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Ed Schock increased mayor’s pay 8-fold

16 March 2011 RS 75 Comments

The City of Elgin paid nearly $8M to buy this luxury country club in 2004 The City of Elgin paid nearly $8M to buy this luxury country club in 2004 (Photo by The Elginite).

An investigation by The Elginite reveals that Elgin Mayor Ed Schock oversaw what may be the largest increase in mayoral pay in the history of Elgin. Mr. Schock voted twice for an increase: first to quadruple and then to double mayoral pay. Mr. Schock’s predecessor Mayor Kevin Kelly earned only $1,800. Today Mr. Schock makes $15,000 as mayor, more than an 8-fold increase in pay for the part-time position.

The first vote came in 1998, when Mr. Schock, then a councilman, was running for mayor. He voted to more than quadruple the salary for the position of mayor, raising it from $1,800 to $7,500. Mr. Schock won the race and was the first mayor to receive the new salary. Just eight years later, he again voted to increase mayoral pay, this time doubling it to $15,000.

Elgin has a council-manager form of government, with day to day duties being handled by a city manager. The mayor and members of the city council are part-time officials who meet formally every two weeks to vote on city business. They also have ceremonial duties, like ribbon cuttings, that they are expected to attend.

Normally members of the city council do not rely on income from their city council salaries. Councilman Dave Kaptain, who is challenging Mr. Schock for the position of mayor, has not accepted a salary from the city since the year 2009. He has reserved his city council salary from prior years for election expenses.

At least one candidate for city council says he will not accept a salary either. Mike Robins, who also ran in the last election, states that:

If I am elected to the council, I will opt. out of the $10000.00 yearly salery, and I will also opt. out of the health insurance and all other perks. This is not a full time job, it is part time and it is of a volunteer nature. Why should your tax dollars pay for a yearly salery, health insurance that I would only have to pay fifteen percent on, and a city credit card to use for city purposes?

In addition to his $15,000 salary as mayor, Mr. Schock, also receives a public pension of $88,100 from School District U-46. He retired as a school principal at the age of 56. His wife, a retired teacher, also receives a pension from U-46. The Schocks also own multi-unit rental properties in Elgin, from which, presumably, they draw income.

Mr. Schock is now seeking a record fourth term as mayor. He has raised large sums to defend his seat against the most competitive challenger he has faced since being elected in 1999. His opponent, Dave Kaptain, is a popular member of the city council who has been active for years in Elgin’s civic community. Mr. Kaptain told The Elginite that if elected mayor he will “vehemently oppose any pay increase” for city council or mayor.

Voters will go to polls on April 5th to pick Elgin’s new mayor and city council lineup, as well as board members for U-46, Elgin Community College and Gail Borden Public Library. Early voting began on Monday this week and ends on March 31st.

Related:
Dave Kaptain: Candidate for Mayor
City Council Candidate Profiles
Mayor Ed Schock sees no conflicts of interest
Mayor neglected basic infrastructure
Businesses fund mayor’s election campaign
Ed Schock increased mayor’s pay 8-fold
Ed Schock blamed for U-46 lawsuit
Schock denies responsibility for U-46 lawsuit
Daily Herald Schock endorsement draws heat
Another year without a 4th of July
Lawsuit puts liquor commission in spotlight

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75 Responses to “Ed Schock increased mayor’s pay 8-fold”

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  1. T Sandor says:

    The most recent raise in council compensation was not initiated by Mr. Schock. As a member of the council I initiated a review of council compensation and introduced the ordinance to raise the compensation of councilman from $5,000 to $10,000 and Mayor from $7,500 to $15,000. The new compensation went into effect after the 2007 and 2009 elections. This was the first increase since 1998.The current levels of compensation are lower than comparable compensations in cities the size of Elgin. Members of the council do far more than attend 2 monthly meetings and some ribbon cuttings as RS has opined. As a former member I know that those that served during my tenure spent a minimum of 15 hour per week on city business and at some times much more. Also, as a council member I did not submit expense reports, except for out of town airfare and lodging while on city business. All other expenses were paid out of my council compensation. If you add up the number of hours spent by council and Mayor, you will find that the compensation is less than one can make working at McDonalds. RS I understand you have an agenda, but your headline is both misleading and uninformed. I am not a big Ed Schock supporter but I can say without a doubt that he did not initiate the increase in pay nor did he orchestrate it in any way. It was a vote by the entire council, both in 1998 and 2006 that increased the salaries and if you would have done a better job of investigation you would have found that the 1998 increase was initiated under Mayor Kelly but under state statute could not take effect until after that election when Schock was elected Mayor.Also, if you fancy yourself an investigative reporter, why hide behind a nickname. Tell us who you are and stand behind your words.

    • Craig says:

      “The current levels of compensation are lower than comparable compensations in cities the size of Elgin. Members of the council do far more than attend 2 monthly meetings and some ribbon cuttings as RS has opined.”

