State Senate Candidates’ Night – Part 3 – Abortion

Continuing coverage of the League of Women Voters Candidates’ Night for those seeking State Senate seat looking at answers to
the abortion question, whether it should be legal/criminalized.

My notes are below:

32nd District

Craig Wilcox

  • Mary Mahady

    Republican Craig Wilcox – “I would never advocate for criminalization.”  He said,”The only one who benefits from abortion is the donor,” meaning the man who would avoid paying child support.

  • Democrat Mary Mahady – “Pro-Choice.”  She said , “I will always fight for women to make the choice for their bodies.  I think there are people who would like to see people punished for that.”

33rd District

Don DeWitte

  • Nancy Zettler

    Republican Don DeWitte – noted the U.S. Supreme Court made legal abortion “the law of the land.”  He added, “I do not support the expenditure of public funds [to pay for abortions].”  In addition, he said he favors partental consent and opposes late term abortions.

  • Democrat Nancy Zettler – “I am unequivocally Pro-Choice.  My and my husband’s choice created and built our family on adoption.”

26th District

Don McConchie

Tom Georges

  • Republican Dan McConchie –  reference the U.S. Supreme Court decision and noted that “more than one person is involved.”  He said he believed that policy should be handled by legislative action on a state by state basis.
  • Democrat Tom Georges –  “Pro-Choice.”  I believe legislators should raised themselves above religious beliefs.”

Dan McConchie Fundraiser Draws Senate Leader Bill Brady

Before State Senator Dan McConchie attended the McHenry County League of Women Voters Candidates’ Night, he held a fundriser in Cary.

Senate Republican Leader Bill Brady was the featured speaker at State Senator Dan McConchie’s fundraiser.

Headlining the event was Senate Republican Leader Bill Brady.

Another view of the crowd attending State Senator Dan McConchie’s fund raiser.

There was a good crowd, as you can see.

Mothers Against Drunk Driving Praise Patrick Kenneally

A press release from McHenry County Staate’s Attorney Patrick Kenneally:


The McHenry County State’s Attorney’s Office is honored to announce that Patrick Kenneally has received the 2018 Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) Heroes Award for his efforts in outstanding impaired driving enforcement.

The MADD award to McHenry County State’s Attorney Patrick Keneally.

The award was presented on September 15, 2018 at the Wyndham Springfield Convention Center. MADD recognized Kenneally for the many initiatives the State’s Attorney’s Office have launched since 2018 to combat drunk driving and make roads safer.

One such initiative includes the No Refusal Policy the McHenry County State’s Attorney’s Office has launched with most of the police department in McHenry County. Evidence of a drunk driver’s blood alcohol concentration (BAC) is the strongest possible evidence prosecutors have in a DUI prosecution.

The No Refusal Policy ensures that a warrant for a blood draw is obtained for any DUI suspect that refuses breathalyzer testing so that prosecutors have evidence of BAC and can hold drunk drivers fully accountable.

In addition to aggressively prosecuting all Sheriff and Illinois State Police misdemeanor DUI cases and all felony DUI cases, the State’s Attorney’s Office has been monitoring the DUI misdemeanor cases handled by municipal attorneys to ensure those cases are not being unnecessarily plead to a reduced charge or dismissed.

Lastly, the State’s Attorney’s Office has conducted dozens of trainings for law enforcement on the topic of DUI so that officers countywide are prepared to conduct the best possible investigations and testify convincingly in court.

The State’s Attorney’s Office wishes to thank MADD for the recognition.

Jack Franks Changes Time for Tonight’s County Board Meeting to 5 PM for Yom Kippur

McHenry County Board member Jack Franks has set tonight’s meeting for 5 PM, instead of the usual 7 PM because of the Jewish holiday Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement.

The biggest item on the agenda is cutting the size of the County Board from twenty-four to eighteen members.  The resolution is below:

The most expensive County Board members costs just under $50,000 a yer, plus mileage, plus paper/computer.

To get that high, a member has to take family health benefits that almost equals the approximately $21,000 salary.

So, multiplying, let’s say $60,000 times six fewer members will save taxpayers about $360,000.

In reality, considerably less will be saved, because most County Board members don’t cost close to $50,000 in salary and health benefits.

Chuck Wheeler Holds Fundraiser

McHenry County Board member Chuck Wheeler held a fundraiser in Johnsburg Tuesday night.

Some of those in attendance early at McHenry County Board member Chuck Wheeler’s Johnsburg fundraiser.

“Why?” one person asked me.

“Isn’t he unopposed?”

He is, but Wheeler is leading the fight against tax hikes proposed by the

  • McHenry High School Board
  • McHenry City Council

I left quite early to attend the League of Women Voters State Senate Candidates’ Night.

