Referendums for Lake Michigan water and more on November ballots
Certain Lake County voters in the November election will be asked to decide local issues such as whether to borrow $41 million for a Lake Michigan drinking water pipeline or to seek a program designed to buy electricity at a cheaper rate.
Nine binding and three advisory referendum questions will be on Nov. 6 ballots throughout Lake County. The list was finalized at the Lake County clerk's office Aug. 31.
Wauconda voters will be asked whether the village should sell bonds to investors and borrow $41 million to pay for improvements and extensions to existing pipelines, so they can become suitable to bring Lake Michigan water to town.
Officials say the $41 million and would be repaid through property taxes. Improvements to convert the current system from eight wells to a single water source and distribute water throughout the village will cost another $9 million, to be paid with water rates. It's estimated the average homeowner would pay an extra $43 a month in property taxes and water rates to help cover the project cost, officials said.
Voters in Warren Township, Fox Lake, Hawthorn Woods and Lake Barrington will see an electrical aggregation question on the ballot. They'll decide whether the local governments should lump together residential and small business customers to seek lower power rates.
Island Lake voters will be asked if the village clerk should continue to be elected to 4-year terms or if the position should become a staff job like the police chief or finance director.
Island Lake also will have an advisory question on whether the village should undertake a multimillion-dollar obligation to construct "a combined public safety facility."
Officials want to build the facility in Water Tower Park 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. Officials have said they are planning to borrow without raising property taxes to pay for the project.
Voters in some sections of southern Lake County will be asked if the Arlington Heights Park District should be allowed to borrow $39 million, through a bond sale to investors, to fund renovations and new construction of parks and community centers, along with other projects.
Highwood will pose a binding question regarding reduction of the city council's size and how aldermen are selected. Highwood voters also will decide whether they should pay an extra $1 per month for the 911 emergency telephone system surcharge.
Avon and Warren townships will offer advisory measures pertaining to the U.S. Constitution.