Election 2024: In McHenry County Board District 3, Eric Hendricks takes small lead over Bob Nowak

Election 2024
The candidates for District 3 in the McHenry County Board Republican primary include Robert "Bob" Nowak (left) and incumbent Eric Hendricks.

Incumbent McHenry County Board member Eric Hendricks had a small lead over former board member
Robert “Bob” Nowak in the District 3 Republican primary, with less than 50 votes separating the candidates.

With all precincts reporting Tuesday, Hendricks was leading by just 47 votes, according to unofficial vote tallies. It is one of two contested primaries, the other being District 7, but the only one featuring an incumbent.

District 3 covers parts of Lake in the Hills, Algonquin, Crystal Lake, Lakewood and a piece of Huntley.

The race is a rematch, as Hendricks, of Lake in the Hills, and Nowak, of Algonquin, ran against each other in 2022, when Nowak was the incumbent and Hendricks the challenger. Nowak lost to Hendricks and Carolyn Campbell, a Democrat from Crystal Lake. Hendricks, who finished second, was elected to a two-year term.

Nowak worked for the village of Cary and Hendricks is an attorney.

Nowak filed a couple hours before Hendricks on the final day of candidate filing this election cycle, and Hendricks filed an unsuccessful objection against Nowak’s candidacy over a typo in the word “Republican.”

The state of taxation in the county was a big reason why both candidates have entered the race, and an area both candidates have similar positions. Nowak said “holding the line” on property taxes was a large reason why he decided to run for election. Hendricks said lowering taxes was his motivation for running.

Both candidates opposed the McHenry County Board vote for a modest property tax levy increase, with Nowak writing in his Northwest Herald candidate questionnaire that he supported the vote to raise the gas tax while opposing raising the tax levy. Hendricks opposed and voted against both the motor fuel tax and property tax increases and said at the time it was a “false choice” to vote for one in order to vote against the other.

Democrat Rester Dogboe filed to run as a write-in candidate in Tuesday’s primary in District 3, but the winner of the Hendricks-Nowak rematch could well be the candidate who wins the seat in the November general election.