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August [2011] open thread

1 August 2011 RS 68 Comments

Pinata, Armando's Supermarket Pinata, Armando's Supermarket (Photo by The Elginite).

The regularly scheduled monthly open thread. Discuss what you want.

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68 Responses to “August [2011] open thread”

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  1. LFG-A says:

    Any thoughts on Elginista’s recent blog post “What can Elgin learn from Detroit?” it’s getting some traction on Twitter and the blogosphere in the past week, IMO its worth a read and has some great comparisons. With one of my clients being the Wayne county Clerk and ‘living’ in Detroit part-time in 2007/08… I saw a lot of the ‘economic’ and government decline firsthand but an increase in HOPE for the residents and businesses first-hand.

    http://elginista.com/2011/07/24/what-elgin-can-learn-from-detroit/

    • Crysta says:

      Thanks for the plug, LF! Yes, please, feedback would be appreciated. I’m sorting through some ideas to determine where to go with it.

      • RS says:

        Sounds great. You should get some people together and do it (a manifesto).

        The most interesting point from your post was about the cost of failure. That’s something that I noticed in Elgin several years ago–I can’t say if it’s the same today, but the retail rents are not low enough in the downtown to encourage businesses to locate there.

        Elgin under the last regime also tended to put up barriers to the establishment of new businesses with what I referred to then as a Taliban mentality (most of the clique is now gone). They harassed businesses like the Mission, even while the had proclaimed (through a master plan) that the goal for downtown Elgin was a 24-hour city with broad entertainment options, etc.

        • paul says:

          “Elgin under the last regime also tended to put up barriers to the establishment of new businesses with what I referred to then as a Taliban mentality”

          Nothing’s changed. Witness the young man who PLANNED to operate a peddle boat rental business off festival park. Requirements. Peddleboats (obviously), life preservers (reasonable,) GPS on each boat, 2-way radios on each boat, DNR licensing of each boat, a city business license, a jet ski, 2 employees, certification in CPR.
          Unsurprisingly, the peddleboat rental business ain’t gonna happen in Elgin.

  2. Terry Gavin says:

    While all of you seem so happy with everything, you seem to have lost your edge. Where’s the coverage of the presssing issues of the day? Racism at EPD, citizens protesting U-46 policies, the evil tax rebates for seniors,& expansion to those on public aid! Oh where are you men of principal that use to run this blog?

    I come here for cutting edge commentary & all I see now is “cubaya” lets all get along. I thought this was a place for real opinions to be heard. Guess I was wrong…

    Meanwhile Elgin is no Detroit, it would take 30 years of nothing but liberal policies to achieve that. Oh like what’s going on in Chicago.
    Oh did I just say that how unPC of me…

    • One Vote says:

      [snark on] You’d best watch your mouth, Terry. The city fathers might hire an assistant city manager in charge of social justice.

  3. Terry Gavin says:

    Thanks for the advice One Vote. Would they need a separate position for “Equity” or would that be a combined position?

    • One Vote says:

      They could try combining them, but I’m sure that would be far more than a full time job.
      Or they could just bump the salary of Counsel to cover the role. Oh wait, they already pulled that stunt.

  4. b4real says:

    I agree we seem to be giving a pass on the latest news out of PC or fear of whatever.

    1. U46 What are they thinking, the story should be on the low test scores and the under performing schools that have to offer students the choice to change schools out of the district this effects the students and the city image as not a place for publc education. We need school vouchers, we have quality schools available in Elgin.
    2.Tax Rebates for a select group, no matter who started it and when it should be cut, psst we have a budget problem I thought.
    3.The immenent tax increase comming to us all because we failed rein in the spending. The CEO is only as good as the staff below him or her and changing the top and leaving the entire body and expecting change is not logical thinking.

  5. Terry Gavin says:

    A question for discussion is everyone happy with the new Elgin Budget Task Force? Well at least we’re pretty close to having “diversity” status. I wish them well!

    • What were they thinking? says:

      It’s nice the budget task force is stacked with people from the public sector. We sure wouldn’t want to look at this from a businessman’s perspective. No, then there may actually be some new ideas. How many on this committee have actually had to meet a payroll?

