Serwatka Urges Lakewood Residents Not to Sign Other Petitions

Here’s an email from Lakewood Village Trustee and candidate for Village President Paul Serwatka.

It appears to be a pre-emptive stike about some attack he expects to undergo during the campaign.

Words of Warning!

Although I am well aware, I want to be sure all of you are, as well…

I have received numerous calls from residents warning me that President Erin Smith along with Trustee Ken Santowski and other current and former board members & administration are launching an all-out, multi-faceted campaign against me, personally, as well as against the entire “Lakewood Tax-Fighter Team” campaign!

I have full faith that you will all see through all of their concerted, deceptive and malicious efforts.

Word of Warning #1

I am writing today, with information that has been provided to me, by several residents, in the last few days – as well as information that was provided publicly – directly by Ken Santowski, himself.

President Smith, Ken Santowski and the others have now enlisted the help of FORMER VILLAGE TRUSTEE and Turnberry resident, JOHN SCHRAUF in their effort to end the Lakewood Tax-Fighter Team campaign.

John Schrauf has begun circulating a petition to run to, once again, hold a seat as a village trustee. His reason for doing this is two-fold.

(These are John Schrauf’s words as reported by several residents)

According to John, himself, their primary reason for his candidacy is that signing John’s (and Ken’s) petition puts our team at risk of being “kicked off the ballot” on a technicality – and therefore we will no longer be a threat to the powers-that-be.

They know, that if the Lakewood Tax-Fighter Team remains on the ballot this April 4th, WE WILL WIN, OVERWHELMINGLY, and their house-of-cards will come crashing down!

Their second reason for John Schrauf’s candidacy, again as expressed by John himself, is that if I am elected to be president, and he can retain at least one village trustee seat for the status-quo, he can help to “dilute the vote, by voting against me and any Lakewood Tax-Fighter Team members.”

I don’t know John very well. I can’t say that I have any knowledge of his actions as a former village trustee.

What I do know about John, is this:

1 – Based on a very recent conversation with President Erin Smith, John Schrauf was strongly encouraged, by President Smith, to run to once again, be a village trustee.

2 – John Schrauf did NOT support our recent Property Tax Referendum!

John refused to even sign our petition to get our Property Tax Referendum on the ballot.

I spoke at length with John regarding our Property Tax Referendum and John maintained, just as President Smith and Trustee Ken Santowski, that residents should NOT have the power to control the taxes they pay.

John Schrauf maintained that “residents elect village board members to make those decisions for them.” John maintained that if village board members feel it’s necessary to raise property taxes and build a new village hall, then “they rightfully have the power to do so.”

I, along with The Lakewood Tax-Fighter Team, am diametrically opposed to this way of thinking!

If you stand with the Lakewood Tax-Fighter Team and our views toward restoring accountable government in Lakewood…

If you believe there is a need to put an end to the business-as-usual/status quo politics that have been in control of Lakewood Tax-Dollars and Lakewood residents for the last decade or more…

If you believe there is a need for a team that is 100% committed to protecting and serving YOU and YOUR tax-dollars…

I urge you NOT to sign John Schrauf’s petition!

Furthermore, to avoid jeopardizing our efforts by getting kicked off the ballot on a technicality, I would encourage you NOT to sign any petition other than The Lakewood Tax-Fighter Team petition.

The Entire Lakewood Tax-Fighter Team effort only works as an entire TEAM!

It really is an “All-or-None” deal!

Electing me as village president, without the support of trustees dedicated to bringing real reform and restoring accountability, renders me, essentially powerless.

Conversely, Electing Ken Santowski to conduct “business-as-usual” as President – even with good trustees in office – still allows critical information to be hidden from the board, allows the board agenda to be manipulated, and greatly hampers the ability for good, dedicated trustees to enact the much needed reform!

To truly restore accountability… to bring the real reform we so desperately need… requires the election of the entire Lakewood Tax-Fighter Team!

Please, Do NOT sign any other petitions!

Word of Warning #2

Ken Santowski has already begun his “Smear-Campaign” by distributing a packet of information about me – information that he absolutely knows to be completely false!

Ken recently made it publicly known that he, along with President Smith and other current and former board members & administration will be disseminating this false information by various methods throughout our campaign.

Ken and I have spoken at length about the fact that he knows this information to be false. His last, most recent, words to me were:

“It doesn’t matter what I know – what matters, is what you can prove.”

That being said, I assure you, I can, and indeed will, prove everything – at the right time.

I promise you, I will talk about this, in more detail, at the right time. But, for now, it is critical that you bear in mind:

– Ken Santowski (and all the others) NEED to distract you from the REAL ISSUES!

– Ken Santowski (and all the others) NEED to make this campaign about ANYTHING other than Village Business, such as:

– The positions he/they have taken and the votes he/they cast on a myriad of issues
– The hundreds of thousands of YOUR tax-dollars that he/they have wasted
– The information he/they have INTENTIONALLY hidden from you
– The unfathomable risk he/they have knowingly put all of us in

The only way the “Powers-that-be” can maintain their grip on our our village government and our tax-dollars is to get us to turn against each other. They need to pose distractions and create false demons so that we are talking about anything other than them!

I know we are all wiser than that…

I know we are all fed up with this kind of bad government…

and, I know we will “show them all the door” on April 4th!

