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October open thread

2 October 2014 Elgin Illinois 196 Comments

Bluff City Cemetery Bluff City Cemetery (Photo by The Elginite).

Monthly open thread. Have a blast!

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196 Responses to “October open thread”

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  1. RS says:

    Hey guys!
    Chuck suggested we make October a month for political cartoons, which you can all submit. Here are Chuck’s cartoons to start it off:

    If you want to participate you can send your cartoon to my gmail address (elginite). Or you can just host it somewhere else like photobucket and paste it here yourself. IMG tags will work fine in the comment body. Please keep the images to a maximum width of 590px.

    Have fun with it!

    • paul says:

      Another city employee exercising extremely poor judgement!: http://www.dailyherald.com/article/20141024/news/141028856/

      Like Lentz, he well may have been well within his 1st amendment rights of free speech but the extremely poor judgement aptly demonstrates his lack of character qualifications to continue to be employeed by the taxpayers.
      And have to wonder if the facebook posts were posted during working hours!!!

      • Margaret Miller says:

        Apparently, he used the same poor judgement a couple of other times and did not accept his verbal reprimand. Three strikes, your out!

        There is a code, and some companies have a written statement that employees are required to sign upon hire and must be adhered too. If they don’t obey the statement’s clauses, they are reprimanded and the incident is placed in their file so when/if the behavior continues, the company has documented cause for dismissal. I see no reason why Police and Fire should be any different.

        Think about this one. If this behavior of posting continued and this officer found himself in a situation of having to defend himself in the line of duty ending in tragedy. His posting could be used against him, and the city, in any potential lawsuit pertaining to this officer’s state of mind and opinion about anything.

      • RS says:

        I was under the impression that all those various commissions in Elgin are staffed by volunteers. I don’t think he’s a city employee.

  2. Chuck Keysor says:

    Thanks Rick! Let’s hope people get creative and start making their cartoons. I am not an artist, so I had to spend a lot of time in Photoshop, and some in Illustrator to make this. It would be a lot simpler for those who can draw by hand! Chuck

  3. James Madison says:

    Jeff Meyer + Bruce Rauner = Dumber and Dumber

  4. Chuck Keysor says:

    Hello James. You know, we get along fine even when we disagree, WHEN you want to engage in rational discussion. But “dumb and dumber”??? Certainly not up to your potential engagement levels.

    And you can not seriously believe what you wrote. It must have been a knee jerk defend any democrat comment that you made when you didn’t know what else to say. But it does illuminate whatever future comments you make, as you have closed your mind on Jeff Meyer without any thought,,,,,,,,, just a reflexive defend the machine in any situation response…….

    I have had enough dealings with Anna Moeller AND Jeff Meyer, and I would suspect that you have had none whatsoever with Jeff Meyer. Correct me if I am wrong, and tell us why you would want to defend Michael Madigan’s machine, and protect the broken machine that has ruined our State. How is Anna Moeller and the machine of which she is a part, going to fix the mess they have perpetuated for so many years?

    Anna’s campaign literature says she is against taxing and she feels the taxpayer’s pain. Yet while on the Elgin City Council for about 3 years, she did nothing but to raise our taxes. That includes our massive tax increases of December 2011 with its trash tax and its related monthly water bill.

    Jeff Meyer worked against all of these taxes, and spoke out and FOUGHT against the Elgin Business License, the December 2011 tax hikes, the Municipal Fire Alarm Monitoring Monopoly, and most recently, the Rain Tax. This is in total contrast to Anna Moeller who served as part of the liberal council elite that was all too happy to tax and spend the taxpayer’s money, like it was Monopoly money.

    Chuck

    • RS says:

      I was kind of surprised to see a lot of Moeller signs in South Elgin in an area I thought would have been more Republican-leaning.

    • bw says:

      Jeff Meyer needs to do some work in the district to beat that lying Anna Moeller. Chuck Keysor gave the voters of the district the true facts about Anna but their history of sending perverts and individuals who lie to elected office proves to be the norm. The TLC lawsuit, filed in federal court, costing Elgin taxpayers $500,000 should have been the frosting on the cake to retire Anna Moeller from any more political activity but when you drive down Edison and see Anna Moeller in several yards you realize Elgin has a number of hypocrites living in district 43 who support Madigan and company. Anna is just another rubber stamp for the Dems. Wake-up people!

      • SIE says:

        “that lying Anna Moeller”

        Wow. Thats a pretty strong statement. And could be considered slander or libel (I always get those two confused) unless you can prove its true.

        • bw says:

          SIE

          New York Times Co. v. Sullivan is a case that allows a person to say and print anything about a public official true or not. Anna Moeller was right in thr middle of the TLC case. At a C

          • bw says:

            (cont.) at a council meeting, where the issue was being discussed, Anna Moeller made false and misleading remarks about her involvement in contacting the Chief of Police to have the TLC operation at the JB Bar parking lot shut down and suggested it was an eye sore. The case ended up in federal court and cost the taxpayer’s of Elgin Township a six figure settlement. The late Attorney John Jurgensmeyer and a Chicago Law Firm won the case and the court ordered the city to change the Ordinance and allow TLC and others to operate within the city on a limited bases. Anna Moeller failed to tell the truth about being the only council member acting To shut down TLC

  5. One Vote says:

    This non-event at the sewage plant bothers me. The whitewash is that a 25 year employee had a bad day. They appear to be telling us that there’s nothing to see here, that he was unarmed, and that the boss didn’t see him turn off any equipment so it’s all OK.
    Except…he was armed - with a starter pistol. And he did disrupt operations.
    Is it just me?

    • RS says:

      Yeah it might be just you on this one.

      I don’t think starter pistols can fire projectiles. And if it’s the sewage plant we’re talking about, I don’t think we need to worry about him poisoning the water supply or something. And he doesn’t fit the profile of a terrorist. So what else is there to say? Another strange day in Elgin, that’s all.

  6. Hoke Music says:

    New voice studio open in downtown Elgin, [b]Hoke Academy of Music[/b] !

    Young or Old, Beginner or Professional - let Maestro Hoke teach you the basics and/or improve your technique for lasting results! I’ve seen such an improvement in my performance with Worship leading at church in only 4 short weeks!

    “Great rates and great results. World class performer wanting to teach you to do the same. Performed Opera in Italy, Brazil, England, New York, DC…. every where! Learn to sing rock, pop, musical theater, classical, jazz… the sky is the limit. Let’s get going on building you a rock solid voice that will last a lifetime! call me today and let’s get started.” - Instructor Russell Hoke

    Hoke Academy of Music

  7. bw says:

    http://www.dailyherald.com/article/20141004/discuss/141009195/

    Please read this worthwhile endorsement for Governor.

    • bw says:

      Jeff Meyer is endorsed for 43rd District because he offers a similar agenda for the good of Illinois. Jeff is a needed voice in the GA. He will tell us the truth.

  8. James Madison says:

    DRUM ROLL PLEASE:

    Since BW is touting the Daily Herald Endorsements, here are James Madison’s endorsements for the 2014 election:

    U.S. Senator: Dick Durbin
    U.S. House: Tammy Duckworth
    Illinois Governor: Pat Quinn
    Attorney General: Lisa Madigan
    Secretary of State: Jesse White
    Comptroller: Sheila Simon
    Treasurer: Mike Frerichs
    Illinois House D43: Anna Moeller

    You are more than welcome.

    Best. Ticket. Ever.

    • bw says:

      Only if you are a Dem..

      • Chuck Keysor says:

        bw, allow me to modify your comment……. Only if you are a Democrat that wears blinders and refuses to see the reality of the disaster that the democratic machine has created in the State of Illinois………. Chuck

  9. SIE says:

    Just for MM.

    A city that discriminates against some of its residents by not providing the same service for all. Seems like something everyone would have an issue with.

