Take This Job and Shove It

If you play this song while you are reading this article, it would be appropriate.

Johnny Paycheck’s “Take This Job and Shove It” pretty much sums up the message Crystal Lake attorney Joe Gottemoller gave to the Grafton Township Board last night.

Because Supervisor Linda Moore was absent due to having just had a myelogram, only her four political enemies on the township board were at the meeting.

Along with two lawyers, Joseph Gottemoller and Jim Kelly.
And a standing room only crowd.

Prominent Democrats were out in force. Both McHenry County Board member Jim Kennedy and Paula Yensen were in attendance.

Attorney Kelly was dismissed by Moore after she took office, but he’s still working for the four trustees. They voted to pay him “$5,724, the most recent portion of a total amount of $17,963.73 for services after May 18, 2009.”

The township trustees and Kelly went into secret session to discuss the lawsuit (Dan Ziller, Jr., et al. v. John Rossi, et al) that a number of the audience members had brought against the township to stop the building of a new township hall.

But Gottemoller’s resignation was the big story.

Right before the trustees went into Executive Session, he said,

“This will be my last meeting. I have spent a great deal of time and effort on this. Much more than I should have.”

He talked about all the local governments he had had contact with during his legal career.

“I have never been in front of of a board as dysfunctional as this one.”

He told of having had nine calls about the agenda for the meeting. He talked of the problems facing the township.

“I hope some day you will address them.”

He said most calls he had received were from people who were mainly interested in learning how to protect themselves from the other side.

“I don’t want my name to be associated with (Grafton Township).

“You’re spending thousands of dollars on legal fees, $25,000 in attorney fees since May 18th.

“Riley Township spent $500 its last full year.” (Riley is one of McHenry County’s smallest.)

“I hope sometime or other you’ll find a way to talk to each other.

“If we could just focus on the issues and not the personalities, it would be (a lot better).

Before the secret meeting began, Kelly revealed he had told the board in February that he wouldn’t continue as township attorney.

“It’s just outrageous we’re in this condition. I’m working on this issue (the lawsuit) only,” Kelly said.

As I was leaving, one person observed,

“They ought to sell popcorn.”

Tomorrow: What Joe Gottemoller wrote in his resignation letter.

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In the top photo you see attorney Jim Kelly on the left and Joe Gottemoller on the right. The four trustees can be seen sitting at the table in the second picture. Trustee Barbara Murphy is in the foreground. At the left of the photo is Trustee Bob LaPorta. To his left are Trustee Betty Zirk and newly-elected Trustee Gerry MaMahon, elected with newly-elected Township Supervisor Linda Moore’s help, but now on the other side of the political spectrum. All the officials are Republicans. Flanking attorney Jim Kelly in the next photo are prominent Democrats Mike Bissett, his wife, McHenry County Board member Paula Yensen, and McHenry County Board member Jim Kennedy (standing). The larger head shot is of Gottmoller. The smaller one is of Kelly while Gottemoller was explaining his resignation.

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