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Arlington Heights hopes to outlaw county red-light cameras
By Deborah Donovan | Daily Herald Staff
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Published: 6/8/2010 9:39 AM

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Anger over Cook County's plan to install red light cameras at three intersections in Arlington Heights led the village board Monday to propose an ordinance outlawing them.

The board first unanimously passed a resolution requesting that the county not install the cameras because it "violates the spirit of home rule and imposes on the village's right to regulate traffic within its corporate boundaries."

Jack Siegel, village attorney for Arlington Heights and Schaumburg, said the Schaumburg Village Board probably will pass an ordinance Tuesday night that "specifically prohibits the installation of red light cameras without consent of the village."

The Arlington Heights board now is asking Siegel and village staff to draw up a similar ordinance for them.

Siegel said Schaumburg officials asked him to seek an injunction against the company installing the cameras if any go up in the village. He believes the villages would prevail in a lawsuit.

"I'm a strong believer of a municipality's right to carry on its business within its boundaries," he said. "If the county can get away with this, they can get away with lots of other things."

Earlier this month, the county board authorized 20 red light cameras in suburban communities and identified 30 intersections where they might be installed. Three of them are in Arlington Heights: Hintz and Arlington Heights roads; Hintz and Buffalo Grove roads; and Arlington Heights and Lake-Cook roads.

Six more potential sites are in Schaumburg and others sit in Buffalo Grove, Palatine, Elk Grove Village and Wheeling.

County officials who backed the plan say they hope to install the cameras on a one-year trial basis, and chose the intersections based on traffic and accident data.

In other business, the village board approved allowing Arlington Dog House to operate a boarding kennel and canine day-care facility in the vacant part of a building at 213. S. Arlington Heights Road. The building also houses Grand Frame and Karate Studio.

The dogs will always be inside the building, and the owners have plans to handle waste and to dampen any noise. The facility should open the second week in July, said Mark Leers of North Barrington, one of the owners.

Three dog owners, including a couple that lives nearby, spoke in favor of the facility. No one opposed it.