    • LFG-A says:

      I’ll reserve my right to comment until after I witness the first meeting on August 9th. Although I did find it amusing that a reporter recently called them the “Elgin Budget Super Friends” :)

    • RS says:

      I thought this was supposed to be a budget task force. Instead it’s a diversity panel. I mean how do you morph from one thing to another like that? It’s just bizarre.

      Oh well, I guess the cost cutting ideas will have to come from elsewhere and be publicized through outlets like this.

      You all have the power of FOIA, so use it to get the numbers you need and make your own recommendations here, at other outlets and at city council public comment periods.

  6. selective memory says:

    http://elginet.wordpress.com

    A simple re-write…
    August 2, 2011 – Here’s the way I think it should have read….

    Elgin Police Officer Caught On FBI Wiretap

    An Elgin Police Officer faces several disciplinary suspensions for being caught on an FBI wiretap associating with known gang members. Most recently, Officer Phil Brown was inadvertently caught associating with known gang-members during an FBI wiretap of gang-members in Elgin. Brown is also known for his escapades in Bartlett leading police on a wild chase and then being charged with DUI & Fleeing and Eluding Bartlett Police officers after attending the wedding of one of his superiors. Brown was somehow acquitted of those charges in court but still faced a police department disciplinary suspension for the incident, originally investigated internally by Lt. Sean Rafferty. This whole thing begs the question: If he was “acquitted” , why was he still receiving a disciplinary suspension from the police department? I guess we ordinary people don’t need to know that information.

    While Brown was being deposed for his suspensions, he suddenly recalled an incident that occurred almost 15 years ago involving the Lt. that investigated his suspensions, and produced a photo he claims, just appeared in his locker one day, of police officers in front of an open to the public display from an Indiana newspaper proud of their 1928 Pulitzer Prize making story exposing the KKK, mocking gang-bangers by making gestures with their hands. Neither photographing the display, or the hand-gestures they depicted in the photograph illegal, but Brown then added that his superior made racial comments during the incident as well. Again, nothing illegal. The incident however was leaked to the press by someone who obviously wanted to divert attention from Brown, and turned into an ordeal that instead of standing with their fellow well-decorated officer of more than 20 years, the City of Elgin’s Police Administrators and a some on the City Council decided to cower to the “R” word (once again!), and also suspend the Lt. who originally investigated Brown for the DUI, Fleeing and Eluding incident in Bartlett.

    Bear in mind that Brown had failed to disclose any of these accusations of his superior to anyone in the department since the incident’s occurrence over 14 years ago. Probably because at the time, he didn’t see anything wrong with it. But now, it’s a convenient diversion that takes the attention off of his clusterf*ck of a career as an Elgin Police Officer.

    As sickening as that act alone was, newly-elected Elgin City Councilwoman Tish Powell, the only black woman on the Elgin City Council, chimed in to make a statement to the papers that this incident shows the “Festering Racial Tensions” in the city. Mind you, the council-woman’s memory must be as bad as that of Officer Brown since she had never made mention of her claims of “ Festering Racial Tensions” in Elgin before, or during her bid for the Council seat she won in April. Ms. Powell also needs to realize that she was not elected for her popularity or skin color, as much as she was simply by default of people not choosing to retain one of the (then) sitting members also running.

    Elgin Police Lieutenant Sean Rafferty
    I have to say it pains me to see an officer, the caliber of Lt. Sean Rafferty, falsely accused of anything, much less something as controversial as this is being made out to be by a police officer who should not even be a police officer. When a police department’s administrators and political leaders throw one of their own under the bus in an effort to quench the thirst of people who simply crave all things “racially or politically incorrect”, we discover that there is no more objectivity or common sense in the top tier of local government, and if that is the case, where are we really headed as a City??

    Just sayin….

  7. Terry Gavin says:

    OMG… And there are people in our community who have the gall to call Lt. Rafferty “racist” me thinks differently! Bless you selective memory for putting these facts on here!

    It’s time we as a community move on from what color our skin is to what character we’ve got within us!

