Update on the Cook County Ban…

I received the following email from Chester Kiernicki today, president of the Will County Historical Research & Recovery club. regarding the Cook County ordinance. I am throwing this out there for the big three to jump in and help Chester out.

Please also see the comments already made by Ron Guinazzo/  Patrick Anderson of the  MHRS Club in Chicago, and read their club’s letter/proposal that was sent in October.  Unfortunately no one has responded as of this date……



Thanks for the follow up inquiry on the CCFPD issue. We haven’t made  much progress, make that no progress, with the Cook County Forest  Preserve District at this time. I attempted to get information from them  through the Freedom of  Information Act but the initial response was that  I needed to be more specific in the request. This was late in 2012.

I’m at a point now where I need advice or someone to help with putting  a campaign together to put pressure on the CCFPD similar to the letter  writing, email, public forum other organizations have used to make the  people at the CCFPD aware that the ordinance is too broad and  restrictive etc..

Being the president of WCHRRA, the club is looking to me to get the  process started but being self employed limits the amount of time I can  devout to this effort. If I can put together a game plan, I could  probably get club members to get involved to assist.  The problem is I  haven’t planned a activist campaign before. Any suggestions you have  will be appreciated.

Chester Kiernicki
Will County Historical Research & Recovery Assoc.


Chester didn’t offer this, but I am providing the following information for those who care to write,  and if you do, please choose your words carefully, be civil, and let me know if you receive a response.  I am also hoping that the FMDAC, the Task Force and WWATS will contact Chester, and offer assistance.

Forest Preserve District of Cook County Board
536 N. Harlem Avenue
River Forest, Illinois 60305
Telephone: (800) 870-3666



Filed under Metal Detecting

14 responses to “Update on the Cook County Ban…

  1. As a member and past president of the Chicago detecting club, I have been in contact with our current president Pat Anderson. He has been working on a proposal for some time, he sent a letter to the forest preserve district general superintendent. No response yet.
    Here is a link to the letter sent.

  2. Dick,

    I just spoke with Ron G and he sent me a link to this blog page.

    Here is a link to a letter I sent to the Cook County Forest Preserve District. The letter outlines the position of MHRS on the ban and requests a meeting. As of this date, there has been zero response.

    Click to access FPDCC%20Letter%20100312_R1.pdf

    Patrick Anderson
    President, MHRS

  3. Mike Smith

    A very nice letter and presentation from the MHRS, now they need to contact the WCHRRA and corrdinate together plus the 3 National organization should be involved. A heavy email, letter and phone call campaign needs to be organized. When they are ready I will gladly send an email in their support.

    • Thought so too Mike, and in fact I would highly recommend clubs out there print out a copy and save it for future reference. Thanks for the input….

      • Keith Wills

        Don’t let up, keep the pressure on and don’t let it go for too long. laws are hard to change after they become law, so many have to be involved to change it. Read below my suggestions, maybe it will help. I remember the most effective way we used years ago was called the “Blitz” where everyone contact as many hobbyist as they could and in a two day planned attack we emailed or called or faxed that agency for the two days so much so that they were begging us to please stop. It can work if enough folks care and are willing to help. For us out-of-town folks we attack by stating we like to vacation there but if they are going to stop our hobby there then we will spend our vacation money somewhere else. Hit them in the pocket book, you’ll get some kind of response and a meeting to discuss it. Keith

