Jack Franks Threatens Effective County Board Opponent, Chuck Wheeler – Part 1

This is a repeat of an article I ran earlier, but the accompanying one running tomorrow is not.

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You might guess that having spent most of my government service in the legislative branch that I identify with it most closely.

(Yes, I know I was in the Executive Branch when I worked in the Executive Office of the President’s Budget Bureau and as McHenry County Treasurer, but my heart is with the Legislative Branch.)

Most of McHenry County Board Chairman Jack Franks’ experience has been in the Legislative Branch, too.

All of it was spent under the protection of House Speaker Mike Madigan.

Madigan provided the leadership example for Franks.

A recent example:

When State Rep. Scott Drury refused to vote for Madigan for House Speaker, Madigan took money away from him by not appointing him as a committee chairman.

Madigan’s not so subtle message:

“Do what I want or you’ll be punished.”

Chuck Wheeler expresses frustration at the restrictions imposed by the Federal government.

Now we have Franks threatening McHenry County Board member Chuck Wheeler with criminal prosecution.

That’s what came out at the Human Resources Committee meeting this morning (1:28 minutes into the meeting; listen here) when Mike Walkup revealed he had found a letter from Franks to Wheeler in his Administrative Building mailbox.

In his “Dear Mr. Wheeler” letter, dated Monday, April 3, 2017, and addressed to his home, Franks writes,

I have been informed that you refused to vacate the meeting room during closed executive session on March 28, 2017 at the McHenry County Mental Health Board regular meeting.

As you know, Dr. Paula Yensen, the duly appointed liaison, was present to represent the County Board.

Jack Franks

You did not have actual or implied authority to represent the County Board or government at that meeting.

As such, your attendance was solely as a private citizen.

For you to make representations to members of the Mental Health Board that you were entitled to appear in a closed executive session because of your position as an elected official, despite clear legal restrictions proscribing your presence is inexcusable.

Nonetheless, you improperly and illegally attended a closed session where sensitive personnel matters were discussed.

Article 4, Section 1, Rule 1.5 of the McHenry County Board Rules state that “d]iscussions held in executive session are considered privileged and confidential.  Not County Board member shall breach the confidentiality of privileged information.”

As a result of your actions, the attorney/client privilege has now been compromised and the individuals who were discussed at the meeting may now be entitled to all  information discussed.

Pursuant to 5ILCS 120/3, you have now subjected both yourself and the County to potential civil action.

Please also be award that 5 ILCS 120/4 provides for violations of this kind to be prosecuted as a Class C Misdemeanor with a punishment of up to 30 days in jail and a $1,500.00 fine.

It will be up to the State’s Attorney or a special prosecutor to determine whether you should be prosecuted for your conduct.

Please be award that should you be sued civilly, it would be improper for the State’s Attorney to defend you, as you acted solely as a private citizen and not as a member of the County Board.

Please be advised that further actions may be taken.

Should you wish to discuss this matter, please contact me.

Very truly yours,

Jack D. Franks
McHenry County Board

cc:  McHenry County State’s Attorney’s Office, Members of the County Board.


Jack Franks Threatens Effective County Board Opponent, Chuck Wheeler – Part 1 — 11 Comments

  1. Why did Cal post this, then delete the post an hour later?

    Whatever the blog post slated for tomorrow is, it’s stale, old news.

  2. Maybe tomorrow’s post will be relative to the intimidation of Heisler and Thorsen?

    Who else has been intimidated by the “round mound”?

  3. The States Attorney recently clarified that any County Board Member has the right to attend any closed session meeting of any board or commission whose members are appointed by the County Board, so Chairman (and lawyer) Frank’s comment that Mr. Wheeler attended “solely as a private citizen” is incorrect and the entire attempt to threaten him is without merit.

    It’s really amazing how often someone who is both an attorney and long time state legislator can’t get the law right, ie. “Pensiongate”.

    That’s why nothing was pursued.

  4. Mike, aka Swampbuggy, I’m curious, why did you get rid of all your conservative friends?

  5. Sunshine blogger: Could you please re-post that ridiculous story on your cat and Guns N’ Roses? I would love to see that shotgun next to your cat again. Also, how about some more old political signs from the 70’s? Tic, tock, tic, tock, tic, tock…

  6. Edgar County Watchdogs also made that point this year (11/21/2017 @ 3:25 comment).

  7. In Big Chief Many Chin’s defense, this might not have been a deliberate attempt on his part to intimidate.

    There is a very good chance that he is simply clueless about the law.

    I don’t think anyone has ever had a conversation with Jack Franks and walked away dazzled by his brilliance.

    A very wise man once said

    “Never ascribe to malice that which can be adequately explained by stupidity.”

  8. ‘Moderate’ your very name is a phony. You work for Jacko Franks!

  9. What is jacks record as an attorney.

    Not the firm but his.

    How many felonies reduced to jaywalking things like that….

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