Mayor Juracek Elected Chairman of O’Hare Noise Compatibility Commission
Mount Prospect Mayor Elected Chairman of O’Hare Noise Compatibility Commission -
Promises to Build Consensus for Aircraft Noise Abatement
Mount Prospect Mayor Arlene A. Juracek was unanimously elected chairman of the O’Hare Noise Compatibility Commission (ONCC)* at the intergovernmental agency’s annual meeting held today at Café le Cave Restaurant, Des Plaines.
Juracek thanked ONCC members—who represent close to 1.3 million residents living in Chicago and communities near O’Hare International Airport—for their support and pledged to remain unbiased when considering options for aircraft noise mitigation.
“Let us not forget how far we have come,” said Juracek pointing to a video illustrating a ‘shrinking’ 65 DNL noise contour from 1997 to the full build-out model for the O’Hare Modernization Program.
“We cannot ignore the fact that far fewer geographic areas are impacted by aircraft arrival and departure noise. But we also cannot ignore the fact that many more residents today are being impacted by noise for the first time and in new ways under the airport re-configuration,” said Juracek.
“I understand what residents are going through and have experienced the kind of sound issues they have. I welcome constructive and credible input from everyone around this table and am eager to engage stakeholders in the development of recommendations to present to the city of Chicago and the FAA, and maybe even Congress,” Juracek explained.
“This is a time to build consensus,” she continued. “ONCC meetings should allow for more open dialog and informative presentations. The role of the commission is to facilitate those discussions, provide a forum in which to debate the pros and cons, and then reach an agreement.”
Juracek outlined her goals to explore how other airports are enforcing noise abatement procedures and plans to address a different aircraft noise topic at each general meeting.
Prior to being elected mayor of Mount Prospect—a community of 54,000 residents situated northwest of O’Hare—in 2013, Juracek served as a trustee in that community for six years. Juracek, whose background was in engineering, retired from her position as vice president of energy acquisition at Commonwealth Edison in 2007 with over 35 years of experience and expertise in electric utility regulatory and policy matters.
During her tenure, she also led efforts to foster environmentally responsible programs such as wind energy. After her retirement from ComEd, she served as the acting director of the Illinois Power Agency, where she facilitated consensus among disparate groups on electricity supply issues.
Commission members also elected Niles Village Attorney Joseph Annunzio as vice chairman. Annunzio, a Park Ridge resident, has served as the ONCC technical committee chairman since 2010 and has a background in environmental law. Former Norridge Clerk Judith Dunne Bernardi will continue in her role as treasurer.
During the meeting, members took time to recognize the accomplishments of former ONCC Chairman Arlene J. Mulder, who retired after 18 years. She received an ONCC proclamation of appreciation and numerous letters of thanks from aviation stakeholders and state and federal legislators who expressed their gratitude for her dedication.
In other business, members passed a resolution welcoming the Village of Hanover Park as its 55th member. The western suburb, located in both DuPage and Cook counties, has a population of approximately 38,000 residents.
*ONCC—an inter-governmental agency composed of 33 suburban communities, 6 Chicago wards and 16 school districts—works to mitigate aircraft noise through residential and school sound insulation programs and advances in aviation technology.
ONCC member communities: Arlington Heights; Bartlett; Bellwood; Bensenville; Bloomingdale; Chicago including Wards 36, 38, 39, 40, 41, 45; Des Plaines; Downers Grove, Elmwood Park; Franklin Park; Hanover Park; Harwood Heights; Hoffman Estates; Itasca; Maywood; Melrose Park; Morton Grove; Mount Prospect; Niles; Norridge; Northlake; Oak Park; Palatine; Park Ridge; River Forest; River Grove; Rolling Meadows; Rosemont; Schaumburg; Schiller Park; Stone Park; Wood Dale and Cook County. ONCC member school districts: 59; 63; 64; 80; 81; 84; 84.5; 85.5; 86; 87; 88; 89; 214; 234; 299; and 401.