McHenry County Department of Health - Environmental Health
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Open Burning of Landscape Waste

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Autumn Leaves McHenry County’s Revised Ordinance: Open Burning of Landscape Waste
Effective April 1, 2008

Approved by the McHenry County Board on December 2, 2007, the Ordinance applies to both incorporated and unincorporated areas of McHenry County. This Ordinance was incorporated into Article II of the McHenry County Public Health Ordinance effective January 1, 2017.

If you live in a city with more stringent restrictions, the more restrictive rules apply.

Summary of Open Burning of Landscape Waste Regulations (English) [PDF]
Summary of Open Burning of Landscape Waste Regulations (Spanish) [PDF]

Landscape waste is defined as "All accumulation of grass or shrubbery cuttings, leaves, flowers and weeds."

Source: McHenry County Public Health Ordinance.

History of the Open Burning Forum

The County Administrator established the open Burning Forum in December 2004 to review the current open burning restrictions in McHenry County and develop recommendations for consideration by the McHenry County Board. The Forum was comprised of county citizens and representatives from local organizations, law enforcement, fire protection districts, townships, McHenry County Board, McHenry County Department of Health, and McHenry County Department of Planning & Development. Over an approximately two (2) year period, the Forum held regular open meetings and discussed the many issues related to open burning. Ultimately, the Forum drafted the revised Ordinance for consideration by the McHenry County Board. Three (3) public meetings were held to obtain public comment on the proposed Ordinance. The revised Ordinance was approved by the McHenry County Board at its December 4, 2007 meeting and became effective April 1, 2008.


 Open Burning Ordinance 
 Native Landscape
 Other Alternatives
 Municipal Restrictions Map
 Enforcement of Open Burning Ordinance
 Open Burning FAQ's


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