Friday, October 3, 2008


It has been quite loud as of late in the Fox Trails subdivision.  they are currently working on the berm and the noise is exceedingly loud.  We are to expect noise, that is for sure.  However, the noise that now pounds the subdivision every day is beyond acceptable.

Click here to sample what it sounds like.

The machinery that Meyer is using is too loud.  It squeaks.  It clangs. And the overall hum of the engines is enough to drown out all the other ambiance of a once-quiet neighborhood.

Perhaps Meyer should get new machinery.

Or, even better:  maybe Meyer should hire more workers and build the berm in the old fashion way---by hand. 

The state has standards for noise pollution and those standards are enforced by local law enforcement.  If you feel that the noise is too loud, call the following people to make a complaint:

Bob Nowack:  (847) 639-1100
Cary Police Department (non-emergency): (847) 639-2341

The Chief of police is Ed Fetzer. he can be emailed at

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Cary Loses to Greed and Money

I am a high school history and civics teacher. In this world, it is very difficult to get young people excited about government. Even at such a young age, high school students are cynical about their voice and their influence in the very affairs that can affect their lives. "My vote doesn't count," they say. "No one listens."

And the Village of Cary last night proved them right in a vote that was for greed and against the well-being of many Cary residents---residents who have, over the last several months, expressed concern and outrage over the proposed extension of a gravel pit within the borders of the village.

Despite the petitions, despite the letters, emails and phone calls, the village of Cary decided to side with Meyer in a unanimous vote in favor of the corporation's plans. So much for Cameron Davis' proclamation that Cary is a "great quality of life community."

Tom Kierna admitted that some residents will feel "pain" during the mining of the pit. That's comforting to know that at least he acknowledges our pain. But then he also revealed the true nature of his vote: "It’s going to generate $2.5 million for the village of Cary, and that’s not small potatoes." He then went on to express admiration for the deal, "looking forward to a prosperous relationship with Meyer."

A prosperous relationship with Meyer? Wow. That's a big "screw-you" to the residents of Cary who put him into office. Apparently, his "relationship" to a corporation with headquarters in Zurich, Switzerland, now outweighs his relationship to the very people in his own community.

I wonder what this "long-term" relationship includes? Perhaps further extension of the pit into Hoffman Park? All that has to happen is the Cary Park District sells that land to Meyer and we are going through this all again. Only this time there will be less opposition, because people will know that the concerns and well-being of the community are secondary to the whims and wishes of a faceless corporation.

I know what some people are going to say: "you don't understand the intricacies of the situation." "The village could be sued." "There were people in Cary who supported the pit." "You are a nimby." Yada Yada Yada.

The fact is, this vote came down to an issue of morality, plain and simple.

Eighteenth century moralist Emmanuel Kant tackled the issue of morality and law during the Enlightenment. He believed that morality was something one was born with; it was not something learned. With his "Categorical Imperative," Kant outlined a way in which one can "test" the morality of an action or a law: if you can will that action as a "universal law" to be followed the world over, then that law is "moral."

In other words, if you can imagine a world in which it is followed that, in exchange for large sums of money, gravel pits are dug near residential homes over the protests of the residents, then you believe that that Village of Cary's actions last night were moral. If you can envision this as the rule rather than the exception, then the vote taken by the Village of Cary was the right thing to do.

Greed over people. That is what this vote comes down to. It doesn't matter that there may be a lake or a park there sometime in the future. The fact is, those residents who live nearest the pit overwhelmingly were against it. They are the ones who should have figured most into the decision. Apparently, they were not.

I am not too surprised by the fact that Meyer will be extending their pit. I am surprised, however, by the unanimous nature of the vote. Even Deb McNamee, a Fox Trails resident, voted for it. However, after a long period of time in executive session, she admitted that her vote was based upon the "advice" of Cary's attorney, Mike Coppedge.

It's a shame that my tax money is helping to pay for his salary and who knows how much he has billed the village for his "advice." I guess we are stuck with his mediocrity.

But at least we can vote the others out of office.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

On the Brink

When the village of Cary annexed some land on February 5 that once belonged in Lake in the Hills, Village Administrator Cameron Davis announced that the acquisition of this land will add "to the village's reputation as a great quality-of-life community."

However, many of us in Fox Trails are doubtful of Davis' assertion as we stand on the brink of having a gravel pit back up to our own back-yards, drastically reducing our quality of life.

Don't get me wrong, the addition of the 180 acres of Hoffman Park into the village is good news. However, that still leaves about 100 acres belonging in Lake in the Hills. Although the Cary Park District owns it, who can say that they won't sell that land to Meyer in the future and the proposed pit will get even bigger.

It can happen. Unless we stop it now.

We are standing on the brink of the final decision. Possibly the last meeting regarding Meyer Material's petition will be held on Tuesday, February 19 at 7 pm. This time, the meeting is being held at D'Andrea Banquets in Crystal Lake. D'Andrea is located on Route 14 and Route 31.

This has been a very long road. It's been monotonous. It's been difficult. It seems that many of us have grudgingly accepted the fact that we could have an eyesore next to our houses.

Some of us have apparently accepted the possibility that in this housing market our home values will fall even further and we will be forced to live next to a dusty, hazardous pit.

Some of us may have accepted the possibility that we will lose.

If we give in to defeat now, then we have given up on our homes, our neighbors and our community.

If we give into defeat now, we have let corporate greed highjack the democratic process.

If we give into defeat now, we will have allowed Cameron Davis to tout the Village's quality of life reputation for the papers while disregarding the truth.

We cannot let that happen. We can still win.

Please come to the meeting on Tuesday. Call the Village Hall at (847)639-0003 and tell them that we hope the village lives up to Cameron Davis' statement about Cary's quality of life reputation and insist that if the village believes that, they will vote no to Meyer's petition.

The only thing that stands between a "yes" or "no" vote is us.

And together, we can tip the scales in our favor.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Protect Our Standards

The following is a recent letter that appeared in the Northwest Herald:

Dear Editor:

The Tuesday, Feb. 5, edition of the Northwest Herald shared a quote with readers from Cameron Davis, Cary’s village administrator, about the Hoffman Park proposed annexation agreement with the Cary Park District. He was quoted as saying that gaining the property “certainly adds to the village’s reputation as a great quality-of-life community.”

What about Fox Trails residents’ long standing pleas to the village to deny Meyer Material’s request for a conditional use mining permit? Please, Village of Cary Board of Trustees, reassure us that our quality of life is as equally important. Vote no and allow us to get on with our lives.

Residents, please attend the next board meeting at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 19, at D’Andrea Banquets at Routes 14 and 31 in Crystal Lake.

Our standards of living should not be compromised.

Cheryl Janu