.

No Space in Highway Dept. for Wheatland Offices, Jarnagin Says

Meanwhile, Supervisor Todd Morse said he has asked for an opinion on the legality of the meeting at which residents voted to take no action on obtaining new township office space.

The Wheatland Township highway commissioner said Wednesday the township board is welcome to use his building for meetings, but there's not enough space for the supervisor and assessor offices.

The to the highway department's three-year-old, $3 million building on 103rd Street was broached Tuesday night as residents debated the merits of different solutions for the township's space problems.

Ultimately, the resounding vote was to take no action at the special meeting attended by nearly 200 township residents.

Meanwhile, Supervisor Todd Morse said he questioned the legality of the Tuesday meeting and said he has asked the township's law firm, Ancel Glink, to provide him with an opinion.

In rejecting the other options, which included building a new town hall next to the highway department, buying an existing builiding, leasing space or remodeling the existing town hall on 91st Street, residents also approved a resolution calling for the sale of the two acres on 103rd Street. That was the land on which a new town hall would be built.

The city of Naperville sold the land to the township and a clause in the contract gives it nine months to buy it back, township Trustee Joe Hudetz said. The land is valued at about $350,000.

“We need to give notice to the city and that option period needs to start – that needs to happen right away,” Hudetz said. “All the people who were (at the Tuesday meeting) were very representative of the township and what they want, and we need to respect what they voted for.”

Morse said he won't take any action until the report from Ancel Glink is presented.

“I represent 56,000 taxpayers,” Morse said. “I’ll wait for the report.”

Morse did not attend the Tuesday meeting, opting instead to go to the township planning commission's hearing on plans for a construction debris recycling center proposed for land on 119th Street, near Plainfield High School.

Chicago attorney Doug Ibendahl, who was hired by residents to guide them through the process of voting on the building options, said Tuesday night that the meeting was legal.

Ibendahl was brought into the situation earlier this year when residents feared Ancel Glink was providing legal opinions that supported the township board majority, which wanted to build a new $1.5 million building on the 103rd Street land.

Trustee Karl Karantonis said that once the Ancel Glink report is in hand, the township board will vote on whether to accept the findings. Karantonis has been an outspoken critic of new the building.

At the Wednesday meeting, Karantonis asked Dayton Jarnagin if he would allow the township to hold its meetings in the highway department's conference room. The issue has become more pressing as township meetings draw bigger crowds every month.

“I’ve never been against it,” Jarnagin said. “I told Todd a long time ago we could meet over there, but the supervisor says he wants to meet here (in the existing town hall building).”

That said, Jarnagin said there is not enough room in the highway building to provide permanent office space for a dozen supervisor and assessor employees.

A handful of citizens scolded Morse and Trustee Doug Haddad for not attending the Tuesday meeting. Katherine Havel, of Naperville, complained about the “adversarial attitude” some township officials have toward the people they represent.

Tricia Tillotson praised the work of the volunteers on the space study committee.

“This is something you as a board should have done,” Tillotson said. “Citizens should not have to take time out of their day to do your job.”

River Talk August 13, 2011 at 08:06 PM
There have been Republicans only on the board, for some time now. We need more Independents and Dems so the board isn't rubber stamping everything, like they tried to do with the new building.
Sheila Raddatz August 13, 2011 at 09:40 PM
I'm not casting stones--that is the last thing I would want to do with my name boldly out there--you look pretty good today by the way, is that a new shirt you're wearing? (being silly because I don't know who you are--haha) Obama had a great marketing platform, he rallied the troops. I am not sure what I think of him but you have to commend him on the avenues he took to get into office. That was a great strategy--go after the new voters--a lot of people just didn't like the outcome. Personally, I don't think I will be happy in the presidential elections till Ronald Reagen makes a miraculous comeback or Hillary decides to run. haha There is goes.....I am a HILLARY supporter. Let the slams begin. haha
John August 14, 2011 at 02:08 AM
Is there really 1.5 MILLION in excess tax money "collected" by the township??? I want my damn money back.
Jane August 14, 2011 at 04:20 AM
You want your money back. How's that concept working with the State gov? How about the school board? The federal gov? Here's the latest Tea party report, from other Tea Party groups. It's coming out in a couple weeks "WE THINK THE WHEATLAND TOWNHIP IS AN EXAMPLE OF HOW WE WANT OUR TAXES TO BE USED: 1. The lowered the tax rates (yes, proven, in the presentation that Mike Crockeet and others refused to show, but it was on the web 2. And they accumulated money to buy a building and build land after they got a vote from the people. This argument continues to be misleading due to your leaders NOT wanting to disclose the other side of the coin.
Mike Crockett August 14, 2011 at 09:43 AM
"Jane" please list the tax levy requests from 2004 through the FY 2012 request so we have some facts. Then I will show everyone here how the $1.5 million accumulated was "saved." I already have those numbers but wouldn't want to be accused of lying about what the real numbers are. As for those tax rates... If taxes are raised from say 2004 to 2009 to set aside money not needed for day to day operations and I "save" that additional tax revenue to build a building say for somewhere above $1.5 million... Once I have "saved" enough, lets say I take the levy request back down some, but not where it was before I started "saving" for that building I wanted to build....so that now I have lowered the tax rates some... have I really been honest about being fiscally responsible? Jane I will talk facts all you want. As for the Tea Party, I have never been to a single TP event, meeting or otherwise. I have sent the local TP material on fiscal issues to disseminate to its members if it decided it was useful. Finally, the name is Crockett.

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