    Instead of focusing on leaf bags why don’t you focus on the fact that your taxes are used to collect some residents leaves but not others. And be aware that the $2 rake out fee in no way covers the program. Your tax dollars are used for this program.

    http://www.cityofelgin.org/DocumentCenter/View/41979

    • Margaret Miller says:

      Just for SIE:

      I found the post below on the FB page of the City of Elgin-Government, City Services and Community News. Sure sounds familiar or is there another person in Elgin crying unfair?

      Bruce Glickman writes: Eliminating the leaf bags was a horrible move on the cities part. No more bags but the rake out: program continues. For $2 a month “some” residents get their leaves taken away after they rake them to the curb. This is a huge inequity.

      The city will not expand the rake out area so the rest of us are stuck with collecting our own leaves. The free bags were a trade off to this fact and now we don’t get them. $2 doesn’t cover the cost of the rake out program so taxes from all residents go toward this program yet we can’t participate. I would rather have the free bags but when the city decided they needed to save money and eliminated the free bags they should have eliminated the rake out program too.

      Call Linda Wallace, she’s looking for more leaves. Problem solved, Linda wants them!

      Linda Wallace Writes: Where are the leaves taken to? Even though I grab leaves from the neighbors i never have enough for my garden. Is there some place we can pick up the collected leaves? I’m sure other gardeners would also like extras.

      • SIE says:

        Thanks for directing me to that site. Apparently several people are not happy about the cities unfair leaf policy.

        Instead of saying nonsense like we should bring our leaves to someone else why don’t you comment about YOUR tax dollars being used to removed only certain people’s leaves?

        I know why you don’t respond, because you can’t defend it. The city has an unfair and potentially illegal policy that is unfair to its taxpayers.

        • Margaret Miller says:

          LOL!

          • SIE says:

            Great comment.

            You constantly go on rants about the city and council spending too much on this or that.

            Do you just not understand?

            1. The rake out program is only offered to some residents.
            2. The nominal fee charged for the program in no way covers the cost. Therefore tax dollars are used to benefit only select residents.

            I will repeat that. You, me and every other resident who does not participate in the rake out program has their tax dollars being used to benefit those that do participate.

            If saving money was the goal of ending the leaf bag program the council should have also ended the rake out program.

            Like I said, you constantly complain about this or that in terms of the city’s spending yet you have no issue with this? You focused on my comments regarding the elimination of the leaf bags to the point you don’t see or understand the situation.

            If you are against overspending in general (which you are), and wasteful use of tax dollars (which you are) you would be against the rake out program.

    • paul says:

      Wow. You get FREE leaf pick-up while I have to pay $24 per year!!!
      Indeed, that is discrimination. I want FREE leaf pick-up. It is outrageous that I have to subsidize the city picking up the leaf piles natural occurring in the streets from the multitude of trees overhanging our tree-lined streets. Those trees lining the street are city property and ALL citizens should share in the cost of cleaning up and preventing our water drainage and sewer systems from clogging and causing our streets to flood. Why do I have to Pay and not SIE! I think I’ll go eat some worms now.

      • Margaret Miller says:

        Paul,

        While SIE claims my leaf pick up if FREE, its not. I pay $148.00 association fee per month and the 2015 fees have/will increased 15%. Currently, that’s $1,776 per year for my landscaping and snow removal and other association essentials. That’s a lot of money but my choice. I guess I could scream “unfair” that I have to pay for everyone in my neighborhood servicies as well as mine but what’s the point, its a given for living in an associated property. Just as its a given to clean up your own yard if you own a signle family home. The city does nothing for my yard, sidewalks or driveway as a private landscaping company does. In fact, each year I walk around my subdivision and cut low hanging tree limbs and the landscaper picks up the discarded branches. You see, I can reach higher than the landscapers can.

        As far as SIE’s comment “Instead of saying nonsense like we should bring our leaves to someone else why don’t you comment about YOUR tax dollars being used to removed only certain people’s leaves?”

        I learned very early in life that not all things are fair and do my very best NOT to sweat the small stuff. I would rather fight the war on high pensions, government waste and the inequality of my continual subsidy of every Progressive feel good program, green projects, children’s education, fraud in SS, unemployment, disability claims, welfare, WIC, housing, code enforcement, over crowding and the list goes on and on.

  10. RS says:

    http://couriernews.suntimes.com/2014/09/26/moeller-meyer-split-road-spending-school-funding-minimum-wage/

    Meyer said Moeller’s campaign has received $92,000 in donations from “special interests and the [State House Speaker Michael] Madigan organization” while “I have raised $14,000 and spent $4,000.” So she will be “beholden to other people who have financed your campaign,” he said.

    Wow, I’m amazed at how little money is going into this race!

  11. bw says:

    RS,

    The problem is trusting a word Anna Moeller makes in her messages to the voter. She has no creditability after her TLC involvement that was no more then saving face before the council and the public.She has cost the Elgin taxpayers as a liberal spender. Just what we need in the Illinois GA.

  12. bw says:

    harmony
    February 27, 2014 at 11:35 am

    Well I see the City has finally admitted it’s cost for legal services is $250,000. I assume that doesn’t cover paying Cogley and associates for their time. So now we are at about a half million. Then the council voted to let Mylott and Cogley write another ordinance. What a joke and then they can’t buy fireworks!! Elgin needs new management instead of this group of idiots.

    still concerned
    February 27, 2014 at 7:03 pm

    Not happy at all with the city paying well over a half million in the TLC settlement. Looking at the city minutes did not see where approval of these payouts was voted on. Did I miss it or if not, what is the process for approval of these types of payouts? If the council did vote for it, without taking sides on the pro-life issue, if councilman Shaw voted for the settlement and also (by self admission) his contributes to TLC for their programs…is that not a blatant conflict of interest violation? Who knows?
    Chuck Keysor
    February 27, 2014 at 9:44 pm

    Still Concerned:

    All the official discussions and votes on the TLC law suit took place in “Executive Session”, so that is why you didn’t see this during the regular council sessions, or learn who voted on what in the papers. And because this was all discussed in “Executive Session”, you can’t even FOIA the information, until some later point in time.

    Even the person who asked Chief Swoboda to serve papers on the TLC ultrasound van has been obscured by lots of smoke and double talk. This obfuscation of the events that precipitated the law suit has taken place because of the inevitable back lash that will be created during the next council election (April, 2015) against the individual who is believed by the voters to have triggered this expensive action against TLC.

    People who are against the City spending so much money on a failed (some say misguided) legal move by the City are mad. People who are pro-life and support the TLC mission are really mad. All these upset people will be devastating to the perceived responsible party in the next election. So of course that person, and her allies will do all that they can to keep this matter confusing, and to deny responsibility.

    This link will bring you to the Courier’s story on this from almost a year ago. Make of it what you will.
    http://couriernews.suntimes.com/business/18699423-420/mobile-pregnancy-care-provider-sues-elgin-over-shutdown.html

    Chuck
    Margaret Miller
    February 28, 2014 at 7:30 am

    Chuck,

    Let’s just say her name and get it out there. No point in trying to protect her reputation, she shamed herself if she has any shame.

    The catalyst to this entire mess was Anna Moeller, the princess of the Council.

    Her actions sure cost the taxpayer’s a lot of money and public embarrassment.

    The above from the February thread,should be made public via court records that are a part of the lawsuit. Where is the news media?

  13. James Madison says:

    This is why you have to reject the negative politics of the RepubliCONS, it is not teenagers who are working for minimum wage, it is adult men and women at fast food outlets and the WalMarts of the world. There is no hope for these people with retrograde attitudes that refuses to address the need for an increase in the minimum wage.

    Walmart will cut health-insurance coverage for employees who work fewer than 30 hours a week. Starting Jan. 1, these 30,000 part-time workers will be left without health benefits. The move by the nation’s largest private employer follows similar cuts made by Home Depot and Target to curtail the rising costs of paying for insurance. “We have to make some decisions,” said Sally Wellborn, Walmart’s senior vice president of benefits. Walmart, which has 1.4 million full- and part-time employees, previously announced that 1.2 million workers and their families are enrolled in their health-care plan. The amount far exceeded what the company expected. Walmart will also be raising premiums for all of its full-time workers.
    http://www.thedailybeast.com/cheats/2014/10/07/walmart-cuts-part-time-health-benefits.html

    This is from a company whose founding family (the lucky sperm club members) has a net worth of $145 billion dollars. If they gave each employee $1,000 per year for insurance, their total expense would be 0.8% of their net worth.