State Senate Candidates’ Night – Part 2 – Recreational Marijuana

Continuing coverage of the League of Women Voters Candidates’ Night for those seeking State Senate seat looking at answers to whether the use of marijuan for recreational use should be legalized.

I did not take verbatim notes, by the way.

32nd District

Craig Wilcox

  • Mary Mahady

    Republican Craig Wilcox – said he did “not support, especially in Illinois, where it revolves around increasing revenue..” He said he wold be willing to discuss the subject from an individual rights point of view.

  • Democrat Mary Mahady – said trend is going toward the legalization of marijuana, that state is “three-fourths” there, that legalization would be a “natural progression” and it “would be beneficial as a revenue source” and cut down on the prison population.

33rd District

Don DeWitte

  • Nancy Zettler

    Republican Don DeWitte – “I will not support legalization of recreational use.” Said he considers it a “gateway drug,” that it would result in “more intoxicated drivers on the road.

  • Democrat Nancy Zettler – “I do support the legalization of marijuana in the state.”  She said tax dollars from legalization should be spent for things like education

26th District

Don McConchie

Tom Georges

  • Republican Dan McConchie –  said that law enforcement organization do not support legalization and that he was worried about crime.  He pointed to increases in Colorado and California.
  • Democrat Tom Georges –  “Don’t think it’s any different than the use of alcohol.”  Doesn’t think “anyone can deny the health benefits of marijuana.”

State Senate Candidates’ Night – Part 1 – Taxing Retirement Income

Rather than staying up late tonight to write a comprehensive article on the League of Women Voters Candidates’ Night for those seeking State Senate seats, I think I’ll do separate articles on varioius questions.

First up, whether they would tax retirement income and health benefits.

I did not take verbatim notes, by the way.

32nd District

Craig Wilcox and Mary Mahady

  • Craig Wilcox – “No.” Ge said the state’s problem is a spending problem.
  • Mary Mahady – “No.” She said that there “will be additional sources of income to offset our fiscal shortfall.”

33rd District

Don DeWitte and Nancy Zettler

  • Don DeWitte – “No.  We do not have a revenue problem in this state.  We have a spending problem.”
  • Nancy Zettler – “No.”  She talked of the “massive spending problem [of] hundreds of millions of tax dollars given away to business.”  She also commented on TIF [Tax Increment Financing] Districts, but I make notes beyond that.

26th District

Dan McConchie and Tom Georges

  • Dan McConchie – “No.”
  • Tom Georges –  “No.”

Joe Tirio Cleared in Campaign Finance Complaint from Active Jack Franks’ Supporter

\Merging the County Recorder’s Office with the County Clerk’s was Joe Tirio’s idea.

It doesn’t take a political expert to figure out that McHenry County Board Chairman Jack Franks does not want Joe Tirio elected McHenry County Clerk.

Consider that Tirio’s campaign for Recorder of Deeds was based on the theme of consolidating government, something Franks talks a lot about, but has precious little to show for it but newspaper clippings.

Consider Franks won’t even endorse a consolidation referendum in McHenry Township, while calling for a referendum of the same consolidation of the Road District with Algonquin Township.

Consider also Franks’ Labor Day Weekend press release accusing Tirio of buying raffle tickets with county money.  (He did, but for receipts, if there were an emergency.)

Obviously Franks gave it a negative spin.

The name of Steve Reick petition challenger and MIke Walkup and Joe Tirio State Elections Board complainer, Ron Eck, appears on State Rep. Jack Franks’ 2015 Host Committee.

So, is it just a coincidence that one of  Franks loyal supporters filed an election complaint against Tirio when he was suing to discover which Jack Franks’ allies are behind the insulting mailings by something calling itself  the “Illinois Integrity (sic) Fund?”

Illinois State Board of Elections Hearing Officer Andy Neuman suggested the following be adopted by the Elections Board:

I do not believe the Complainant has met his burden of introducing evidence or information sufficient for the Board to conclude that the Republican Central Committee of McHenry County had paid legal fees on behalf of Mr. Tirio.

I believe the Respondent left some room for speculation considering they didn’t provide any supporting evidence to show that the Republican Central Committee of McHenry County had paid Mr. Prossnitz for services that were performed on their behalf.

However, I believe he presented a plausible explanation of the expense and considering Mr. Tirio testified that he was paying for his own legal fees for his lawsuit I recommend these allegations be found not to have been filed upon justifiable grounds and this matter not proceed to a public hearing. (Boldface type in the original.)

Today, the Illinois State Board of Elections acccepted its Hearing Officer’s recommendation.

