Crash Near Union Takes One Life

A 27-year old Rockford woman was killed and a 24-year old Marengo man was injured in a traffic crash involving two vehicles in unincorporated Union in the 17000 block of Route 176. Members of the Marengo-Union Fire Protection District, and the McHenry County Sheriff ’s Office responded at 10:03 p.m. to the scene of a crash.

According to a sheriff ’s department statement, “The preliminary investigation indicated that a 2005 Honda Civic was traveling westbound on Route 176, and veered…into the oncoming lane of traffic, where it collided with an eastbound 2007 Jeep Grand Cherokee.

The female driver of the Honda was pronounced dead at the scene at 10:46 p.m., while the male driver of the Jeep was transported by the Marengo Rescue to Centegra Huntley Hospital. He was later transported to Advocate Lutheran General Hospital in Park Ridge, where he remain(ed) in critical but stable condition.”

McHenry County Coroner, Dr. Anne Majewski said, “The deceased is identified to be Sarah E. Wells, of Rockford. An autopsy performed Jan. 19 revealed that she died from blunt trauma to the head, neck, chest, abdomen and pelvis. The crash remains under investigation by the McHenry County Sheriff ’s Department Accident Investigation Unit. The condition of the drivers of other vehicle is not known by my office.”

Marengo district battalion chief John Kimmel said, “No toxicology results have been returned, and at this point, there is no known cause for the accident. They had mentioned possible cell phone use, but the accident is still under investigation.”

Settlement Discussions Continue On Fraternite Order Lawsuit

A Jan. 17 hearing before a magistrate judge presiding over the lawsuit filed by the Fraternite Order of Notre Dame against the McHenry County Board has resulted in the negotiations toward a settlement being continued. The Order had filed a petition for a special use permit to build a winery, brewery, assisted living and nursing facility, a boarding school, and several other endeavors.

Several hearings before the county’s Zoning and Planning Appeals Committee were controversial and ended with no recommendation in forwarding the matter to the full county board for a determination. The county board voted to deny the special use permit, and subsequently, the Order entered litigation citing an aberration of its constitutional rights, and similar businesses in the proximal vicinity.

“The bakery is already on the property and has been operating throughout this time, from the initial filing,” said James C. Geoly, the Order’s representing attorney. “The sisters have not commenced construction on any of the requested projects, since their request for a permit was denied, thereby resulting in the pending lawsuit.”

 City Council Hears Presentations For Treatment Plant Engineering Services

The Marengo City Council will audit presentations, during a Jan. 29 special meeting, from firms that have submitted their qualifications for potentially being selected for engineering services at the municipality’s Wastewater Treatment Facility.

“We received qualification submissions from thirteen firms, and we will be interviewing four of them,” said Marengo city Manager Josh Blakemore. “The selection will be providing engineering services, and an early priority is focusing on the capital improvement plan for the plant and the collection system.”

Blakemore said the four firms that will be considered are: St. Charles-based Trotter and Associates, Madison, WIbased Strand and Associates, Machesney Park-based McMahon and Associates, and Rockford-based Fehr Graham Engineering and Environmental.

The council had formally authorized a $12,149 emergency expenditure, during its Jan. 22 session, for a new centrifuge rotating assembly, and bearing replacement, at the plant. The Kenoshabased firm of Centrisys Centrifuge Systems, Inc. made an on-site inspection after excessive vibrations were detected from the rotating scroll, which was subsequently taken out of operation and delivered to the company.

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