    Meyer, however, said that “I don’t want to help just the working-class or middle-class families in the district. I want to help all the families in this district.” He said that if the minimum wage is raised, part-time and seasonal jobs taken by young people after school or over the summer “would evaporate.”
    http://couriernews.suntimes.com/2014/09/26/moeller-meyer-split-road-spending-school-funding-minimum-wage/

    Demand for goods and services drive employment, not wage levels. The only “job creators” are consumers and those who buy goods and services.

    • RS says:

      The graveyard of American capitalism is littered with the corpses of retailers that could not control their costs. Retailers operate on razor thin margins. A 3% profit margin easily turns into a 3% loss, continue that for a few years and that company is gone forever.

      Wal-Mart provides low cost goods to the lowest economic sectors of society. When they are gone, the poor will be paying much more for their daily living expenses.

  14. James Madison says:

    Dear RS, that corpse is usually riddled with mis-management through overexpansion, failure to adapt to changing market conditions, senior management hubris and failure to create an inclusive and engaged workforce. For every Circuit City that has died from these ailments, a COSTCO has risen that treats their employees as partners and their customers as family members, paying a fair wage and charging appropriate prices. Top line losses are incurred far before margin shrink begins.

    • Chuck Keysor says:

      James, it is because of ObamaCare that Walmart felt free to drop the medical coverage of their part-time employees. If their part-tiimers work a couple of jobs, they can earn enough to get an Obama subsidy. If they don’t work enough hours to earn the required threshold, then they can apply for ObamaCare Medicaid. So you can thank Obama for Walmart’s part time employees losing their healthcare coverage. Chuck

      • RS says:

        Speaking of healthcare, I noticed that the cost of treating the now-deceased “Dallas patient” is estimated at $500K. I also noticed that Dallas, as well as state and federal authorities really had no idea how to deal with this. I mean, we all expected the CDC would have capabilities to stop disease, but really they are little more than a research institution. When it hits, every city is on their own. I mean for crying out loud they outsourced the cleaning of the affected apartment to a local mom and pop cleanup crew!

        The only preparation we have here in Elgin was the shooting of the movie Contagion! We cannot rely on the movie extras to guide us on what to do. Elgin is a diverse city with many global links to the population here. We are minutes away from one of the busiest airports in the world, where in all likelihood some of our residents work. I think it’s just a matter of time before an ebola patient checks into Sherman Hospital.

        How prepared will this city be?

        If you are a first responder, you had better buy your “space suits” now, because don’t expect the federal government to be of any help. They are still handing out tourist visas to Liberian nationals!

    • RS says:

      Walmart has been successful all these years because they have not veered from their business model. They own the low cost position in the marketplace, nothing else. To stray from that and start charging “appropriate prices” will doom them. They are not Target, Costco, Jewel-Osco or whatever. Everybody has a different business model and a different position in the marketplace. It’s up to those companies to determine their model, their position and to struggle for survival.

      • James Madison says:

        Chuck and RS, I think we should thank Obama for moving this country in the direction of a “one payer” system that will be modeled after Medicaid. All the mergers you see in the hospitals in this area indicates they know that single payer is when not if. That is a good thing for all citizens. It is wrong to live in a country of this wealth that spends almost 18%, 18%–the highest rate in the world, of GDP for health care, and had more than 40 million uninsured before Obamacare.

        As for the Walmart model, the fact that large corporations such as Walmart, Yums, McDonalds, ad naseum, are able to subsidize their businesses by paying low wages to their workers, who then must seek federal and state benefits such as the SNAP program, to feed their families is a disgrace. According to the FORBES 400, the Walton family (the lucky sperm club) is worth $175 billion. Annual sales in the US are more than $300 billion. As they have grown, their original founding philosophy of finding under-served, small markets and creating a critical mass retail environment in those areas (usually at the loss of smaller, more specialty retailers, i.e, Downtown Elgin)has been replaced by extortion as they have moved into larger markets, creating bidding wars among neighborhoods (Carpentersville vs. West Dundee) and threatening to take their stores to other neighborhoods without large incentives to locate in that community. Their new business model is monopolistic. Once all the retailers are gone from an area, they can price products at any level. And they do. Every single Walmart prices their stores based on local competition. If none exists or prediatory pricing has put them out of business, prices rise. For many years, they had a marketing slogan and operational philosophy: EDLP: Every Day Low Prices. With that attitude, they did not have to advertise. They only advertised in print about 14 times a year a few years ago. As they expanded to larger cities and were under the Wall Street imperative of getting even bigger, they have expanded to more aggressive and more frequent print and media ads. Drive down Randall Road. Look at the blight that remains when a Walmart moves out of a neighborhood (or South Elgin where Lowes closed a large store). These building are a drain on society. Eventually, owners take tax write-offs as these properties lose money. Who pays for that tax write-off? James Madison, RS and Chuck pay for those write-offs.

        The three of us should be in the streets to join the OCCUPY-MOVEMENT to protest this assault on this country’s basic fiber. It is easy to point fingers and say it is a Democrat or Republican problem but the truth is that we have been betrayed over and over again by politicians whose only imperative is to raise enough money to keep their jobs. It is disgusting that the Supreme Court rules that money is speech which just opens the flood gates for massive spending for elections. Reagan chose free enterprise over democracy. For thirty years now, all the politicians who followed him have kept that alliance. We the people are poorer and poorer as the 1%ers accrue more and more of the developed wealth of the U.S.

        • RS says:

          Their new business model is monopolistic. Once all the retailers are gone from an area, they can price products at any level. And they do. Every single Walmart prices their stores based on local competition. If none exists or prediatory pricing has put them out of business, prices rise.

          This same tripe has been regurgitated and circulated in liberal circles for 40 years. Guess what, you don’t make a 3% profit margin by running a monopoly. Go to the places in rural areas where Walmart is the only game in town, and do you ever see anybody complaining? No, they don’t because Walmart’s prices are far lower than what the mom and pop used to charge them.

          It’s funny that the people who are constantly complaining about Walmart are the ones who never shop there and look down on the poor and rural people who do.

          • James Madison says:

            RS, facts suck, and they really suck when you are defending an indefenseible position like supporting these guys. Maybe not shopping there is the only way to vote for small, local businesses that are integral to any community health and welfare. Do you think Walmart cares about you? You seem to care a lot about them. That is called unrequited love. Never ends well. Rock on brother RS.

          • RS says:

            I care about Walmart because Walmart provides low cost goods to the poorest people in our country. Without Walmart, their cost of living rises and that means greater poverty. The poor are the beneficiaries of Walmart. They are the people who have the greatest stake in its continued survival.

      • Chuck Keysor says:

        James, I never shop at Walmart, but agree with RS.

        I think we have agreed in the past on the value of most politicians, and they are as a class, WORSE than any big corporation, if I can extrapolate what I had thought were are previously shared sentiments. They make Walmart look like saints. So that is where you stun me, and make me think you have fallen off the tracks by joyously proclaiming the most miserably, disgustingly greedy, power hungry, inept people in our Country, are “the best ticket ever”. Don’t you know what you are saying? Are you that robotically controlled by the Democrats that you could even let such words issue from your finger tips for the world to see. Now I know why you post anonymously! Chuck

        • Chuck Keysor says:

          PS: I don’t have a single store where I shop that anyone even knows my name. Do you still live in Mayberry? When I was a kid, and we would shop at Gromer’s in the 1960s, the manager, Dean Thornten knew my Mom’s name, my name. The manager of the Ben Franklin knew my name, and I knew his. Back in the early 1980s when I was fresh out of college, I always shopped at Eagle on McLean near Rt. 20, and I knew the clerks names, as they had name badges on, and they stayed there for years. But that was the last of it. And in that time frame, I also shopped a little at Card and Camera, in the same shopping center, and some of them knew my name. But you know what, it was FAR cheaper to purchase a Cannon AE1 from Broadway Camera in NY, NY. And that was far more important to me than being able to be chit chatty with the clerk at Card and Camera. They closed! I think if little local stores are your icons of purity, that me and EVERYBODY else who refused to pay the high prices that they must charge are the guilty people. Instead of wasting time preaching Down with Wall Street, you should protest, saying, Down with the Greedy RS, and the Greedy Chuck Keysor, and all the other 200 million greedy consumers.

