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Article updated: 8/30/2012 10:18 PM

Island Lake officials field questions on new municipal complex

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For the second time in less than a week, Island Lake residents filled the gymnasium at village hall Thursday night to learn the details of a plan to build a new municipal center.

Mayor Debbie Herrmann and a table of consultants fielded questions about the project's financing options, the scope of the project, the construction timeline and other aspects of the proposal.

Although most of the people who asked questions were respectful, the crowd occasionally turned hostile.

Some people snickered and laughed during a few answers. One woman repeatedly called out "liar" while Trustee Shannon Fox was answering a question, too.

The focus of the meeting -- as was the case during a similar session Saturday -- was the plan for a new village complex in Water Tower Park, which is on Route 176 at Newport Court. With an estimated base price of $4.9 million, the complex could house village offices, a police station, a community center and other services.

Additional elements, including a police firing range and a garage for police vehicles, could bring the total to $6.2 million, officials said.

Village staffers and police now share a building on Greenleaf Avenue. The facility also contains a preschool, a senior center and a gymnasium.

If the project moves forward, village leaders would borrow money to pay for it, the consultants said. Officials won't ask voters to raise their taxes to fund the effort.

In fact, Herrmann insisted property taxes will not increase if the project becomes a reality.

"We are not going to ask you to have your taxes raised," Herrmann said.

If officials determine the town can't afford the project, they'll kill it, one of the advisers said.

An advisory referendum about the plan will appear on Nov. 6 ballots.

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