      Some have suggested that, in general, pay for some elected officials is too high.

      “If you add up the number of hours spent by council and Mayor, you will find that the compensation is less than one can make working at McDonalds.”

      As RS pointed out, unlike the mayor (illustrated by nature of his willingness to not only accept a salary but also increase it), Mr. Kaptain sees the opportunity to serve his community on the council as one of a voluntary nature.

      If you or I volunteer our time for a good cause, while making even less than we would spending the same time working at McDonald’s, there’s a reason we don’t quit and apply for fry cook.

      Certainly this story is noteworthy in the context of the current national climate. David Kaptain and Mike Robbins both said they would not accept a salary, and I think that resonates with a lot of voters—with good reason.

      Without questioning any intentions of the current candidates (I honestly believe they all have the best of intentions in their hearts), people have begun to question the value that politicians actually bring to the table. And why shouldn’t they?

      In recent history, we’ve gotten subsidized condos at the top of the housing bubble, more city run operations that lose money (golf course, centre), and new and increased business fees, just to name a few. What good has all this done?

      Why do we believe that a council of 7 people, made up of regular guys like you and me, who don’t know most people in Elgin, can manage our money better than we can do it ourselves? It’s a fallacy that not only causes problems and malinvestment here in Elgin but is chiefly responsible for the troubled economy we’re still experiencing. (How many years into “recovery” are we now? It’s got to be at least two…)

      Also, I just walked by the downtown Quizno’s, which is now closed…I guess those brick sidewalks didn’t fix downtown after all…Who would’ve guessed?

      • rm says:

        Craig, you seem like a reasonable guy with a good understanding of economics, the price curve, and supply and demand.

        If one understands that we “get what we pay for” in most aspects of our lives, why do we expect good government from people who are serving on the cheap or for free?

        And the concern is especially pressing in the case of Dave Kaptain. Kaptain’s gesture of “volunteering” to run Elgin is a small price to allow him and Sandy to get their hands on city government and appropriate its resources to implement their personal “sustainability” crusade.

        The Kaptains are just the latest iteration of that long American tradition of humorless, childless, droning cranks who live outside the money and market economies and want to “reform” everyone else to their standards of the New Jerusalem. Kaptain and his wife don’t need salaries; they exist on their own fanaticism, the adulation of a little band of similar nuts, and some sandwiches from In the Neighborhood.

        Dave Kaptain’s biggest public policy fear has always been that Elgin might attract some “affluent” residents. There’s not much risk of that now. But Dave knows that middle class people who have real jobs in the market economy and who live independent lives and can afford to buy things… those people won’t buy into the Dave and Sandy Crusade for making Elgin a sustainable, communal barrio.

        There are lots of reasons to attack Schock’s record in Elgin. The mayor’s salary isn’t one of them.

        • Craig says:

          I am wary about Kaptain’s “sustainability crusade” as well—I question what real good a city government can do with edicts that couldn’t be accomplished much more efficiently and successfully if it were done instead through voluntarily education and action.

          However, I don’t think “you get what you pay for” applies here. If we paid someone $400,000/year to be mayor, I’m sure you would have a few more candidates come out of the woodwork, but I don’t know how much better they would be…

          As one who believes in the power of markets, (and I think you’re there with me) I see other incentives for people to take action besides money. People volunteer for and donate to charities because it makes them feel good. People pay extra for “Thom’s Shoes” because they donate a pair for every one they sell. (Google it!) And maybe, just maybe, there are some politicians that do it not for the money or power. (Doubtful I know…but possible.)

          Sure, Kaptain’s “no salary” bit is in part a publicity stunt, but turning down a free $10,000 is not easy unless you’re really really rich, which I don’t believe Dave to be.

          So, while Kaptain is by no means the ideal candidate, this is something I’d put in the “plus” column.

          • Craig says:

            That should read: “maybe there are some politicians that don’t do it entirely for the money or power”

          • Dave Reinert says:

            What kind of a mayor will a volunteer be? Not the kind I want running my city. I want a paid mayor who is transparent to the citizens and also held accountable. I don’t want to hear “but I do this job for no pay” everytime a candidate gets question on an hot issue.

        • Bob says:

          “If one understands that we “get what we pay for” in most aspects of our lives, why do we expect good government from people who are serving on the cheap or for free?”

          That’s the reason we’re paying $160,000 salary for a city manager. The mayor is not the city manager.

    • Warreen says:

      I have lived in Elgin all my life.

      I remember our city as it was, before the Hemmens,when there were businesses in the buildings torn down for parking and the Hemmens. Where did those businesses goe? I remember before Larkin High School was there, and watched the city expand to Rte 47 from Wing Park Blvd city limits.

      It apalles me to see the city as it is now. We have not run this city like a business.

      We have watched the downtown area fall to disrepair. It all started with the creation of a mall we didn’t need. What has been the failure rate of those businesses that tried to hang on after the mall and since the “new road infastructure”? Bad decisions over the years have costs this city millions!

