Among the issues plaguing delivery of care in Illinois skilled nursing facilities

Part Two of the nursing home sales & ownership series; Part One is here. Almost a year ago, in the cause of shedding the landlord collectively known as Hunter Properties, City of DeKalb signed a settlement agreement with them. DeKALB – After a series of unresolved code violations, the City of DeKalb and Hunter Properties…

Nursing home sales and ownership, and our local situation

Part One: A referendum is the right thing to do Recently the DeKalb County Board signed a contract with Marcus & Millichap (M&M) that has two phases: first, M&M as consultant in deciding what to do with our DeKalb County Rehab & Nursing Center (DCRNC); and secondly, M&M as broker of a sale with a…

We deserve an examination of the nursing home failures

The DeKalb County Board used more than an hour of its Committee of the Whole meeting last week to start discussing options in determining the fate of DeKalb County Nursing & Rehab Center (DCNRC) in responding to its financial crisis. In my opinion, the board and administrator have acted responsibly and transparently from the moment…

Support of the clerk’s office helps protect DeKalb elections

The Daily Chronicle published a story last week about the DeKalb city clerk’s absenteeism at city council meetings. Sasha Cohen’s attendance record since taking office is running about 50%, and the city council is whining about it. Unfortunately, the article is missing context, such as the double standards and hostile environment at play. While I’m…

Letter urges investigation of the housing authority’s contracts with the mayor’s IT firm

Derek Van Buer’s latest letter to DeKalb County Board regarding Housing Authority of the County of DeKalb (HACD) urges authorities to investigate evident irregularities with HACD’s service contracts with the DeKalb mayor’s firm, Sundog IT, including allegations that HACD is not following HUD procurement rules nor its own procurement policies in approving and executing contracts…

Unauthorized compensation of city commissioners: the fix should be simple

City of DeKalb has been paying compensation to at least two of its advisory commissions without proper authorization. Members of the Planning & Zoning Commission (P&Z) and the Board of Fire and Police Commissioners both receive what look like meeting per diems in the expenditure records. But it turns out the payments aren’t properly authorized…

DeKalb Township is getting things done

With the election shenanigans and rough start of the new township board last year, I didn’t expect much from this public body at first. But eight months into it and they deserve credit for pro-public policies and practices. Meetings This week, for example, the board reversed an earlier decision to remove agenda background material from…

We could strengthen open meetings laws by plugging the ‘walking quorum’ loophole

I decided to find out more about Sycamore’s new city manager (who comes to us from Wisconsin) and ended up adding to my vocabulary. A ‘walking quorum’ is a series of gatherings among separate groups of members of a governmental body, each less than quorum size, who agree, tacitly or explicitly, to act uniformly in…

Housing authority roundup

Last summer, City of DeKalb did a favor for the Housing Authority of the County of DeKalb (HACD) by approving a plan to make a segment of North Sixth Street one-way to relieve the housing authority’s parking problem. Mind you, there’s no evidence of any parking issue. Meeting minutes and requests for information turned up…

Letter informs DeKalb County of an illegal stipend paid to a housing authority commissioner

Derek Van Buer has been filing Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests with the housing authority since last summer, and now is summarizing concerns he’s found for the DeKalb County Board (and where applicable, HUD officials). The first letter to the county, which alleges the housing authority has failed to follow travel reimbursement policies, is…