  4. Keith Wills

    This is Keith Wills, VP of WWATS and I have been reading up on your problem and have these suggestions to make from past experiences of same nature with other states that had some success in reinstating the hobby in closed areas. First I would like to make sure you understand some key phrases that seem to make a world of difference in dealing with groups or committees such as meetings requested with agencies. Phrases like: Pre-Disturbed Areas; Public Use Areas. These phrases immediately indicate non-historical significant areas of their lands and if areas are significant then why was there parking lots, bathrooms and etc. built on them. Also, if during the meeting the subject of preforming a new survey outside of the orginal survey done to establish the park or land area so to determine the areas of significance is mention, you might want to ask why the orginal survey did not indicate those areas of significance with the orginal survey so not to violate the historical laws set in place of both county and state to begin with?
    Also they try to push these new surveys so the committee quickly answers in their favor by adding on that the new survey must be funded by the local tax payer. Again, there is no need for a NEW survey or to charge the local tax payer if the orginal survey was done correctly in the first place. I’m just trying to head off what they may hit you with when you are face to face with them, I have been there many times.
    As for your “Talking Points” discribed in your letter, they seem to be fine, but maybe a little overboard to me. As a government agency, state or federal, they have to allow you a “Hearing” to discuss the matter of recent changes in rules and regulations. If you get no response, then you may need to go a step futher and go where they get financing from. Here in Texas, we have a board called Sunset Committee that yearly does a review on state agencies to see if they have been treating the interested public properly and if not they can shut down the agency or reduce their financing drastically. Suddenly, that agency will take a very serious interest in your request and working with you is a great importance to them. An article in your local newspaper will help swing more interest in your behalf, if well worded.
    I also want to say this; local and state officals care about voters, so if your a voter there, then you have more power than you really know. Saying this, if you were to go see one of you state senators or congressman and explain your problem, many times they will contact the agency and ask all the right questions and tell them they too are very interested in why a active hobby shared by so many has been restricted by new regulations. Once someone of that importance contacts them, you will see a fast response from the agency to come to some agreement with you so to report back to the senator of their working with hobbyist that help keep our parks clean. It is wonderful that you have kept photo evidence of cleaning their lands and working with them in the past to do so. I have preached for many years that every club needs to at least keep a “portfolio” of their many community projects; it would hurt to keep a portfolio of those attacking the hobby too, such as what your facing now. For somewhere in the futre it may be neccessary evidence needed for even WWATS if some day we had to go before a national committee and prove such assults upon our hobby by the many agencies.
    My interest is not just the injustice here, but I once was invited to Chicago by several of the clubs there (they paid my airfare there) and they took me to several of the old Picnic Grounds where I made several real good finds. Also they had what I thought was one of the best ideas in our hobby today, an advertised to the public meeting of introduction to metal detecting and treasure hunting at one of the schools cafateria and I was one of the guest speakers there with some 200 public attending. Great bunch of folks in Chicago. Maybe this will help in your quest, but if I can help any more, please contact me by email or phone (903) 734-7773 . I will try to contact the agency’s person you listed and see if I can get any answers and will let you know. Keith

  5. bill from lachine

    Without wading through all the details of the situation here’s my take for what it’s worth….probably 2 cents.

    This would apply pretty much to people who are in Cook County and not outsiders such as yours truly.

    Start a petition and have members, family, friends, neighbors, coworkers, etc….sign it…..if someone has a contact with a local lawyer perhaps he/she would be willing to do some pro bono work to draft up a citizens bill to be put before the local counsel to strike down this foolish law…..food for thought.

    Regards + HH


    • Bill, your two cents is always appreciated. Thank you…

      • Keith Wills

        Bill, good ideas, but in my book if anyone out there is not a member of PLP (Public Lands for the People) they just don’t care enough about the hobby they so enjoy. PLP keeps a special trained attorney on staff all the time that has specially train on keeping public lands open for hobbyist, up to this point mostly prospectors, but much of their problems on public lands are the same as metal detecting since they too metal detect and excavate for nuggets. By being a member of PLP you can get free information on how to approach such problems from past experiences, information most of use can’t afford to pay for. WWATS many years ago align themselves with PLP and have used their resources a number of times. If anyone is interested in this already well prepared group,try checking out http://plp1.org You will be glad you did. Keith

  6. Folks, if you want to respond to this situation, please use spellcheck, and such things as comma’s, periods, etc.. You know….basic grammar. If you are not good at it, please have someone else double check before you send it off. If not you could be doing more harm than good. PLEASE!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.