Member Comments that Led to Recommendation to Abolish Them

Andrew Gasser

Andrew Gasser

McHenry County Board member Andrew Gasser has posted the member comments from the last meeting.  The article containing that may be found here.

There addressed the topic of nepotism, which was introduced into the meeting by Joe Alger during the Public Comment period.

Listen to them and then figure out why the Management Services Committee majority want the ability of members to comment at the end of meetings abolished.

Or read about them here.

In the committee Monday, only Mike Walkup opposed the silencing of the minority. He, of course, is part of that minority.

Members on the committee besides Walkup are

  • Michele Aavang
  • Jim Heisler
  • Tina Hill
  • Bob Martens
  • Anna May Miller
  • Mike Skala


Member Comments that Led to Recommendation to Abolish Them — 27 Comments

  1. > County Government > Departments A – I > County Board > County Board Committees > Management Services

    Agencies of the: County Administrator; County Board; Facilities Management; Recorder; Purchasing; Information Technology; McHenry County Cable Commission; and McHenry County Council of Governments.

    Stewardship / Liason for matters pertaining to the: Public Building Commission and the overall management of county facilities and property; Coordinate with the legislative and Intergovernmental Affairs Committee and oversee county communication program with residents.

    Chairman —— Tina Hill
    Vice-Chairman – Michael Skala
    Member ——– Jim Heisler
    Member ——– Bob Martens
    Member ——– Michael Walkup
    Member ——– Anna May Miller
    Member ——– Michele Aavang

    Walkup is for allowing members of the Management Service Committee to make public comments at the end of Management Service Committee meetings.

    Who else is for it.

    Who is against it.

  2. Mark: The rule being discussed is a ‘Board’ rule, not a committee rule.

  3. Correct. We will still be able to comment at the end of committee meetings. However, those meetings are not recorded nor live streamed and the minutes may or may not reflect what is said plus no one reads them.

  4. Mike: Is there a ‘rule’ against recording the committee meetings?

  5. Part of the Rules changes would require anyone who wished to record state that they are recording, However, we haven’t passed that yet so people can show up and record away. They can’t stop recordings due to Open Meetings Act.

  6. I didn’t hear anything uncivil or disrespectful in those comments.

  7. Michael walkup the chicken choker

    Is probably having to much chicken feed in the hen house with Donna Kurtz.

    He is delusional and officiated with trying to be a republican when he is not.

    Rather, he try’s to talk about his family heritage going back to the civil war days what he fails to mention is there was to much in-breeding going on between then and now.

    Michael walkup why don’t you tell us about when you were the Democratic party representative or how about you cannot seem to get facts to support your babbling assertions of others.

    You need to understand you too are an elected official and subject to the rath of your next election by your constituents.

    Even the democratic party wont claim this bottom feeder

    Bye Bye Walkup

  8. I am and always have been mchenry voter.

    The above comment is not mine.

    If you notice I have a space between the name and the above does not so don’t get confused.

  9. So the Management Services Committee is contemplating a rule change that would apply to “Board” meetings but not “Board Committee” meetings.

    The rule change would strip / take away the current right of Board members to make comments at the end of “Board” meetings.

    What meetings are considered “Board” meetings?

    Presumably “County Board – Regular Meeting”?

    And any emergency meeting to which the entire Board is invited?

    Any others? > County Government > County Meetings

  10. Committees are composed of 7 Board members and concern certain types of subject matters such as Planning and Development, Transportation , Health and Human Services etc.

    These meetings are not recorded and virtually no members of the public come to them.

    The full Board meetings occur twice a month, in the morning on the first Tuesday and in the evening on the third Tuesday of the month.

    All 24 Board members attend those meetings.

    The importance of being able to have the member comments at the full Board meetings is that the meeting itself only concerns resolutions that came out of the committees.

    Sometimes something doesn’t pass a committee and doesn’t make it to the Board floor.

    Other times there are emerging issues.

    Most of the time the member comments are something innocuous like announcing a Girl Scout troop cookie sales drive in McHenry.

    However, at other times, hot button issues have been addressed, like when Chairman Hill caused the vote on the direct election of the Board Chair to be delayed so it couldn’t be put on the ballot in 2013, thereby giving herself another shot at being elected by the Board, or when she over rode the selection of a candidate to sit on the Mental Health Board by simply making an announcement at the beginning of the meeting that she was doing that leaving no place for members to express their objection.

    The nepotism issue is another such example.

    Ms. Hill is apparently the one who caused the abolition of member comments to be brought up at Management Services and the other committee members went along.

