Winnetka Trustees Approve Controlled Prairie Burn, Amend Sign Rules
Once other permits are obtained, there will be controlled fires in Crow Island Woods and Bell Woods to stimulate new plant growth.
Winnetka trustees granted a request by the Winnetka Park District to initiate a "prairie burn" at two locations in early spring at Tuesday night's council meeting.
The prairie burn is a way to clear away invasive species and limit the manual labor that task would require, said Fire Chief Scott Smith, who presented the request to the council. It also encourages native plants and flowers to grow in the area. Residents living in the area of Crow Island Woods and Bell Woods, where the burns would take place, will be notified.
The park district must also obtain permits from the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency. (For more information on prairie burns from the IEPA, click here.) The burn is done by an independent contractor and takes place in the spring when the ground is often damp. A similar burn took place last year.
Trustees also adopted an ordinance that eliminated time limitations for political signs on residential properties that brought village code in line with a new state law. The new law, which took effect at the beginning of the year prohibits home-rule and non-home-rule municipalities from setting a deadline for residents to remove political signs from their properties. However, political signs on non-residential property must be removed by the seventh day after the election or event.
Additionally, residents do not need a permit to display political signs on their property. A size limit of six square feet was set, just slightly larger than the size of most political signs that have been displayed in Winnetka, said Katherine Janega, village attorney.
Event signs displayed on the sponsoring organization's property must be 32 square feet or smaller while event signs displayed elsewhere may not be larger than six square feet. They must also be removed by the seventh day after the event.