From the files of Bob Malkas: The Lincoln-Lansing Drainage District

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Local Voices

Bob Malkas

I have tried for 40 years to inform Lansing homeowners in Bloom Township of the injustice of the Lincoln-Lansing Drainage District. There is no justification for it to be able to impose a useless tax burden on residents.

I have paid my annual $2.00 assessment religiously until last year. Because of my research I knew what would happen if I ever declined to pay and then decided to sell my home: the Lincoln-Lansing Drainage District would place a lien on my property.

Last year, I withheld my payment for the first time to see what would happen. As I anticipated, in this year’s billing I was charged a late fee.

I wonder how many homeowners are experiencing this unnecessary burden and then ask officials in Lansing, Lynwood, and Sauk Village to correct the injustice.

Today, I will pay this bill under protest to avoid any future problems. I will demand from the district that they list in public what projects they have completed since my last billing.

Years ago, I first circulated the path communities can take to eliminate the Lincoln-Lansing Drainage District. This is a duplication of what I submitted in an open letter. The authority for general supervision of stormwater management in Cook County was conveyed to the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District (MWRD) pursuant to the passage of PA 93-1049 on November 17, 2004. On February 15, 2007, the District’s Board of Commissioners adopted the Cook County Stormwater Management Plan by ordinance.

Existing Drainage Districts in Cook County are discussed in Chapter 5 under 5.5.1.3 in the section entitled Active Drainage Districts:

“Active drainage districts have the potential to perform many functions consistent with the implementation of this plan. For example drainage districts can levy assessments for stream maintenance and restoration activities. Drainage districts may also be able to help address existing and future drainage problems, so the District will encourage their participation in watershed planning efforts.”

“In accordance with the Act, “{a} drainage district that continues to exist within Cook County shall conform its operations to the county wide stormwater management plan.” The District has the authority, upon creation and implementation of the Cook County Stormwater Management Plan (CCSMP), to petition the circuit court to dissolve any drainage district located entirely within the District (70 ILCS 2605/7h(h)….”

The MWRD explains further their authority: “The MWRDGC will assume all property and obligations of the former drainage district — and all debts must be discharged as soon as practicable.”

I contend that this is the main reason why the MWRD has not moved to extend its authority. They don’t want the extra work.

Wanting to share this information I had written an open letter to three south suburban communities that was printed in the South Town Star, requesting that each community that is administered by the existing drainage district ask the district to list what it had accomplished with collected funds over the past five years. If they could show progress was made in compliance with PA 93-1049, their existence would be justified. If no effective progress was accomplished I believe the communities should ask them to voluntarily disband.

Bob Malkas


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3 COMMENTS

  1. aaaaaaaaaaal

    Although I did not know Bob had moved, he still keeps an eye on things and is very good at it !
    His researh and reporting is spot on ! God bless Bob his years at the airport and what he does ! Keep up the good work Bob !!!!!!!!

  2. Carl-wild horses couldn’t get me to move from Lansing. I have had a 40+ years to the Village and I’m not ready to quit now, but I think some people would like me to move.

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