    WIth the committees now having been stacked by the Chairman so there are no minority members in a majority on any committee, things can now get buried in committees.

    The only outlet for that has been the member comments at the full Board meetings.

    Without that, everything can now be done essentially in secret.

  11. McHenryVoter is ok with the Miller dynasty taking from the taxpayers.

    He’s perfectly fine with that nepotism.

  12. Mchenryvoter:

    At least Walkup was not in the Algonquin parade with a democrat campaign sign on his truck like the Millers.

    If anyone believes the Millers are “serving” the people, there is still some swamp land for sale in the south.

    At least he leans more conservative than the ‘majority’ of the Board.

  13. What is the process to approve applications to County Board appointments?

    Is is the sole discretion of the County Board Chair?

    Does the full County Board take a vote?

    Is it the process the same for all Board committees, or does it vary by committee, or are there exceptions?

    The Management Services Committee is going to vote on the measure, to abolish Board Member comments at the end of regular Board Meetings (but not Board Committee meetings), at the next Management Services Committee meeting?

    Which is March 9, 2015, at 8:15AM, at the County Board Conference Room, 667 Ware Rd, Administration Building, in Woodstock.

    The next issue is who is aligned with who, in general (obviously that can vary depending on the issue); probably best for someone other than a Board member to voice their opinion.

    Michele Aavang (District 6)
    Yvonne Barnes (District 1)
    Bob Bartens (District 4)
    Sue Draffkorn (District 4)
    Diane Evertsen (District 6)
    Andrew Gasser (District 1)
    Joseph Gottemoller (District 3)
    John Hammerand (District 4)
    James Heisler (District 2)
    Tina Hill (District 5)
    John Jung Jr. (District 5)
    Ken Koehler (District 2)
    Donald Kopsell (District 3)
    Donna Kurtz (District 2)
    Anna May Miller (District 1)
    Robert Nowak (District 1)
    Nick Provenzano (District 3)
    Michael Rein (District 5)
    Carolyn Schofield (District 2)
    Michael Skala (District 5)
    Mike Walkup (District 3)
    Chuck Wheeler (District 4)
    Mary McCann (District 6)
    Larry Smith (District 6)

  14. Mark: They are all listed as Republicans.

    You may want to send each one an email and ask them if they support or do not support the Republican platform.

    We do know that the Millers had a campaign sign for a Democrat on their truck in the Algonquin parade. We do know that Mary McClellan had her campaign signs on the property of the Union hall in Lakemoor.

  15. The union hall in Lakemoor meaning the IUOE Local 150, District 3 office at 28874 Route 120, Lakemoor?

    IUOE = International Union of Operating Engingeers.

    So we have Anna May Miller (McHenry County Board District 1) & Mary McClellan (McHenry County Clerk) aligned?

  16. Anna Miller sounds like a Democrat to me.

    Takes all she can from the tax payers.


    possibly the same.

    HOw much is McClellan now taking from the tax payers?

    I wonder how much the Miller’s pay in property taxes?

    I wonder how much the McClellan’s pay in property taxes?

    I’m sure about as much as Nick Chirkios pays, which is not much.

    At least he’s off the tax payer’s backs.

    Of course, if it’s up to Geri Davis, he will be back……

  17. Here’s a McHenry County Blog comment expressing transparency concerns.

    90 Attend Gottemoller County Board Fundraiser
    Posted on 10/16/2013

    First some photo captions.

    “Kirk Dillard, and the Gottemollers”

    “State Senator Pam Althoff said some nice things about Joe Gottemoller.”

    “Larry O’Brien talks with Joe Gottemoller.
    In the background is Edward Gil, Nunda Township Trustee. He is County Board member Mary McClellan’s husband.”

    Now the comment:

    “Klatu Barrada Nikto on 10/17/2013 at 7:21 am said:

    I’ll keep posting this until the voters realize what’s happening to them.
    Voting for less transparency were

    Michele Aavang
    Nick Chirikos
    Sue Draftkorn
    Joe Gottemoller
    Tina Hill
    Ken Koehler
    Mary McCann
    Mary McClellan
    Anna May Miller
    Robert Nowak
    Carolyn Schofield
    Paula Yensen

    This, pretty much, says it all.”

  18. Further sorting out the factions on the McHenry County Board.

    Mary McClellan defeated Nick Provenzano (both at the time were incumbent elected members to McHenry County Board District 3) during the March 18, 2014 Republican Primary.

    Northwest Herald

    McClellan beats Provenzano in GOP race for county clerk

    March 19, 2014
    by Stephen Di Benedetto

    photo caption: County Clerk elect Mary McClellan and her husband Ed Gil (right) talk with supporters Joni and Brent Smith at the Andrew Zinke election night gathering Tuesday in Crystal Lake.