          That is part of Left wing mania, to vilify the large “greedy” corporations. Chuck

          • ADV says:

            There is abundant independent research showing that Walmart decimates local economies. It creates poor people and keeps them that way. A little Googling of “walmart local economies” or a similar term will yield an abundance of information, including the fact that Walmart regularly includes information on how to apply for and receive government benefits such as Medicaid in its employee training materials.

          • Zreebs says:

            Walmart does pay low wages, but it hires people who would otherwise not be able to get another job. And the low wages enables them to charge lower prices. While I don’t say this often, I agree with Chuck and RS on this one.

  15. bw says:

    CK:

    “People who are against the City spending so much money on a failed (some say misguided) legal move by the City are mad. People who are pro-life and support the TLC mission are really mad. All these upset people will be devastating to the perceived responsible party in the next election.” Anna Moeller is the responsible party and is up for election. Let’s see if people put-up or shut-up and follow thru on your statement.

    • Chuck Keysor says:

      bw, so far, I have seen no reference to Anna Moeller and TLC in the context of this election, except on the Elginite. I am afraid not enough people know about this.

      I read through parts of Anna Moeller’s deposition given during the TLC lawsuit. When asked if she was pro-life, or pro-choice, her attorney told her to NOT answer that question! Yet at last week’s LWV forum, she practically jumped out of her seat to tell the world that she was pro-choice. Where was her conviction during her deposition? (You can get the deposition by FOIA from the City.)

      I’d like to make another cartoon, one which would show a little girl with Anna’s face. She would be sitting on top of a little hill, holding some daisies. Over her head would be a big cloud, with the letters TLC on it, and John Juergensmeyer, wearing angel wings and a halo looking down on Anna. But I am too busy to make another cartoon.

      Chuck

      • bw says:

        bw, so far, I have seen no reference to Anna Moeller and TLC in the context of this election, except on the Elginite. I am afraid not enough people know about this.

        I have lived in Elgin for over 78 years. Issues like TLC are not reckless enough to take center stage for the average citizen. The big shots in Elgin like to spend their time on handing out awards where they will get noticed and mentioned in the news media. These same individuals don’t care about the poor. The care about themselves. Elgin is not a real friendly city. It is a selfish community with only one agenda, me, me, me.

  16. SIE says:

    Was anyone able to sign up with Direct Energy for their electric service?

    As I previously had posted anyone who was on the cites previous plan and then chose not to go with their new supplier received a letter from Com Ed saying “you cannot return to your previous supplier”. Ironically Direct Energy has the best rate right now. Why our city could not get a good rate with them is beyond me, but that ship has sailed.

    I’d like to know if anyone was able to sign up again with Direct Energy. I keep getting conflicting information, no matter who I call.

    • still concerned says:

      I was told by a council member that Direct Energy WAS NOT considered for bid this round because they were, “unresponsive” to the city. No detail was given as to what exactly that meant, but I, too, agree that the aggregation process ended up giving Elgin citizens a higher rate than what Direct Energy quoted on line for the next year. Who cares if they don’t talk to city hall….the RATE is what is important!

      • bw says:

        The city council is a weak close group from the so called elite members of the community. They are self serving individuals who only care about their own agenda. They decide matters, like the energy matter, in executive session. They know that they have control of the city piggy bank that they will do as they please. The hell with the public who are below them. That is the attitude of our elected officials. They are poor role models representing Elgin.

  17. RS says:

    I noticed that there have been quite a few changes in the downtown recently. Mr. Cheaps Mattresses is now on Chicago St., and I guess SpaceTaste Gallery has moved to the other side of the river (the Waverley Stables?), the Fadez & Bladez barber shop has moved from the Tower Building to a couple doors down from the Central Barber Shop (Jerry). They actually have a pretty nice space there. And Abe Froeman’s is set to open this month.

    Did I miss anything?

    What is a mattress store doing on Chicago Street anyway? Doesn’t make a lot of sense to me as we were trying to make Chicago Street our entertainment/dining center. An art gallery worked well in that spot, but a mattress store? And in that tiny space? It seems like totally the wrong place for it. Their old location across from Walnut Speakeasy seemed spacious and ideal but I guess they had no choice to leave it as the building has been sold. And yes, it would be a shame if they tear that building down.

    Is the shoe repair shop gone now? I saw large equipment being moved out of there one day but haven’t been back since to see if the store has been emptied out. It would be too bad if they’re gone now. I had a couple shoes resoled there and the guy did good work. I guess this type of business is dwindling in this area as there are fewer people now buying shoes that are worth being resoled.

  18. RS says:

    If any of you are mushroom hunters, this week is when the maitake are fruiting. You have a few days and they’ll be gone until next year, next October. Somehow I managed to miss maitake week for like the last four years. They are very ephemeral. That’s the beauty of it all.

    Around here, in the spring we have morels and in the fall we have maitake. There are other mushrooms but these two are especially beautiful just because they operate like clockwork to announce the beginning of spring and the beginning of fall, respectively. And they don’t stick around. They make their announcement and they disappear, “See you next year!” So you’ve got to catch them at just the right time. And that makes it fun!

    Maitake are the easiest mushrooms to find. All you have to do is go to a high-quality forest and look for the biggest oak trees. They will be growing at the base. To remove the mushroom, cut through it with a knife. Don’t rip out any part that’s under the ground or you might kill it (if undisturbed they fruit at the same spot year after year). These things are enormous so don’t get carried away. Take as much as you can use (probably one! or half of one!) and leave the rest to give joy to others.

    Do take that last bit of advice seriously. In fact if you take more than you can use, you will be prosecuted for commercial harvesting if you are collecting the mushrooms on public land.

  19. bw says:

    Sen. Paul Simon’s Our Culture of Pandering, 2003 must have been written with people like Anna Moeller on his mind. Pandering is what she is an expert at. She misleads people by telling the what they want to hear and fails to tell the real story. We don’t need her the in the Illinois GA. We need members in the GA that are really concerned with our good and that of the poor. She was able too walk around the TLC issue without a mark on her record. Anna, you can fool some of the people some of the time, but you can’t fool all of the people all of the time. Your record will catch up with you as it has with all political members in the corrupt Illinois GA.

  20. One Vote says:

    So, the City of Elgin is getting in the charter school business, thanks to the NENA alliance and their connections.
    Even though it isn’t the old day school location, they are going headlong into the Rackow subcontract.
    The CYA is getting the state folks to agree to everything.
    So, for $10 a year Schock and Kelly get $20,000 worth of free space.
    Where do I sign up?
    Oh, I forgot; I’m the schmuck left holding the bill.

    • RS says:

      It sounds like a great deal to me, actually. The building is there, it’s purposed for education and now it won’t be a vacant, decaying eyesore awaiting eventual demolition. This could also save the Bertrand Goldberg Laundry Building if they push the fence all the way back to the other side for extra security. The Laundry Building will become a usable facility for all kinds of stuff. They could turn into a skate park, an art gallery or museum. It could be used as the venue for the Next Wave Art Salon, which is homeless and who’s future is in doubt now that the Haight Building is being used by Town & Country Gardens.

      So this can potentially solve a number of issues.

      It may even eventually lead to accessibility of the sports complex from State Street. Right now it’s kind of ridiculous that you have to cross town all the way to McLean to get in there. And really you can only get in there by car. It’s like an island. If it becomes accessible from State Street, people can now bike there or walk there and that will make a huge difference I think in utilization of this facility.

