The litigation concerning who has what power in Grafton Township has been long and expensive, but also interesting. I’ve discussed how it involves the pitting of the Executive, Legislative and Judicial branches of local government with Linda Moore’s attorney John Nelson and an attorney at Ancel, Glink, suggesting the case would be wonderful for law school students. The one at Ancel, Glink said he would talk to a professor at Northwestern University.
The first case was won by Moore.
Judge Michael Caldwell ruled that she had executive powers much as do village board presidents. (Both, you will note have a vote on their legislative bodies.)
Ancel, Glink, dismissal by Moore was ratified and Township Administrator Pam Fender, installed by the Trustees to take over pretty much ever duty the Supervisor had had under the man she beat in the GOP primary, John Rossi, performed, except the administration of General Assistance (a very limited welfare program) and keeping the books.
The second time around, Caldwell also ruled for Moore, saying that her choice for Township Attorney, Nelson, would be installed even though he had been rejected by the four Township Trustees.
The Trustees attorney, Thomas DiCianni, seemed visible stuck (read the bottom of the transcript) by Caldwell decision. After regaining his composure, he asked to appeal and, upon consideration, Caldwell granted him that request.
Trustees Rob LaPorta, Barb Murphy, Berry Zirk and Gerry McMahon won that effort in the 2nd Appellate Court.
Now, Moore has announced that she will not appeal the ruling that Trustees must approve her nomination for Township Attorney.
Last night two Trustees, LaPorta and Murphy, joined more in appointing Michael Torchalski as “Special Counsel” to handle legal affairs in the sale of the Haligus Road property. That parcel was purchased from the Village of Lake in the Hills for a new township hall. That decision by the Township Board headed by John Rossi. Moore used the issue to defeat Rossi in the first GOP primary election in Grafton Township. (Previous township officials were elected on ad hoc party names.)
Here is the press release from Grafton Township Supervisor Linda Moore:
Grafton Township Supervisor Declines Appeal to the State Supreme Court
Linda Moore, Supervisor of Grafton Township announced today she did not authorize an appeal to the Illinois Supreme Court as to whether it was legal for the trial court to order confirmation of her Attorney, John M. Nelson, as Grafton Township Attorney.
The Second District Court of Appeals reversed the order of the trial court in its decision on August 2011.
“The case involves complicated issues of enforcement of a court’s injunction versus arguments of separation of powers. While my attorney was anxious to have the Illinois Supreme Court decide these important issues, unfortunately, the cost to township taxpayers of such an appeal would vastly outweigh the benefits to Grafton Township and it’s taxpayers, “
Ms. Moore stated.
“The trustees’ attorneys, Ancel Glink have charged a total of $57,379 for just their appeal to the Second District. This is in addition to Attorney Nelson’s charges of $ $11,707.
“I can only imagine how many more tens of thousands of dollars it would cost to make law on this issue,”
In addition, there is no guarantee the parties could obtain an expedited hearing for a quick decision.
“The Illinois Supreme Court is very deliberate because they set the rule of law in the state, “Ms. Moore said.
“We need a township attorney now, not months from now.”
Ms. Moore pledged she would continue to nominate qualified attorneys to assist Grafton Township in their legal matters. She continued by saying,
“Hopefully the trustees will come to their senses and confirm this appointment so we can move beyond the self-defeating actions that have driven this board.”