  19. In a blatant act of nepotism, after being elected McHenry County Clerk on November 4, 2014, Mary McClellan (an elected official) hired her husband Edward Gil effective December 1, 2014, with approvals by the department head on November 18th and the Human Resources Director on November 24th.

    And then McClellan attempted to reclassify her husband (along with another worker) from hourly to salary, defending the action to the County Board Human Resources Committee by asserting her husband was the best person for the job.

    Northwest Herald
    Clerk’s hiring of spouse makes McHenry County Board committee uneasy
    February 9, 2015
    By Kevin Craver

  20. The Holiday Hills area of Griwold Lake where McClellan & Gil reside has very low property taxes.

    If you look at Google Earth, there is a large structure behind the McClellan / Gil house.

    If you look at Google Street View, the picture of the house is obscured.

    In the Illinois State Board of Elections records, the 3014 S Bergman Dr property has a Holiday Hills address.

    In the McHenry County Property Tax records, the same property has a McHenry address.

    It seems the 3014 S Bergman Dr house is in unincorporated McHenry County?

    McClellan / Gil are both listed for the first property (3014 S Bergman Dr) which indicates 807 square feet of living space with 1.5 baths, lot size 5,663 sq ft (which is .13 acres).

    Per McHenry County tax records the 2013 fair cash value of the 3014 S Bergman Dr property is $67,450.
    Parcel 15-18-460-003.

    PIN: 15-18-460-003
    Legal Description: DOC 2002R0080352 LT 2 GRISWOLD LAKE LAGOON SUB
    Site Address: 3014 S Bergman Dr, McHenry, IL 60050
    2013 Property Taxes: $1,872
    Township: Nunda
    Tax Code: 15002
    Property Class: 0040
    Acres: None Listed.

    Gil is the only person listed on the next 4 properties.

    PIN: 15-18-460-004
    Legal Description: DOC 92R033043 TRACT BET LTS 1 & 2 & TRACT BET LTS 4 & 5
    Site Address: none listed
    2013 Property Taxes: $70
    Township: Nunda
    Tax Code: 15002
    Property Class: 0030
    Acres: .29

    PIN: 15-18-461-001
    Legal Description: DOC 92R033043 LT 1 GRISWOLD LAKE LAGOON SUB
    Site Address: none listed
    2013 Property Taxes: $701
    Township: Nunda
    Tax Code: 15002
    Property Class: 0030
    Acres: None Listed.

    PIN: 15-18-461-002
    Legal Description: DOC 92R033043 E PT SW1/4 SE1/4
    Site Address: none listed
    2013 Property Taxes: $280
    Township: Nunda
    Tax Code: 15002
    Property Class: 0030
    Acres: 2.73

    PIN: 15-18-476-001
    Legal Description: DOC 92R033043 PT SE1/4 SE1/4
    Site Address: none listed
    2013 Property Taxes: $308
    Township: Nunda
    Tax Code: 15002
    Property Class: 0030
    Acres: 3.0

    Gil was previously an elected Nunda Township Trustee, prior to resigning during his wife’s campaign to become McHenry County Clerk.

  21. Typo above.

    Change $701 to $70.

    PIN: 15-18-461-001
    Legal Description: DOC 92R033043 LT 1 GRISWOLD LAKE LAGOON SUB
    Site Address: none listed
    2013 Property Taxes: $70
    Township: Nunda
    Tax Code: 15002
    Property Class: 0030
    Acres: None Listed.

  22. The property tax for the address listed for the Millers is listed as $8,602.48 for 2013.

    The Property tax for the address listed for Mrs. McClellan and Mr. Gil is listed as $1,872.02 for 2013.

  23. Here is a local newspaper article about the McHenry County Board’s Management Services Committee current work in process to abolish the current rule that allows McHenry County Board Members to make comments at the end of McHenry County McHenry County Board Regular Meetings (Regular Meetings are held twice a month).

    Northwest Herald
    Proposed McHenry County Board rule change has member crying foul
    February 23, 2015
    by Kevin Craver

    The Board should be working on a nepotisim rule.

    Mary McClellan won the County Clerk election November 4, 2015.

    On November 18, 2015 (only 14 days after the election) the department head approved that her husband be hired for a position in the County Clerk’s office.

    On November 24, 2015 the Human Resources Director approved Gil for the position.

    Effective December 1, 2015, her husband, Edward Gil, was hired by McHenry County for a position in the same department to which she was just elected, of course paid for by taxpayers.