      How is it that Dundee, St Charles, Geneva and Batavia have retained their downtown areas and still benefited from development along Randall Road. Not Elgin.

      Did we really need to put a boulevard median on Wing Park Blvd and make it difficult for those residents to get in and out of their driveways? How much did that cost and how much will it cost to maintain it over the years once the concrete starts to be effected by the snow plows. Whose genious idea was that to spend our tax money on?

      And now more money on a roundabout at the intersection of Summit and Rte 25? The one on Gifford has been driven over many times. Why spend the money on another one like that. It’s wasteful of our tax money!

      And now our mayor, who is an educator not a business man, gets a raise? How much money has he and our other leaders cost this city unnecessarily over the years?

      We need new ideas and leadership that make economic sense and for the good of all the people!

      • One Vote says:

        Well said.
        I’m guessing you are not Councilman Mike “Warreen”. Your comments are far too realistic and logical for that.

    • paul says:

      Informative report and wonderful thread comments. Provides a deeper understanding of why TS is no longer on the council.

      ” Mr. Schock, also receives a public pension of $88,100 from School District U-46. He retired as a school principal at the age of 56. His wife, a retired teacher, also receives a pension from U-46.”

      And he’s going to get a $200 property tax rebate from the city of Elgin because he’s on a “limited income” and needs the money more than rest of us who are apparently on unlimited incomes!!!! Is that the gist of what the other former city council member TG said here today?

      • Terry Gavin says:

        paul or whoever you are, posting distortions like this about comments I made regarding low income widows living on SS only & the rebates under an alias means you’re nothing but a coward!

        I work with many seniors both in & out of Elgin who are barely making it & obviously Ed Schock is not one of those people, you’re a joke.

  2. Dave Reinert says:

    Anyone who serves without compensation has a hidden agenda. It is usually that taking compensation would put them in a higher tax bracket so they would have to give the federal and state government all that they received. I learned a long time ago that no one takes a job that requires a 15 to 20 hour work week for free. They can save paying extra taxes by writing off the compensation as vounteer work including travel expenses. Come on Craig, get with the program. Any smart voter can see through their motives. It is a goood reason not to vote for these people.

    • Craig says:

      Dave, in the other article on campaign finance, you insist that noble politicians can receive significant campaign contributions without being beholden to the interests of donors, even though recent history is rife with evidence to the contrary.

      Yet here, you assert that any politician refusing a $10,000/year salary must automatically be so corrupt as to have some kind of hidden agenda for doing so.

      Which is it?

      • Dave Reinert says:

        Stop taking my remarks out of context. Your a typical media man. Read my post again and you figure ou what I’m suggesting. Using the trick of not taking compensation to get votes has been around for years. Saving money on your taxes is something everyone wants in their life. Using one to get the other is smart and clever.

        • Truth in Elgin says:

          As I can tell the Kaptains live quite frugally, and don’t require, nor want, luxurious lifestyle. Come on guys $15,000 is paltry when you have retirement funds and live within your means. This couples main purpose is to promote a sustainable agenda. As I’ve been able to ascertain that means living within our means, and creating a city that will support itself. He also talks about bringing jobs to the area, not losing the 2,000 jobs for Elgin that Schock did.

    • Bob says:

      “no one takes a job that requires a 15 to 20 hour work week for free”

      Certainly not you, Reinert. You weren’t even satisfied with the healthy salary and benefits they gave you as Elgin Township Supervisor. You had to bilk taxpayers out of another $500,000. One would have thought that after serving three years in prison for embezzlement you would express some remorse for what you did. The court ordered you to pay back $1,000,000 and you paid, what, $3,000? You sure have a lot of free time to blog for somebody who owes the taxpayers of Elgin nearly a million bucks.

    • Truth in Elgin says:

      Does that include priests?

      • Truth in Elgin says:

        DR said yesterday the insurance company picked up the bill. Therefore, he didn’t have to pay up. The boys in the ‘good old boy network” sure take care of one another. Didn’t the Mayor buy a condo for his daughter in the townhouses by the boat. Let’s see if Plote, or Krezmary contributed in the last election, or maybe again in this one. Let’s see if his partner Gilliam now living at Fountain Square got any money from that builder. Follow the money it’ll always tell you why things happen the way they do.

        If Kaptain accepts no money from large contributors who is he beholden to? No one! If he chooses not to accept compensation because he doesn’t need it-more power to him! He’s transparent, and the other guy doesn’t even know what that means.

  3. T Sandor says:

    These are elected positions, not volunteers and the compensation is in line with the job being performed.Both the 1998 and 2006 increase passed unanimously which included Mr. Kaptain in 2006. Mr. Kaptain has made a personal choice to not accept his compensation. We elect the members of the council to make decisions on our behalf.This is the system of government we have in the United States. If you dont feel that any one or more of them are doing a good job, vote them out, or better yet, run for office and see if voters trust you with making decisions. The closing of Quizno’s is not good for downtown, but I can tell you that the construction was only one of many factors that caused their closing.

