The Township of Evanston held its final meeting on April 28, as the Township trustees unanimously passed resolution ITR14 and formally dissolved the Town form of government in Evanston. The vote came after more than 60% of Township residents voted by referendum to authorize such action.
The final vote came with little fanfare. Former Township Assessor Bonnie Wilson, whose elected position was eliminated, said, “I already made my speech [at an earlier meeting], but I just hope the City continues to provide the services” the Assessor’s office provided prior to dissolution. Ms. Wilson was an active supporter of keeping the Township, saying often that, should her office fold into the City, seniors and other property owners might have no place to turn for assistance.
Henry Colquitt, a case worker for the Township, accepted a plaque from City Manager Wally Bobkiewicz that recognized his services. “This really doesn’t belong to me,” he said. It belongs instead to “the disenfranchised, those living in the parks, living on trains. … “I’m an advocate for social justice.” He concluded with “thanks to those who supported me, publicly or privately.
Mr. Bobkiewicz announced that Mr. Colquitt “will continue working at the City of Evanston” in a role similar to the one he held with the Township.
Mr. Colquitt pledged that he would do his best “so we can take care of people. That’s pretty much my goal.”
With that, Council voted on the dissolution referendum. There was no debate. The Township has been absorbed within the City. What that means for those who received Township services will be revealed over the coming months and years.