On the Republican primary ballot there two races that are particularly important to voters in Stephenson County. Carl Larson should be retained as State’s Attorney. He has demonstrated by his exemplary conduct of the office that he should be given a full term. John Vogt, his Republican predecessor in this office, has unequivocally endorsed him. The voters of Stephenson County should do the same, and elect Carl Larson State’s Attorney.
The other important race is for Circuit Judge, and James Hauser should be retained as a judge in Stephenson County. Andrew Smith in the Illinois State Bar Association poll received a NOT recommended rating. James Hauser in the same Bar Poll received a recommended rating. In contrast two former, retired Stephenson County Circuit Judges, Barry Anderson and Theresa Ursen, have recommended James Hauser for Circuit Judge. Again, the voters of Stephenson County should do the same, and elect James Hauser Circuit Judge.
This annual event begins on Friday, August 1 and ends on Sunday, August 3, 2014 at the Stephenson County Fairgrounds, 2250 S. Walnut, Freeport, Illinois. Friday and Saturday from 7 am to 8 pm, and Sunday 7 am to 5 pm. It offers over 300 antique steam and horse-powered engines and equipment, and gas engines. This year’s feature is Allis-Chalmers tractors and equipment. There will be a huge parade daily at 1 pm, a large flea market, a large display building offering a large antique transportation display, home antiques, crafts, demonstrations, and farm miniatures. Gasoline Alley which will feature Rawleigh, Rawleigh-Schryer and Ziegler-Schryer gas engines and products, sawmill, and blacksmith shop. Also ride the Silver Creek and Stephenson Railroad antique steam train. Food is offered including a variety of food stands, plus breakfast from 7 am to 9:30 am and a noon dinner from 11 am until 1 pm. A Farmer’s Hitch Class Horse Pull will be offered on Friday at 6:30 pm. A Midwest Championship Antique Tractor Pull will be held on Saturday. On Sunday, there will be a kiddie tractor pull after the parade.
For more information, go to http://www.thefreeportshow.com/show.htm
Don’t let those taxing bodies fool you. Every taxing body in the City of Freeport has increased their tax rates for 2013 led by the Freeport School District which has the capacity by itself to bankrupt this community. The total tax rate for those living in Freeport has increased over 10% in two years, and this is a fact. If this rate increase continues at 5% per year, it would be up 25% in five years. If you work in the private sector, has your income gone up over 10% in last two years? If you are retired without a public pension, has your social security gone up 10% in the last two years? When will the taxpayers in Freeport say enough is enough? The answer is clear – only after it is too late, and we are close to that point.
An editorial in the Journal Standard on April 1, 2014 reflected on Governor Quinn’s proposal to give every property owner a $500 refund on their property taxes. It further stated that the refund is of less value in Stephenson County for the following reason:
“What’s more, a flat refund is of less value in Stephenson County than it is in areas where property taxes are not quite so out of whack.”
Yes, taxes in Stephenson County and in particular Freeport are “out of whack.” In fact that is a nice way to put it. Property tax assessments (based on market values supposedly) in many cases bear no relationship to actual property values. High tax rates and unrealistic property assesments have contributed to to falling property values, population decline, and businesses leaving the area.
What small business owner wants to fight about its assessment every year?
What home owner wants to live in a community where his tax assessment has not fallen along with property values?
Who wants to own property in a community where the tax rate goes up every year with a corresponding increase in your real estate taxes?
The answer is no one. People are tired of fighting. They say nothing, but their actions speak for them. They just leave the area.
Years go, a local Freeport community leader would tell people that if they did not like it in Freeport, they should leave. Will, my friend, they are all gone now. Thank you for your words of wisdom.
The next meeting will be tonight on August 15, 2013 at 6:30 pm at the County Board Room, Stephenson County Court House, 15 N. Galena Avenue, Freeport.
For a complete agenda go to http://co.stephenson.il.us/board/mins.asp
Get Out to the Fair and Get Those Cheese Curds from the Jaycees – Their Stand Is Next to the Grandstand!
The weather should be terrific for the fair today and the rest of the week. There will be no excuse not to go to the fair. Fantastic events every night. How lucky we are to have such a wonderful fair!
Go to stephensoncountyfair.org/grandstand-shows for a complete schedule of events.