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Editorial/Opinion - page 26

Letter: A thank you to Kaneville residents

in Letters to the Editor by

Thanks to everyone in Kaneville who has contacted Rep. Randy Hultgren to ask for assistance in our campaign against the 50 percent reduction in window service in our Kaneville Post Office, which USPS has proclaimed will take place some time in 2013. We have been met with much impatience by the congressman’s staff, who told one visitor to the Geneva Office that our congressman “is busy with bigger issues,” and seems to feel that our letters, calls and visits do not warrant a response of any kind.

So now we are taking our campaign to the U.S. Postmaster General, and to the Central Illinois District office of the USPS. We are also asking Kaneville residents to send letters to our two senators.

Please stop in to the Purple Store (Hill’s Country Store) in Kaneville and pick up a copy of our suggested letter. Add your own comments and send this letter to all four addresses. It is imperative that we make our voices heard. The issues and points raised at the USPS town meeting in Kaneville on Nov. 1 were not properly conveyed to the powers that be: reducing the service hours in Kaneville will result in insignificant savings because our overhead costs are extremely low and will simply be moved to other less-efficient offices; that the township provides space, utilties and buildout at minimal cost, and the USPS is taking our community funds to support other operations; that the Kaneville office has special needs due to the way that mail is addressed; that we are a growing community in a large population county, and more.

Kaneville is a small but strong community, and we have shown strong financial support and community support for the post office. It will be impossible for the post office to provide mail service and counter service in our office with only four window hours.

Join us in asking for further review of our unique situation, for six window hours, if not eight window hours, per day, and for an extension of our full eight hours of window service until the end of 2013, with a review at that time.

Let’s not take a cynical action. Our voices can be heard.

Joann Murdock
Kaneville

Letter: Consider chiropractic treatment

in Letters to the Editor by

Earlier this year Derrick Rose of the Chicago Bulls injured his lower back and missed quite a few games without finding any pain relief. He finally received chiropractic treatment from a chiropractor in Bannockburn, Ill., and received great benefit. More recently, Jonathan Toews, captain of the Chicago Blackhawks, suffered a severe concussion prior to the 2012 NHL playoffs. Without finding relief, he went to the Carrick Institute at Life Chiropractic University in Merietta, Ga., where he was treated by a chiropractic neurologist. He stated he is “feeling really good now” and the treatment got him “back to ground zero.”

As a doctor of chiropractic who has practiced over 30 years in Elburn, I am very happy with these results. My only regret is that I did not get a chance to treat either of these gentlemen in my own office.

On behalf of the thousands of chiropractic physicians who provide effective care on a daily basis to the citizens of Illinois, it would behoove many patients to strongly consider chiropractic care as a first choice, even for conditions that are not associated with the spine.

It is my great hope that both of these athletes can now surpass these injuries and be able to excel at the pinnacle of their sports.

Dr. Kenneth Baumruck, D.C.
Elburn Chiropractic and Accupuncture

Guest Editorial: November is National Diabetes Month

in From the Editor's Desk by

by Julie West, West Physical Therapy
Did you know that here are 23.6 million children and adults living with diabetes in the U.S.? Of these, an estimated 17.9 million have been diagnosed, and 5.7 million are unaware they have the disease.

Diabetes is a disease in which the body does not produce or properly use insulin. Insulin is a hormone needed to convert sugar, starches and other food into the energy necessary for daily life. While the cause of diabetes is unknown, factors such as obesity and lack of exercise play important roles. Diabetes can result in conditions such as heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure, blindness, kidney disease, nervous system disease (neuropathy), amputations and problems with the skin, including ulcers and infections.

Managing your diabetes can lower your risk of resulting health issues. Management includes controlling your blood sugar (glucose), lowering your blood pressure and cholesterol, maintaining a healthy weight and exercising. Physical therapists are experts in restoring and improving human motion, and can play an integral role in the management of diabetes by establishing and, as needed, supervising exercise programs and providing treatment of complications.

Diabetes that is not well controlled leads to problems in blood vessels and nerves, often in the legs. Low blood flow to the legs can create cramping pain when walking or lead to sores on the legs or feet.