This April 4th, we will liberate Lakewood!

If you haven’t already, Please learn more about The Lakewood Tax-Fighter Team Mission at!


Serwatka Urges Lakewood Residents Not to Sign Other Petitions — 11 Comments

  1. OMG paul, you are quite the conspiracy theorist.

    Your rhetoric is getting tiresome.

  2. I was in attendance at The Lkewood Tax Fighter petition signing at Turnberry last Thursday.

    Ken Santowski’s appearance and behavior was despicable.

    Threatening the candidates that they better not file papers to run and yelling “You’ve all been warned! You’ve all been warned!” as he exited the building made it quite apparent that it is really important to him that this Lakewood Tax Fighter team is not elected.

    This was not indicative of a man who was just looking to “serve his community”. This was something else.

  3. Thank you Paul Serwatka and the Lakewood Taxfighter team. I am sick of the current regime and I find these political games shameful.

    Time and time again we have only had a single voice on the Village of Lakewood board and that was Paul Serwatka.

    I signed your petition Paul and I will not sign anyone else’s.

    It really is a shame that local politics has stooped to this level and it makes me wonder what we will uncover come April 5th and we have a new president and board.

  4. Trustee Ken Santowski, for whatever reason, has taken to championing the status quo and everything wrong in our village government.

    Intentionally silencing residents at meetings and not allowing us to be heard.

    FOIA requests prove he conspired to keep information hidden from us on several occasions.

    Conspiring to give secret patronage bonuses.

    Awarding secret bonuses year after year.

    Approving patronage contracts without ever seeing them.

    Conspiring to make our board packets unsearchable.

    Working against our property tax referendum.

    The only trustee to vote against doing away with our vehicle stickers.

    Supporting policies potentially doubling our property tax levy.

    With this record as a trustee in just the last two years, how could he possibly campaign on real issues.

    Santowski is right about one thing.

    He has only two prayers (not that a self-proclaimed atheist would actually pray)

    He needs Serwatka off the ballot so he can run unopposed according to plan.

    Or he needs to run a smear campaign of gargantuan proportions.

  5. Paul Serwatka lobbied for and received searchable board agenda packets for Lakewood Village Board meetings.

    That is a major taxpayer transparency victory.

    Here is an example of a Lakewood searchable board agenda packet:

    In Adobe, select “Edit” from the menu in the upper left corner of the screen, select “Find”, type in “Hidden Lakes”.

    Hidden Lakes is searchable, for example.

  6. The very real tax burden of $9000 per year per Lakewood TIF student inflicted by the current Lakewood Board is an example of the magnitude of tax liability being protested by Mr. Serwatka and his cohort.

    That tax burden alone ( lasting for the next 35 years of TIF District lifespan, and rising annually with inflation) dwarfs the annual Village budget.

    I agree voters should look at specifics rather than generalities.

    Specifically, at median tax Rates above 3.66% (Lakewood neighbor Woodstock property tax rate is 4.66% of home’s fair market value), McHenry County is in a Tax Rate Crisis causing a death spiral of Home values.

    (Tax rates are capitalized into home values. At 3.66% compared to national average 1.4%, McHenry County homeowners lose over 2.26% of home value annually relative to homes all across America.

    (This is in addition to paying an additional 2.26% of home value cash tax each year in return for no additional value—the same social services which are supplied to communities nationwide by law, for property tax rates averaging 1.4% of home’s fair market value).

    This local excessive tax rate was caused by specific borrowing , spending, hiring, and bonus policies transacted by those current officeholders insisting that Elected officials must maintain unquestioned control over disposition of public funds.

  7. How does one eat an elephant?

    One bite at a time.

    This is very simple childlike wisdom.

    What special kind of stupid thinks a small improvement in government isn’t worth pursuing because it’s small?

    Small good is how expansively great things are grown.

    Mustard seed imagery and all that.

    When the SA cuts his budget, the Sheriff finds efficiencies, Serwatka fights for tax relief in a small municipality, Susan continuously fights to educate how D200 is directly destroying Woodstock property values, Mark writes about the most destructive economic force in the pensions, Nob calls for attention to the role of government….

    On and on.

    It all matters to the financial and overall health and welfare of our communities each person takes responsibility.

    These few and others are taking on a great deal of the responsibility we should all take.

    To tell anyone who is fighting to make a difference their contribution is too small to matter shows the idiocy of the one who criticizes these efforts.

    To take an idea from Susan, if you want to pay more taxes the government will always happily accept your money.

    For those of us who are tired of government stealing our cup of morning coffee we applaud every effort made to stop them.

  8. Sounds like the utterly stupid are taking pages from the Hitlery handbook.

    (I see a few useful idiots that will make excuses for why they deserve to be enslaved by the powers of Hell.)

    Pray against this demonic attack –

    Demons are nigglers; they never completely go away.

    You must rebuke them over and over.

  9. Searchable board packets are part of government Transparency 101 aka Transparency for Dummies.

  10. Received and Noted the Fear is showing in the samo samo old regime,

    There was a Reason for Tea Party doings back in Britain do any of these people remember why that was???!…

    its time for the people to manage THEIR MONEY as none of you know how to take care of business economically!

  11. I disagree that tax levies “are primarily set by the county.”

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