    • Craig says:

      Tom, good point on Kaptain’s vote. That’s definitely relevant here.

      I’m not necessarily saying that there shouldn’t be a salary of some sort for these positions. I’m sure it’s a lot of work, and if you’re taking time away from a job, I understand why it may seem necessary.

      However, I do agree that someone in Schock’s position (retired with a nice pension), might do some good in returning the money to taxpayers.

      Then again, keeping money taken from taxpayers is (or would be in Kaptain’s case) in no way hypocritical for either candidate, really.

      • Common Sense Clarence Hayward says:

        No one should have to work for free and doing what needs to be done takes a lot from your life.

        In my opinion both some Councilman and Councilwoman as well as the Mayor have not earned their salary because of what it has cost the city in some bad decisions and then there are some decisions that the city has benefited from.

        Based on the needed time to read the information, research, be available for Elgin citizens 10,000 and 15,000 is reasonable to me.

        The most precious asset we all have in life is time with our families and taken all that time away from their families should be worth what they are getting paid to do the job duties the job entails.

        If you don’t agree with the performance of the Mayor then vote him out for performance issues but not for his meager little salary he gets.

        I will vote him out for performance issues and because I don’t think he should accept big donations from people who may or already have come before the council such as builders and others like the two grocery stores who are giving him 1500.00 each.

        I can’t imagine any reason the grocers would have to give him 1500.00 other than perhaps they are hoping to ask the Mayor for something. I hear they might want a liquor license for their stores.

        If Mayor Schock controls the majority voting block on the council then he has tremendous power.

        Your vote for Dave Kaptain can make the Mayor powerless.

        • Dave Reinert says:

          CH, you have some real weak reasons to vote against a Mayor who has done great things for our city.

          • Truth in Elgin says:

            Kaptain is retired living on a pension. This is what he chooses to do in his retirement-serve a community he cares about deeply.

          • Common Sense Clarence Hayward says:

            In other posts at this sight I go into the big reason of the Mayor’s involvement with the Futterman Law Firm in 2004 as being my big reason.

            How about spending all that money on a softball field for the Bandits? Where have they gone with our plus 450,000 dollars spent on that field?

            Ed has had more than enough years to fix the city.

            It is time to vote Dave Kaptain in.

        • Truth in Elgin says:

          I thought the mayor was one of 7, and just as powerless as the rest. You mean to tell me he’s not?

          • Common Sense Clarence Hayward says:

            If he has three votes on the council that are willing to vote his way he has a majority vote and can have his way until voted out of office.

        • Truth in Elgin says:

          CH Yes, Elgin Fresh Market is coming before Schocks Liquor Board. Do you think that’s why they contributed so much money?

          • Common Sense Clarence Hayward says:

            I don’t think Elgin Fresh Market needs a license to sell groceries. They already have that. I can imagine it is profitable to sell liquor or beer and wine.

            I was a produce manager with Eagle Foods for many years and the overall profit margin in a grocery store back then when all was said and done was about 1.5%.

            Thank goodness produce, meat, non foods all had bigger profit margins because they contributed to raising that very slim margin in groceries.

            Perhaps Elgin Fresh Market wants to help compensate for the low margin in the grocery portion of their store by selling either liquor, beer, and wine, or some combination of the three?

          • RS says:

            Clarence, I think the number is $711,000 not $450,000. The mayor said last night that it was “a good investment.”

    • Truth in Elgin says:

      What were some of the other factors that caused them to close? We keep hearing it was just the construction.

      • Common Sense Clarence Hayward says:

        The franchiser Quiznos required it’s franchisees to update some system I believe.

  4. Shocked by Schock says:

    Seriously??? He’s already living high on the hog while a good deal of Elgin is living below the poverty level. MY tax dollars are padding his salary even more?????? It should be illegal for the mayor or any public official to be able to vote themselves a pay raise. My taxes go up, gas goes up, the cost of living goes up and he makes enough and lives in a mansion now. I can barely pay my mortgage, yet I know that somehow I’ll be paying for his increase in wages.

    Let it be noted that I did NOT vote for this idiot.

    • Dave Reinert says:

      Do you know of any government body where the members don’t vote on their pay increases. If you do, let me hear about them.

  5. Combos says:

    What’s missing from this article is Kaptain’s yearly pension amount. Should Kaptain and the Mayor and his wife, for that matter, be penalized for making their career decisions? Their investment choices of property is not relevant to anything. Unflattering, Elginite.

