Northwest suburban voters say yes in referendums
Northwest suburban voters overwhelmingly answered yes to all the referendum questions that appeared on ballots last week, unofficial results indicate, but the jury is still out on the fate of write-in candidates in Des Plaines and Mount Prospect.
A week's worth of additional ballots have brought clarity to some races that were too close to call on election night, though final results won't be known until next week.
Apparent winners currently include Sean Oskerka for Des Plaines Ward 3 alderman, Karen McHale for Rolling Meadows Ward 1 alderman and Kathryn M. Brady of Wheeling village clerk.
Leading for three trustee seats in Barrington Hills are Laura Ekstrom, David Riff and Thomas Strauss, while in Deer Park it's Victoria Zimmerman, Michael Reiser and Keith Olson.
Several school board races also have come into sharper focus since last week.
In Arlington Heights Elementary District 25, the leaders are Anisha Patel, Gregory Scapillato, Gina Faso and Richard Olejniczak.
In Mount Prospect Elementary District 57, the apparent winners are Vicki Chung, Jennifer Ciok, Eileen Kowalczyk and Kevin Bull.
For Elk Grove Elementary District 59, current vote totals favor Joseph Sagerer, Roberto Mancilla Jr., Daisy Espino and Mardell Schumacher.
Apparent winners in Maine Township High School District 207 are Linda Coyle, Carla Owen, Jin Lee and Ashley Kilburg.
And leading by a strong margin for the Harper College board are Nancy Robb, Diane Hill and William Kelley.
Palatine Rural Fire District
To the Palatine Rural Fire Protection District's request to issue $2.2 million in bonds for equipment and station upgrades, 882 voters said yes while 440 said no, according to the latest tally.
The bonds are scheduled to be paid off in 10 years, but in the meantime would cost the owner of a $400,000 home an additional $60.48 in annual property taxes to the district.
Deer Park sales tax
Perhaps looking for some financial help from visitors to their village, Deer Park residents voted 272 to 154 in favor of a three-year sales tax increase to overcome the downturn from the pandemic.
If that outcome becomes official, Deer Park's sales tax rate would increase from 7.5% to 8% for the next three years before returning to its previous level. The increase would result in an additional 50 cents of tax for every $100 spent, which could net Deer Park an extra $700,000 annually, officials said.
Prospect Heights library annexation
The Prospect Heights Public Library District's proposed annexation of 14 properties near the intersection for Rand Road and Thomas Street required separate approvals of voters in both the existing district and the area to be annexed.
District residents voted 779 to 198 in favor of the annexation, while to vote within the area was 1-0 in favor as of Wednesday.
Most of the 14 properties are commercial, but they also include three single-family homes west of the Thorntons gas station and another residential structure that's been subdivided into multiple apartment units, library Executive Director Alex Todd said.
Other commercial properties in the annexation area include Aldi, Zen Leaf, Carquest Auto Parts, Village CycleSport, and Route 12 Rentals. The annexation is estimated to bring the library district roughly $27,000 more in property tax per year.
Hoffman Estates advisory questions
Hoffman Estates voters supported three advisory questions on the April 6 ballot, but a significant number clearly differentiated among the three.
The strongest support was for a question asking whether the village should install streetlights on collector streets in subdivisions without them. The vote was 3,517, or 69%, in favor to 1,583 against.
The percentage of support was 59% in the 3,010-to-2,113 vote as to whether the village should require bicycle racks at all new commercial buildings.
Support was 56% in the 2,911-to-2,258 vote on whether the village should require electric car charging stations at new commercial buildings.
Though the three referendums are advisory rather than binding, Mayor Bill McLeod said before the election that the village board intended to put significant weight on the public input.
Officials at the Cook County clerk's office said Wednesday the earliest results for write-in candidates would be available Friday.
In Des Plaines, write-in candidate Gloria Ludwig is challenging 1st Ward Alderman Mark Lysakowski. And in Mount Prospect, write-in hopeful Brian Maye is seeking to disrupt an otherwise uncontested race for three trustee seats.
Lysakowski had 365 votes according to Wednesday's most recent count. In Mount Prospect, Augie Filippone had 3,747 votes, Terri Gens had 3,584, and Peggy Pissarreck was apparently the most vulnerable to a write-in challenge with 3,539.