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Thread: Absurdity in Northern Illinois

  1. #1
    Cyburbian cch's avatar
    Mar 2006
    Machesney Park, IL

    Absurdity in Northern Illinois

    Get this... in 2005 the Illinois State Supreme Court ruled that a city can control how a rural subdivision is developed, even if it is outside of their extra-territorial jurisdiction area. Well, the loophole is that it can be many many miles outside, as long as they have a annexation agreement (which doesn't actually have to take effect for 20 years after the agreement is made, and by then they can just agree to abolish the agreement).

    You can probably see where this is going. A developer has 1400 acres of land in unincorporated Boone County, IL, on which he wants to develop some commercial and lots of residential. It doesn't adhere to any land use plans anybody has for the area, the schools can't handle the kids, the county doesn't want to maintain the roads, etc. So, the developer started shopping around for a municipality that will let them develop the land, by signing the annexation agreement. And they found one LOCATED 26 MILES AWAY. There are a few cities between the development site, and the little village that will approve it, and they are even in different counties. But, the developer is going to charge each homeowner in his development $100/yr. fee, which will go to the little village 26 miles away, basically as bribe money. This little town is looking to make over $5 million, without having to provide any services to the development. The locals where the development lies will still have to take care of all of that, even though they don't want it.

    The state is making progress to close this loophole, but it probably won't happen before this becomes a done deal. It is sickening to me. Here are related articles, if you are interested: Rockford Register Star

  2. #2
    Cyburbian Hawkeye66's avatar
    Feb 2006
    Heartland of America
    Does Illinois have a City Development Board to rule on annexation issues?

    In Iowa someone would object and it would be contested in the City Development Board. I dont think it would fly here. Of course, having lived in Naperville and the outlying Chicagoland area....I can see it.

  3. #3
    Cyburbian Random Traffic Guy's avatar
    Jul 2005
    Lone Star State
    It is absurd, but I love the balls of it! Free market finds a way around government obstacles.

    We spend alot of time here in Texas on ETJ issues, luckily enough not on truly unincorporated land yet, annoys me that a municipality tries to control land that they are not providing their so-called services to. Taxation (takings) without representation.

    In this case where the County doesn't want to improve the roads, it seems alot of staff and elected officials need to get some backbone and let the democratic process run. Let the development go, but ignore their complaints since they were warned before. If the development gets large enough to have a voting bloc that can influence elections, then they can choose to tax themselves for the roads.

    In Texas the government schools are paid for by ISDs rather than cities and based on property tax (huge $$, much more than city taxes), so no matter where a development goes, they are paying for the government schools.

  4. #4
    Apr 2005
    Section 14-12-7, 3rd PM
    Isn't Pecatonica west of Rockford? Boone County east of Rockford? Maybe Mattoon can get in on some of this action

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