Thursday, March 28, 2013
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Thursday, March 28
Dear Editor: Jeff Lawson & Scott Volpe have more than earned our vote for reelection as Oswego Village Trustee. They have balanced our budgets; found and passed on cost savings to taxpayers; rescued the water and sewer fund from insolvency; and returned Oswego to a solid footing while lowering the Village’s property tax rate. Let’s keep them working for the taxpayers of Oswego. Alvin P. “Phil” Smith for Park District Commissioner— Summa Cum Laude CPA graduate from NIU; DePaul Law School graduate, licensed attorney in Illinois; experienced financial auditor with two CPA firms, and most importantly a strong fiscal conservative with fresh ideas and the taxpayer’s interest at heart. He goal is to lower property tax rates. Greg O’Neil …
Tuesday, June 5, 2012
The newly-released transcript of the Dec. 28 closed session, during which the Oswegoland Park District Board violated the Open Meetings Act, shows a board at odds with one another.
The just-released transcripts of a closed-door session in December offer a glimpse at the tensions between members of the Oswegoland Park District board, tensions that Board President Bob Mattingly said haven’t improved since. The written record of the meeting has been made available at the behest of Kendall County State’s Attorney Eric Weis, who rendered his opinion last week that the park board violated the Open Meetings Act during this session. It was Commissioner Len Wass who complained to Weis about the violation, and the transcript shows that the conversation was largely about Wass himself. The Illinois Open Meetings Act provides 28 exceptions under which public bodies can meet behind closed doors, but Weis said portions of the …
Thursday, May 31, 2012
The Oswegoland Park District board member suggested a target of 20 percent in cost reductions, but other board members disagreed, saying staff is already working to cut expenses.
Should the Oswegoland Park District set a formal goal for spending cuts, and stick to it? That’s the question raised by Board Member Len Wass last week, during the park district board’s regular meeting. And though other board members did not take to the idea, saying the district is already holding the line on costs where it can, Wass still believes it’s a good one. Even though the district kept the tax levy the same in 2012 as it was in 2011, Wass said, the district’s portion of his tax bill went up. That, he said, is due to a declining tax base, and the only way to combat that is to trim spending. So Wass proposed passing a board resolution to set a goal of reducing district expenses by 20 percent. It is the second time he has proposed a …
Monday, May 28, 2012
The Kendall County state's attorney delivered his decision on a violation that occurred in executive session last year. Commissioner Len Wass informed Weis of the violation.
Kendall County State’s Attorney Eric Weis has delivered his decision on allegations that the Oswegoland Park District violated the Open Meetings Act in an executive session last December. In a memo dated May 16, Weis said he reviewed the minutes, audio recordings, and written transcripts of a closed-door session that took place on Dec. 28, 2011. Weis concluded that portions of the meeting did, in fact, violate the Act by straying from the allowable topics for an executive session. “A review of the relevant transcript shows that a lengthy discussion regarding the conduct of board members was done in executive session in violation of Section 2 of the Act,” Weis wrote. It was Park District Board Commissioner Len Wass who initially alerted …
Tuesday, February 7, 2012
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Tuesday, February 7, 2012
It was with great sadness that I read your reported account of the last Park District Board meeting wherein Mr. Wass related he was once again the target of intimidation and bullying from the majority members of the board. It seems they are still attempting to get him to “go along to get along”. Kudos to Mr. Wass for resisting and bringing the matter to the public attention. Since no denial from the majority board members was reported, I must assume the description offered by Mr. Wass is accurate. I thought this matter had been put to rest after the public humiliation of Mr. Wass by the board during the board workshop held at the Little White Schoolhouse on 26 October 2011. It seemed that all had moved on to conduct the business of the…
Thursday, February 2, 2012
Commissioner Len Wass again battled the board majority Tuesday night.
The discussions of executive sessions of local elected boards are rarely made public, but that’s just what happened at Tuesday night’s Oswegoland Park District Board meeting at South Point Center. Commissioner Len Wass read from a statement, saying he again suffered from what he called intimidation from fellow board members during a Dec. 28 executive session meeting. The attack, he said, was the second such incident. The first came at the district’s Oct. 26 board workshop at the Little White School Museum, during which Wass sparred with the board over park district spending. “… At an executive session held on Dec. 28, 2011, this board once again continued its assault on me, asserting among other things, that I should seek the board’s …
Monday, October 31, 2011
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Monday, October 31, 2011
On Oct. 26 I attended the Oswego Park District workshop/meeting in Oswego. I was appalled at how the board and staff treated an elected official, Len Wass. Mr. Wass was scheduled present his campaign numbers he represented as wasteful spending by the Board. Even before Mr. Wass began his presentation the attack team (Bob Mattingly, Deb Krase, Danielle Ebersole, and outside Lawyer Dirke Price) started the attack, often interrupting Mr. Wass with criticism and abuse. The Board suggested Mr. Wass’ numbers were wrong as he had compared the Oswego operating budget to the actual funds expended by the comparison districts. OPD actually expended, according to the Board $9.6 Million. The budgeted/comparison number used by Mr. Wass was $18.2 …
Thursday, October 27, 2011
Commissioner and Oswegoland Park District critic Len Wass presented his campaign financial analysis to his fellow commissioners Wednesday morning at the Little White School Museum. It was less than warmly received.
The tension between members of the Oswegoland Park District Board continued Wednesday morning at a four-hour board workshop held at the Little White School Museum. Commissioners met to discuss a wide range of issues, but spent most of their time arguing about newly-elected member Len Wass’ campaign study of park district spending. Allegations that Wass manipulated the district’s budget numbers to shed a negative light on spending stretched out over his nearly 90-minute presentation of his analysis, which was widely disseminated during the campaign earlier this year. Commissioners agreed to allow Wass to provide his analysis at the workshop meeting after a report in the Aurora Beacon News said that his claims that the park district spends …
Tuesday, September 27, 2011
A $60,000 loss last year and another possible $100,000 loss this year has officials asking questions and making cuts.
Mounting losses at Fox Bend Golf Course have Oswegoland Park District officials taking a hard look at cutting costs and turning the red ink to black. The golf course may lose more than $100,000 this year because of what Park District Executive Director Bill McAdam says is a three-pronged problem—a bad economy, bad weather and local competitors who have offered deep discounts. “Nobody around here thinks a loss is acceptable,” McAdam said. “We’re just trying to stop that from happening again next year.” A report delivered to the Park Board’s golf committee earlier this month showed that the course was down about 2,700 rounds from district projections, causing a a deficit of $101,000 in greens fees alone. However, rounds have picked up as of …
Friday, August 26, 2011
Deep division on the Oswegoland Park Board surfaces on Thursday night.
As much as Commissioner Len Wass may want them, term limits on the Oswegoland Park District Board are not likely to happen anytime soon. The reasons are twofold. First, the district’s attorney has said state statute doesn’t allow the park board to impose term limits on its members, and the board majority led by longtime commissioner and President Bob Mattingly have no interest in doing so, either. Wass and his fellow commissioners clashed on that and other issues at Thursday night’s meeting, which included more debate on overspending at the Park District. “There is no statutory basis for imposing term limits on the office of park commissioner” in the park code, said Mattingly,reading from an email from the board's attorney. “Unlike some …