Diabetes can affect the nerves, which can result in tingling in the feet and may progress to complete numbness. This numbness can cause damage to the skin or joints because of the lack of pain sensation. These problems can lead to difficulty with daily activities, limit the ability to exercise, and also result in very serious consequences to one’s health. It is best to take action to prevent complications, but if these problems occur, physical therapists can help restore your quality of life.
Physical therapists can:
• Use special tests to check the sensation in your feet
• Help decrease cramping pain during walking
• Evaluate and care for skin ulcers and sores that are slow to heal
• Improve your walking ability by adapting shoes or orthotics
• Show you how to protect your feet if they have lost sensation
• Recommend shoe wear or assistive devices if needed

A physical therapist can create an exercise program to help you achieve better health safety. You should see a physical therapist to help you with physical activity if you have:
• Pain in your joints or muscles
• Numbness or tingling in your feet
• Calluses or sores on your feet
• Pain or limping with walking
• Used an assistive device such as a cane or crutches
• Had a stroke
• Questions about what type of exercise is best for you

For more information, go to www.apta.org, or www.moveforwardpt.com.

Letter: Sugar Grove Food Pantry Holiday Book and Toy Drive

in Letters to the Editor by

It is holiday time once again. In an effort to help the many struggling local families here in our community, we are doing a Holiday Book and Toy Drive to help alleviate the financial stress that is associated with this time of year.

All parents and grandparents would like an opportunity to provide for their loved ones during the holidays, and our efforts should help them.

Please drop an unwrapped new toy or book for children of the ages of birth to 18 years of age. The pantry has needs for children of all ages.

Six locations are available for drop off. For more information on these locations, email patdangraceffa@msn.com. A box will be provided for dropping off items between Thursday, Nov. 29, and Friday, Dec. 7.

Thank you in advance for your help in making these local families’ holiday a tiny bit brighter. All items will be dropped off at the pantry by Sunday, Dec. 9.

Pat Graceffa
Sugar Grove

ISBA Illinois Law Now Q&A for November 2012

in Editorial/Opinion by

Question: Is there a law which requires the purchaser of a home
to do a radon test?
Answer: No, but many home buyers are concerned and now have a radon test conducted at the same time they do their home inspection. If the radon test exceeds normal levels, the buyer will usually require that radon remediation be done and that a second test be conducted before the closing.

Question: Even though I signed
up on the federal government’s
do-not-call registry, I still get
several robocalls. Do I have
any recourse?
Answer: Unfortunately, placing your phone number in the do-not-call registry will not stop all telemarketing calls. Also, be aware that political solicitations and calls from charities are not covered by the registry. However, if a third-party telemarketer calls on behalf of a charity, you may ask not to receive any more calls from that specific charity.
Complaints to the government on unsolicited phone calls are up significantly since the do-not-call registry was established. The best thing to do is either hang up or not return the call. Another option is to contact your phone provider and ask them to block the number, but be sure to ask if there’s a charge for that service. You may also want to report the incidents to the Federal Trade Commission and the Illinois Attorney General’s office.

Question: As the owner of a small company, can I deny employment based on criminal convictions?
Answer: The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission advises businesses to assess a job candidate with a criminal history on the severity of his/her crime, and to give job applicants a chance to explain their background, taking into consideration references and rehabilitative efforts. They also suggest documenting in writing the justification for employment decisions made for those with criminal histories.

Question: What Illinois laws
govern the hunting of various
types of game?
Answer: Illinois law allows hunting of various types of game, including deer, turkey and small game such as squirrels. Waterfowl and doves are also considered fair game. All hunting in Illinois is subject to seasonal restrictions and specifications. Also, the proper Illinois hunting license must be obtained prior to any hunting activity. An applicant must have resided in the state for 30 days prior to submitting an application. Hunters born after January 1, 1980, must have completed the Hunter Education Course as provided by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources.

Question: How can I be sure
that I am complying with all the
driving laws with regards to
texting and phoning?
Answer: In Illinois, there are numerous laws that restrict the use of cell phones while driving. Recently, the Governor signed three new laws that prohibit specific types of phone use while driving. One law bans most hand-held phone use within 500 feet of emergency scenes. Two other acts, which will go into effect January 1, 2013, contain similar bans on all roads for commercial drivers and for all drivers in construction and maintenance speed zones. Information about traffic laws can be found at www.cyberdriveillinois.com.

