McHenry County News Briefs

Chronicle Media

The Fox Lake Fire Protection District has teamed up with American Red Cross to start a smoke detector installation program for residents within the district.

McHenry County

Proposed rebate plan offers property tax relief

The county reported that a proposal to rebate $15 million of Valley Hi Nursing Home’s fund reserve will make most McHenry County homeowners eligible to recoup just under 30 percent of county government’s share of their 2018 property tax bill. The $15 million rebate, almost double the $8.8 million first proposed by County Board Chairman Jack Franks (D-Marengo) will still leave the county-run nursing home — located at 2406 Hartland Road, Woodstock — with more than two years of reserve funding. Franks stated that the $40 million Valley Hi reserve, which is about $6 million more than the entire municipal budget for the City of Woodstock, is the result of years of overtaxation. To be eligible for the proposed rebate, homeowners had to have taken the homestead exemption during the 2017 tax year for bills payable in 2018, and had to have paid their taxes on time. Homeowners who are exempt from paying any property taxes under the disabled veterans’ homestead exemption do not qualify. The amount of the rebate will be calculated by a formula based on the amount the homeowner paid in taxes to county government in 2018. About 88,000 properties in McHenry County could potentially qualify. The resolution could go before the County Board for a vote in March. For more information, call 815-334-4000 or visit

Dist. 155 names Ratliff, Koeppen as vice principals

Community Unit School District 155 reported that the Board of Education recently approved Lori Ratliff as vice principal at Crystal Lake South High School and Kevin Koeppen as vice principal at Prairie Ridge High School. Both will begin serving in their roles on July 1. Ratliff, a Crystal Lake South alum, will transition from her role as assistant principal for educational services into the vice principal position. She also has served as a humanities division leader and English teacher at Crystal Lake South. Koeppen joined District 155 in 1999 and has served as a division leader of industry and careers and wellness for the last five years, and as a department chair prior to that. He also served as an assistant athletic director and coach. Ratliff replaces Joe Cole at Crystal Lake South and Koeppen will take over for Lisa Connell at Prairie Ridge. Both Cole and Connell will retire in 2019. For more information, call 815-455-8500 or visit

Island Lake

Village’s Fun Bowl event to aid fireworks fund

The village announced that the Island Lake Fun Bowl, a fireworks/events fundraiser, will be held from 1-4 p.m. Feb. 24 at 3D Bowl, 4018 Roberts Road. The event includes three games of bowling and shoe rental, and a lunch buffet, silent auction and 50/50 raffle. The cost is $20 (adults), $15 (ages 11-18), $5 (ages 10 and under) and $10 (non-bowlers). All proceeds will go toward the 2019 summer fireworks. Advance sign-up is recommended. For more information, send an email to — or visit

Fox Lake

FLFPD offers free smoke detector installation

The Fox Lake Fire Protection District has teamed up with American Red Cross to start a smoke detector installation program for residents within the district. Upon request, the FLFPD will visit residents’ homes to install brand-new smoke detectors free of charge. The smoke detectors are battery-operated. The FLFPD serves approximately 33,000 people residing in an area of 30 square miles in Lake and McHenry counties and surrounding communities. For more information, call FLFPD Station #2, 306 Washington St., Ingleside, at 847-587-3312 or visit 


Vaudeville-style show to benefit food pantry

The performance troupe from vaudeville-style dance academy Dickinson’s Little Vaudeville will present “A Day at The Beach,” an old-fashioned variety show performed by kids (ages 5-15) with dancing, acting and music pre-dating 1940, from 7-8 p.m. Feb. 22 at Mixin’ Mingle, 124 Cass St. Admission is free. Attendees are encouraged to bring non-perishable food items for donation to the Woodstock Food Pantry. For more information, call 847-528-3942 or visit


Village installs two electric vehicle charging stations

The village reported that two new electric vehicle charging stations recently were installed and activated as part of the infrastructure improvements included in the Old Town Algonquin reconstruction. The stations are located at 106 S. Main St. and 302 S. Main St. Though the charging stations are owned by the village, both are operated and maintained by ChargePoint, an organization that operates a large network of electric vehicle charging stations. To use the stations, residents and visitors will first have to register with ChargePoint online or through a mobile app. Once registration is complete, users will have the ability to use their mobile app and ChargePoint access card to access the charging stations and begin charging sessions during their visit. For more information, visit


Chamber to host Home, Biz & Wellness Expo

The Huntley Area Chamber of Commerce will host the 2019 Home, Biz & Wellness Expo from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. March 2 at the Huntley Park District REC Center, 12015 Mill St. The event features an array of exhibitors and vendors representing a variety of local businesses and services, as well as kids activities, entertainment, raffles, prizes, adoptable dogs, The Expo Cafe (featuring local restaurants) and more. Admission is free. For more information, call 847-669-0166 or visit      




–McHenry County News Briefs–