Tirio will be back in court on October 26th, when Judge Kevin Costello is expected to allow what his attorney Philip Prossnitz sought in the suit, the ability to subpoena Breaker Press about the identify of those behind the Illinois Integrity Fund.

= = = = =
Of possible interest:

8-23-18 County Clerk Candidate Joe Tirio Moves Forward Toward Learning Which Jack Franks Allies, aka, Illinois Integrity (sic) Fund, Sent Out Post Cards Calling Him a Crook with a Secret Slush Fund

Jack Franks’ Carpenters Union Cat’s Paw’s Election Board Complaint Against County GOP Fizzles

Carpenters Union official Ronald Eck, a fervent supporter of Democratic Party McHenry County Board Chairman Jack Frank, filed a complaint with the Illinois State Board of Elections against the McHenry County Republican Party for bad campaign financing reporting.

Specifically, that the GOP should have indicated, Eck claimed,  that a $1,200 check written to attorney Philip Prossnitz should have been classified as a “contribution in kind” to County Clerk Joe Tirio, who has retained Prossnitz to discover who make the scurrilous mailings from the anonymous group calling itself the “Illinois Integrity Project.”

Here’s Hearing Officer Andy Neuman’s summary of the complaint:

The Complainant alleges that the Republican Central Committee of McHenry County failed to properly identify the beneficiary of an expense paid to attorney Philip A. Prossnitz on their June 2018 Quarterly Report.

Mr. Eck believes the $1,200 payment of legal fees paid to Mr. Prossnitz wasn’t for the benefit of the Republican Central Committee of McHenry County but rather the expense should have been reported as an in-kind contribution to Citizens to Elect Joe Tirio because the payment benefited Mr. Tirio.

Eck said his source came from those who attended the April convention of the local Republican Party, but he refused to identify those presumably Republican Precinct Committeemen.

He also filed a complaint against Franks’ opponent Mike Walkup last year, but was a no-show.

He also filed a complaint against Steve Reick’s 2016 Primary Election petitions.

A closed hearing was held in Chicago August 27th, which the Carpenters Union official attended, complete with a lawyer named Scott Erdman.

Attorney Robert Hanlon , representing the GOP, said  the GOP

…conferred with his attorney Mr. Prossnitz for the purpose of attaining whether or not itwas a prudent thing for them to join in the lawsuit or not.

Therefore, they believe the $1,200 payment for attorney fees would have been appropriately reported, there was no in-kind contribution, and at the conclusion of this proceeding they will be seeking sanctions against Mr. Eck for the false statements contained within the proceedings.

After arguments, the Election Board Hearing Officer said this about the hearsay information from the Republican Party Convention presented by Eck:

…in a case such as this where the Complainant’s allegations are based upon things told to him by unidentified people, there is no way to assign such statements any credibility.

The Hearing Officer granted that Eck may

have made a logical assumption that the Republican Central Committee of McHenry County had paid Attorney Prossnitz $1,200 on behalf of Mr. Tirio assuming his informants provided him with an accurate account of what the Chairperson had said during the April 2018 meeting and the Chairperson’s words correctly summarized the situation.

He then indicated that he did not believe that Eck had met his burden of proof.

Neuman’s conclusion:

…considering Mr. Tirio testified that he was paying for his own legal fees for his lawsuit I recommend the complaint be found not to have been filed upon justifiable grounds and this matter not proceed to a public hearing.  [Boldface type in the original.]

GOP Treasurer Rachael Lawrence attended the closed hearing.

Today the process concluded with the State Board of Elections accepting the Hearing Examiner’s recommendation.

Randall Road Pedestrian Death’s ID Released

A press release from McHenry County Coroner Anne Majewski:

McHenry County Coroner, Dr. Anne Majewski, announced this morning that her office is investigating the death of a pedestrian struck by two motor vehicles as he was walking across Randall Road at Angela Lane in Crystal Lake, Illinois on September 16, 2018 just after midnight.

Angela Lane and Randall Road, Crystal Lake

A 911 call went out at 12:37 am with Crystal Lake Fire and Rescue and Crystal Lake police responding to the scene.

The decedent, Bryan C. Reigart, age 38, of Mahomet, Illinois, was pronounced dead at the scene at 1.

An autopsy performed in the Coroner’s Office revealed that he died from blunt force injuries of the head, chest and abdomen.

The death remains under investigation by the Crystal Lake Police Department and the McHenry County Coroner’s Office.

Tax Fighter Chuck Wheeler’s Fund Raiser Monday Nigth in Johnsburg

When McHenry’s Chuck Wheeler ran for the County Board four years, he pledged to lower taxes.

