Plethora of questions on Lake County ballots in November

Updated 8/29/2014 1:04 PM

Should Antioch raise taxes to fund ambulance service?

Should Lake Zurich become a home rule community to have greater control over its tax revenue?


Should the Wauconda Community Center undergo a $4.75 million expansion?

These are just a few of the questions Lake County voters will answer when they enter polling places Nov. 4.

Government agencies in the Antioch area, the Grayslake area, Lake Zurich, the Round Lake area and Wauconda are among those that have put questions on the upcoming ballot. The list of referendums in Lake County was finalized this week.

Voters in Antioch and Antioch Township will be asked if they want to approve a new tax for ambulance service.

The Antioch Fire Department has been handling ambulance calls since this spring, after controversies within the all-volunteer Antioch Rescue Squad.

For the owner of a house valued at $100,000, the proposal would raise property taxes about $83 the first year.

Grayslake residents will have a fire-department related question on their ballots, too.

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Grayslake Fire Protection District officials are seeking more money to cover the cost of operations.

Fire Chief John Christian said more money is needed from taxpayers because of declining property values and increasing financial demands from district operations, district records indicate.

For the owner of a house valued at $100,000, the proposal would raise property taxes about $53 the first year.

Lake Zurich voters will be asked if their elected officials should have home rule powers.

Proponents say the move could help officials limit property-tax increases. It also could allow officials to create other revenue sources, Mayor Thomas Poynton has said.

Lake Zurich voters overwhelmingly rejected home rule in 1998.

Round Lake Area Unit District 116 officials want voter permission to borrow $29 million for a high school expansion and upgrades. The projects could eliminate the need for mobile classrooms, which now are in use.


Under the proposal, Round Lake High would receive 30 new classrooms, including four laboratories for science, technology, engineering and mathematics. Plans also call for a new gymnasium and new student commons areas.

Tentative estimates show an owner of a $100,000 house would pay an additional annual average of $218 to the district if the plan is approved, officials said.

The Wauconda Park District board is asking voters about a $4.75 million expansion proposal for its community center at 600 N. Main St.

Highlights could include an expanded fitness area, group fitness classrooms, an expanded dance room and an early-childhood classroom.

If voters approve the plan, the owner of a house with an average value of $223,500 would pay an additional $72 in annual property taxes, officials have said.

Voters in Barrington, Highwood, Lake Bluff and Wadsworth also will have questions on their ballots. That's in addition to the five statewide questions that will appear on all Illinois ballots in November.

Daily Herald Staff Writer Bob Susnjara contributed to this report.

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