peculiar to high density development, not estate type development.”


    It’s usually not low-density property owners who complain to municipalities about flooding, and cause $$$ to be spent fixing over-development and consequent flooding’s problems.

    ‘S about time someone pointed that out, Jim. Thanks.

    PatricianNot, you may be entertained by your own witticitms (not) but if all you can talk about is Detroit and Jackson Hole, you’re not relevant.

  3. The key is to be conservative with water usage.

    There are several organizations in addition to ALAW monitoring the water situation in McHenry County.

    US Department of the Interior, US Geological Survey (USGS), Illinois Water Science Center.

    University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Prairie Research Institute, Illinois State Water Survey.

    Environmental Defenders of McHenry County

    There are long term concerns with McHenry County groundwater, especially the southwestern portion of the county.

    Alternatives are expensive.

    For example, much of suburban Cook and DuPage County receive Lake Michigan water pumped from Chicago. In 2011 Chicago approved increasing its water rates 70% over 4 years. Suburban recipients pay that rate, plus whatever surcharge the suburban water commission adds.

    In the case of Dupage County, the DuPage County Water Commission will add a surcharge in effect covering mismanagement in the agency.

    Some municipalities are adding an additional tax rate over and above the DWC rate, the rationale being the municipalities anticipate less water commission revenue because people will be more frugal with their water usage, so to maintain total revenue, increase the tax rate even higher!

    The results of a McHenry County water study by some of the above agencies should be released in 2012.

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