    Lt. Rafferty has been done a great injustice for what I don’t know but the city council/mayor should look deep within it’s soul & ask the question” is this right?” If it’s not right then apologize for making “baseless” accusations against this officer.

    For the good of community & our nation we must look within ourselves & ask the question is this right!

    • RS says:

      I don’t think the issue is whether he’s racist–I’m not sure anybody has accused him of that. He was suspended for two incidents, for one of which at least, there is physical evidence in the form of a photograph. It is important for the city to take action to send a message that there is a zero tolerance policy for that sort of behavior.

    • raingirl says:

      Until those of you who are Non Black let me enlighten you. You will never understand the pain suffering and racial bigotry and police brutality constantly imposed on the black community even today as we talk about the merits of whether Lt. Rafferty’s guilty as charged or not. Too many of EPD’s officers are guilty of malicious and well known racial profiling and discrimination and hateful treatment without just cause blacks simply based on the color of their skin. I know that many non blacks and some blacks are in denial this country has moved backwards not forward on race relations and as long as blacks are seen as worthless this will never change. We will never be able to bring this subject to the table and have an open truthful discussion because too many on both sides are closed minded and deny the obvious. “Racism in the city of Elgin is alive and very active” If you want a debate bring it on.I will enlighten you on the history of this racist community dating back at least 50 or more years and will provide proof of my take on how Elgin as a whole treat blacks in this town. As for as Tish Powell she has every right to comment and speak her mind on how she sees EPD and the entire city as a whole. Until you have walked in the shoes of a black living in this city or in this country save your opinions of who is guilty and who is not.There are many officers who have as many as 300 allegations of police brutality and no one will do anything about it. Rank does not make a person honest,or qualified to fulfill the duties assigned.too many times complaints have been swept under the rug and never dealt with just like the case of the Hispanic guy that Officer Mike Sullivan alleged placed a cell phone on to enhance his chances of getting a promotion when in fact the report failed to speak of the drug charges levied against the guy that had to be dropped because the officer actually placed drugs on him at least that is the word on the street. It is clear that Elgin’s finest is not so fine they do a lot of dirt under the cover of blue. There is an old saying there is nothing that goes on in the dark that won’t come to the light. Elgin has run it’s course many things will surface now because the new kids in town will force their hand where as blacks were never endowed with enough support to accomplish what the new folk will assuredly master.Blacks are hunted down by certain officers on a daily basis while crime occurs right before their eyes but if the criminal is not black they just don’t seem to see the offence.Race is an issue that should be discussed only when there is a genuine effort or desire to change what is in the hearts of the people. Things that are offensive now and in the past seem to be acceptable for a select group of people today I ask the question Why?

  8. Terry Gavin says:

    “What sort of behavior are you referring too” RS?

    The implication of his wrong doing & the comments of Ms. Powell is based on a “racism” charge. And if you bother to read the few comments attacking this officer on the DH website you’d know they’re saying he’s a racist! Totally unfounded but the implication is out there & fostered by a council person. Apology necessary now!

    Wake up & read the facts… Unless you’re reading the facts/evidence differently then I’m reading them.

    • RS says:

      I don’t see why we would be concerned about some commenters on DH saying he’s racist. I don’t think any city official has said that he’s racist. But he has been reprimanded for the incidents that violate the rules of the EPD as well as common sense for a police force. You simply cannot joke around as a police officer in that manner. The public needs to have full confidence that everybody will be treated fairly by people who have the power to arrest and send people to prison.

      I have no basis for commenting on Powell’s statement. She may be right or wrong. Chances are that she’s right, just because every organization deals with racial tension, gender tension, age tension, etc. I didn’t find her comment particularly inflammatory.

      • b4real says:

        RS is correct, action should have been taken and was, now lets move on. I’m sure no one thinks posing for a photo in front of that image was a good idea even years later or sending the joke, Do you? The public should demand high standards from those with power period. Would you pose for the same picture? MOVE ON!!!! The officer has been punished and will have to make amends for his actions to his family and friends, but he did it to himself.

        • Bill O'Neill says:

          Again, my personal opinion….

