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Kankakee River Rountable


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The Kankakee County Economic Alliance has started a new group called the Kankakee Round Table. I found about it at the Kankakee River Basin Commission meeting this month.

 

It is a group of citizens, government and business that are going to find common ground and work for the benefit of the river. One thing that they hope to accomplish is putting a value on the river of what it means to our communities as a whole. That way we can go to the state and the feds and be able to say this is the economic benefit of the river that we stand to lose if we don't fix it. We will also attempt to educate the communities of the value of the river to all and hopefully get them to join in and ask for needed help to start fixing problems.

 

This is seperate from the Kankakee River Basin Commission in that the KRBC is an IDNR C-2000[or whatever it will be called if funding is restored]partnership group and not allowed to participate in political lobbying and such. The KRBC rather is a conduit for funding projects that partner groups bring forth for the benefit of thier area.

 

I have decided that I will attend as many meetings as my schedule allows. I have volunteered for two subcommittes, one involves public relations/community education and the other deals with recreational issues. So far as I know there has only been the initial meeting held to get the ball rolling so I'm pretty much getting in at the start of this iniative.

 

Time will tell if it is successful but it is heartening to know that local government has decided to start this project. I feel that this is something that I must do for the river I love.

 

On another front the battle for the proposed garbage dump may soon be over. If the Illinois Supreme Court decides the dumps proponets appeal is without merit than they will have run out of legal options. Kankakee County government is footing the bill[ I heard it might be $200,000 for this deal]. This would be great news as the proposed dump would be situated on a tributary of the river.

 

So far no word on funding for projects or administrative costs for the KRBC or other partnership groups from the IDNR.

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