Judge won't rush results of Elburn fire district vote

  • A proponent of disconnecting from the Elburn fire protection district shows their support, on property along Empire Road.

      A proponent of disconnecting from the Elburn fire protection district shows their support, on property along Empire Road. Susan Sarkauskas | Staff Photographer

  • People along Route 64 through Wasco show their take on the proposal to disconnect their properties from the Elburn fire district.

      People along Route 64 through Wasco show their take on the proposal to disconnect their properties from the Elburn fire district. Susan Sarkauskas | Staff Photographer

 
 
Updated 10/22/2014 6:44 PM

A Kane County judge has agreed not to immediately certify results of a Nov. 4 referendum asking if some properties should be allowed to disconnect from the Elburn Fire Protection District.

Circuit Judge David Akemann agreed to the delay Monday at the request of the Elburn fire district, which is appealing his Aug. 28 decision to allow the referendum to take place.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

If voters approve the disconnection, Akemann would be asked to certify the vote and order the disconnection. If voters decide not to, Akemann would have to dismiss the petition, according to a motion filed by the Fox River district, which opposed the stay.

The appellate court has given the districts until Feb. 10 to file motions and replies on the appeal.

Voters in a portion of Campton Hills, Wasco and unincorporated areas are being asked whether they want to join the Fox River and Countryside Fire/Rescue District instead.

The Elburn district contends, in an appeal it filed with the Illinois 2nd District Appellate Court, that the petitioners who sought the referendum didn't adequately prove requirements for allowing the referendum. Under state law, Akemann had to judge whether the area in question would receive equal or better service.

The petition for disconnection was filed July 17. Hearings were held in August. Elburn fire district officials argued they hadn't had enough time to prepare a case that would counter the petitioners' claims about taxes, fees, response times, facilities and more. The Fox River district says it could respond faster to emergencies, and would charge less property taxes.

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The Elburn district has also asked Akemann to vacate his Aug. 28 order, but he has not ruled on that request.

Attorneys for the Fox River district argue Akemann's decision can't be appealed, and that the stay of judgment would eliminate the "ability to obtain relief sought by the petition for disconnection."

The area in question is bounded roughly by Campton Hill, La Fox, Burlington, Empire, Silver Glen and Swanberg roads.

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