          Tish Powell should resign. She can no longer be seen as objective or genuine. She had the opportunity of a lifetime and she blew it in one sentence.

          EPD needs to weigh the issues at hand, against what would/could surface in “Discovery” if a law suit were to develop. I honestly don’t know if they’re capable of making the right decisions now though.

          I didn’t write that blog because I wanted to shock people. I wrote it because they’re railroading someone, for no reason.
          Lt. Rafferty did nothing wrong in the photo. You have to keep in mind that:

          1. The majority of gang-bangers in this city are black and Hispanic.

          2. Gang-bangers communicate by using “hand signs”.

          3. This was a Historical Marker open to the public. I would have seen this as the Lt. making fun of gang-bangers. Nothing he did, was illegal! From the photo to the hand-signs. If anyone has earned the right to make sh*t of bangers, he has. I would venture to say that Lt. Rafferty has kicked in more doors of bad-guys in his career, than even our Chief, and I know he’s done his share as well. To take something like this and base the entire photograph (not even taken BY Brown mind you!) off of Brown’s “recollection” of the day, is just plain nuts. How was Brown’s recollection of the night of his DUI?

          Rafferty has an immaculate record. Now….because of some kind of payback by an officer he once had to investigate (let’s not forget….Brown started this all out with his DUI, Chase etc. in Bartlett..) and being a minority, they’ve always got that “Race” card to pull out when all else fails.

          Who are really the racists in this?

          • raingirl says:

            Regarding Tish Powell and whether she should resign or not. In my opinion the answer is hell no we need more like her and fewer like O’Neill. I am not surprised to hear you take the side of defending Lt. Rafferty and I doubt that you have any more facts to support your biased opinions that he is a “God Like” officer than you do to suggest that ms. Powell should resign. You are the sort of backwards thinker that keeps this town in the dark ages. Wake up and open your thinking stop looking at people by race, which in my opinionjis what you clearly did in your piece. You went on to give a couple of examples as to your opinion that Rafferty is being railroaded for nothing. Really!! I have to guess that you administered the sodium pentothal and witnessed the responses given by him at the time of his interrogation and or spend a lot of time in his head and heart. Stop with your ignorant thoughts or maybe you are voicing your personal feelings and using this occassion to express just how you feel about race. I hope that you would at least give Tish Powell the courtesy of her right to freedom of speech without calling for her risignation.
            Your comment that he has earned to right to make sh*t of gangbangers. How wrong you are no one earns the right to abuse and mistreat any one that includes every police officer and leader of the free world. You sound like a mad man with a clear obsession with race. Clearly you find fault in those who do not fit your mold or represent your flavor of choice. I feel sorry for you. I pray that some day you will learn to judge others by the content of their character and not the color of their skin as you so ignorantly did in your writing.

    • raingirl says:

      Terry be careful where you throw your support as a former city councilman I believe that you know that there is racism in the EPD if not; as a citizen of this city for some years I am sure you have engaged in conversation or at least overheard negative references to the black community. I don’t want this thing to get out of hand but it is what it is and this town is filled with racist behaviors and actions by both the police department and the city leaders and has always been the source of friction in the black community,in regards to how poorly blacks are treated. I know you to be an intelligent man so Please don’t play politics with this subject. Now is the time to really start some dialogue on improving race relations in this city and we all need to work toward a comprable solution to that end so that all citizens are treated equally or at least judged by their characater and not by the color of their skin.

  9. Terry Gavin says:

    I agree with both of you regarding your comments. My reactions are two fold,1) this issue shoildn’t have gotten out to the public in the first place & 2) a sitting council person shouldn’t make broad stroke comments that there’s a “festering problem of racism in the dept.” without providing some prove.

    Since it did get out the reputation of a highly decorated officer of 20 years has been damaged.I also fear having worked closely with the police dept. in the 90’s this kind of stuff hurts over all morale. As public officials you must always watch what you say or do least you cause a potentialy bigger problem.

    I’m all for moving on with the hope this will be over & done & not continue to “fester”.

