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Some Communities May Choose Home Rule Status

Mon, 17 Mar 2014 16:46:05 CDT
By: IPR's Bill Wheelhouse

Voters in four small Illinois communities will decide on election day whether to give their village governments more power to raise taxes and pass laws. Home Rule Authority communities can pass certain ordinances that might otherwise be forbidden by the state and they have more powers of the purse. Dave Armstrong is village president of Rochester in Sangamon county. He says if voters approve home rule there, the town is going to ban billboards and raise the gas tax by a couple of pennies a gallon for road work. He says the estimate for some repairs came in at a million and a half dollars.

"We don't have 1.5 million to make that road right."

The Illinois Association of Relators opposes home rule. The group president says towns with it have a license to raise property taxes or force other onerous regulations on the community. Other communities with home rule referenda on the ballot are: Gilman in Iroquois county, Sparta in Randolph County, and Merrionette Park in Cook County.

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