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Comment Today on Lake County Budget

Today, Monday, April 8th is the deadline to submit comments to the Lake County Board to offer input in their Strategic Planning process. Please take a moment and complete the form at the following link to help us ask them to consider our environmental agenda outlined below. We have a real opportunity to help our county embrace policies to help us stay on track toward a more sustainable future!!

Talking points:

  1. Hire a Full-time, Sustainability Director and form an environmental and energy committee.
  2. Help us bring parties to the table to negotiate a closure settlement agreement with the Midwest Generation Coal Plant in Waukegan to fully mitigate for environmental damages and help retrain the workers to jobs in renewable energy or other green trades.
  3. Enact a Fracking ban. Fracking (drilling for gas using pressure high pressure fracturing) consumes and pollutes our water, and likely has many other poorly understood and undesirable consequences. While fracking is unlikely to take place in Lake County, this is a symbolic gesture and will help raise awareness about the environmental hazards of fracking and help rally support for a fracking ban in the state.
  4. Form a Zero Waste Plan to compliment Lake County's 60% recycling plan. Zero waste strategies examine the complete cycle of resource use and recycle.
  5. Complete long range and short term Carbon Reduction Plans to reduce our climate disruption impact.
  6. Lake County is in non-compliance with the Clean Air Act on clean air standards. With the Midwest Generation Coal Plant still active, our Sulfur Dioxide emissions (a toxic criteria air pollutant) are nearly that of Cook County, and dwarf the levels of every surrounding county. Our County Board and County Health Department should enact policies to clean up our air quality within best available technology and practices.
  7. With Lake Michigan at record low levels and many municipalities with inadequate access to clean water, we would like the County to implement Water Conservation policies and pricing. We would also like them to consider the impact on water availability and quality and have a plan in place before issuing any building permits.
  8. The county declares it has no authority over state roads, yet is advocating at every level for the extension of Rt. 53. The county should stop sending mixed messages in its plan.
  9. Suburban sprawl in western Lake County is already exceeding the ground water supply. The county should have a plan in place for compensatory ground water recharge zones, and water for the additional development that will accompany the Rt. 53 extension before advocating for this highway.
  10. The County Board should know that you are not willing to pay all of the taxes and tolls that the Blue Ribbon Commission Report prescribes - while leaving a large Rt. 53 funding gap. The report proposes eleven (11) different new taxes and tolls.
  11. The county should focus on more efficient transit, especially on existing rail: passenger service on the EJ&E, use of PASSAGE to provide priority access for buses and HOV's and increased paratransit.

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