    • RS says:

      As it’s been quoted here a couple times, I think it should be stated that “festering racial problem” was used in the title of the article only, and may be a paraphrase written by the author of the article. Nowhere in the article itself is Powell quoted using those words.

      • Combos says:

        I see a weak and transparent attempt of an image rehab of Tish Powell has just begun on her Facebook page. There she praises public works men repaving a street and then mentions something about the “health of our community”, while showing a photo of them working. NONE of the public works employees shown are African-American, by the way.

        Next she links onto a story about an Elgin lifeguard who is also not African-American.

        I expect a full investigation from her as to why there are no African-American public works employees repaving streets and why there are no African-American city lifeguards getting awards! I expect charges of racism in those departments, too. Powell does not care about the “health of the community”. If she did, she wouldn’t poison the community with unproven race claims in the police department.

        As she said, “Race is a long-standing and obviously unresolved issue in the Elgin Police Department that needs to be dealt with.” I’ll bet the voters will love using the ballot box to make sure Powell is “dealt with”. And, if they forget, 99% of the police department will remind those voters the day before the election !!!!!

        • raingirl says:

          Yep I am a voter and a life long resident of this city and I will be voting I am sick of people who think that only their voice carries any importance. Ms Powell has every right to express her opinion and so she did,.get over it she has just as good a chance of getting re-elected as any one in this town and I do believe she cares about this city if not why would she give of herself and sacrifice her family for an ungrateful bunch of opinionated people who have no idea what it is like to walk in the shoes of a disenfranchised person. Many comments are simply biased and elitism in nature. There is nothing that I would like more than to have this city open itself to some “real” dialogue to stamp out the entire concept of racism. I know it can be done if there is the will. In response to her making such a comment since she became a council member is irrelevant, she did not loose her rights to freedom of speech and to express an issue that is longstanding and unresolved in the black community. I believe she expressed a desire to start some much needed dialogue help build a better and strong relationship with the critical service providers that serve our community. The problem is that until we learn to respect each other this city is going nowhere. The men/women of the police department are just extensions of the people at large, who are products from the community and should be open to constructive criticism. No one or group should ever get too big to be brought before the public when their behaviors warrant such attention. Lt. Rafferty and no other officer is that great, that holds true from the highest office in the land to the lowest. We are all human and a title of 20 years of service is not a good indicator that he or anyone in the department are free of a spot or wrinkle. We might all be surprised if the real truth surfaced and we discovered that our polished opinions based on how we are treated by certain people is quite different that how others are treated by the same person who is obviously a saint in the eyes of those that never saw the other side of that person. His record of 20 years means that he is either not guilty or he has been protected. The latter is probably most accurate. Elgin has a long history of negative police allegations, That is not a secret. The sad part about this entire story is that the reality and truth of the sour climate in this city will never improve because we are either to afraid, stubborn, hateful or unwilling to accept the fact that we have an entrenched long standing problem with negative race relations in this city,Plain and simple. Both sides need to come together and own up to what has divided blacks,whites and Hispanics past, present and hopefully not the future. In the last fifty years this town has made many cosmetic changes but the core of this city has not changed at all in regards to race relations.

          • Bill O'Neill says:

            Thank You for your rebuttal, Tish! lol. (wow…..talk about anger-issues! ;-)

            Keep in mind that the argument you present, and the anonymity you posted it with, probably negate each other.

            Have a great night.

  10. b4real says:

    Did Ms. Powell take the photo or send the pix? She is entitled to her point of view as are you. The voters put her in office and she has to answer to them not you. Stop trying to defend and deflect from the facts.
    The question you should ask is how do we solve the problems and reduce the reasons kids are joining gangs. Do you have any rational solutins or just finger pointing and hurt feelings.

    Please think about your statement and then answer your own question.
    “they’ve always got that “Race” card to pull out when all else fails.”

    Who are really the racists in this?

    • Bill O'Neill says:

      “Please think about your statement and then answer your own question.” lol. (as you post anonymously) That was the one thing I didn’t care for on this board. It’s a problem on the DH and it’s a problem on the Courier’s site. Too many people want to throw insults…..but hide when doing it.

