Long Grove joins suburbs raising concerns about Foxconn project in Wisconsin

  • Long Grove is the fifth suburban government to pass a resolution urging Wisconsin leaders to enforce environmental regulations on the $0 billion Foxconn project just north of the Illinois border. Some Lake County officials fear the project will worsen flooding near the Des Plaines River.

    Long Grove is the fifth suburban government to pass a resolution urging Wisconsin leaders to enforce environmental regulations on the $0 billion Foxconn project just north of the Illinois border. Some Lake County officials fear the project will worsen flooding near the Des Plaines River. Associated Press

  • Bobbie O'Reilly

    Bobbie O'Reilly

 
 

Long Grove has joined four other suburban governments in opposing Wisconsin's purported plan to waive environmental restrictions for a Foxconn manufacturing plant being built just north of the Illinois border.

Trustee Bobbie O'Reilly grudgingly joined her village board colleagues Tuesday night in supporting the resolution urging Wisconsin to enforce environmental regulations on the Foxconn project.

But O'Reilly disputed concerns that have been raised about Foxconn's potential effect on the Des Plaines River watershed in Illinois.

"There are no facts," she said. "There are just accusations."

Saying she would go along with being a "lemming," O'Reilly joined the rest of the village board in backing the resolution in a voice vote. Mundelein, the Lake County Board, Lincolnshire and Gurnee have approved the same resolution regarding Foxconn.

Wisconsin leaders have noticed the resolution. In a Daily Herald opinion piece this week, Wisconsin State Assembly Speaker Robin J. Vos questioned the resolutions and wrote that the plant will not worsen Des Plaines River flooding.

"When Wisconsin lawmakers approved the Foxconn legislation, we not only required compliance with all the state and federal air and water quality standards, we actually strengthened environmental protections," Vos wrote. "In the project zone, for every one acre of wetlands used in construction, two have to be created as close to the construction site as possible."

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Long Grove Trustee Rita O'Connor cited Vos' opinion piece when the resolution arose for discussion.

Trustee Michael Sarlitto encouraged his village board colleagues to support the Foxconn resolution, saying it could help Long Grove gain future backing from other suburbs on its stance against a northern extension of Route 53.

Taiwan-based Foxconn is the world's biggest contract manufacturer of smartphones, computers and other technology products. The $10 billion plant is being built in Mount Pleasant, about 20 miles north of the Illinois border.

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