Question: I have a serious issue with my latest credit report and am afraid that unless it is resolved, I will be denied credit altogether or be forced to pay higher interest rates. What are my options?
Answer: It’s good that you are aware of your credit history. Approximately 96 percent of free reports are unclaimed, according to some sources. If you disagree with some of the information it contains, you should request a correction in writing. If that action is unsuccessful, you may want to hire an attorney. A letter from an attorney can often get results.

Question: My grandchild is a huge fan of a certain pop star and has registered on his website. How can people be sure that the information those sites collect doesn’t violate the children’s privacy rule?
Answer: The Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act requires operators of these sites to alert parents and obtain their consent before collecting, using or disclosing personal information about children under age 13.

Question: May I deny visitation rights to my ex because he
stopped paying child support?
Answer: The non-payment of child support cannot be a factor in allowing or denying visitation. However, the failure to comply with a visitation court order is a criminal action and could subject the offending parent to a fine and possible jail time. Any parent who violates the child visitation agreement without cause, or falls behind inexplicably on payment of child support, could be held in contempt of court. Your best bet is to consult with an attorney.

Question: What is an employer’s responsibility with regards to the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Act?
Answer: Among an employer’s responsibilities, he or she must obtain compensation insurance, post a notice in each workplace that lists the insurance carrier and explains workers’ rights, keep records of work-related injuries, and report to the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission any accidents involving more than three lost workdays.
Employers may not harass, discharge or refuse to rehire an employee for exercising his/her rights under the law. Finally, an employer may not charge the employee for workers’ compensation insurance premiums that the employer is required to pay. More information about workers’ compensation laws is available at http://www.iwcc.il.gov/

Question: With the holidays right around the corner, I’m thinking of buying some gifts at one of the online auction websites. What should I know?
Answer: While many online auction sites offer excellent deals, they are ripe for scams. Even if an auction site is legitimate, a seller on the site could take your money and never deliver the goods. Before making any purchases, visit the sites and familiarize yourself with how they operate. Talk to friends about the experiences they’ve had with different online auction houses.

Generally, the person who placed the highest bid for an item will be contacted by the seller to arrange payment and delivery. Most legitimate sellers will accept credit cards or use a third-party escrow agent for payment. Be cautious if a seller asks you to pay by check, money order or cash. If you become a victim of fraud, it will be extremely difficult to get your money back.

For more information about Illinois law, visit www.illinoislawyerfinder.com. If you have a legal question, send it to illinoislawcolumn@isba.org.

Editorial: Kaneland District, community make strides toward bully-free environment

in From the Editor's Desk by

At the Kaneland School Board meeting on Sept. 24, Kaneland parent and Elburn resident Leigh Ann Reusche read a letter on behalf of Knights Against Bullying (KAB), a self-described “group of concerned parents, teachers, former students, and community members coming together for the purpose of addressing the issue of bullying in our schools, and in our communities.”

In the letter, Reusche asked the School Board to implement five recommendations: make bullying prevention a priority; assign a prevention coordinator; form a task force; develop or adopt a comprehensive, multi-faceted district-wide plan; and implement, maintain and evaluate the plan.

It appears Kaneland was listening.

After meeting with KAB on Oct. 9, the school administration on Oct. 29 unveiled a district-distributed work update and response identifying bullying prevention as a goal in the Superintendent Plan of Work.

The plan also designates assignment of a prevention coordinator and gathering of a task force. Dr. Sarah Mumm, director of educational services K-5, and Erika Schlichter, director of educational services 6-12, will coordinate the work group revising the district’s current bullying prevention plan. Once revisions are finalized, focus will move to student services.

We applaud KAB and community members for having the courage to stand up and speaking out against a difficult issue like school bullying. Likewise, we applaud the Kaneland administration for having the good sense to listen to the community and work with KAB in order to move forward and hopefully put an end to the bullying issue in District 302. As School Board President Cheryl Krauspe said following the Sept. 24 meeting, “One bullied child is too many.”

