Fourth of July events, Senior citizens assessment freeze applications, and More

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Craig Taylor, District 19

June 29, 2017

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Celebrate the Fourth of July

fireworks over lake

Whether you’re looking for a parade, live music and delicious food or a spot to set down your blanket and watch the fireworks, Lake County has lots of ways to enjoy Independence Day. Check out Visit Lake County’s Guide to the Fourth of July, and have a spectacular holiday. 

The following are details on celebrations near you.

Barrington: Enjoy an array of festivities that includes the Brat Tent, which runs June 30 to July 4 as well as more festivities on July 4 including the family fitness run, Barrington’s White House Open House, the Fourth of July parade and fireworks. Learn more

Hawthorn Woods: Join the fireworks display and concert starting at dusk July 3 at Community Park. The night will feature classic rock music, featuring Second Time Around. And celebrate America by watching the Fourth of July parade, which will kick off at 10 a.m. July 4 from Lagoon Drive to the Village Barn. Learn more

Lake Zurich: Enjoy music, entertainment, swimming, the Taste of Summer and more at the annual Independence Family Day July 4 at Paulus Park. The day will culminate with fireworks launched over the lake. Details

As part of Lake Zurich's festivities, the 22nd annual boat parade will begin at 8 p.m. just before the fireworks display. This year's theme is Whatever Floats Your Boat! Gift cards from local restaurants and retailers are offered as prizes to the winning boats. All interested boat owners can contact Rob Thorp at to participate. 

Learn Proper Way to Protect Yourself from Ticks

tick protection video

Protect your dog and family from ticks! Dogs love to roll around in the grass, jump in brush and walk in wooded areas – ALL places ticks may live. Watch this video to find out the proper way to check and remove ticks from your dog from Heidi Johnson, who works in Animal Care and Control for the Lake County Health Department and Community Health Center.

IDOT To Shut Down Road Construction Projects

The Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) will be sending notice to their contractors to stop all construction and prepare to make construction work zones safe for a possible “long-term” shut down by June 30. This road construction shut down is due to the lack of a state budget and an appropriation to fund work after July 1.

This will impact several large projects in Lake County where federal funding is administered by IDOT:

  • Washington Street Grade Separation (LCDOT Project)
  • Deerfield Road – in the Village of Deerfield and City of Highland Park (Municipal & LCDOT Project)
  • Grand Avenue at US 41 in the Village of Gurnee (IDOT Project)
  • IL Route 59 at Petite Lake Road intersection improvement and resurfacing (IDOT Project)

LCDOT will be working with resident engineers and contractors to make sure that the roadways are as safe as possible for the traveling public. Road construction projects that are locally funded will continue as scheduled.

For information about any of the projects in the 2017 Construction Program, view our interactive construction map.  

Lake County Invests in Renewable Energy

county invests green energy

Lake County will now get 25 percent of its electricity from “Green power” or electricity from renewable resources, such as solar, wind, and geothermal. This is an additional 20 percent from its previous electricity rate contract.  Green energy has proved to be environmentally preferable to electricity generated from conventional sources, including coal, oil, natural gas, and nuclear. According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, on average, replacing each kilowatt-hour (kWh) of traditional power with renewable power avoids the emission of more than one pound of carbon dioxide, a key greenhouse gas. Lake County will purchase 9.98 million renewable energy kWH(h) under this contract, which is the equivalent of more than 15 million pounds of carbon dioxide. Lake County has received an Environmental Stewardship Certificate for its commitment to investing in green energy.

Submit Senior Citizen Assessment Freeze Application by July 7

The deadline is July 7 to complete the 2017 Senior Citizen Assessment Freeze Application for taxes payable in 2018.

The Senior Freeze provides eligible seniors (based on income levels) protection against real estate tax increases due to rising property values, as this exemption “freezes” your home’s equalized assessed value at a base year value. The base year is generally the year before you first qualify and apply for the exemption. For example, if you first qualify and apply in 2017, your property’s equalized assessed value will be “frozen” at the 2016 equalized assessed value. Please note that this exemption is not a tax freeze or a tax reduction and does not protect against increased taxes due to tax rate increases.

To qualify for this exemption, you must be 65 years of age or older, own the property as your principal residence for the past two January 1’s, and have a 2016 total household income of $55,000 or less.

