Automated Meter Reader Program
Public Works has completed the implementation of the automated meter reader program. This initiative allows remote meter reading, providing more accurate and timely information. In addition to saving approximately $250,000 a year of operating costs, the data collected has allowed Public Works to assist customers by identifying leaks in homes that may not be visible, but are identifiable due to changes in water usage patterns.
IL Route 53 Extension
In December 2015, the Illinois Toll Highway Authority Board unanimously approved a resolution authorizing an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the IL Route 53/120 project. The EIS will be conducted in partnership with the Illinois Tollway, the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT), the Lake County Division of Transportation, and the Federal Highway Administration. Lake County Board Chairman, Aaron Lawlor, along with staff, have been actively involved in the feasibility study process, which has included developing financing options and a corridor land use strategy. Lake County is urging the Tollway and IDOT to use the Blue Ribbon Advisory Council recommendations as the intellectual framework for the IL Route 53/120 EIS. Those recommendations call for an innovative parkway with specific design and performance standards that reduce congestion, preserve the environment, and enhance connectivity. www.ILRoute53.org.
Regional Collaboration/Consolidated 911
Chairman Lawlor convened a workshop in January attended by mayors, police chiefs, fire chiefs, Emergency Telephone Systems Board leaders, dispatchers and others to discuss and further explore options for regional 911 consolidation. The purpose was to obtain input in order to analyze and develop financial models on possible consolidation alternatives, as well as alternatives for governance models to be considered for a future consolidated organization. To help advance this initiative, the County Board approved creation of a 911 Emergency Dispatch Task Force that is comprised of the county board chairman, along with municipal leaders, and representatives from fire and police agencies. The group held its first meeting in September 2015. Also last year, a multi-jurisdictional team hired IXP, in cooperation with Baker Tilly, to conduct the Phase 2 study. The consultant team met with PSAP’s and other stakeholders to collect specific data about each PSAP, and develop initial findings, which were presented to the broad stakeholder group. Another regional meeting is planned for spring.
Lake County continues to advance its Shared Services Initiative to collaborate and coordinate with other units of governments to generate greater economies of scale, foster partnerships, and reduce costs. In 2015, Lake County expanded a number of shared services projects and explored opportunities for new initiatives, including the annual salt bid, which saw an increase in participation by 19 entities for a total of 45 jointly purchasing salt for the 2015-2016 snow season. Additionally, the Planning Building & Development department expanded plan review inspections services and entered into new agreements. The County continues to explore joint bid opportunities, like hydrant painting, with the Municipal Partnering Initiative (MPI).
To promote environmental stewardship, Lake County is advancing operational and community-wide sustainability initiatives.
Lake County recently incorporated “Sustainability Statements” into all of its requests for proposals (RFPs) requiring responders to provide information regarding policies, practices, and procedures in the areas of water and energy efficiency, waste minimization, staff training and education efforts, or certification achievements.
To reduce waste at County facilities, the County has implemented a mini bin program, in which employees swap their regular office waste bin for a small container that attaches to office recycling bins.
Visit our Sustainability Lake County web portal to learn more.