How did City of DeKalb end up paying the library’s expansion debt?

Mr. Teresinski expressed his frustration that the library debt became the City’s obligation rather than the library’s. Mr. Teresinski commented there is no revenue that the City is using on the library’s behalf so it’s a pure add on to the City budget. City Manager Nicklas stated it was his understanding that the library needed…

The intersection of ‘Crime-Free Housing’ and Chapter 52 is where your kid’s behavior gets you evicted

The best thing City of DeKalb could do for families who live in apartments is to pull Chapters 52 and 38 from its “Crime-Free Housing” ordinance during the current amendment process. This is because these chapters describe “unlawful activities” that are not serious crimes but could still trigger eviction. Chapter 38 is the city’s liquor…

Series: Prosecution of City Ordinance Violations

Our local schools employ city police as “school resource officers” (SROs) via intergovernmental agreements, and have for years. The objectives are enhanced safety and better relations between law enforcement and the public. What people don’t know is many Illinois schools, including District 428, have turned to SROs to take on disciplinary roles for school infractions…

What FOIA has revealed so far about prosecutions of children in City of DeKalb

Since last spring, I’ve submitted several requests with City of DeKalb for information about school resource police officers’ ticketing of children in local schools, a practice in more than 160 school districts statewide, including District 428. Here, I want to summarize data I’ve obtained that readers might find useful in evaluating future postings on the…

DeKalb’s unable to produce hearing notices for ordinance violations — here’s why it’s important

Below is a copy of a citation issued in DeKalb last spring for the ordinance violation of “Fighting within the City.” According to a file obtained via Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request, the person connected to the violation ended up owing the city $1,147.50 for this violation and was sent to collections. I asked…

DeKalb must overhaul ordinances if it insists on prosecuting kids

***2nd Update 10/7/2022: This week in the DeKalb Municipal Code I’ve found a provision for “court supervision” that includes community service, but am leaving this recommendation in the post because at this point I don’t know if or how it’s used. ***Update 9/15/2022: Pro Publica is hosting a virtual event on the subject of police…

Ward meeting discovery: Alderman McAdams is having trouble keeping up

Fifth Ward alderman Scott McAdams held a ward meeting last week. I’ve listened to a recording of it that’s making the rounds. One item of note from the meeting is the alderman’s admission that he’s not read the draft update of DeKalb’s comprehensive plan even though the city is collecting public input. I’ve transcribed his…

DeKalb County and the prospect of multiple and unknown buyers of its skilled nursing facility

On Facebook, I promised this week to trace the connections between the Hunter Properties people and Saba Healthcare, LLC, one of the companies interested in purchasing DeKalb County Rehab & Nursing (DCRNC). The connections may be an issue for people in the area, because City of DeKalb spent a lot of time and money pursuing…

Determination: DeKalb must release locations of license plate readers

The Public Access Counselor of the Illinois Attorney General’s Office has determined that City of DeKalb improperly denied a Freedom of Information Act request for the locations of its license plate reader cameras (LPRs). DeKalb fought release of the information beyond all reason. This post examines three ways the city embarrassed itself doing it. The…

The depot’s place in a comprehensive development plan

During DeKalb’s last Planning & Zoning Committee (P&Z) meeting, a member of the public asked whether Union Pacific Railroad intended to sell its old train depot. The reply: City Manager Nicklas responded he has had several conversations regarding the rumor of Union Pacific selling the depot, however as far as he knows they are not…