Now, he is leading the charge against the McHenry High School District’s and City of McHenry’s efforts to hike taxes.

His $25 fundraiser is Monday night at Stucky’s in Johnsburg from 5:30-8.

The address is 400 N. Johnsburg Road (near the bowling alley).

State Senate Candidate Forum at MCC Tonight

The McHenry County League of Women Voters is holding a candidates’ forum tonight at McHenry County College.

Featured at the 7 PM event will be

Meet the candidates for the Illinois State Senate Districts 26, 32 and 33 at 6:30 pm.  Hear them answer questions at 7 pm.

The Candidates:

  • District 26 – Tom Georges (D), Dan McConchie (R)
  • District 32 – Mary Mahady (D), Craig Wilcox (R)
  • District 33 – Nancy Zettler (D), Don DeWitte (R)

This is the type of event Jack Franks routinely has skipped.

Jack Franks, empty suit, was not seen in the empty seat next to GOP County Board Chairman candidate Mike Walkup.

McHenry County Dems Gets Another Almost $12,000 from Pritzker

As previously reported, the McHenry County Democratic Central Committee received, on July 31st,  $11,833.33 of the $1 million JB Pritzker gave to the Democratic Central Committee of Rock Island County.

On September 16th (today), another $11,833.33 contribution to local Democrats was reported.

No similar sugar daddy has been found by McHenry County Republicans.

The Republican Party started July with $1,531.37 and received $1,000 from Citizens for Rauner on July 6th.

Jack Franks Sneaks $98,000 Inspector General in Supplemental Budget for Tuesday Night Meeting

Although approved by no committee of which I am aware, McHenry County Board Chairman Jack Franks has put $98,000 in the supplementary budget for next year.

Jack Franks in  “I’m in charge”

If approved, the position of Inspector General would be under the people who need inspecting.

Currently, the McHenry County Auditor performs the function of keeping McHenry County honest.

Besides knowing how McHenry County government works from first hand experience as Chief Deputy Auditor, recently-appointed Auditor Shannon Teresi has the following qualifications,:

  • Masters in Accounting Science
  • Certified Public Accountant
  • Certified Internal Auditor
  • Certified Fraud Examiner, Certified Risk Management Assurance

The spreadsheet containing Chairman Franks’ proposed new patronage employee is very wide, so I have chopped it up and present the information below.  Obviously the relevant information is on the third line.

Note the third line makes it clear that Jack Franks will be in charge of the new position, ,just as he is of the County Administrator, who broke county personnel policy to hire Franks’ two patronage employees.

The “Inspector General” position appears here on line three.

On the third line is the salary and benefits for the proposed Inspector General, totaling $98.283.

= = = = =
See following articles about Jack Franks continuing effort to replace the elected County Auditor with an appointed Inspector General:

If you would like to contact County Board members, their email addresses appear below:

Charles Wheeler <[email protected]>, Chris Christensen <[email protected].gov>, Christopher Spoerl <[email protected]>, Craig Wilcox <[email protected]>, Donald Kopsell <[email protected]>, Donna Kurtz <[email protected]>, Jack Franks <[email protected]>, Jeffrey Thorsen <[email protected]>, Jim Heisler <[email protected]>, Jim Kearns <[email protected]>, John Hammerand <[email protected]ov>, John Jung <[email protected]>, John Reinert <[email protected]>, Joseph Gottemoller <[email protected].gov>, Kay Bates <[email protected]>, Larry Smith <[email protected]>, Mary McCann <[email protected]>, Michael Rein <[email protected]>, Michael Skala <[email protected]>, Michael Walkup <[email protected]>, Michele Aavang <[email protected]>, Paula Yensen <[email protected]>, Robert Nowak <[email protected]>, Thomas Wilbeck <[email protected]>, Yvonne Barnes <[email protected]>, Peter Austin <[email protected]>

Democratic McHenry County Board Member Paula Yensen Uses “Slush Fund” to Criticize Joe Tirio, the Same Way the Illinois Integrity (sic) Fund Did in Anonymous Primary Hit Pieces

Former McHenry  County Board member Ersel Schuster gives her take on the interaction of Republicans on the McHenry County Board with Democratic Party Board Chairman Jack Franks after his strident criticism of Recorder of Deeds (and, more importantly, GOP County Clerk candidate) Joe Tirio at Thursday’s meeting:

The Disappearing Tape of the Last County Board Meeting

Church Lady says, “Isn’t that special?”

How interesting.

While listening to the audio of the McHenry County Board Committee of the Whole (COW) eeting Thursday (9/13/18)… just as the discussion peaked my greatest interest, bam!

