DuPage voters facing long list of referendum questions

 
 
Posted8/30/2016 5:20 AM
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  • Both Naperville Township and the city of Naperville are asking a nonbinding referendum question about whether they should enter an agreement for combined roadway services to save money.

      Both Naperville Township and the city of Naperville are asking a nonbinding referendum question about whether they should enter an agreement for combined roadway services to save money. Bev Horne | Staff Photographer

The deadline for taxing bodies to place referendum questions on the November ballot isn't until Thursday, but it's already clear DuPage County voters will be asked to consider at least 20 propositions this fall.

The ballot questions filed so far doubles the combined number of referendums that DuPage voters weighed in on during the March primary and April 2015 general election.

"There are times during bigger elections where we see a lot more," said Joseph Sobecki, assistant executive director of the DuPage Election Commission. "It's just that in recent years we haven't."

Sobecki said a few more questions are expected to be added to the Nov. 8 ballot before Thursday's deadline.

A statewide measure tops the list and will ask if there should be an amendment to the state constitution to prevent Illinois from using transportation-related funding for other purposes.

Six townships are asking nonbinding advisory questions about mosquitoes. Bloomingdale, Addison, Winfield, York, Lisle and Downers Grove townships want to know if voters support the idea of having the county's nine townships administer abatement services.

Meanwhile, Bloomingdale Township is asking voters in another advisory question if they want Illinois to use local property dollars for schools, park districts, libraries and fire districts in other areas of the state.

Both Naperville Township and the city of Naperville are asking a nonbinding referendum question about whether they should enter an agreement for combined roadway services to save money.

In addition, the city wants to know if voters support abolishing a township government if it could be shown that Naperville or another government body could deliver the same services efficiently and for less money.

Both ballot questions are nonbinding because Naperville doesn't have the authority to eliminate another unit of government or force township officials to accept a service deal.

Downers Grove has three advisory ballot questions related to the village's stormwater utility fee.

Officials want to know if voters believe the town should continue using the fee to pay for stormwater management -- or if property taxes should be used. The third option is whether a combination of stormwater utility fees and property taxes should be used.

In Villa Park, there will be a binding question asking if the village should increase its sales tax to raise money for combined sewer separation, stormwater projects, water main replacement and other improvements.

Five other entities are seeking permission from voters to increase revenue or raise money for projects. They are:

• Burr Ridge, which seeks a property tax increase for street improvements.

• Bloomingdale Park District, which wants to borrow $9.9 million to improve parks and facilities, including Johnston Recreation Center and Oasis Water Park.

• Salt Creek Elementary District 48, which wants to borrow $8 million to repair Salt Creek Primary School in Elmhurst, Stella May Swartz School in Oakbrook Terrace and Albright Middle School in Villa Park.

• Helen M. Plum Memorial Public Library, which wants a property tax rate increase to replace its existing library building in Lombard.

• Hinsdale Elementary District 181, which wants to borrow $53 million to construct a new school.

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