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A small but engaged group of Knollwood residents attended our Annual Meeting on Tuesday, March 29, 2015, at the Knollwood Fire Station. The meeting featured a report on the organization's finances, reinstatement of the existing officers, and a discussion of the purpose and activities of the organization, as well as presentations by guest speakers.
Invited guests in attendance were Kathleen O'Hara, President, Village of Lake Bluff; Roman Buchberger and Maria Nava of the Lake County Sheriff's Office; Martha O'Hara, Head of Adult Services at the Lake Bluff Library; Carol Russ, a Lake Bluff resident who is working with a group trying to combine the village and school caucuses; and Jerrold Frumm, Vice Chairman and Chief Investment Officer of Senior Lifestyle Corporation. Mr. Frumm's presentation on the new senior living facility at Waukegan and Atkinson roads is reported on in a separate article. Refreshments were generously provided by Graffiti Grill.
The meeting was conducted by Susan Dennis, president; Karl Snoblin, treasurer; and Nicki Snoblin, secretary, all of whom offered to continue serving in their current positions and were unanimously elected.
The president opened the meeting and reported that we will be organizing a separate meeting in April to allow the Shields Township Assessor to address recent property assessment changes that may result in higher tax bills, which will be delivered in May.
The treasurer reported the following income and expense figures for 2015:
|Total profit (or loss)||-$325.00||-$807.62|
Our single greatest expense is insurance, which was $595.00 in 2015. Our only source of income was donations from residents. We had anticipated income from participating in the Lake Bluff Block Party fundraiser, but our share was far smaller than anticipated and was not received until after the beginning of 2016; it will be reflected in 2016 income.
At the end of 2015 we had an account balance of $5,802.93. This is what remains from the years when we charged membership dues and held an annual fundraising raffle. Since we currently have no regular source of income, we will continue to dip into our reserves to meet our operating expenses and look for ways to fundraise with the limited amount of volunteer time available to us. It's important to keep a reserve because, if a situation should arise in which we need to communicate with the entire community instead of just our relatively small email base, we will have to do mailings to the 550 or so residences in Knollwood. Between the printing and postage costs, this is a costly undertaking.
In response to questions, the secretary described the duties of each officer and the legal requirements to maintain our status as an Illinois not-for-profit corporation and an IRS 501(c)(3) charitable organization. All donations are tax-deductible.
Martha O'Hara spoke about how the Lake Bluff Public Library serves Knollwood residents. As most of Knollwood is not in a taxing district for any library, Knollwood residents may purchase a nonresident card from the Lake Bluff library. The cost differs for each residence and is determined by the assessed value of the property multiplied by the library's tax rate. This yields a figure comparable to what we would be paying in taxes to the library if we were in the taxing district.
New in 2015 was the introduction of free District 65 Student Cards for any student living in School District 65 (which includes Knollwood). These cards are for the student's use only and are accepted only at the Lake Bluff Library. This is in contrast to the purchased nonresident cards, which may be used at any library and cover all members of the household.
The library staff will be glad to help residents find out the cost of a nonresident card and decide whether a student card or a nonresident card is best for their family. A description of the cards can be seen here. Martha emphasized that everyone is welcome to use the library's many facilities and programs with or without a card; the only difference is that you may check out materials only with a card.
Many local districts in our area use nonpartisan caucuses to select candidates to run in elections. Carol Russ talked about an effort to make this process simpler and more efficient by combining the VOTE group (which does the nominating for Lake Bluff municipal elections) with the School Caucus (which nominates candidates for the District 65 and 115 boards of education), and possibly folding in nominating for Lake Bluff Park Board elections as well. We will keep an eye on this initiative, since Knollwood is in the school districts and most of Knollwood is in the Park District.