      You guys know who I am and where to find me. Thanks to everyone who’s given me encouraging words today, and even to those who disagree with me (and are confident enough in their opinion to actually disclose who they are.) By the way…that latter has been no one. ;-)

      • b4real says:

        I made no personal attack on you, do not know who you are even with your name posted. Why would anyone need to find you?. You are entitled to your own opinion, but when you post please be secure enough to listen to a different point of view without the “You guys know who I am and where to find me” ouch. Don’t be so sensitive. That’s the problem with some people when presented with a different view point and no way do defend it in print, the dialogue digresses to hurt feelings and whatever else.

  11. Combos says:

    Mr. Gavin, you must remember, this site is not a site bound by any journalistic credo or implied rules of fairness. They are not held in the same regard as the Courier or Trib or Daily Herald. This is not a journalistic outlet. The owners are not and should not ever be afforded the same pathways the above-mentioned publications are allowed. They are not journalists.

    Think of this site as a toy owned by RS and Mr. Mason. They can put up any links they want, ban or allow anyone they want to, they can let their own personal beliefs rule this site as they are showing in not creating separate pages for the TWO major gaffes involving councilwoman Tish Powell. Powell’s actions and comments ARE news and are worthy of more exposure. However, this is their toy and they can unplug it and anyone else at any time.

    If anyone does not liike it, they can start up their own blog site and strive for fairness without prejudice there.

    • One Vote says:

      Although they cut off discussion about John Dalton without explanation, I have found Elginite to allow in-depth discussion about a variety of topics not normally considered newsworthy.
      When it comes to open dialog, they get higher than average marks in my book.

    • One Vote says:

      Here’s a case in point. I made a comment on the Herald’s article about an increase in LINK Card usage and got this reply:

      Thank you for participating in the discussion at DailyHerald.com. A comment you placed recently was removed for the following reason(s):

      * The comment was abusive, discriminatory or hateful on account of race, national origin, religion, age, gender, disability or sexual orientation.
      When signing up for an account at DailyHerald.com, you agreed to the TOS, which can be found at this location: http://my.dailyherald.com/nfo/tos/

      Your posting privileges have been suspended for 48 hours.

      The comment was: “Regarding those who use a LINK Card and don’t even speak English, your government has allowed immigrants (and yes, illegal aliens as well) to sponge off your social programs LEGALLY. We once weeded out those who were a “public charge” and/or required their sponsors to pony up. But that is no more. About the only thing we won’t do is write them checks in their own name. Section 8 housing? OK. LINK? OK. Free school lunch? Of course. http://alienrants.blogspot.com/2011/06/what-does-it-mean-to-become-public.html And we wonder why we don’t have enough to take care of our own.”

      So much for your “journalistic credo” idea. I don’t think Elginite would have pulled such a stunt.

      • elginkevin says:

        There’s a reason I stopped my subscription to the Daily Herald, even though it’s the only real option for traditional journalism in Elgin these days. You’d think they’d at least attempt to appear impartial.

      • Common Sense Clarence Hayward says:

        At least the Daily Herald lets you know what can get you kicked off the site. The day after Mayor Schock lost the election I was kicked off http://www.bocajump for breaking numerous rules that I was never told about.

      • LFG-A says:

        FYI, once 3 people report a TOS about you on D-H, you are automatically suspended by the Content Management System. It’s an auto generated reply, nothing to do with what you typed “One Vote” - only the fact that 3 or more people reported it as ‘abuse’ instead of a thumbs down. Just FYI. :)

        • One Vote says:

          Oh really? Are you sure about that?
          If it works, you’ll see lots of comments going down in the future. It’ll make the entire board meaningless.

  12. Terry Gavin says:

    Nice job One Vote! The fact that the liberal DH suspended you is a badge of honor but thanks to their coverage of the U-46 Board meeting on Monday Gleen Beck himself spoke to that issue of the new Chief of Equity &

  13. Terry Gavin says:

    Social Justice in Elgin today on his national radio program with millions of listeners! Plus his national newsletter TheBlaze is running with the story. I know because the editor for the newsletter called me yesterday & interviewed me for the story. Check it out folks Elgin’s corrupt school board is now a national story…

    • RS says:

      Maybe national attention is what Torres was after all along. For that, apparently it’s worth throwing some kids under the bus. Isn’t that what happens when you cut funding for two crossing guards?

