Grafton Township Board Strips Supervisor of Duties, Equipment, Files

Grafton Township Trustees revising the budget six weeks before the end of the fiscal year. $50,000 was transferred from a contingency line item.

I’d forgotten how boring budget committee mark-ups could be.

That was the first order of business at the Grafton Township meeting Monday night.

Held at the Huntley Park District headquarters (the old high school that local taxpayers have had the privilege of paying for twice because of Illinois’ multi-layered form of local government), the main order of business seemed to be to make sure there was enough money to pay newly-hired Township Administrator Pam Fender, who is also a Huntley Village Trustee.

Pam Fender advising Rob LaPorta during the meeting.

The budget discussion went on and on.

And in the reallocating of $50,000 in contingency funds, making sure Fender would get paid was the primary objective.

Consider these three separate comments from Trustee Rob LaPorta:

“We have to keep in mind we have to add Pam’s salary in this. Plus benefits.”

“…and Pam’s has to be factored in here, too.”

“Is there going to be enough for Pam?”

What the officials side of the room looked like.

Before the meeting started, Fender asked me not to take pictures from behind the row of desks where all but Trustee Gerry McMahon sat and not to sit on the counter as I had for a while during last week’s too long meeting.

I told her that there wasn’t room behind the desk and asked her why she cared whether I sat on the counter top.

She said I might fall off, get injured and sue the township, that I was “a litigious person.”

I told her I haven’t sued people, that she ought to get her facts straight before making such a charge.

Perhaps she was relying on the Northwest Herald’s account of its owner’s suit against me. If so, check out the court files. The paper sued me, not the opposite. My legal representation by Patrick Ouimet was outstanding, as was the result.

(Or maybe Fender is thinking about the days forty years ago when I sued about 2,500 people a year for non-payment of Personal Property Taxes when McHenry County Treasurer–a deliberate statewide strategy to get the General Assembly to abolish the tax that actually worked–but I doubt she’s been around long enough to remember that.)

In any event Fender was in a take charge mood, interrupting to say,

“Trustees, this isn’t going to go anywhere,”

when discussion veered to mistakes made by listening to various lawyers and bond counsel about how it was legal to borrow the $3.5 million from the Harris Bank.

Some of the audience at the meeting.

That made me wonder why the board has not looked at recovering the $600,000 plus dollars that the trustee side of the table accused the taxpayer side of the table of costing township taxpayers.

Surely the attorneys who gave advice that led to actions Judge Michael Caldwell and the 2nd Appellate Court ruled improper have legal malpractice insurance.

Grafton Township Administrator explaining what she needs to do her job.

But, there I go talking about potential lawsuits, helping make Fender’s point, I guess.

Later when the board was methodically, stripping Supervisor Linda Moore of every duty not specified by state law, the high speed copy machine, her files on other subjects, that is, leaving her with nothing to do but administer welfare relief and be treasurer of the township, Fended asked,

“Can I say something?”

Moore replied,

“The time for public comment is over.”

Fender’s comment was

“I’m an employee now.
“I’m an employee now.”

I’ve attended a good number of municipal meetings and, while city managers or village administrators sometimes interject themselves into the meeting without being asked, that is rare. Maybe Huntley’s village board meetings have a different dynamic.

Trustee McMahon was vociferous as usual.

Grafton Township Administrator advising Trustee Gerry MaMahon.

Joining trustees, Administrator Fender attempted to calm Trustee McMahon down when he got excited.


Grafton Township Board Strips Supervisor of Duties, Equipment, Files — 17 Comments

  1. Cal, you failed to mention that the supervisor came to a budget meeting and could not answer budget questions because the supervisor did not bring their computer to the meeting. The Township Supervisor could learn something from the Boy Scout motto of “Be Prepared.” Township Supervisor, nice work! Great to see that you are doing your job (not). I now see why the trustees of Grafton took steps to hire a Township Administrator. Thank you Grafton Trustees.

  2. Anything that Fender says during a public meeting needs to be said aloud. She is not an attorney. The hush-hush of her comments should be loudly objected to by all citizens in the room. The meetings are public meetings under the Open Meetings Act!

  3. I’d be going out of my mind if I lived in a township governed by these idiots. Heaven help Crystal Lake or Algonquin Township if they hired the same brilliant legal mind to advise them that GRAFT-on has going for them. There is no greater example to eliminate townships on a state-wide basis than them. Linda Moore deserves better.

