Laona Heights Sugar River Colored Sands Sugar River Two Rivers Ferguson Hartley Memorial Trask Bridge Four Lakes Pecatonica River Pecatonica Wetlands Crooked River Grove Creek Seward Bluffs Klehm Forest Preserve Severson Dells Fuller Memorial Cedar Cliff Indian Hill Hinchliff Memorial Kilbuck Bluffs Trailside Kishwaukee Gorge South Kishwaukee Gorge North Rockford Rotary Kishwaukee River Oak Ridge Blackhawk Springs Deer Run Espenscheid Memorial McKiski County Line Kieselburg Roland Olson Stone Bridge Clayton Andrews Ledges Hononegah J. Norman Jensen Millrace Isle Macktown Atwood Homestead Forest Preserve Headquarters

Board of Commissioner Minutes May 19, 2021

Forest Preserves of Winnebago County


Preserves Headquarters

May 19, 2021


PRESENT                                                     STAFF

Mike Eickman                                                 Mike Holan, Executive Director – via Zoom 6:07pm

Jake Henry                                                      Vaughn Stamm, Operations

Audrey Johnson                                             Steve Chapman, Finance

Cheryl Maggio                                                Kim O’Malley, Human Resources/Volunteer Program

Jeff Tilly – via Zoom


ABSENT                                                        GUESTS

Judy Barnard                                                  Alex Mills, Klehm Arboretum

Gloria Lind



The meeting was called to order at 5:30 PM, by Vice President Mike Eickman.  Recording secretary Kristy Knapp called the roll.


PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE     Audrey Johnson led the assemblage in the Pledge of Allegiance.


APPROVAL OF AGENDA and MINUTES      Minutes for April 21, 2021 and May 6, 2021, were approved (Jake Henry Voted No).  No changes or additions were made to the agenda.



Solar Power for Klehm – Alex Mills addressed the Board of Commissioners regarding a Solar Power Project for Klehm Arboretum.  Klehm Arboretum’s Board chose to select the Illinois Solar for All Program that focuses on increasing the amount of solar power to low-income areas. Day and Night Solar and Miller Engineering will facilitate this project.  Alex presented designs of where the solar panels would be placed on each building. The visitor’s center, maintenance shop and clarcor pavilion will all have solar panels installed on the roofs. The solar panels could be put on the ground or on post if needed. There will be a sign put up at Klehm to inform the public of the project. Once the lease is up, Klehm Arboretum would keep the solar panels as their asset. The Forest Preserve would not own the solar panels, since the loan and lease were in Klehm’s name as a non-profit entity.  The total cost for the project will be $153,000 for all three buildings, which energy credits will be applied towards the loan. After much discussion, the Board’s consensus is to have the Forest Preserve’s Attorney review the details of the project and the Board will give their approval if there are no concerns from the Attorney. At 6:07pm, Mike Holan joined via Zoom and discussed the project with the Board of Commissioners. Mike will have the Forest Preserves’ Attorney review the terms of the project when he returns. Alex mentioned having inspections done before and after the solar panels are installed.



President Tilly received a phone call from a gentleman who is looking to put some money aside for the Forest Preserve in a trust to possibly establish a foundation. Jeff will talk to Mike Holan when he returns about possible options.



Bills for April – Cheryl Maggio made a motion, and Audrey Johnson seconded to authorize the payment of the bills for April in the amount of $762,362.33. Motion passed unanimously.


Budget Amendment – Steve Chapman spoke on the financial side of the budget amendment. The Forest Preserves of Winnebago County’s revenues in FY 2019/2020 were higher and expenses lower than projected, creating a fund balance in the Corporate Fund that will allow Forest Preserves of Winnebago County to complete additional projects totaling approximately $300,000.  There are three projects that the total cost can be completed within this price range.  The first project is a deep well pump replacement at Ledges Golf Course for $24,080, second is the replacement of the septic field at Central Shop totaling $15,721, and lastly is the asphalt replacement of the entrance road, turnaround and upper two parking lots at Klehm totaling approximately $240,000. The $300,000 in appropriations shall be added to the 2020-2021 fiscal year Corporate Expense Fund under expenses in Capital Outlay. Vaughn Stamm stated that the Klehm asphalt replacement project would have been included in next year’s budget as a capital improvement project. If the project is done now, it will free up money to do other capital improvement projects next year.  The Board discussed the details of budget amendment at length. Jake Henry began discussing an increase of the forest preserve portion of his homeowner taxes, at which time Mike Eickman call point of order. Audrey Johnson made a motion, and Cheryl Maggio seconded to approve the Budget Amendment.  Roll call vote taken.  Motion did not pass due to needing a two-thirds vote of all members constituting the board (3-1). Jake Henry voted No.


Preserve Operations – Vaughn Stamm, Scott Stewart, Scott Wallace & Bryan Helmold submitted a written report.


Land and Development – Natural Resource Staff submitted a written report.


Golf Operations – Vaughn Stamm, Rich Rosenstiel, Tyler Knapp, & Mark Freiman submitted a written report.


Environmental Education – Ann Wasser submitted a written report.


Human Resources/Volunteer Program Report – Kim O’Malley submitted a written report. Kim announced the hiring of a new Communications Coordinator, Samantha Crooks.


Law Enforcement­ – Sheriff’s Department submitted a written report.



Alex Mills announced that Klehm had almost 2,000 people out for the week of Go Public Garden’s Days. He thanked those who attend the ribbon cutting. Garden Fair is coming up the first weekend of June.


Jake Henry asked Kim O’Malley about the restructuring of the position at Severson Dells. Mike Holan addressed the Board regarding this topic and stated that he spoke to Ann Wasser regarding the position and that it would have to come back to the Board for approval since they want to go with a full-time and part-time person.



Audrey Johnson made a motion to go into closed session at 6:34 pm.  At 6:54 pm, the meeting returned to open session. No action was taken while in closed session.



Meeting adjourned at 6:55 p.m.

Next board meeting, 5:30 p.m., Wednesday, June 16, Forest Preserve Headquarters


Respectfully Submitted,

Kristy Knapp

Recording Secretary