We also ask that School Board members stick together, communicate with the administration and realize that board unity is absolutely essential when taking on a stubborn issue such as school bullying. After all, it’s probably counterproductive to point fingers and stare down members of the administration in attendance—tactics that could be considered bullying in their own right—while working to make the School District a safer institution for students.

Emotions can run high when it comes to troubling topics like bullying, but if School Board trustees and administration can stay the course and continue to work with the community, Kaneland School District will be a better place for students and parents alike.

Letter: Corn Boil Committee shares proceeds with local organizations

in Letters to the Editor by

All the bills have been paid, the seed money for the 2012 event is banked, and the committee is pleased to share the proceeds with local organizations.

The Sugar Grove Corn Boil Committee is proud to be able to give back $13,700 into the community after a successful event this summer. On Oct. 18, 2012, Corn Boil President Jean Lindsey presented the donations to a variety of community organizations. The Corn Boil meeting and presentation ceremony was held at the Sugar Grove Senior Center on Snow Street in Sugar Grove.

This year, we’re pleased to recognize and present a financial donation to the following organizations: Between Friends Food Pantry Big Rock Park District, Calvary West Church, Clown Ministry, Elburn Boy Scouts Troop No. 7, John Shields Elementary School, Kane County Sheriff’s Office, Kaneland Drum Core, Kaneland First Responders, St. Katharine Drexel Church, Sugar Grove American Legion No. 127, Sugar Grove Community House, Sugar Grove Historical Society, Sugar Grove Lion Club Fireworks, Sugar Grove Park District, Sugar Grove Township Senior Center, Sugar Grove United Methodist Church, Sugar Grove Veteran’s Park, Village Bible Church of Sugar Grove and West Town Human Services Network.

The next Sugar Grove Corn Boil will mark the 46th anniversary of this annual event. Please support your community by helping to plan this special event in 2013. Beginning in January, the Sugar Grove Corn Boil meetings will be held the third Thursday of every month. The Corn Boil is a volunteer-run community event, featuring three family-friendly and fun-filled days.

For more information about the 2012 Corn Boil, visit www.sugargrovecornboil.org, follow us on Twitter or like us on Facebook.

Fairel Rank
Fairel Anne Design, Ltd.

Editorial: Two ways to help

in From the Editor's Desk by

Become informed, then vote
Because the state of Illinois is considered safe for President Obama for the presidential election, there may be some who do not feel the need to vote on Election Day because either their vote “won’t count” or their candidate is already certain to win the state.

However, there are many reasons why everyone eligible to vote should still do so by Tuesday, Nov. 6.

While the vast majority of news is focused on presidential politics, the reality is that the presidential race represents two positions (president and vice president) within the same branch of the federal government. It does not address U.S. House or Senate races; it does not deal with state-level races; it does not deal with local races.

It can be argued that local politics matter a lot more to the daily lives of citizens than do presidential politics. The more local one gets, the more direct impact one will feel from those elected to office.

If you need to deal with the local court system in any way, you are impacted by the actions of local elected officials. If you have a county zoning question, or need help with information about a local issue, that help is provided by either a local elected official directly, or someone working for that official.

Most of the situations in which you interact with the “government” in your day-to-day lives, you are interacting either directly or indirectly with local elected officials. Even the broader, federal policies that are passed require the votes of local, elected officials.

Given that, no matter what your view is in regards to presidential politics, the importance of your vote can not be over-stated. At the county level, there are a number of offices that will be filled by a newcomer, no matter which candidate wins. In other local races, there are newcomers with fresh perspectives facing incumbents who want the chance to finish the work they’ve started.

You owe your community your time to become informed, as well as your time to vote. You do not even have to dedicate a portion of Election Day to the process, there are still opportunities to vote at your convenience before then.

The early voting period ends Saturday, Nov. 3, and the absentee voting period ends Monday, Nov. 5. The General Election is Tuesday, Nov. 6.

We are warm and safe; millions are not
The devastation from Hurricane Sandy is mind-boggling. As of Wednesday morning, dozens passed away, an unknown amount suffered injuries, millions remain without power, and economic loss estimates range from $10 billion to $50 billion.