      So I think this is great news!

      • One Vote says:

        So, you’re OK with them getting free rent. I’m not. What about Einstein Academy? Shouldn’t they get their rent paid for by the city?
        What about opening new revenue streams? How about collecting some rent to offset police/fire/snow removal for Ed Schock’s friends?

        • RS says:

          Think of it this way, the city is turning over a loss-making property to somebody else to take care of and maintain. I don’t know ultimately who is responsible for it, whether it’s the state or the city, but somebody will end up with the bill eventually when it needs to be rehabbed, gutted/demolished or just maintained to prevent it from becoming an eyesore. There is a holding cost to keeping properties in your portfolio and now that cost is being transferred to the charter school. So from the perspective of the City of Elgin I think it solves an immediate problem.

          I don’t know who else would rent it and I don’t know if they would be able to rent it for any purpose other than a school given the peculiar nature of the lease arrangement with the state.

          As to whether it’s fair or not, charter schools are basically public schools. They are funded publicly and private schools are funded privately, so I don’t think it’s unfair to private schools.

          • One Vote says:

            Two issues:
            1) The city is poking its nose under the tent. We don’t need more of their liberal influence in yet another organization. Giving them $20K a year in free rent is favoritism to liberal friends.
            2) As for the city and private schools, you wouldn’t want them to do that. Why, someday they might give away $300K of our tax money to a private school so they can build an auditorium. Oh wait…never mind.

            Your willingness to allow these deals without thoughtful examination is exactly how we got to this point of government involvement in our lives.

          • RS says:

            Fair enough, but I think it’s a pragmatic choice to support this deal.

            The only thing I’m worried about is that they are not committed to this location and are just using it on paper now so they can check off all their requirements, as I believe they need to have a location when they go the state charter school commission.

            I hope the commission requires them to stay in this location otherwise they will forever be angling for the Trout Park/FCRD site…

            That site I think should be turned over to Max McGraw if they will have it. It makes the most sense for them to take care of it as it’s adjacent to their property. They should be asked to provide public access to it, but otherwise they can do with it as they wish. I’m sure the buildings can be used for some of their programming. They can probably fund the rehab with grants. There are a ton of nonprofits/foundations in this country that hand out grants after all. Just a thought…

  21. bw says:

    CK:

    Jeff Meyer received the endorsement from the Daily Herald for State Rep. District 43. Anna Moeller’s creditability has caught up with her. She knows the TLC issue and her involvement in getting it shut down by the Chief of Police would surface in any future election. It is one of those issues people discuss without a lot of noise. The TLC supporters are still mad and have their own way too see that Anna is held accountable. in addition, Jeff Meyer is the best person for the job. He is the most qualified person too represent the 43rd District in the Illinois GA,

  22. Allen Skillicorn says:

    The DH knows Moeller is a career lobbyist and is firmly entrenched in the status quo. Even local Dems know she is an outsider.

    • RS says:

      Is this race competitive or not? Why has no money gone into this race? It seems very strange.

      • Chuck Keysor says:

        bw, thanks for the good news. I have gotten out of touch with family visiting this week, and John Juergensmeyer’s funeral and its preparations.

        RS: I don’t know why you are saying that no money is going into this campaign. Look at Anna’s D2 financial statements, and you will see what must be over $100,000 worth of donations (they don’t seem to provide a spread sheet summary, very UN-transparent). Most I looked at were from big UNIONS and the Democratic Party. Jeff Meyer has no Republican machine to back him, so he has raised what one young man can by asking friends and acquaintances. If there were a GOP machine, I am sure that the bucks would be flowing in, but Illinois is effectively a single party state when it comes to money and machinery.

        Again, I think over $100,000 for Anna IS a lot of money for a campaign of this scale. And it is 5 times as much as Meyer’s money, roughly speaking.

        Chuck

        • RS says:

          Compared to recent legislative races this amount is really very little. The Noland/Rauschenberger contest hit two million dollars in total spending and the Farnham/Munson contest I think approached a million dollars. If campaign spending has indeed come under control statewide then that’s a good thing, otherwise this lack of spending on both sides is kind of…interesting.

          • bw says:

            RS:
            You have to admit the 43rd is a dull election, weak candidates and no big issues for this district. Moeller is a sure rubber stamp for MM. Meyer is another fiscal conservative to add another body to the GOP side of the GA.

          • One Vote says:

            Or maybe, as Andy Shaw said on the radio the other day, Mike Madigan is the master cartographer.
            And he hand-picked Anna.
            Anna’s help comes from what she calls “the labor temple.” I was driving down Chippewa yesterday and there was a Moller sign, next to a “Union Home” sign.
            The trouble is, there aren’t enough people who know what a snake she really is. Print media is a shadow of its former self and the 60+ crowd in the district are isolated from the truth. All they know of her is the photo of a cute blond who looks moderate on the outside.

  23. ADV says:

    The marketing director of the casino was let go last week. Apparently she was the general manager’s right hand and it’s a pretty big deal.

  24. One Vote says:

    He’s there all the time.
    An officer in a squad car at the old Fox River Country Day School property.
    He’s back off the street a block or two, near the pool building.
    Is this a 24/7 post?
    What a white elephant. What a waste of resources.

    • RS says:

      I was sitting in Panera a month or two ago and noticed an Elgin police car parked there for about an hour while the officer had coffee with a young woman at Starbucks next door. The only thing that I thought strange was that the car was running the whole time. I guess that must be their standard practice or something to leave the car running, but it was sitting in the parking lot running for about an hour, which I thought was kind of wasteful.

      Anyway, does the police department have a GPS system to track all the police car locations at any given time? I assume they must have something like that so if somebody is parked somewhere unnecessarily for a long time it will show up on their radar. Then again probably the police union would fight something like that, so maybe they don’t track the cars. But they should. It would provide a lot of useful information.

      Another place they like to just park is the ECC parking lot, even though ECC has its own security guards.

      I do think that in general, patrol cars should patrol. They should not be parked waiting for crime to come to them or waiting to be called to action (and probably killing time updating their Facebook or mobile shopping). In particular in neighborhoods where people don’t feel that safe, they should be continuously driving around there.

    • JP says:

      I have noticed this too, as I drive 25 most evenings. I’ve thought about swinging down the driveway to ask them why they are always there. I swear that in the Daily Herald article about the Chinese Investor from 10/21 said that Elgin SWAT was using it for exercises, but I cannot find that comment at the moment.

      Okay, it looks like the article was updated in the afternoon yesterday and the picture and comment about SWAT training was removed. When I searched the article using Google the preview text reads: “23 hours ago - The school proposal is backed by Chinese investor Hongwei … Day School is currently being used for SWAT training by the Elgin Police …” [www.dailyherald.com/article/20141021/news/141029640/]

      Maybe someone can contact the author to see why the article was changed, or find a cached version of the article?

  25. bw says:

    What a horrific election cycle. We will not vote as every candidate is flawed. All the crap in the TV ads is useless. Nothing will change after the election. The court will rule in favor of those who receive a pension and have for years. What the GA passed is unconstitutional thus we will hear more abut that issue for the next few years. MM knew this would happen but he put the issue asleep during the election cycle,Thank God that politics will not be a part of the next world.

  26. RS says:

    A thought occurred to me a moment ago while playing piano that Elgin should have a charter school oriented around MUSIC. The whole math and science thing is important but it’s a basic part of public education as it is already. I think a school can specialize in it, but it’s not going to be a big difference from a regular public school. Having attended one of these schools, I don’t think there’s much of a difference between a specialized math and science school and a good private or public school.

    Where I think there would be a bigger difference is if you have a school where every student is a musician. I think that can be much more unique regionally, even nationally. And if people see this school as a potential feeder for Interlochen or Juilliard or whatever, it can become something attractive about Elgin. And of course, the fact that we have Elgin Symphony Orchestra and a very well regarded Elgin Youth Symphony Orchestra makes everything tie in together quite well.