  6. Bill says:

    as a 23yr old who has lived in elgin his whole life, i have seen this city change, mostly for the better. but i have talked to people who serve the city of elgin and have heard about some qualities and actions of mayor shock that most would never hear about. i like that downtown is being renovated and they’re making the architecture look like how this area looked in the early 1900’s. however, i’m a 23yr old i like the night life. elgin’s is now non-existant. ‘the roadhouse’ bar and ‘mainstage’, we’ll call it a theater, opened over a year ago. it gave young people a reason to go to elgin. it revitalized elgin’s nightlife and it had a lot of potential. mayor shock promised then multiple incentives and never made good on his word. not surprising because of what i have heard as to the character. i feel like he is two-faced and is only worried about himself. not saying he is, but he remind me of Blago. he has become complacent with his position and his time is up. he may have been a great mayor when he started but it time for someone new.

    dave- someone that is willing to take no pay or incentives might have a hidden agenda OR he might be a genuine person who is sick of what politics has become in this country and wants to start a trend of not being a selfish greedy egomaniac. it’s ok to be weary, but at worst he would be equal to our current mayor.

    • rm says:

      Bill, thanks for your comments.

      I’d be grateful if you could give us some reasons why you believe that the change in Elgin has been “mostly for the better.”

      By the way, the only I source I ever heard who claimed Schock promised incentives to the Roadhouse was the owner when he was winding up the business and, I heard, apparently stiffing some liquor suppliers in the process. Not a witness with great credibility.

      • Bill says:

        like i said, i’m going on what i heard about the character of mayor schock re: roadhouse. could be trumped up, but only one had something to lose. mayor schock seemed like he promised more than what he was ready actually give. the change that was mostly for the better was the housing that went up across from the Centre and the housing that went up between the casino and where roadhouse was. unfortunately they were asking WAY too much for the places considering the surrounding area at the time. putting up high class housing in a, at best, middle class area is a good idea. it was geared to bring in higher caliber people, but nobody was willing to pay the asinine prices with neighborhood behind butera 1/4 mile away. they priced themselves out of the market. again, it’s time for change. i noticed nobody disagreed that mayor schock has become complacent in his position. at the very least a mayor not taking any money or incentives gives the city manager more money to spend on improving the city.

  7. Common Sense Clarence Hayward says:

    RS,

    Thanks for the update on the cost of bringing the Bandits to Elgin on the taxpayer’s dollars. I thought it was 711,000 but I was not sure. I wonder how the Mayor thinks that was a good investment?

    • rm says:

      My understanding is that a lot of that money went into a nice softball facility and upgrades for Judson University. Maybe someone else can confirm that and provide some more details.

      In any event, it was a nice way to pass public money to a church-affiliated school. (Not that I’m suggesting that Judson isn’t a good thing for Elgin.)

      • RS says:

        You know I was there just a few days ago trying to find the improvements but I could not figure out what they actually did. Nothing looked to me like it could possibly have cost $711,000. I have to admit I am a little mystified. Somebody else will have to describe exactly what they did there.

        • enoughalready says:

          Not sure I can account for all of $700,000, but facility is state of the art. The field is amazing, and there is an indoor training facility located in the gym.

          But note, I said the FIELD. The stands were adequate, at best. Bathrooms were in a trailer and concessions were located in tents. Parking was mostly along the road, and on a practice soccer field. It was treacherous returning to your car in the dark after a game.

          Judson rents the indoor facility for $150/hr. Not many local softball organizations can afford that, but there is a team or two that do. Besides Judson, the Northern IL Lightning Travel League is based out of there. And Fox Valley Sports Academy uses the field occasionally for their leagues, but I do not know what is paid for that. But all monies go to Judson.

          I realize women’s softball may have a limited audience. But given a shot, it was good entertainment and the tickets were not too expensive. The Bandits had a great team, with several nationally well-known stars. But no parking, no beer, and sitting on top of the river getting eaten by mosquitoes, I think, all ensured it never really got off the ground.

          I cannot help but wonder - if that same money was invested in a different location, perhaps on ECC or connected with the Sports Complex, the entire endeavor might have fared better. ((I do not remember all details of initial deal. But Judson location was supposed to be temporary, but then the economy crashed. Understandable of course. But moving the facility *I cannot remember final location* was tanked in favor of our new golf courses))

          Let me just state again that I realize this sport is not everyone’s cup of tea. But my family and all our friends like softball - and the Cougars - and prefer these games to big $$ Chicago professional games. This summer, we are taking our entertainment dollars to Rosemont…

          • enoughalready says:

            Like rm, I want to say Judson University is a great asset to Elgin. It’s just that years and $700,000 later, Judson is the only one benefitting from our investment…

          • mike_c says:

            The City of Elgin provided funding for Bandits to help Elgin become more of a destination city. This $700k did not work to our advantage, but the city has not given up on the idea of Elgin becoming a destination city. We are now building a multi-million dollar artist colony in downtown. According to one councilman, the city paid $750k towards this project (the mayor indicated that no city funds were used). The other funds are coming from the state, federal government, and Artspace non-profit (which is probably funded through federal granting agencies). The total cost is ~$14M. Once completed, the artist colony is expected to attract more people to downtown.