The worst part of the situation is that it is still not over. Weather.com reported Wednesday that the storm is weakening, but also lingering, in the northeast. Meanwhile, a winter storm is taking control of the atmosphere, with an estimated three feet of snow dumped in certain locations that had just been battered by the hurricane. Additionally, arctic temperatures are flowing into the ravaged areas, many of which continue without power.

It is an awful situation, and you can help.

According to the American Red Cross, there is an immediate need for blood donations. Due to the scope of the storm, the organization said that 300 blood drives have already been cancelled, with more to occur in the future. This will put a strain on already-strained resources. Additionally, blood continues to be needed to help those injured from the storm itself.

Additionally, the Red Cross is asking for monetary donations, as those are the best, fastest ways to provide assistance to those in the storm-ravaged areas.

To find out how and where to donate, or how else you can help, visit redcross.org.

The worst of the storm has past, but the disaster will continue for some time, and help from those of us not affected by the disaster will prove vital to the recovery and rebuilding efforts.

Letter: Supporting Pierog for Illinois Senate District 25

in Letters to the Editor by

I am writing to encourage people in the Illinois Senate District 25 to vote for Corinne Pierog. Corinne is a resident of St. Charles and serves on the St. Charles School Board. She also is a local businesswoman, as well as the founder and president of Sustainable Leadership Solutions, a consulting company that advises nonprofits and government agencies on fundraising, management, economic development and executive transitioning.

As a School Board member, Corinne is of course an advocate for our schools, but as a businesswoman, she also knows what it’s like to start up a business. She understands the problems facing our economy. That’s why her main reason for running is to put people back to work. Some of her solutions include providing tax incentives for small businesses—not just large corporations—and providing help to schools, colleges and training facilities so they can better educate our residents for existing jobs and those of the future. She wants to bring manufacturing plants back to Illinois, and encourage research and development institutions to locate here.

Corinne is not a “politician.” She is a local businesswoman who wants to work to fix the problems in Springfield. She cares. That’s why I am giving her my vote.

Chuck Sutcliff
Yorkville

Letter: A loving thank you

in Letters to the Editor by

A loving thank you to Deanna, Bob and Bailey Cates, and Kathryn and Herbert Moeckel, for making our 50th wedding anniversary on Oct. 20, 2012, an unexpected surprise with loving memories that we will always cherish.

Also, a thank you to all who sent cards and wishes on our special day.

Charles and Joan Gregg
G-ma and G-pa, and many friends of
near and far
Elburn

Letter: In response to SG Board’s decision regarding video gaming

in Letters to the Editor by

In response to the Sugar Grove Village Board’s decision to table video gaming, all I have to say is this: I am a veteran and a legionnaire, and we saved this country’s fanny. Now the board says we can’t have any enjoyment.

As far as gambling is concerned, very little of it goes on with these machines. However, they pay taxes. The establishment couldn’t pay the taxes if not for these machines.

If it wasn’t for us vets, you might not even have a country.

This decision will kill the Sugar Grove Legion. Now they won’t be able to pay their taxes.

Gilbert Nickels
Elburn

Letter: A thank you to Drew Frasz

in Letters to the Editor by

I would like to take the time to publicly thank Kane County Board member Drew Frasz for his help and support of our community. I serve as a member of the Rob Roy Drainage District No. 2 in southern Kane County, as well as the Sugar Grove Fire Protection District’s Board of Trustees.

As an engaged member of our village, I have witnessed first-hand the tireless efforts of Drew as he helped our community solve a decade’s old water and drainage issue with the support of the Kane County Board and Water Resources Department.

Drew stood up for the “little guy,” the taxpayer, the members of our community.

I can think of no finer representative for the people of his district.

Thank you, Drew, for all of your help!

Michael J. Fagel
Sugar Grove

Guest Editorial: Kaneland Hall of Fame nomination

in From the Editor's Desk by

by Jeff Schuler, Kaneland Superintendent
To celebrate and commemorate the many accomplishments and achievements of Kaneland graduates, Kaneland District 302 has formed the Kaneland Hall of Fame. New Hall of Fame recipients will be inducted at the Academic Awards Ceremony in the auditorium on May 6, 2013.