  14. AFLA says:

    Remember on July 10th how we reported that there were three broken windows at the library and four at The Centre.

    None of them have been replaced.

    I drove by the library this morning and noted that they now have a total of SEVEN broken windows on the south side of the building.

    Photo here: http://elginlegalamericans.blogspot.com/2011/08/broken-windows-theory-illustrated.html

    Does anyone know what’s going on here?

    • Terry Gavin says:

      Fyi I sent the link to the Mayor, Chief & members of the city council last night. 2 responses back this morning from Mayor & Chief both stating they’d get back with info later today.

      Even though the Library is it’s own governing body these are seious property crimes & someone needs to pay for damages.

      Having read Guliani’s Broken Windows report in the 90’s I can tell you the theory is accurate so thank you AFLA for following up!

      • AFLA says:

        Don’t hold your breath. I e-mailed Femi Folarin in January 2009, asking him to do something about that hideous pylon sign on the property at 50 Kimball.

        He wrote back: “Since no business is currently conducted at the site, I do not think that the owner of the building will have any problem with removing the message on the pylon sign. I’ve asked somebody to talk with his agent about it. Femi”

        Two and a half years later nothing has been done.

        You can bet that if I had broken windows on my property, the city would make me fix them or board them up.

        • Bill O'Neill says:

          are we talking about that sign in Spanish for airfares or something across from the library?

          • Anonymous says:

            That entire parcel of land needs to be imploded and either developed into something respectable or just left a giant crater in the ground. Same goes for the gas stations on kimball.

          • AFLA says:

            The sign says roughly, “You can send up to $1,000 out of the local economy for only $10.”
            And below that it tells you the rates for insurance.
            The county says someone bought it for $500K in 2007. That seems like a lot. Were they speculating on Shock Towers being built across the street?
            I agree with Anonymous. The place needs to be leveled. How are you going to attract people to Elgin when the showcase corner has a dump like that?
            Broken windows fit right in.

        • Terry Gavin says:

          Fyi the city had to order the glass for the windows at the Centre. Due to the fact that the windows are all different sizes in the building they must be custom made. It wouldn’t make sense to keep large inventories of different sized window panes, obviously expensive glass. What strikes me about that is “who in the world would design this building like that?” Anyway the Centre’s windows should be ready soon.

          The library is in a similiar situation as the Centre. Guess the same architech worked on both buildings…

          My bigger concern is who did this “criminal” act? How do we stop it? Who is going to pay for this crime? Other then that everything is just fine…

          • RS says:

            Indeed, this sort of brazen vandalism is out of the norm. I do hope they get to the bottom of it. Are there no cameras on the sides of those buildings?

          • Bill O'Neill says:

            Yeah….”we” will end up paying for this type of vandalism, no matter what. The kids that did it, most likely don’t have the money to pay for it, nor their parents.

            Cameras are crap at night. That stuff you see on 24 is kind of available, but not at this city’s budget.

            I noticed for the first time, Chicago-like “Blue Light” crime cameras in Hoffman Estates, with Cook County Sheriff & Hoffman Estate’s logos on them in a neighborhood in Barrington Square. It would be interesting to see what affect this has had, if any, or if it was just some sort of deterrent.

            The issues about the windows being special order is understandable, especially at what they paid to build that library. They wanteded it to stand out, and it does. It’s a shame they didn’t develop all the way around it though because that does take away from it, drastically.

  15. Jules says:

    Comment on the Dog Park? http://elginparksmasterplan.org/parks/survey/

    It’s in Hoffman Estates, rather than Elgin. If they sell day passes, as one Yelp reviewer mentioned in the review of this HE park: http://www.yelp.com/biz/bos-run-hoffman-estates How does that make the park safer and cleaner for those who pay the yearly membership ($45+)? The day pass dogs may not be up to date on shots.

