The major actors in the legislation that would make McHenry County Boar Chairman perhaps the most powerful county chairman in Illinois made major moves yesterday.
McHenry County Board Chairman Jack Franks disavowed his lust for power in the following statement about the bill that David McSweeney introduced four days earlier:
Over the past week, a number of County Board members have expressed serious concerns with House Bill 3317, the McHenry County Equitable Standards and Governmental Efficiency Law, filed last Friday by state Rep. David McSweeney.
After careful review of this bill, I concluded that I cannot support it.
I believe House Bill 3317 grants the office of Chairman too much authority, and I also believe that your input is vital on a bill of this magnitude.
I informed Representative McSweeney over the weekend that I opposed the bill, and then reached out to Rep. Sam Yingling, who is chairman of the House Counties and Townships Committee.
I shared with him the concerns that I, and County Board members, had with the bill, and he has agreed not to move it forward.
A copy of the email he sent me is attached to this letter.
Representative Yingling wrote that his committee is developing an omnibus good-government bill, and unlike House Bill 3317, I intend for the County Board to have a voice in its development. I am creating an ad-hoc committee to offer ideas regarding what the bill will include.
I value the working relationship that a majority of this County Board and I have developed over the past two years. We have accomplished so much together for our constituents. House Bill 3317 would have done significant damage to that relationship, and I could not sit idle and allow that to happen.
If you have questions on this or any other subject, as always, please just give me a call.
I remain very truly yours,
Here is House Counties and Township Committee Chairman Sam Yingling reply:
I transferred the bill to Chairman Yingling, the committee Chairman. Yingling wants to use the bill or another bill to do one omnibus County/consolidation bill that will affect multiple counties, including McHenry County.
I believe that some of the elements of my County bill will be included in the omnibus bill.
The two most important items in the bill to me are
- abating surplus funds to taxpayers and
- eliminating health care benefits for County Board members.
I would also like the omnibus bill to include increased authority to cut and veto spending.