All community members, staff and friends of Kaneland are encouraged to nominate individuals or groups for one of the Hall of Fame categories. The categories include:

1.) Service—Kaneland High School graduates who have contributed significantly to their community, state or country and have been out of school for at least ten (10) years.

2.) Personal Achievement—Kaneland graduates who have been honored or recognized by their college/university, profession or peers for their success and achievements and who have been out of school for at least 10 years.

3.) Extra Curriculars—Former extra-curricular participants in non-athletic or athletic activities who were recognized for excellence by their organization or team for at least two years. In addition, the participant(s) received honors in one or all of the following: All-Conference, District, Sectional, State or American. These nominees must have graduated from Kaneland High School and have been out of school for at least 10 years.

4.) Commitment—Past or present staff members who worked at Kaneland for a minimum of 10 years and who, through their employment at Kaneland, have demonstrated their deep commitment to Kaneland students, parents, and/or staff.

5.) Friend of Kaneland—Those who have given meritorious service to Kaneland and/or one or more of its schools for many years, or have been a loyal friend to Kaneland and/or one or more of its schools. Kaneland staff members are not excluded from this category. However, nominations of Kaneland staff members in this category shall be for something other than what they achieved as an employee.

6.) Athletic Teamwork—A Kaneland High School team or organization that demonstrated outstanding achievement, which may include record status or state recognition, at least 10 years prior to selection.

7.) Individual Athletic Achievement– Former athletic participants who were recognized for excellence by their organization or team. In addition, the participant(s) received honors in one or all of the following: All-Conference, District, Sectional, State or American. These nominees must have graduated from Kaneland High School and have been out of school for at least 10 years.

8.) Special Recognition—Any member of the community, alumni or staff member can submit names for nomination to the committee. The submission deadline date is Saturday, Dec. 1, 2012. A nomination form can be obtained from Beth Sterkel at (630) 365-5111, ext. 109, or at www.kaneland.org/d302/hof.

Individuals making nominations should send the nomination form, resume and/or biography of the individual or group and their achievements or contributions to: Hall of Fame Committee Kaneland CUSD No. 302 47W326 Keslinger Road Maple Park, IL 60151

Editorial: Celebrate Red Ribbon Week, Oct. 23-31

in From the Editor's Desk by

Looking for a great way to promote drug prevention in your community? Look no further than Red Ribbon Week, which will take place from Oct. 23-31.

This year will mark the 27th installment of Red Ribbon Week. The week-long celebration is the largest and longest-running drug prevention campaign in the United States, and urges teachers, parents, students and community members to wear red ribbons as a way to signify their commitment to raising awareness about the negative effects of drug use.

A contest in which kids promote awareness in neighborhoods and enter for a chance to win a $1,000 drug prevention grant for their schools or an iPad will also take place during Red Ribbon Week this year.

According to a Red Ribbon Week press release, this is how the contest works:
• Students must bring the Red Ribbon Week message home by working with parents to decorate their front door, mailbox, fence, etc., with this year’s theme, “The Best Me Is Drug Free.”
• Take a picture that includes both your family and the message, then upload the pic to www.redribbon.org/contest or www.facebook.com/RedRibbonWeek by Friday, Nov. 2 (must be over 18 years of age to upload photos).

• Let the voting begin. Feel free to ask family and friends to vote for your entry at www.redribbon.org/vote anytime from Nov. 2-16. There will be 10 winners from regions across the U.S. Winners will be announced in December.

“Students will once again take Red Ribbon Week’s message of prevention home to their neighborhoods with this national contest,” said Peggy Sapp, volunteer president of National Family Partnership. “By decorating their homes together with this year’s Red Ribbon theme, families carry the message to their communities.”

According to the press release, studies indicate that substance abuse risks lessen when parents talk to their children about the dangers of drugs, and that is the goal of this year’s contest: to encourage families to talk about prevention.