Applications can be filed at the Chief County Assessment Office, 18 N. County St., 7th Floor, Waukegan or at your local township assessor’s office.

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Forest Preserve News

Civil War Days 2017

26th Annual Civil War Days
History comes to life at one of the largest reenactments in the Midwest, featuring battles, period demonstrations, kids’ activities and Civil War-era shopping. Civil War Days will run from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. July 8 and 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. July 9 at Lakewood Forest Preserve. Purchase tickets online, and save $1 on admission. View daily schedule

gateway grants

Gateways Grants Open the Door for Schools 
As budgets shrink, field trips are increasingly out of reach for Lake County schools, especially in low-income communities. Since 1991, Gateways Grants have made field trips possible for tens of thousands of students. They benefit from “school” in outdoor and museum settings, where learning is experiential and profound. School districts with a low-income population of 40 percent or more are eligible. Gateways Grants cover program fees and provide a bus stipend. Donations fully fund this program. Our goal is to raise $5,000 in Gateways Grants by the start of the school year. Help make field trips possible.


Little Sprouts: Planting a Seed
Help plant the garden at Bonner Heritage Farm in Lindenhurst and sow seeds to take home. Join us down on the farm for fun and frolicking on select Wednesdays through October. Get to know families while kids enjoy stories, hands-on activities and crafts. Learn more


green youth farm

Eat Healthful Produce and Support Local Youth
Eat healthful produce and support local youth when you shop at the Green Youth Farm of Lake County market. The market is open from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Wednesdays through Oct. 12. Purchase fresh and nutritious organic vegetables, herbs, honey and more, grown in Greenbelt Forest Preserve in North Chicago by area students. Learn more

Sheriff’s Office Continues Fight Against Heroin Epidemic

So far in 2017, members of the Lake County Sheriff’s Office have saved the lives of 16 people from heroin overdoses. This number already surpasses the number of lives saved in 2015 (11) and 2016 (13).

The Sheriff’s Office partnered with the Lake County Health Department in 2014 and trained all Sheriff’s Office enforcement personnel in the administration of naloxone, an opioid antidote that counteracts the effects of heroin and opioids in the brain and essentially “brings back” an individual from an overdose. Nearly 100 doses of naloxone were administered since then.

The Lake County Sheriff’s Gang Task Force also continues to make strides, arresting heroin dealers operating throughout Lake County as well as providing educational presentations to school students, school staff, and community groups.

drug disposal

This summer, join the fight against opioid addiction. Here’s how:

  • If you know someone who is addicted to opioids, find help.
  • If you know someone who is dealing opioids or other drugs, report a tip.
  • If you have unused or expired prescription drugs, bring them to one of these drug disposal box locations

“A Way Out” Lake County

A Way Out

Individuals who struggle with substance abuse can get directed quickly to treatment through a pilot program called “A Way Out." The program is offered 24 hours a day, 365 days a year at participating police departments in Lake County. Individuals, who possess narcotics or paraphernalia, enter a participating police department and tell an officer they are requesting help will avoid criminal charges if the participant seeks assistance. Watch this video to learn more about the “A Way Out” program.

Lake County's Dirty Jobs - Fireproofing New Court Tower

dirty job fireproofing court tower

The Lake County Courthouse Expansion project is well underway! Watch this edition of Lake County's Dirty Jobs as County Board Chairman Aaron Lawlor tackles an important task and sprays fireproofing material on the steel beams in the building, which will make it safer in the event of a fire. This project, which is anticipated to be completed in summer 2018, is designed to increase the efficiency of the justice system and support growth of the justice agencies out to the year 2030 and beyond. 

Community News

Join Barrington Brew Fest 
Barrington Brew Fest will take place from 3 to 7 p.m. July 8 in downtown Barrington. The event will feature nearly 50 brewers showcasing more than 90 different brews. Details

Save the dates for Alpine Fest
This year's Alpine Fest will take place July 21 to 23 at Lions Park in downtown Lake Zurich. Enjoy the parade, music, contests and much more. Learn more

View Environmental Graphiti exhibit 
The Brushwood Center at Ryerson Woods presents, "Environmental Graphiti," a contemporary art created to enhance public awareness about the science of climate change. The exhibit is open now through July 31. Each of the digital paintings uses as its "blueprint" a graph, chart, map, word or number relating to a key fact about climate change. Learn more

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