Video: House adopts Reick resolution congratulating McHenry County Conservation District

State Rep. Steve Reick filed a resolution congratulating the McHenry County Conservation District on the occasion of its 50th anniversary. The resolution was adopted by the Illinois House of Representatives. You may read it here or below.

WHEREAS, The members of the Illinois House of Representatives wish to congratulate the McHenry County Conservation District on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of its founding; and

WHEREAS, The Conservation District Act (70 ILCS 410) was established by the Illinois General Assembly in 1963; and

WHEREAS, On April 6, 1971, the McHenry County Conservation District was formed by a successful county-wide referendum held in conjunction with the consolidated election of 1971 and was formally organized in July of 1971; and

WHEREAS, The founders envisioned a public agency that would preserve and protect the land and water they loved and on which they lived, while promoting a way of life they cherished and establishing a place that could be shared with the wildlife around them; and

WHEREAS, The McHenry County Conservation District exists to preserve, restore, and manage natural areas and open spaces for their intrinsic value and for the benefits to present and future generations; and

WHEREAS, Over the past 50 years, the McHenry County Conservation District has secured and protected more than 25,600 acres, diverse with woodlands, wetlands, prairies, creeks, and rivers that afford habitat for a wide array of native plants and wildlife species, including numerous endangered and threatened species, that clean and filter surface and ground water, and that provide for clean air; and

WHEREAS, The McHenry County Conservation District has dedicated 17 sites as Illinois State Nature Preserves and has helped to establish the Hackmatack National Wildlife Refuge in southeast Wisconsin and northeast Illinois; and

WHEREAS, The McHenry County Conservation District has partnered with many local, state, regional, and national governmental agencies, institutions, businesses, and not-for-profits to advance its conservation mission and vision; and

WHEREAS, Throughout its history, the McHenry County Conservation District has been awarded and nationally recognized as a leader in conservation and environmental stewardship excellence for its role in ecological restoration, rare plant discoveries, scientific research, innovative management strategies, wildlife reintroduction, investments in green infrastructure, greenway corridors, and trail connections, and thus establishing McHenry County as a treasured destination and a place to call home; and

WHEREAS, McHenry County conservation areas provide access to open space and public amenities in 35 locations where residents and visitors can enjoy outdoor recreational pursuits on 106 miles of hiking trails, 45 miles of regional biking trails, 25 fishing areas, six campgrounds, six canoe launches, 36 miles of horse trails, and 18 sites with multiple picnic areas and shelters, as well as a multitude of opportunities for wildlife viewing; and

WHEREAS, The McHenry County Conservation District hosts over one million visitors each year, including during 2020 as outdoor explorations were deemed essential during the COVID-19 pandemic and sites were able to stay open for the health and mental well-being of all residents; and

WHEREAS, For five decades, the McHenry County Conservation District leaders, dedicated staff, and volunteers have achieved the vision set forth by the founders and fulfilled promises made to county residents to protect, preserve, and enhance the properties owned by the conservation district and held in perpetuity, for all county residents to enjoy daily and for decades to come; and

WHEREAS, It is appropriate to celebrate and recognize the milestones achieved, the growth, progress, perseverance, achievements, and accomplishments, the many partnerships that help bring projects to life, and most importantly the citizens of McHenry County who placed their trust in the conservation district to bring into being the conservation dream envisioned by the founders; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, BY THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES OF THE ONE HUNDRED SECOND GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF THE STATE OF ILLINOIS, that we congratulate the McHenry County Conservation District on its 50th anniversary, and it is with deep and sincere gratitude and heartfelt appreciation that we hereby congratulate the past and present board of trustees, staff, volunteers and citizens of McHenry County; and be it further

RESOLVED, That a suitable copy of this resolution be presented to the board of trustees for the McHenry County Conservation District as an expression of our esteem and gratitude.