To have a seat on the Oswegoland Park District board, one’s primary residence must be within the boundaries of the district.
Park Board commissioners, who are often at odds with fellow Commissioner Len Wass, claim that Wass, elected to the Park Board in April 2011, does not consider Oswego his primary residence.
At the Park Board meeting last week during the board's tax levy discussion, Wass was vocal for cutting the tax levy by 20 percent, while the rest of the board wanted the levy unchanged.
During the conversation, Wass told the public gathered at the meeting, “They want me off the board so they don’t have to hear me stand up for you.”
That remark sparked a discussion of Wass’ primary residence. Board President Bob Mattingly tried to explain the situation to the public. He and commissioner Deb Krase had discovered earlier in the year that Wass had declared his primary residence to be in Somonauk, which is in LaSalle County.
But earlier he had declared his home in Oswego, on Adams Street, to be his primary residence.
Wass told the Aurora Beacon News this week that he named the Somonauk home as his primary residence for tax purposes and that he votes, lives and was elected in Oswego. Wass said he’s discussed the matter with his lawyers and all say his residency claim for Oswego is legal.
During the tax levy discussion Wass suggested one way to save the district money.
“You want cost savings?” he asked. “Stop spending money investigating me. There’s your cost savings.”
Mattingly told the Beacon the cost so far to the district to study Wass' residency has been about about $1,500.