    County Dog Parks
    Lake County’s are one $40 fee for 4 parks: http://www.lcfpd.org/preserves/index.cfm?fuseaction=preserves.viewActDetail&object_id=130

    Kane County
    At your own risk but free: http://www.kaneforest.com/findPreserve.aspx?Feature=13

    We just drove to Hoffman Estates, so maybe it just feels too far from our particular part of Elgin…

    • RS says:

      It sounds like a good project. Small upfront investment by the city, then Hoffman Estates takes over the mgmt. They charge a fee to users to keep it maintained. Should be a nice amenity for dog owners.

  16. One Vote says:

    Uh, it takes a MONTH to get special glass? (Oh yeah, I forgot. They drove Joe’s Glass out of business.)
    And why did they have the snorkel out a month ago? To take measurements?
    I don’t buy it for a minute.
    They screwed up.

    • Anonymous says:

      One of the windows at the Centre actually crashed in during that storm and scattered glass all over the pool and 2 workers. I was there. It should have been boarded up, and it’s been 2 months still no new windows?

  17. anonyous says:

    You will not buy glass at the newest home improvement store on Randall any more. They are closing their doors. Once again Elgin citizens have made it clear that they will not support a local business. Another large vacant building. I wonder how the mayor views this loss. Maybe the council will charge them a fee for closing and moving from this urbanity in the burbs. It is reallly sad to see these jobs lost and the employees out in the cold.

    • One Vote says:

      How many flea markets can one town absorb?
      These big box stores are albatrosses in any community these days. How long did Seigles on Big Timber remain vacant before the flea market stepped in?
      As long as you’re blaming Kaptain, add Noland, Obama and Durbin to the list.

      • anonyous says:

        I have little use for the last three you mentioned. As a matter of fact it is time for Durbin to retire. He is nothing more than a member of he “good old boy network.”

      • raingirl says:

        One vote you are absolutely right while you are at it throw in the chamber and some other politicians in this town.

    • elginkevin says:

      Did anybody actually shop at Lowes? I think I stopped in there once. What did it have that The Home Depot or Menards don’t?

      I don’t think this is an issue of supporting a local business. I think this is an issue of oversupply.

      • Crysta says:

        Agree with Kevin. I wondered why the Lowes opened in the first place, especially where it did, right next to Menards. With Menards and two close Home Depots on Randall (Elgin and South Elgin), there were too many big box home improvement stores in such a short distance, especially when the new housing market slowed. I went into the Lowes a few times, but it was never busy.

        As the Elginite posted on Facebook yesterday, they called it when the store originally opened. At least we didn’t give Lowes incentives. http://elginite.org/blog/2006/01/27/high-end-retail-on-randall-road/

        I feel bad for the people who lost their jobs, but it’s too much supply and too little demand.

        • anonyous says:

          Far too much attention given the downtown district. The plan for the Elgin business community is not sustainable. The competitive advantage is lacking. No retail experience on the council. Closing after closing all over Elgin. Elgin citizens do not support Elgin business. That agenda has been going on for years. Too many problems all over the city need to be addressed. Mayor and council way too weak in leadership ability. Expect many more businesses to leave Elgin and close their doors. What dose Elgin have to offer? I went to the boat last week. You could have rolled a bowling ball down and not hit a person. DesPlaines is going to hurt way more than people expect.

          • Anonymous says:

            The des plaines casino opening has already caused a number of layoffs at the grand Victoria.

  18. Anonymous says:

    Also the reason no local business can survive in Elgin is that there simply aren’t enough residents with disposable income to support them. Everywhere you look there is a new dollar store, flea market, or cash for gold pandering to the no income, welfare, lazy and/or illegal population of this town that keeps growing by leaps and bounds and the morons in charge just keep turning a blind eye to it.

  19. One Vote says:

    Hey, I drove down Kimball on Sunday. The broken windows at the Centre have been replaced. Must have been done in the last couple of days.

    As for the Library, it still looks the same. SEVEN broken windows.
    That glass doesn’t look so special. Anyone know what’s going on? Maybe they’re looking for something Hoppe-proof. (Just kidding.)