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DeWitt County Board Puts Off Decision on Referendum On Mahomet Aquifer

A resolution to place a referendum on the November election ballot was tabled Thursday by the DeWitt County Board.

The Board discussed the placement of a referendum regarding the Mahomet Aquifer on the ballot. Board Chair Sherrie Brown says the question concerns whether citizens are in favor of disposal of toxic wastes over the aquifer. State's Attorney Karle Koritz shared a few concerns with the referendum. He wonders if certain terms had been clearly defined and if the question was politically neutral. Koritz points out there is still a question as where the public stands on the issue.

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The question will be looked over by the State Board of elections before being approved. Terry Hoffman feels it is a good idea to place the question one the ballot, calling it "common sense", but Koritz differed with Hoffman when the board member couldn't define "chemical" and "toxic" without looking at his papers.

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George Wismiller notes the most effective tool in dealing with the Mahomet Aquifer has been the two previous resolutions. Because of residency issues pertaining to Wismiller, when asked if he would be around next year to continue the fight, he answered "probably not".

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There have been two previous referendums passed regarding the public's acceptance of PCB's in the Clinton Landfill. It is Wismiller's contention those two referendums are not current and should be updated. However, Camille Redman disagrees, she feels the public opinion has not changed.

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A motion was made to table the motion until the referendum went through the State's Attorney for proper wording. Brown says it is properly worded, but it still failed to pass 5-4. Keith Koons and David Newberg were absent Thursday night.

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