City: Breach of Contract? No problem!

Near the end of the Council meeting tonight, I argued against Re:New DeKalb’s getting another agreement with the City of DeKalb because of breach of contract. Re:New has not been turning in the documentation called for (which could then be accessed via the city through the Freedom of Information Act) nor has it been following the Open Meetings Act. I can verify this provision has been ignored for at least two years.

The mayor mumbled something about having Legal look into it, then called for a vote on the resolution with no further discussion. Re:New gets $45,000 of our money this year and follows whatever rules it wants to. Or none, I guess.

A lot of other business was conducted tonight, almost none of it good. Use this as your council meeting open thread if you like.

Lawlessness Complaint

Yesterday I mailed a complaint about City Council’s failures to adhere to the Open Meetings Act. It is on its way to the Illinois Attorney General, cc’d to the DeKalb County State’s Attorney.

I selected three violations occurring in May and June to include in the complaint, beginning with the decision to address the financial consultants’ (EPI) report after FY2010 budget approval. Continue reading Lawlessness Complaint

Lawlessness Letter

Sent this in last week and was told Monday it would be published in the Chronicle “in a couple days.”

DeKalb City Council passed a resolution June 22 authorizing the city manager to reduce the number of firefighters for Fiscal Year 2010 as a means to present a balanced budget to the community. Let me make it clear that I am no fan of the firefighter layoff option. However, a resolution is a directed plan of action, and the FY2010 budget ordinance—approved on the same day—depends on this plan of action.

Yet following a 45-minute closed session during a special meeting on June 29, Mayor Povlsen suddenly announced that the city was still in negotiation with the firefighters’ union. In short order, Council violated its own Resolution 09-41, (budget) Ordinance 09-34, and the Open Meetings Act, which prohibits decisions being made in closed session.

City government is becoming a law unto itself. Continue reading Lawlessness Letter