            The city is then planning a $32M expansion of the sports complex to attract more people to Elgin via sports tournaments. It seems unlikely that $32M will ever be recovered through additional increases in sales tax revenues. Plus, the expansion will probably cause the city to spend additional money providing new programs to Elgin residents. The city already spends over $700k per year on recreational programs.

            All together when the city expands the sports complex, builds another $39M rec center on the westside, provides $2.5M to repair the eastside rec center, and makes needed repairs/renovations to the downtown rec center we will have about $150M invested in recreational infrastructure. And this doesn’t include neighborhood park improvements, improvements to Hemmens, or golf course construction. Perhaps a better option would be to eliminate the unnecessary spending and reduce the property tax rate so that families can decide for themselves how to spend their money.

            Michael Curtin

  8. Combos says:

    Women’s softball peeks at the high school level. The Bandits won the championship and still no one cared in Elgin, Chicago or Illinois. The Olympics dropped it as a sport. The media ignored it because the public ignored it even with Jenny Finch. Not being able to sell beer at a Baptist college was never a mystery. The tickets were cheap and still no one came. Many of those in attendance were given free tickets. It was and is a high-risk venture.

    • enoughalready says:

      Hey Combos -
      I admitted several times that softball has a unique following. But you do not have to be insulting, and saying the sport peaks at the high school level just shows how ignorant you are about it. The reason it was dropped from the Olympics? It is truly a North American sport - every year it was USA and Canada winning.

      In addition to the high schools, local colleges, and little leagues, do you know how many travel leagues there are within, say, 25 miles of Elgin? Wasco, Algonquin, Dundee, St Charles, Geneva, Batavia, Huntley, Streamwood, Elgin (has 2), Bartlett, just to name a few. Many of them are fielding more than one team at the different age levels. Say what you want about these people, but with so few athletic opportunities for girls, there were dollars there to be spent on a reasonably priced practice facility if nothing else.

      A base for fan support was there. It just was not built on. Will they do better in Rosemont? Hard to say. But if I were to compare the success of the Kane County Cougars to what’s happening with the Schaumburg Flyers, it’s hard to make any predictions.

  9. enoughalready says:

    Back back to the topic -
    The salaries paid to the Mayor and Councilmen do not seem extravagant. As our taxes rise, salaries and benefits are lowered, pensions are being warred over, aren’t we all saying, “Hey when are the politicians going to take a cut?” Kaptain offers to do just that, and we wonder about his sneaky motives? Which way do we want it?

  10. Darth Bill says:

    1800 to 15000 is not an 8 fold increase. It is an 8x increase. “Fold” is use to describe a paper folding. I think 8-fold from 1800 would be 1800^8 or 1.102×10^26. Quite a difference.

  11. Morse Code King says:

    It is one thing to say don’t vote for Moeller and Warren. (See Brian on the Hill comments after recent AFLA forum story.) But the pro-Kaptain people must get together and publicly endorse two council candidates.

    I believe that failure to do this, will assure that Warren and Moeller will walk right onto the council, even IF Schock looses. That is because all the pro-Schock people will vote for Warren and Moeller. But the pro-Kaptain people will split their votes up between probably 6 candidates. Divided and conquered!

    I think the highest profile pro-Kaptain/anti-Schock leaders must get together and endorse a pair of candidates to counter the clear choice the pro-Schock people have. Of course this would ideally be Kaptain, Prigge, Dunne, Terry Gavin, Tom Sandor, and so on.

    I don’t think it is too late, as the pro-Kaptain people I have talked to haven’t figured out who to vote for! But my good friends who are supporters of Mayor Schock are clear and ready to vote for Moeller and Warren.

    • Crysta says:

      Excellent point that many have overlooked. Schock-Moeller-Warren signs always seem to appear together, which means those who vote for one will likely vote for the entire bloc. But driving and running around town, I haven’t noticed any similarities among the other candidates.

      I wonder if Prigge, Dunne and the other councilmen not currently up for re-election might tip their cards a bit…

      • LFG-A says:

        I’ve been seeing John Steffen and Tish Powell signs in conjunction with Kaptain and/or Schock signs… so there is another collective election-strategy opinion out there - just got to get the community discussion going and the betting poll on “who” finishes “where” started.

        Have seated council-members publicly endorsed incumbent and/or new hopefuls in the past?

        I would hope some of our former council-members/leaders could step forward and show some direct support to some of the fresh blood out there and their choice for Mayor. The people will listen, read and hopefully be informed in their vote.

        • Dave Reinert says:

          “I would hope some of our former council-members/leaders could step forward and show some direct support to some of the fresh blood out there and their choice for Mayor. The people will listen, read and hopefully be informed in their vote.”

          Who is going to listen to a bunch of current and former council members. You read all of the post on this board and the news media accounts of how bad the city has been operated. Why would anyone listen to those who are the leaders of all the mess created by these individuals during their time in office? The record is clear on what they did or did not do while serving. Give me the name of one person on the current council who has a positive agenda for the future of the city.