An hour and 45 minutes (+/-) into the audio, it was gone.

Early indications suggested the audio would be up and available for the public that evening, but it wasn’t

Late 9/14/18… Nothing.

Before losing this audio, the discussion took a decidedly political turn.

Hopefully, the audio will be restored in its entirety for all voters in the county to hear! (Schuster wrote the day after the meeting.)

Finance Committee Chair Mike Skala mentioned that new information had become available to the Recorder and that his proposed budget would be updated to reflect that change.

Recorder Joe Tirio stated that it was determined that he could reduce the amount of an “Automation Fund Fee” and that as a result, his projected budget would change.

What was soon to become an issue was an “Automation Fund” balance.

This fund, a collection of filing fees, these current fees were set and approved by the McHenry County Board in 2008.

The fund is intended to be used to update all the necessary equipment, components and salaries of those employees in that division of the office.

Not to let a political opportunity escape her, Member Yensen jumped in with a personal tirade against Recorder Tirio.

At approximately (1:38 in the audio) Democrat Paula Yensen states that “buried in the treasurer’s report…” “…she sees the Recorder’s 2019 Automation Fund surplus at $2.5 mil rather than $2 mil…

Just one of the mailings from the Illinois Integrity (sic) Fund charging Joe Tirio with have a “secret slush fund.,” which, incidentally, was reported by the County Treasurer to the County Board every month.

During her comments, she blurted out reference to “his” “SLUSH FUND.”
Interesting how things just seem to slip out when you least expect it.

Obvious to anyone paying attention to the dirty campaign literature against Recorder Tirio during the 2018 Primary Election, “His (Tirio’s) private “SLUSH FUND” was the major claim by those anonymous (soon, hopefully, to be exposed) hit pieces during this campaign.

It was later learned that while the audio was dead… members in attendance at this meeting, upset with Chair Franks’ harassment of Recorder Tirio, perhaps all but Democrat Yensen, walked out of the meeting.

The walkout occurred following members Chuck Wheeler & Joe Gottemoller’s having called for point-of-order, attempting to rein in the attacks.

In turn, the chair ruled them to be out of order.

Could it be, as with what is happening, from the National level, where liberals have worked so hard to discredit, demean and find a way to impeach our President… they may have stepped on a land mine in their mind-numbing zeal to undermine anyone daring to defend America, just to obtain their goals?

Not to be outdone, it just may be that our local liberals are also getting caught up in their own campaign of dirty tricks and will soon be exposed for who and what they are.

McHenry County, and America, deserves better than this.

Man Killed Crossing Randall Road

A press release from the Crystal Lake Police Department:

Pedestrian Struck and Killed

The Crystal Lake Police Department and the McHenry County Coroner’s Office are investigating the death of a 38-year-old male pedestrian, a resident of Mahomet, Illinois, who was struck and killed earlier this morning while crossing Randall Road.

The preliminary investigation indicates that at approximately 12:36 am, the pedestrian was crossing Randall Road near Angela Lane when he contacted a Toyota Tacoma traveling north on Randall Road, driven by a 27-year-old resident of Crystal Lake.

Angela Lane and Randall Road, Crystal Lake

After the initial collision, the pedestrian was struck again by another vehicle, a Dodge Charger driven by a 54-year-old resident of Crystal Lake, also traveling north on Randall Road.

This event remains under investigation by the Crystal Lake Accident Investigation Team and the McHenry County Coroner’s Office.

We encourage anyone who may have information relating to the crash to contact the Crystal Lake Police Department at 815-356-3620.

In addition, anyone with a cell phone can send an anonymous tip to the Crystal Lake Police Department by texting the word CLPDTIP along with the tip information to 847411 (tip411). Normal text messaging rates do apply.

Ash Trees Gone

As the Daily Herald and the Chicago Sun-Times reported a year ago, ash trees are now a rarity in McHenry County.

Here’s Wayne White, the man who saved the ash tree that shades half of our home.

Victim of a beetle called the emerald ash borer.

The Daily Herald and Sun-Times reported the demise of ash trees in Illinois a year ago.

Thanks to Emerald Tree Care, one of McHenry County’s advertisers, however, the ash tree between our home in Lakewood and our neighbors is doing fine.

The ash tree shades our bedroom in Lakewood.

You can see what the treatment looks like here.

Jack Franks’ Cats Paw Election Board Complaints On Monday Agenda

Monday will be the day when the Illinois State Board of Elections makes its decision on whether to approve or deny the complaints that strong support of Jack Franks, Carpenters Union official Ron Eck, made against McHenry County Clerk candidate Joe Tirio and the Republican Party of McHenry County.

The agenda items appear below: