The River Forest park board's past year was marked by a series of contentious debates over sewer systems and park lighting at the someday-to-be-completed Keystone Park. In June tensions boiled over as the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District (MWRD) dragged its feet on a permit for the sewer system at Keystone Park. Board vice president Steve Dudek complained that the MWRD had earlier rejected a park district application to connect their storm sewers to the MWRD system, no longer had any say over the park sewer system, since it wouldn't be connected to the MWRD's storm sewer system. The board's ire was provoked by a suggestion by the MWRD that the park's shorten planned sewer pipes to "minimize the chance the sewers will be reconnected at a later date."
The River Forest Development Review Board voted 5-0 in July to reject the district's application for lights in Keystone West after intense neighbor objections and a finding that the application had failed to meet six of 13 standards required by village code. Such resistance continued through the fall, with numerous neighbors testifying every time lights were on the agenda, including a Sept. 13 village board meeting. On that occasion the park district withdrew it lights application in a tactical move following a motion for the village board to accept the DRB's July vote.
On Oct. 1 the park board celebrated a small victory when it opened a playground area in the east park. Three days later they hammered out a lights policy for their East Fields, again in the face of vocal opposition.