Red Ribbon Week is also in honor of former DEA Special Agent Enrique “Kiki” Camarena, who was abducted and murdered in Mexico in February 1985. In the words of DEA Administrator Michele M. Leonhart, Camarena “made the ultimate sacrifice to keep our communities safe.”

The DEA will co-sponsor the national contest this year.

“Take the Red Ribbon Week pledge across America to help children grow up safe, healthy and drug free,” Sapp said.

Letter: Senate candidate Pierog supports tax relief

in Letters to the Editor by

People today are struggling to find jobs, to pay bills, to keep their homes. When they are hit with high real estate taxes, it can put them under water. Many residents in District 25 are faced with this problem. They need relief.

Illinois is ranked as the seventh-highest property taxed state, and Kendall County is the 24th-highest taxed county in the nation. In order to address this tax burden, Illinois needs to rebalance the revenue it receives from property, sales and state income taxes. It also needs to look at ways to save tax dollars. One place to start: cut the number of taxing bodies within the state. Illinois has more local governmental units than any other state—6,994. This can lead to duplication of services and higher property tax bills.

However, the primary recipient of local property tax dollars is our public schools. There are over 800 school districts in Illinois, and 50 of them rely on the state for more than 60 percent of their funding. In 2013, lawmakers cut the level of the state’s contribution from 92 percent to only 89 percent of the $6,119 that is mandated per student.

Illinois ranks 49 out of 50 in its level of funding support for public education. Education funding can either support or slam the door on our residents’ economic futures. We’ve been promising to repair the way Illinois funds its schools for over a generation.

It is now time to live up to our pledge.

Corinne M. Pierog
Democratic candidate for Illinois State Senate District 25

Letter: Kentucky coroner supports Tao Martinez

in Letters to the Editor by

This coming November, the citizens of Kane County have an important decision to make in determining whom they want to be their coroner.

The coroner’s position is not to be taken lightly; the coroner needs to be honest, trustworthy, knowledgeable and willing to learn. The coroner also needs to be understanding and compassionate. I have been a coroner in Kentucky for 20 years, (as well as) past president of Kentucky Coroner Association and regional director of Kentucky Mass Incident Response Team. I have dealt with Tao Martinez on a professional and personal level. I believe he has all the qualities it takes to make your county a great coroner. He has a wiliness to learn and a compassion for people that is second to none.

I endorse Tao Martinez for Kane County Coroner.

Mitchell Lee
Marshall County Coroner, Kentucky

Letter: Mental illness not funny

in Letters to the Editor by

As the Halloween season approaches, I would like to make a request on the behalf of all the families in our Kane County area that have experienced a mental illness in their family life: Please do not use or promote the image of someone who is mentally ill as a costume character.

The image of a straight-jacketed or ax-wielding “mad” man or woman only contributes to the inaccurate portrayal of those with mental illness. Horror houses, which use such characters, add to this myth. These images are hurtful and add to the stigma suffered by those with mental illness. This stigma often results in delay in getting needed treatment for their illness.

Most mental illness is caused by a biological chemical imbalance in the brain. Mental illness is a disease, just like cancer or diabetes. Would you favor an image or character that makes fun of those diseases? I would hope not. It also perpetuates the myth that all mentally ill persons are dangerous. Statistically, persons with mental illness are much more likely to be victims of crime, rather than the perpetrators of it.

Lastly, these images also convince people that having a mental illness is hopeless. The facts show that most mental illnesses can be successfully treated. Treatment works for the great majority of people.

So please, no raving or drooling “maniacs” this Halloween. You could be making fun of a neighbor or relative. Please stick to vampire fangs and werewolf hair and have a good time this Halloween.

Jerry J. Murphy
Chair, Kane County Mental Health Council

Letter: Endorsement of Corinne Pierog for State Senate 25th District

in Letters to the Editor by

As a parent of an autistic son, it’s hard to find a state legislator who is willing to understand the issues that parents of special needs children face on a daily basis, and has the experience to provide solutions on how to help families and not continue to live in a state, which is ranked near the bottom in the nation, in providing education and services to people with developmental disabilities.