    And now that I think of it, there is (or was?) even a Guitar Madness convention or tradeshow, so we perhaps already have an inchoate ecosystem, but it needs a lot of work, a lot of development.

    Students who study music are also likely to be involved with bands and this could lead to a much more vibrant music scene for the downtown.

    What do you guys think?

    The city has spent a lot of time talking about artists in the downtown. But maybe we need to be more specific about the type of “artists” we want to recruit to Elgin. “Artist” is a very vague term and vague ideas are not easy to deal with as far as developing and implementing a strategy, and difficult in terms of positioning in the marketplace as well. So if we drop the term “artists” and start promoting Elgin as a place for “musicians” to live, work, teach, make music, etc. Then maybe that’s going to be a much easier way to get people’s attention and keep our own people focused on what needs to be done (to establish and nurture an ecosystem with ample network externalities that will attract more and more musicians). Elgin could become a music center…

    And yes, this also means we MUST bring the Electric Daisy Festival to Downtown Elgin!

  27. Chuck Keysor says:

    One Vote is correct, Larkin does have a performing arts academy. Chuck

    • Jerry Garcia says:

      We also have the Elgin Youth Symphony, the Elgin Symphony and other groups that need to be talked about as well as attending their events. There have been some great local bands playing original music around town at bars and art studio’s. Go check it out. Even if you come away feeling like the music you experienced was not for you, you would not have know that unless you tried. You might be pleasantly surprised by what you find. I’m sure we all have experienced worse things in life than live music, that cost us much more than a night out.

    • bw says:

      CK,

      you mist have also lost interest in this electuon

      • RS says:

        It’s a pretty boring election. Rauner has a chance so people might go out to vote for him. But the US house races are not competitive so nobody is taking an interest in those. The US senate race has Oberweis who is unpopular among many Kane Republicans because of his primary fight with Lauzen back when they were running for Hastert’s seat, so those people are not going to show up to vote for him (and it’s not even a competitive race). And there is no president on the ballot.

        So I don’t think turnout around here is going to be very high.

      • Chuck Keysor says:

        Hello bw. Actually, I have been out of town for the last week, and just got home yesterday at 5PM. I was in St. Paul to celebrate my mother’s 90th birthday! So, I have gotten disconnected.

        But I am still volunteering as I can to distribute literature for Jeff Meyer, but I also have to try and finish painting the north side of my house before it gets to be too cold. So I have to balance these priorities.

        I even was glad to get home in time to watch the last Rauner/Quinn debate which was held last night on Channel 7. And tonight I have to start work on another project for the Meyer election.

        And even trying to anticipate if people will vote to keep the Illinois democratic machine running at full power, or if they will finally give Quinn the boot, and dump Madigan’s personally approved and backed replacement for Keith Farnham is quite fascinating. So, I very definitely have a strong interest in this election.

        But right now I have to go make dinner. Man does not live by politics alone……….. Chuck

  28. RS says:

    I remember Steve Munson telling me once about the first dot com boom and how Elgin was trying to take advantage of the fact that the downtown had access to some high speed Internet, I guess by virtue of the At&T station down there(?). And a number of buildings, like the Leath Building, were outfitted for high-speed Internet at that time. Of course, it didn’t take long for every household to get “high-speed” Internet and thus the boom never really materialized in the downtown.

    But the thing is that today, bandwidth requirements have become so huge, that once again we are dealing with bandwidth constraints that can bring home “high-speed” Internet connections to a crawl. Now hard drives come in at a tera and more, and data accumulates very rapidly.

    For example, I shoot raw files with my digital cameras and each individual picture averages 30MB in size. And I feel sorry for people shooting home videos, because every stupid camera manufacturer decided that their video is going to be in HD and 60 frames per second (Remember that Super 8 recorded at just 18 frames per second, and movies have traditionally been shot at 24 frames per second.)! So every stupid home video you make is going to be gigs in size.

    So anyway, external hard drives last a few years and then they fail, which means you need to backup your files, and everybody now has moved to the cloud for backups.

    But how long do you think it takes to upload a tera using a home connection? I’m uploading picture backups year by year. Right now I’m uploading a 75 gig file and I expect it to take all week.

    This is where I think Elgin might have a solution. If indeed the AT&T station means it is possible to get unusually high upload speeds, when why not tap into that somehow? Someone should open a business, cafe or whatever downtown, where we can just go and upload our files in a fraction of the time that it takes to do it at home. I for one would be happy to pay for the privilege.

    I think such a business could last for a while. We are always going to be bandwidth constrained, and storage requirements continually increase, and the trend of moving files to the cloud is a long-term trend. So somebody figure this out. It’s a problem that needs a solution and the solution can be in Downtown Elgin.

    Let’s put the E back in E-Town!

    http://www.nytimes.com/2014/02/04/technology/fast-internet-service-speeds-business-development-in-chattanooga.html?_r=0

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/the-switch/wp/2013/09/17/how-chattanooga-beat-google-fiber-by-half-a-decade/

    http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/aug/30/chattanooga-gig-high-speed-internet-tech-boom

    • One Vote says:

      Here’s the naysayer again. Government and bandwidth don’t mix. Somehow a fast-moving and ever-cheaper technology don’t mix with government bureaucracy.
      Here’s an example. Utah’s Utopia project:
      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Utah_Telecommunication_Open_Infrastructure_Agency
      It is reduced to a private company trying to sign up municipalities to finish the project. At this point the proposal is to charge each home a mandatory fee of $18/month on their water bill to fund the completion. That doesn’t sit well with residents.

      Utah County is sometimes called Silicon Slopes as a tech mecca. Lots of geeks for hire. Adobe just built a new complex out there. Google Fiber chose the area as a place to develop their bandwidth project.

      Maybe someday Elgin will achieve critical mass for high tech. I’m not seeing it yet. I DO see inept government jumping into some sort of Utopia project. That would be bad.

      • RS says:

        I don’t advocate a Google Fiber type of project that will cover the whole city. But if it’s possible to exploit whatever connection we have to AT&T in the downtown, then it could be worth looking into just for the downtown. That would be seriously attractive for area companies if Downtown Elgin has the highest speeds in Chicagoland.

    • RS says:

      My file finally finished uploading. It took, what, five days? In places like Chattanooga, Kansas City, Austin, Provo, it would have taken less than TWO MINUTES!

      We need to fiber up the downtown!!

      http://www.techrepublic.com/article/the-google-fiber-lottery/

      Here are the five parameters that Google is using to determine which cities will get Google Fiber:

      1. Existing fiber network - Google wants wants to move quickly and do it as cheaply as possible so it is leveraging dark fiber and existing fiber networks like the one in Provo. So far, Google has only moved to take over existing buried networks, so there is a possibility that they will install Fiber in cities that have utility poles (like Charlotte), mainly because of the massive price difference of hanging vs. buried cable.

      2. Close to a Google data center - Google operates data centers internationally to support their products. More fiber running to and from the Google data centers means that it can process requests faster and glean data more efficiently. Proximity to a Google data center is key.

      3. Population size range - At least in the beginning, Google will be targeting cities that are big enough to be diverse, but small enough that it will be able to avoid the oversight of cities like San Francisco, Boston, and New York City. Again, speed matters.

      4. Willing local government - Permitting is, perhaps, one of the biggest obstacles that Google will have to overcome in its quest to rapidly build out Google Fiber cities. All of the city officials we have talked to said that they were very eager to work with Google, and some were working to expedite the permitting process to show their dedication to bringing Fiber to their city. So, local government cooperation is huge.

      5. Not in a Verizon FiOS coverage zone - Verizon is the biggest competitor Google Fiber has at this point. FiOS consistently takes top ratings in customer satisfaction as an ISP. It would be foolish of Google to try to take on FiOS this early in the game, however, they don’t seem to have a problem taking shots at AT&T, as evidenced by their brazen move into Austin.

      “I think you want an underserved community that can be served economically. That might mean it has enough backbone capacity, or some way to provide that capacity, without costing a huge amount of money,” said Jeff Hecht, author of Understanding Fiber Optics.

