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Senate Bill Could Pave the Way for Dissolving County Airport Authority, Sanitation District

Group of nine Illinois senators join DuPage County Caucus with focus on giving County Board ability to consolidate small areas of government.

Illinois Sen. Tom Cullerton (D-Villa Park) has co-sponsored a bill that would give the DuPage County Board authority to dissolve smaller units of government.

The legislation, Senate Bill 494, would affect the county airport authority, county fair and exposition authority and sanitary districts. Current law requires a voter referendum to dissolve these appointed boards and authorities.

Cullerton's bill is the first goal of the newly formed DuPage County Caucus, a group of nine Illinois state senators focused on promoting the interests of DuPage County, according to a news release from Sen. Don Harmon (D-Oak Park).

“DuPage County is a unique part of the state,” Harmon, founder and co-chairman of the DuPage County Caucus said in a statement Thursday.

“Many of its communities have similar concerns and expect similar things from state government. I thought it was important for all the senators who represent the area to discuss these issues and form an advocacy plan.”

In addition to Harmon, who serves as president pro tempore, the DuPage County Caucus includes Christine Radogno (R-Lemont), the Senate Republican Leader; Co-chairman Michael Connelly (R-Wheaton), Cullerton, Kirk Dillard (R-Westmont), Linda Holmes (D-Aurora), Dan Kotowski (D-Park Ridge), Pat McGuire (D-Joliet) and Jim Oberweis (R-North Aurora). 

The County Board would have to dissolve the authorities by ordinance, including a hearing before the vote.

"Chairman (Dan) Cronin and the County Board are committed to taking bold and innovative steps to reduce duplication of government services,"  Connelly said in a statement. "This legislation will enable DuPage County to set a trend for others to follow."

Dan March 23, 2013 at 02:39 PM
Where does the DuPage County Caucus stand when it comes to placing a storm water utility fee on our homes,businesses, schools and other non-for-profits? This fee would no longer have the protection provided by the current property tax caps. If you look to the fee in Downers Grove you can see that it is set to increase 11% a year for the next 15 years! Even though our schools are struggling with decreases in funding from Illinois, Springfield now is in the process of passing a bill that will place additional fees on our schools. Sure they promise to give the schools an opportunity to reduce the fee if they will add material into the curriculum that meets the storm water departments mandates. Do our schools really need another state mandate? My attempts that have included visiting the assessors office at the county, e-mailing the legislative committee with questions, e-mailing my state representative, and calling my state reps. have resulted in only vague descriptions of what a storm water utility is not answers to my specific questions. How about a little transparency in the plan to place a fee on every property in the county. Instead of passing a bill that the public is unaware of and those voting on it do not have a clear understanding of because the details have not been spelled out why not first provide ALL of the details to everyone interested and than have the vote. The one thing that is certain is once this fee is on our schools etc. it will never come off.
D L March 23, 2013 at 07:19 PM
Yeah do this out in the open Dan. You are right.

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