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Voters say ‘no’ to Huntley Parks referendum, yes to Johnsburg District 12

Published: Wednesday, March 19, 2014 12:18 a.m. CDT • Updated: Wednesday, April 9, 2014 7:07 a.m. CDT

(Continued from Page 1)

Voters gave mixed answers to a series of referendum questions laid out Tuesday.

While Huntley Park District voters overwhelming voted against issuing $18.75 million in bonds to construct a new indoor turf facility and to pay for future land expansion, Johnsburg District 12 voters narrowly approved up to $41 million in bonds to cover facility improvements.

As for the 249 voters who cast a ballot Tuesday on the Bull Valley road improvement referendum, their approval (or disapproval) didn’t matter.

Village officials announced last week that they had rethought their request to issue $5 million alternative revenue bonds to repair village roads and were going to look into other revenue streams.

Provisional and late absentee ballots are not included in the vote counts.

Johnsburg District 12: Approval of a $41 million bond question squeaked by Tuesday.

Johnsburg District 12 voters authorized the consolidated school district to issue up to $41 million in bonds to pay for facility improvements, 1,237-1,213, a margin of 24 votes.

Maintenance costs on the district’s four aging buildings have been pushing the district consistently over its budgeted expenses.

The school board has been preparing plans to renovate three of the district’s buildings and decided to stop using Bush Elementary School as one of its grade-level centers.

With the referendum approved, the district will be able to pay for the improvements using bonds, which will be paid back using property taxes.

Huntley Park District: Officials will have to find a new revenue stream if they plan to move ahead with plans to expand its facilities.

By a 3-to-1 margin, voters rejected a $20 million bond question that would have financed an indoor turf facility and future land purchases.

The debt would have been repaid using property taxes, but because the district planned on restructuring its debt, the bond portion of property owners’ tax bills would not have gone up, officials said.

Fox Lake: Some of Fox Lake’s roads will still get repaired despite the failure of Tuesday’s referendum question in a 509-to-444 vote, its village president said.

The Fox Lake Village Board decided to ask voters whether the village should take out $6 million in bonds to supplement $2 million the village has saved up to improve about 23 miles of roadway.

The Village Board still plans on spending the $2 million on road improvements over the next few years, Village President Donny Schmit said. Final approval requires board action.

Algonquin: The village joined 11 other McHenry County communities in approving municipal electric aggregation referendums.

The program allows municipalities to group their residents’ electric usage in an effort to win lower electricity rates.

Nunda Township: Streamlining garbage, recycling and yard waste collection could save Nunda Township residents as much as $150 to $200 a year, township officials said.

Voters gave the township permission to seek contracts on the services through a referendum question Tuesday.

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