          It will be the same for the next four years. Don’t hold your breath while waiting for a differnt Elgin. We have 7 peole who occupy chairs and vote in favor of the city manager’s agenda meeting after meeting. The unfortunate part is Elgin has a WEAK city manager. It shows the mindset of those members who voted in favor of this guy. Inform me of a maor project this guy has accompished. Things happen in Elgin by accident; not by leadership. They happen because we are in the right place at the right time. The federal and state government and the boat are the driving force behind Elgin’s accomplishments. The people on the council get the recognition and credit for all of the grants collected from these sources. Don’t believe, for a minute, that any member on the council is overworked.

  12. Brian on the Hill says:

    Morse Code King:

    I agree 100%. People are confused on this and may not be able to see the connections from Schock to Warren and Moeller. If Schock, Steffen, Moeller, and Warren are elected, that would leave Dunne and Prigge as the only two on the council who are not disciples of Schock. Sounds like a lot of 5-2 votes coming.

    I went to Dunne’s Facebook page and and Prigge’s Facebook page and web site and didn’t see anything about endorsements. It may be controversial doing so, but it would be so helpful if Dunne and Prigge were to endorse some people. Their public support would go a long way right about now.

  13. Brian on the Hill says:

    Facts:

    Moeller lives in NENA.

    Moeller is endorsed by Schock.

    Moeller’s neighborhood has been the location of some major crimes committed by illegal aliens in the past handful of months.

    Moeller does not support any more efforts to rid Elgin of illegal aliens.

    Moeller has very few straight answers to campaign questions.

    Opinion: How anyone could vote for a candidate who will not support initiatives to rid even her own neighborhood of the same illegals who are committing crimes there is beyond me and common sense.

  14. roosterman says:

    Schock has been in the majority since 1st getting elected to council. In that time period he & his puppets have cramed liberal spending down the throats of the Elgin taxpayers. His arrogance is so total that on controversial issues he calls the vote thus ending public debate because he’s got the majority! So much for open & honest govt. We need Kaptain to win to bring transparency back to city hall! Morse Code & Brian on the hill are right on target. Just say no to Schock’s puppets Moeller & Warren.The prob is the rest of the candidates are an unknown commody & appear politically weak.

  15. Herguth says:

    I have no political respect for anyone who is soft on criminals and can be so easily intimidated by tough, relevant questions to the point of running away from a blog site she freely entered for political gain.

    Is it Moeller’s fault she is being pushed by Schock as a puppet mate to Warren? No.

    Is it Moeller’s fault she has no specific ideas on how to move Elgin forward, just large circles of nothingness? Yes.

    Is it Moeller’s fault she is in the sand when it comes to illegal aliens destroying not only Elgin, but her very own NENA neighborhood? Yes.

    A thousand times, yes.

  16. One Vote says:

    Though technically a non-partisan election, I like to figure out what party they come from. This will be key if we fight the battle of Madison here with the SEIU.
    Elgin has been governed by liberals for a decade now, and it shows.
    Here’s my take from liberal to conservative.
    Steffen - Moeller - Powell - Warren - Shaw - Nowak
    Among the rest, Curtin appears Libertarian.
    Czymmek is Richard Bennett with a pony tail.
    McCarthy and Robins are in the unclassifiable fringe.
    As for the current council, Dunne and Prigge are ideological opposites with a common enemy - Ed Schock. Gilliam is liberal, but out for himself. He will go with the flow to keep his health insurance.
    This analysis is worth precisely what you paid for it.

    • Terry Gavin says:

      One Vote you’ve hit the nail on the proverbial head! It’s very sad that a city as great as Elgin has such a weak(liberal) field to choose from! At least we’ve got a shot a unseating the mega liberal incumbent Mayor & open up city hall to the PEOPLE. Well done.

    • RS says:

      Nowak is a Libertarian.

      Gilliam is retired on a $130,000 pension. According to what I’ve heard, he commutes to Elgin for city council meetings from his home in Arizona. He’s not poor. I don’t think he’s doing it for health insurance.

      • One Vote says:

        Nowak has a view of limited government, to be sure. But only a liberal would call him a libertarian.
        Poverty is not Gilliam’s problem; picking up new coverage in his current physical state is.

        • Yep ! says:

          More OUTRAGE !! Ridiculous pensions .. doesn`t even live here ?? to boot .. ?? Something got lost over the last decade or so concerning affordability.

  17. Terry Gavin says:

    Again I must comment as a naive candidate in 1993, 1995 & 1999 I personally didn’t think about the pay scale I wanted to make a difference in Elgin! From 1995-1999 we council people made $1,200 a year before taxes, a tiny sum for basically a full time job if you’re a pro-active representative of the people. No complaint here just a statement of fact! I do find it a bit obscene that the salary is now $15,000 a year w/ perks but the quality of candidates has not risen. The point is simply this the job is tough if you are conscientious but the rewards are you represent the people plain & simple! Some seem to thing they deserve money just to serve & that’s just plain wrong!