      “It appears to me the cities that are chosen are ones that have high growth potential and are still small enough, in some respects, to be able to put in this type of infrastructure versus a mega-city like New York City.” Jeff Stovall, Charlotte CIO

      That’s why Google is targeting existing fiber networks. It saves the company time and money and it is proof that the city is interested. Provo, Portland, Phoenix, Chapel Hill, Nashville, Salt Lake City, Atlanta, San Antonio, and San Jose all have either existing fiber optic networks, or unused “dark fiber” that has been installed, but isn’t currently in use.

      “I believe these cities are not too big, they are not too small, they are not too rich, they are not too poor. They have the possibility to dig up the roads without causing major havoc like in downtown Manhattan, but there is purchasing power,” said Dan Dieler, a principal analyst at Forrester Research.

      These cities have enough resources to make good use of the Google Fiber product, without have an overbearing bureaucracy that could slow down the plan. According to Heather Burnett Gold, the president of Fiber to the Home Council in the Americas, Google is looking for cities with a committed city leadership in place who are “champions for fiber deployment,” to help with things like expedited permitting, non-onerous franchise fees, access to any common ducts pole or right of way, and demand aggregation. Google is looking for cities that share their vision.

      “I think Provo and Google shared a common vision about access to the Internet at home; the value to education, entrepreneurship, families and governance are all enhanced by nearly ubiquitous access and the availability of high speed said Provo chief administrative officer Wayne Parker.

      Fiber will be a great way to market Downtown Elgin not just for businesses but residents as well. Those Tower Building apartments are going to lease a lot faster, the Professional Building is gonna fill up. I mean this would be huge. And if other cities around here get it first, it means we are at a huge disadvantage. We could be at a huge disadvantage for years.

      Thankfully it appears that Google Fiber has spurred the competition and At&T is rolling out Gigapower

      https://www.att.com/shop/u-verse/gigapower.html

      But Elgin is not on this list

      http://www.att.com/att/gigapowercities/

      So the city really needs to work on this, because if you do nothing they will just assume that Elgin is too poor and people here are not going to subscribe to 1Gbps Internet. So the city needs to make the case for why AT&T should invest in fiber in downtown Elgin.

      This is from their page (linked to above):

      Yes, we are open to hearing from community leaders within our local service territory – areas where we provide home phone, broadband and TV services – that can show strong investment cases based on anticipated demand, in addition to receptive policies.

      So they want to talk to you guys. Go talk to them please. Because seriously if Chicago and the more prosperous suburbs get 1Gbps Internet and Elgin doesn’t, then nobody is going to live here or do business here.

      Admittedly it’s an uphill challenge. Elgin has a lot of poor people so it’s not considered a good market for investment. This could mean that if AT&T, Google etc don’t invest, then Elgin needs to lay out its own fiber plans for the Downtown, because otherwise it’s going to be at a huge competitive disadvantage compared to the other towns that will eventually get 1Gbps Internet, whether it’s from Google, AT&T or whomever.

      And I hope that Elgin leaders or bureaucrats had the foresight when they were tearing up all the sidewalks in the last several years to lay fiber while they were at it. If we already have dark fiber lines running through the downtown then it’s going to be much easier to get this done. Otherwise, just rely on electric poles though I think a lot of them have been buried.

      Anyway, pay them (AT&T) if you have to. If that’s what they mean by “receptive policies” then just do it. It’s cheaper than building our own fiber service.

  29. One Vote says:

    Did you see a couple of new bidders for the day school property?
    http://www.dailyherald.com/article/20141021/news/141029640/
    I guess $100K without leaving the city holding the bag for maintenance is an improvement, but that still seems cheap for that property.

    • RS says:

      It’s great news! I like the idea of a boarding school for international students. It will give a boost to the local hospitality industry when parents visit, prospective students visit, etc. As long as it’s not some kind of a scam, I say go with the boarding school proposal.

      • Chuck Keysor says:

        I too agree, this is GREAT NEWS! Getting this money sucker off of the taxpayer’s back, is a fabulous development. I had guessed someone had come along to purchase that property, since the Charter School people shifted their sights to the Rakow Building.

        Special thanks to everyone on the Council who ultimately took a stand against the City bank-rolling the charter school’s dream of setting up shop at the former Fox River Country Day School site!

        Chuck

      • SIE says:

        What local hospitality industry? The no tell motel across the street from the property?

        Anyone coming to the area will stay in Hoffman Estates or another city. Not Elgin.

  30. bw says:

    I think the city can get a whole lot more for that 19 acres, $100,000 is not fair value, Ir is like stealing from the taxpayers. Get a fair value for the parcel. Used your heads for a change. Any dummy can give the City’s assets away without the input of it’s citizens.

  31. still concerned says:

    Anyone notice the current electric rate offered by ComEd is only 0.6473 or 0.1237 cents lower than the city approved aggregation rate provided by Constellation due to kick in next billing of 0.771 cent per KWH. That and the fact that our old provider, Direct Energy, has a published rate lower than Constellation is causing us concern. The whole point of a city participating in an aggregation program is to get the lowest rate possible for its citizens. It appears Elgin has failed in that mission with the current Council asleep at the wheel!

    • SIE says:

      Not sure where you got your ComEd number but maybe it doesn’t include something somewhere.

      From the CUB site:

      “Compare the prices below with ComEd’s 7.487 cents per kilowatt-hour (kWh) rate for October, and 7.43 cents per kWh rate for November through May.”

      But you are correct about the City completely blowing the new aggregation agreement. And the worst part about it is we are forbidden from signing with Direct Energy on our own for six months or a year (the ICC recently changed the waiting period but they are still unsure which timeframe applies)

  32. RS says:

    http://couriernews.suntimes.com/2014/10/22/elgin-ready-keep-downtown-safe-zombies-party/

    ELGIN — Back in 2011, those involved with putting on Elgin’s first Nightmare On Chicago Street were a bit scared the Tuesday before the Saturday event when advance ticket sales stood at a paltry eight paid admissions.

    Their fears went unfounded as about 4,000 people attended. In 2012, the crowd grew to about 6,500 and to close to 7,000 last year for the pre-Halloween shindig.

    So have had no problem hosting a 7,000-people event by blocking off a relatively small area of the downtown. Electric Daisy Festival apparently attracted 24,000 people on the busiest day when it was held in Joliet last year. Total attendance over three days was 65,000 people.

    I think this is a doable number for us in the downtown. It’s basically 3x more people than we do on Nightmare on Chicago Street.

    It would be awesome. We will block off a bit more area: the whole (new) Riverside Drive Promenade, the Spring Street parking lot (DJs on each level), and probably more of Grove Avenue, perhaps the lower level (Chase Bank) parking lot, and probably Festival Park. Let’s bring the casino into this too. It’ll be great for business!

    This can put Elgin on the map! It’ll bring the people we have been trying to attract (artists and musicians) to downtown Elgin to see what we have to offer. It’s going to bring 65,000 people to Downtown Elgin! How else are you going to bring 65,000 people here? It’s a marketing coup if you can do that! And here we don’t even have to pay for it. The festival organizers pay. The city will probably even turn a profit.

    And of course it’s going to be really good for downtown business. Imagine how many burritos El Faro is going to sell! How many people will walk into the casino. How many beers and martinis will be sold, etc. The Electric Daisy Festival in 2013 injected $26M into the Joliet economy. I don’t know why we aren’t jumping on this.

    Yes, downtown residents may be inconvenienced for a few days but they can be compensated with vouchers to spend at downtown businesses. It’s something that can be worked out.

    And logistically I think it works out great, because people can come in from the city on the train, and they don’t need to worry about driving home, parking, etc. I think in this respect it’s a better location than the Joliet speedway.

    Don’t let the opportunity pass. Once the festival becomes established in some other town, it’s not likely to leave there.

    The city’s economic development people, the DNA etc., need to get in touch with the festival organizer (Insomniac) and figure this out now. There’s no time to waste!