    On Mary McClellan’s campaign website there was and is an endorsement from, “Nunda Trustee Ed Gil.”

    No mention that Edward Gil is her husband on her campaign website.

    No mention that she planned to hire her husband immediately after getting elected.

    Her 2013 property taxes are $1,872 for 807 square feet of living space in Holiday Hills (unincorporated McHenry County?)

    That’s $2.32 property taxes per square foot of living space.

    In the upcoming years people are going to be paying more attention to property taxes per square foot of living space to fund pensions, retiree healthcare, & bond debt, not to mention the more obvious current salaries and not so obvious current benefits and all the other not so obvious spending buried in financial statements and board minutes.

  24. Here is the URL (linked in the above article) of the YouTube audio recording on McHenry County Board Member Andrew Gasser’s website of the Board Member Comments made at the end of the McHenry County Regular Board Meeting that took place on February 17, 2015.

    Andrew Gasser County Board

    Comments on Nepotism

    Posted February 23, 2015

    In that clip, County Board Chair Joe Gottemoller states section 3.16 of the McHenry County Board Personnel Policy Manual approved August 1, 2011 addresses the employment of relatives.

    The McHenry County Board Personnel Policy Manual can’t be located via a Google Search or by searching the County website, so if it is on the county website, it’s not easy to find.

    During the clip, Michael Walkup, Donna Kurtz, and Chuck Wheeler spoke out against nepotism / hiring relatives in the County Government.

    Diane Evertsen and Andrew Gasser also made comments.

  25. A McHenry County Regular Board Meeting took place at 7PM on February 17, 2015.

    There are typically two Regular Board Meetings per month.

    Agenda item 13 in that meeting was to approve the appointments of John O. White & Cherie R. Rickert to the McHenry County Ethics Committee.

    Here is the location of agenda item 13 on the County website. > County Government > County Meetings > Full Calendar > Feb 17, 2015 7:00 PM County Board – Regular Meeting > click on the date > 13. Appointments > Recommendation for Appointments to the McHenry County Ethics Commission for February 17, 2015 > John O White and Cherie R Rickert

    Prior to voting on agenda item 13, a public comment was made by a citizen, Joe Alger.

    Mr. Alger expressed his dissatisfaction that McHenry County Clerk Mary McClellan (elected November 4, 2014) hired her husband (Edward Gil) into her department (County Clerk’s office) shortly after being elected (dept head approval was November 18, human resources approval was November 24, and the hire was effective December 1).

    County Board Member Andrew Gasser posted an audio recording of Alger’s comment on his (Gasser’s) blog.

    That audio recording was linked in the above article.

    Here is the Gasser blog post containing the audio recording of Alger’s public comment (Alger is not a member of County government).

    Andrew Gasser County Board (website)
    Joe Alger’s Comments and the Ethics Commission Vote
    February 20, 2015 (date of article, the vote was February 17)

    After Alger’s comment, the audio recording lists the roll call of who voted for and against the hiring of John O. White & Cherie R. Rickert to the McHenry County Board Ethics Commission.

    Voting Yes (to appoint John O White and Cherie R Rickert to the McHenry County Board Ethics Commission)
    Michele Aavang (Woodstock – District 6)
    Yvonne Barnes (Cary – District 1)
    Bob Bartens (Spring Grove – District 4)
    Sue Draffkorn (Wonder Lake – District 4)
    Joseph Gottemoller (Crystal Lake – District 3)
    James Heisler (Crystal Lake – District 2)
    Tina Hill (Woodstock – District 5)
    John Jung Jr. (Woodstock – District 5)
    Anna May Miller (Cary – District 1)
    Robert Nowak (Lake in the Hills – District 1)
    Mary McCann (Woodstock – District 6)
    Larry Smith (Harvard – District 6)
    Carolyn Schofield (Crystal Lake – District 2)
    Michael Skala (Huntley – District 5)

    Voting No (to not appoint John O White and Cherie R Ricket to the McHenry County Board Ethics Commission)
    Diane Evertsen (Harvard – District 6)
    Andrew Gasser (Fox River Grove – District 1)
    John Hammerand (Wonder Lake – District 4)
    Donna Kurtz (Crystal Lake – District 2)
    Nick Provenzano (McHenry – District 3)
    Michael Rein (Woodstock – District 5)
    Mike Walkup (Crystal Lake – District 3)
    Chuck Wheeler (McHenry – District 4)

    Absent from the vote (no vote):
    Ken Koehler (District 2)
    Donald Kopsell (District 3)

    Summary: 14 yes votes, 8 voting no, 2 not present.

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