I first met Corinne Pierog when she ran against John Milner for State Senate in 2008. As a parent advocate for my son on things related to autism, what I immediately noticed and liked about her was her experience and knowledge about disability issues and her passion to help families like mine, even though she has no children with disabilities herself. After the election, she helped me with a project that, I’m very proud to say, started with the first vocational class for special needs adults over the age of 18 at Harper Community College in Palatine, Ill.

On her own personal time, she came with me to meetings with the president of Harper College and other administrators to help provide myself and other parents and professionals with her knowledge and support, and to establish a program for adults after high school, when they have few-to-no alternatives to turn to after aging out of the high school system.

With her help with the project at Harper College, the Career Skills Institute was formed and started its first class at the Palatine campus on Sept. 5.

I hope all parents who, like myself, have children with special needs vote for Corinne Pierog for State Senate in the 25th District. She will be among the few legislators that will honestly fight for a better life for people with disabilities.

Mike Baker
Schaumburg Autism Society

Guest Editorial: Principal Appreciation Week is Oct. 22-26

in From the Editor's Desk by

Do you want to tell a school principal that you appreciate them? If so, you’ll get your chance in a little under two weeks.

Oct. 22-26 this year will mark the 23rd annual Principal Appreciation Week in Illinois. The week-long celebration will culminate with Principal Appreciation Day on Friday, Oct. 26.

“Very few individuals have the ability to impact a student’s life like our educational leaders do every day,” said Aaron Hill, president of the Illinois Principals Association. “The overall operation, vision, and success of a school lies directly with the building administrator. All building administrators work tirelessly to ensure the success of our schools and to make sure our students are provided every opportunity to succeed. I encourage everyone to observe Principal Appreciation Day as our educational leaders deserve recognition for their dedication to our students.”

According to the Illinois Principals Association, Principal Appreciation Week provides school learning communities an opportunity to publicly recognize the work, commitment and importance of principals, assistant principals, and deans throughout the state.

“Research has proven that the building Principal’s impact on student achievement is second only to that of the classroom teacher when considering school based factors,” IPA Executive Director Jason Leahy said. “Principals and educational leaders impact students’ lives in a significant way. Speaking as a former principal and having visited dozens of schools throughout Illinois, the quality of a school’s learning environment and the ability of a school to do what is best for its students comes as a direct result of the leadership provided by the school’s principal and leadership team. Courageous leadership is essential to effectively educate students and work to provide the resources and support they need to be successful in the 21st Century. It is important that we recognize and encourage our schools’ leaders.”

Be sure to recognize and encourage your school’s leader the week of Oct. 22-26. After all, principals show their appreciation for students year-round by trying to make their school a better place, but Principal Appreciation Week only happens once a year.

Guest Editorial: Newspapers are community icons

in From the Editor's Desk by

by David Porter, director of communications and marketing for the Illinois Press Association

Congratulations. By holding this newspaper in your hands [or reading online], you are participating in a strong community tradition that dates back hundreds of years. You are demonstrating that you don’t simply live or work in this community, but that you are a part of it.

The local newspaper is the cornerstone of a community. This is where the community congregates, so to speak. It’s where we record the daily history of the town, discuss the issues of the day, shop for new items and peddle our used items. It’s where we learn about what’s going on at the school, at city hall and in our neighborhoods. It’s where we track who was born, who passed on and who won the game last night.

The newspaper starts out as a large, blank roll of paper. While reporters, photographers and editors do the work of writing the news and placing it on the pages, it’s the community itself that fills these pages. As the pages are printed, the newspapers are sliced and folded and prepared for delivery.

Then an amazing thing happens.

It’s as if the paper becomes one giant roll again, wrapping the community together. From customers in the salons and barbershops to the diners in the restaurants to the students in the classrooms, everyone has access to the entire community through the pages of the newspaper.

That’s not to say we all hold hands and sing “Kumbaya.” While there is great joy within these pages, the newspaper also serves as a forum for dissent. It’s a resource for discussion and a catalyst for debate.

The newspaper is as much a community icon as the local schools, the banks, the parks and the library. Any time a community loses one of these institutions, it loses a part of its identity. So, thank you for reading the newspaper today and preserving this rich and rewarding tradition.

Next week is National Newspaper Week in America, and we are proud to be here representing and recording our community.

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