Wilmette, News

Wilmette Village Board: Officials encourage public over private mosquito control; new Linden Square occupant; change in refuse collection

Wilmette trustees on Tuesday, July 25, also heard a presentation from the North Shore Mosquito Abatement District that highlighted the local government agency and its operations and services to residents. 

Dr. Mark Clifton, the agency’s executive director, walked the board through how the NSMAD manages local mosquito populations to reduce the risk of disease from mosquito-borne viruses and minimize the negative impact on quality of life within the district.

Clifton also detailed how the NSMAD can help residents who are experiencing issues with mosquitos in the area and he encouraged locals to contact them before considering treatments from private companies, such as Mosquito Joe and Mosquito Squad.

The mosquito control services offered by private companies, often called barrier treatments, can be effective for an individual household but the more successful long-term and environmentally friendly control is done by the NSMAD, Clifton said, noting its services have a communitywide benefit as opposed to just an individual household. 

The effectiveness of barrier treatments is not absolute, and as previously reported by The Record, the control methods often come with unintended consequences, such as harming other insects and animals and creating resistant mosquitoes that could cause potential health concerns in the future. 

Clifton said residents should contact the district for its free mosquito control services before using barrier treatments, noting that a “communitywide effort to control mosquitoes is really important.”

Interested residents can visit the North Shore Mosquito Abatement District’s website to review all of the services offered and request them at their home.

Wayfarer Foundation nabs space in Linden Square

Filling vacancies in Wilmette’s Fourth and Linden business district has long been a priority of village officials, and trustees on July 25 took a step toward finalizing a new tenant in the area. 

Wilmette trustees approved a request from the Wayfarer Foundation for a special-use permit to occupy an office space at 350 Linden Ave. The foundation’s new office is just over 4,000 square feet, according to village documents, and was most recently occupied by a physical therapy studio. Neighboring tenants include Wilmette Dental and The Dog Wash. 

Per plans submitted to the village, the nonprofit organization will use the space as an office for its employees and it expects to have around 15 staffers there from 8:30 a.m.-5:30 p.m. Monday-Friday. 

Representatives from the Wayfarer Foundation told members of Wilmette’s Zoning Board of Appeals earlier this month that the nonprofit is interested in the space because it has a Baha’i affiliation and the proximity to the Baha’i temple is appealing, according to minutes from the meeting. 

The nonprofit is not part of the Baha’i organization but is inspired by the writings of the Baha’i faith, representatives also told officials at the meeting.  

The Wayfarer Foundation was started by Illinois native Steve Sarowitz in 2021 with a mission to “advance humankind spiritually towards a future peaceful world civilization,” according to the organization’s website. 

Sarowitz, who is the founder of the human resources and payroll software company Paylocity, joined the Baha’i faith seven years ago, according to the minutes. He also started the Julian Grace Foundation, which is based in Highland Park. The foundation is “an entrepreneurial private foundation that does high-engagement grant making in order to create a just, unified and hopeful world,” its website says. 

Wilmette picks new garbage-collection provider, which will begin next year

Trustees also on July 25 voted to approve a new eight-year contract with Lakeshore Recycling Systems to serve as the village’s new garbage and recycling collection hauler.

Lakeshore Recycling will begin servicing Wilmette residents on Jan. 1, 2024, according to the approved agreement. 

Erik Hallgren, Wilmette’s assistant village manager, said at the meeting that the decision to change providers was rooted in several factors, including cost increases from the previous provider and expanded services offered by Lakeshore. 

Lakeshore will replace Wilmette’s previous provider Waste Management, who took over operations in Wilmette in late 2020 after it purchased the company that was collecting garbage.

According to a press release from the village, Wilmette collects an annual average of 12,000 tons of refuse and recycling and services approximately 8,600 single-family and multi-family households located throughout town. Household collection days will stay the same throughout the village, officials said at the meeting. 

Wilmette residents will see a cost uptick, averaging an extra $6 per month per user, for collection services, according to the press release. Hallgren noted at the meeting that costs for collection services would have also increased if Wilmette stayed with Waste Management. 

“We look forward to our partnership with LRS to provide high-quality refuse and recycling to our residents,” Hallgren said in the press release. “We were impressed with their high-level of customer care and their commitment to sustainability, which is demonstrated by the new and expanded services for residents.” 

Wilmette officials are planning to share details regarding the change in service, including how residents can enroll and information about cart change-outs, in the coming weeks and months. Information will be included through the village’s newsletter, website, utility bill inserts and direct mailers. 

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martin carlino
Martin Carlino

Martin Carlino is a co-founder and the senior editor who assigns and edits The Record stories, while also bylining articles every week. Martin is an experienced and award-winning education reporter who was the editor of The Northbrook Tower.

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