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 Commissioners Minutes November 19

Winnebago County Forest Preserve District


Forest Preserve Headquarters

November 19, 2014


PRESENT                                                                 STAFF

Judy Barnard                                                              Mike Holan, Executive Director

Mike Eickman                                                             Steve Chapman, Finance

Audrey Johnson                                                          Vaughn Stamm, Preserve Operations

Gloria Lind                                                                 Tom Hartley, Land and Development

Cheryl Maggio                                                            Mike Durand, Golf Operations

Mary McNamara Bernsten                                          Jamie Johannsen, Marketing

Randy Olson                                                              Don Miller, Education


Lee Johnson

Jerry Paulson



The meeting was called to order at 5:30 PM, by President Barnard. Recording secretary Ronelle Johnson called the roll.


PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE     Judy Barnardled the assemblage in the Pledge of Allegiance.


APPROVAL OF AGENDA and MINUTES     Minutes for October 22, 2014 were approved. Two changes were made to the agenda. The closed session will be earlier in the meeting rather than later to accommodate schedules and the Land Purchase Process will be postponed until December meeting. Mary McNamara Bernsten made a motion to change the agenda, seconded by Gloria Linda. Motion passed unanimously.



Bills for November – Gloria Lind made a motion, Mike Eickman seconded, to authorize the payment of the bills for November in the amount of $675,503.45. Motion passed unanimously.


Purchasing Policy ––Sikich requested, via their Management Letter, that the Forest Preserves establish and adopt their own Purchasing Policy. The District purchases materials, supplies, equipment and services annually to operate as efficiently as possible. The objective of the purchasing policies and procedures is to set forth a general policy and procedure, which will assist the Forest Preserves in purchasing materials and services at the most economical price available in an open, organized and ethical manner, complying with all Local, State and Federal laws, as well as, in a timely manner so that materials and services are available when needed without creating excess inventory. Gloria made a motion, Audrey seconded, that the Board of Commissioners pass an Ordinance to adopt the Purchasing Policy to comply with the recommendations of Sikich. Motion passed unanimously.


Conflict of Interest Policy –During the development of the Purchasing Policy, it was discovered that the Forest Preserves did not have a Conflict of Interest Policy in its Employee Handbook. In order to protect the agency and its employees against business dealings that may appear to create a conflict between the interests of the Forest Preserves and an employee, Mike Holan has drafted a Conflict of Interest Policy. The policy will make it the responsibility of every employee to disclose any personal or financial interest he/she or a family member may have in any person, firm, company or business entity conducting business with the Forest Preserves. If adopted the Policy will be handed out to every employee to read and sign off on. Supervisors or employees authorized to purchase equipment who may have an interest in business entities that may conduct business with the Forest Preserves, may be required to file a Statement of Economic Interest as required by Illinois Law. Gloria made motion, seconded by Mike Eickman, that the Board of Commissioners pass an Ordinance to adopt Appendix J: Conflict of Interest Policy as part of the Employee Handbook in Section II: Personnel Rules & Procedures. Motion passed unanimously.


2015 Board Meeting Schedule – According to the Open Meetings Act, a yearly schedule needs to be passed and adopted. Mike Eickman made a motion, Gloria seconded to adopt the 2015 Board Meeting Schedule. Motion passed unanimously.


2015 Golf Fees – Mike Durand is proposing a revision to the 2015 Fees. The revision is proposed to eliminate the 9-hole and 18-hole single rider golf car rental fees. The proposed fees would be $10 fee per person for 9-holes and $15 per person for 18-holes. All other golf fees will remain the same. Mary McNamara Bernsten made a motion, Gloria seconded, to approve a resolution to revise the 2015 Golf Fees schedule. Motion passed unanimously.


Golf Revenue – One of the Strategic Plan goals, adopted at the February 2014 Board meeting, was to “Pursue non-tax revenue opportunities”. At the July Board meeting, staff brought forth the idea of pursuing video gaming in the club houses. At that meeting, the Board decided video gaming was a viable revenue source that staff should research and pursue further. Since that meeting, golf course and clubhouse managers, the Director of Golf, and the Executive Director have held several meetings and entered into discussion about what needs to be done to incorporate video gaming into clubhouse facilities. They have decided it is feasible to offer video gaming and it will offer an alternative non-tax revenue opportunity that can run congruently with golf operations without compromising the Forest Preserve’s mission. If approved by the Board, the staff will pursue the proper licensing and legal requirements needed to bring video gaming into all three clubhouse facilities. This will also require a change to the ordinances to allow video gaming on Forest Preserves property. A resolution for this ordinance change will be brought to the Board in December if the Video Gaming Resolution passes.


Randy Olson made a motion, Gloria seconded, that the Board of Commissioners pass a Resolution to allow Video Gaming at the Forest Preserves of Winnebago County golf course clubhouses. This Resolution should be passed in November to allow staff sufficient time to obtain all licenses needed. President Barnard called for a roll call vote. Resolution is approved 5-2 (Audrey Johnson and Mary McNamara Bernsten voted no).  Mike Holan will keep the Board apprised of the progress.



Greenways Plan Update – Jamie Johannsen gave a written update as to the Boone Winnebago Greenways Plan Update 2014. RMAP is coordinating the plan through a federal sustainable grant. Jamie outlined several steps that have taken place in updating the plan. She and Tom Hartley are hopeful that the updates to the Boone/Winnebago Greenways Plan will be done by spring 2015. It will then be marketed to local organizations and planning commissions, to remind them that this tool is available to them. It will be brought to this board for adoption when it is completed for a future reference tool.


Land Purchase Process – Postponed until the December 17th, Board Meeting.



Gift Certificates – Mary inquired as to the availability of gift certificates and was wondering if that is something that we should offer and advertise more. Jamie indicated that the District does offer gift certificates and she will be sure that the new staff knows what and all that are available.






Preserve Operations – Vaughn Stamm submitted a written report.


Land and Development – Tom Hartley submitted a written report.


Golf Operations – Mike Durand submitted a written report.


Marketing and Community Relations – Jamie Johannsen submitted a written report.


Education – Don Miller submitted a written report. Chastity Brown was a great success, full house.


Law Enforcement – Terry Nordberg submitted written report.



Audrey made a motion to go into closed session at 5:57 pm to discuss land acquisition. At 6:18, the meeting returned to open session. No action was taken while in closed session.


Land Acquisition – The board is allowing Tom Hartley to proceed with an appraisal with the property discussed in closed session.


Audrey Johnson made a motion to go into closed session at 6:22 p.m. to discuss personnel. At 7:08 p.m. the meeting returned to open session. No action was taken while in closed session.



Holiday Party – December 10, 11:30, Klehm Arboretum


Legislative Reception – December 15, at Klehm Arboretum, from 4-6pm. Invitations will be sent in the mail. Environmental groups will also be invited.


Oath of Office Ceremony – December 17, Chief Judge will be here to swear in new Commissioner at Macktown.


Judy presented Randy Olson with a Certificate of Appreciation for his Outstanding Service to the District as a Commissioner, and to the residents of Winnebago County. Judy then thanked Randy for his many years of service. Randy thanked the Board and the Staff.


Nancy Williamson will be attending the December Meeting to talk about the Illinois Wildlife Action plan.



Meeting adjourned at 7:12 PM.

Next board meeting 5:30 PM, Wednesday, December 17, Macktown Living History Center



Respectfully Submitted,

Ronelle Johnson

Recording Secretary