  4. Cal – interesting that you will not post my earlier comment. Any comment regarding Linda Moore beating on Pam Fender this morning? You really know how to support the cream of the crop Cal.

  5. Hey, Jack: What I want is somebody who will stand up to the old boys network, the connected pals. Like Moore and the GRAFTon Taj Mahal. Like Donna Kurtz and the MCC Wrigley Field, like Jeff Thorsen and Aaron Shepley’s sales tax increase. Heck, even like Zane Seipler vs. Boss Hogg. Would you at least agree with me about eliminating townships? What’s going on in GRAFTon deserves Lisa Madigan’s attention. That township has the Three Stooges of LaPorta, McNamara and whatever the attorney’s name is subverting the vote, will and rights of the township citizens. Maybe Linda Moore will be a failure as a supervisor, but she hasn’t yet been given that chance.

  6. Paul, look again. The only people who think the building is still an open issue are you, Linda Moore, and Gerry McMahon (he’s as bad as Moore). Its over and done. The residents of Grafton township just want to move on, but evidently we won’t be able to until the current four year term is over.

  7. There are two sides of every story and unfortunately only one side is ever told here. This site caters to the views of Larry Snow’s and Aileen Seedorf’s of the county.

    If Cal can’t see what a goof Linda really is it just shows what a bitter old man he has become.

  8. c. Kay – I don’t know what you tried to post, however, a one sided version of the event you are probably addressing serves no one.

    There is another version in the public eye. I imagine you won’t like it.

    Here’s a thought –

    (1.) If a Board is going to hire someone, they should know what the job will entail BEFORE assigning a salary and benefits to it. It’s MY Taxpayer money they are spending not THEIR private funds. People didn’t elect any of them to be kings and queens.

    (2.) It’s a public entity. GASP, did I say that? Do a public search/job opening announcement in the Township (or out of it for that matter if legal) and open up the job (after you know what it is) to everyone instead of doing some sort of an “appointed” hiring. This just makes things look worse – shutting out people who might be better for the job.

    (3.) oh, why bother, you probably aren’t listening anyway.

  9. Quote –
    Otto says:
    02/23/2010 at 1:35 pm
    There are two sides of every story and unfortunately only one side is ever told here. This site caters to the views of Larry Snow’s and Aileen Seedorf’s of the county.

    If Cal can’t see what a goof Linda really is it just shows what a bitter old man he has become.

    Cal, for the record, I never think of you as bitter or old. Nor do I have the idea that you can’t think for yourself.

    As to “Otto”, whatever.

  10. The building issue is dead/over/gone! The building issue is dead/over/gone! The building issue is dead/over/gone!

    If someone says the above over and over again, does it automatically make it true?

    The following comes from a local paper’s article –

    “In August, McHenry County Clerk Kathy Schultz confirmed voters would get to weigh in on whether to build a new township hall on the November 2010 ballot.”

    Does the McHenry County Clerk’s word carry more weight than that of others trying to say the issue doesn’t exist anymore?

    Was her comment only in effect at that time and no longer applies?

    Have the Trustees in Grafton ruled out a November referendum?

    What was discussed at the January meeting that might be applicable to this question?

    So many questions, so little time.

  11. Jack:

    A.: I don’t live in GRAFTon, I pointed that out before. I just think the politics there are such an abomination, the citizens should throw everybody out. It’s a situation humiliating to this county.
    B.: I think Dee and Alan just gave you an information wedgie on the building issue, saying it better than I. My thanks to them.

    Jack, do you whistle past graveyards much? That’s what your mindset is the equivalent of. Again, I support dissolution of every township and regional superintendent’s office in the state of Illinois as a starting point to cutting budgets, taxes and cleaning up government. If the people of GRAFTon wnat this building and this way of administering their tax dollars, then so be it. I thought they tried to move on until Stooge-a-palooza started.

  12. Unfortunately This happens all over our County. We need to evaluate township Government and do away with the ones that aren’t working or all of them and get rid of the problems they are creating in our County. Example Burton township in Spring Grove, 3 years ago. In which our Supervisor did bad things. but the people here still voted in the same people.

  13. Linda is crazy. The people that think that are right! It’s nice to have other respected people of the community realize how crazy she truly is- she twists the truth constantly, has her own agenda, is without a doubt delusional. I’m glad your Township is on the track with stripping her of her duties- it was long overdue.

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