    • One Vote says:

      Gavin’s right. U46 is a much bigger animal to oversee, and they don’t get a dime. If the money is any consideration at all for deciding to run, they are in the wrong business.

    • TSandor says:

      I rarely if ever agree with Terry Gavin, but on this post I must
      concur. For those who are serious about serving on the council, little if any thought is given to the amount of compensation and perks that go with the job, whether at the $1,200 level received during Councilman Gavin’s term, the $5,000 per year I received or the current $10,000 per year. If one does the job, conscientiously and diligently performs the duties of the office, the true reward is knowing that you have tried to make Elgin better than it was. I also agree with Councilman Gavin, in that as a candidate, councilman and political analyst for WRMN, I feel that this is one of the weakest groups of council candidates in the past 20 years.

      • terrygavin says:

        I’m honored that Councilman TSandor agrees w/ me on not 1 but 2 different issues! Thanks Tom but the truth has no agenda & kudos to you for understanding that… Our city,state & country is in crisis & much of it has to do w/ liberal/progressive policies. We must all remember in public office the bill payers are we the tax payers!

  18. A person in Elgin says:

    I hope he does not get re-elected. He has enough money, hes not bringing in jobs and he sure is making it hard for his “tenents”. He doesnt take care of his property, which by the way I rent from him. There is no reason why he cant fix things that are going bad in the places he owns, if he cant do that he sure cant run a city. Thats why hes the cause of a lot going wrong in elgin……. He should NOT be re-elected…………

  19. Combos says:

    “Political analyst for WRMN”???

    Give me a break! LOL. No, give me TWO breaks, I need them for that comment. I didn’t know losing big in THREE elections, one as an incumbent, AND carrying a chip on your shoulder for a non-paying gig on the radio makes one a “polictical analyst.”

    That’s an A-list laugh for the day.

  20. TSandor says:

    Its always nice to hear from one of our listeners. Glad you had a good laugh. Keep listening, whoever you are.

  21. Change council Now! says:

    The Elgin City Council took steps to help Senior Services Associates expand its downtown space and approved a contract with the police union at Wednesday evening’s council sessions.

    Acting on a suggestion Councilman Mike Warren brought up in February, the move would allow Senior Services to expand beyond the 800 square feet it rents at 105 S. Grove Ave. to include another 6,900 square feet of room close by at 107 S. Grove and 205 Fulton St. All three sites in question are overseen by Elite Management, 164 Division St., located in the Professional Building downtown.

    Warren, who like Mayor Ed Schock is running for re-election, noted that Schock told him he knew Ron Cope, one of the owners of the Professional Building, who also own the properties in question. Schock put the parties in touch.

    Councilman John Prigge tried to convince the council to table the measure, stating that because Warren only brought it up in February, it came up too fast. He said he was not 100 percent comfortable with it and suggested a decision wait until May, after the election and with a new council seated.

    His motion failed 4-3, with Prigge and Councilmen Rich Dunne and Dave Kaptain, who is running for mayor, wanting to table it and Mayor Ed Schock, Councilmen Mike Warren, John Steffen and Bob Gilliam negating the move. Only the same four voted for moving the motion forward to an upcoming regular meeting for approval, but that was sufficient.

    Steffen mentioned that other options had been explored for extra space, to no avail. While not against the project per se, Kaptain objected, claiming that it appeared council members tried to negotiate a deal before bringing it to staff.

    “Staff should be there from the very beginning,” Kaptain said.

    “There was no deal cut,” Warren said, noting he took offense at what Kaptain was implying.

    “This isn’t like this is the first time this has occurred. There is nothing new here,” Schock said, strongly asserting no deals have been made.

    “The timing of this is exquisite. I wanted to take the ‘politicalness’ out of it. I don’t want that for this team,” Prigge said.

    City Manager Sean Stegall mentioned that the purchase of service agreement with Senior Services was due to be on the meeting agenda regardless of its amended nature. To leave it off might seem equally political, Stegall said.

    As set at the committee of the whole session, the agency would receive $10,170 in 2011 as part of the agreement to provide services to local seniors and about $14,000 more to cover seven months’ rent for the additional space this year. The city then would have to come up with extra money to help pay the rent for two years beyond that. The money would come from Grand Victoria Casino money the city receives.

    Rent on the property would be $3,600 per month, which would include all utilities. A code inspection would be done prior to any agreement. Senior Services would continue to pay $800 a month out of its own funds. The deal is contingent upon Elgin Township pitching in $833 a month, which it is set to discuss at its April 6 meeting. The city would contribute $1,967 a month toward the rent.

    No

  22. Tom of Elgin says:

    After dealing with a totally uninterested Mayor Ed Schock at a hearing on a homeless shelter a couple of years ago when I was not a resident, I look forward — now that I live in Elgin — to vote this guy out of office!