  33. Cruex says:

    I see where the Daily Herald endorsed Jeff Meyer over Anna Moeller. The pro-life TLC supporters have one chance to use their vote against the woman who can’t control her desire against people helping pregnant women. She still cost Elgin $250,000 in law fees because of this. If Moeller wins then Madigan wins another puppet and the TLC people will be seen as minority fanatics

  34. Chuck Keysor says:

    Per Cruex’s post, here is the entire Daily Herald endorsement of Jeff Meyer, dated 10/11/14. Chuck

    “Illinois House District 43 Democratic incumbent Anna Moeller is challenged by GOP attorney Jeffrey Meyer. Both are from Elgin, and both have similar stands on several issues, such as favoring charter schools. What sets Meyer apart is his resolve to challenge the culture of governing in Springfield: the passage of whopping tax increases by lame-duck legislators, the ironclad rule of House Speaker Mike Madigan.

    Meyer is a former board member of Elgin Octave, a conservative watchdog group that supports fiscal responsibility in local government. He also ran unsuccessfully for the Kane County Board two years ago. Moeller, a former Elgin City Council member, brings strong credentials to the race. She served as executive director for the McHenry County Council of Governments for nine years, and, bucking Democratic leadership, vows not to vote to extend the life of the state income tax increase. But we agree with Meyer that his election is a step toward more balance in government in the House, allowing for, as he puts it, “open dialogue and substantive progress on the issues most affecting our state, namely marginal income tax rates, an underfunded pension liability, a structural budget deficit, debt and jobs.” Meyer is endorsed. The 43rd House District includes Elgin and portions of Carpentersville, East Dundee and South Elgin.”

  35. James Madison says:

    And this dude Rauner wants to lead 12.9 million residents of Illinois? I don’t think he could organize a clown car.

    Why I left

    October 22, 2014
    Michael Ferro
    Chairman
    Chicago Sun-Times
    350 N. Orleans St., 10th Floor
    Chicago, IL 60654

    Dear Mr. Ferro:

    I’ve worked for almost two decades at the Chicago Sun-Times because it had a soul.
    The home of eight Pulitzer Prizes, this newspaper once set up a tavern to expose graft at City Hall and later listened to a grieving mother who wanted justice for her late son after the system failed her miserably. It has stood for hard news. It has stood for independence.

    The Sun-Times is stocked with dedicated reporters, editors and columnists, who work every day with integrity, long hours and not enough pay. They are more than colleagues. They are my friends. They are my family. They are the soul of the Sun-Times.

    But today, I’m faced with a difficult decision due to the disturbing developments I’ve experienced in the last two weeks that cannot be reconciled with this newspaper’s storied commitment to journalism.

    At issue is the Sun-Times/NBC5 report about LeapSource and its fired female CEO, a story for which I proudly shared a byline with Carol Marin and Don Moseley. The piece focused on litigation involving the former executive, who alleged Bruce Rauner, while a director of the company, threatened her, her family and her future job prospects.

    With the backing of our editors and supported by sworn testimony and interviews, the piece took us nearly a month to vet, report and write. It was approved by the legal departments at both the Sun-Times and NBC5 and was posted online simultaneously with Carol’s Oct. 7 broadcast report on NBC5. It was a Sun-Times story done in the finest traditions of the paper.

    Prior to publication, the Rauner campaign used multiple tactics to block it, including having campaign staffers vowing to “go over” our heads. We are accustomed to such tactics.

    But what does not come with the territory is a campaign sending to my boss an opposition-research hit piece–rife with errors–about my wife, Ann Liston. The campaign falsely claimed she was working with a PAC to defeat Rauner and demanded a disclaimer be attached to our story that would have been untrue.

    It was a last-ditch act of intimidation.

    Yes, Ann does political consulting work for Democrats. But she has not been involved in the Illinois’ governor’s race and has focused on out-of-state campaigns. She and her business partner have gone to great lengths to prevent potential conflicts of interest, including creating a legally binding firewall that prevents Ann from participating in, strategizing in, or financially benefiting from the Illinois governor’s race. For that work, her partner formed a separate corporation with its own bank account that didn’t involve Ann in any way. In January, before we were even married, I presented this information to Sun-Times management and received approval in writing to move forward.

    Faced with the Rauner campaign’s ugly attack, Sun-Times Publisher and Editor Jim Kirk immediately told the Rauner campaign that this “assault” on my integrity “border[ed] on defamation” and represented “a low point in the campaign.” In other statements, Kirk called the campaign’s tactic “spurious” and “sexist.”

    Yet despite such strong rebukes, two days later, I was yanked from my beat as I reported on a legislative hearing focusing on Gov. Pat Quinn’s botched Neighborhood Recovery Initiative. My reporting for that day was then removed inexplicably from the Sun-Times website.

    I was told to go on leave, a kind of house arrest that lasted almost a week. It was pure hell. Kirk told me that his bosses were considering taking me away permanently from the political and Springfield beats. He offered up other potential jobs at the paper, all of which I considered demotions.
    Because of my unexplained absence from my beat, colleagues started calling, asking if I had been suspended. Or fired.

    Through all this, I simply wanted to get back to my beat, but the paper wouldn’t let me. And, Carol and I were instructed not to contact you or Tim Knight about the Rauner campaign’s defamatory allegations.

    For guidance, I called Patrick Collins, a former federal prosecutor whose name is synonymous with ethics in Illinois. His involvement brought about an abrupt shift in the company’s tone from penalizing me to reinstating me. Ultimately, the company pledged I could return to the job with “no restrictions.”

    Yet, on the first day back, I was advised I shouldn’t have a byline on a LeapSource-related story “right out of the gate” even though it was a legitimate follow-up to our initial story. While later relenting and offering me a contributing byline after I protested, the newspaper had failed an important test: It was not permitting me to do my job the way I had been doing it for almost two decades.

    Was all this retaliation for breaking an important news story that had the blessing of the paper’s editor and publisher, the company’s lawyer and our NBC5 partners?

    Does part of the answer lie in what Kirk told me – that you couldn’t understand why the LeapSource story was even in the paper?

    Days later, the newspaper reversed its three-year, no-endorsement policy and unequivocally embraced the very campaign that had unleashed what Sun-Times management had declared a defamatory attack on me.

    Readers of the Sun-Times need to be able to trust the paper. They need to know a wall exists between owners and the newsroom to preserve the integrity of what is published. A breach in that wall exists at the Sun-Times.

    It’s had a chilling effect in the newsroom. While I don’t speak for my colleagues, I’m aware that many share my concern. I’m convinced this newspaper no longer has the backs of reporters like me.

    I appreciate the recent, public statements of support by Kirk, an honorable man with solid news judgment who got the LeapSource story into print. But, ultimately, I don’t believe he called the shots here.

    We reporters have a healthy suspicion of both parties and candidates. It’s our job. It’s regrettable that this issue has emerged in the homestretch of an important election in Illinois, but respectfully, this isn’t about either candidate or the election. It’s about readers and their trust in us. So my decision could not wait. I hate to leave, but I must.

    And so, it is with great sadness today that I tender my immediate resignation from the Sun-Times.
    ________________
    Dave McKinney

    • RS says:

      Based on his dramatic departure and all I would say that the Rauner campaign had it exactly right, that this guy is not exactly an unbiased journalist. Is this not intended to affect the election? It’s disgraceful behavior that only confirms what was alleged about him.

      • James Madison says:

        yes, it is disgraceful and you are blaming the victim

        • RS says:

          I don’t like Rauner but I like this guy even less. What he did was very unprofessional and I’m pretty sure he’s never going to get a job again.

  36. Margaret Miller says:

    CHICAGO TRIBUNE
    Endorses Meyer!

    EXTRA! EXTRA! Read all about it!  

    43rd District: Jeffrey Meyer is endorsed!

    “Moeller tells constituents that she’s independent of House Speaker Michael Madigan, but he’s largely bankrolling her campaign. We endorse attorney Jeffrey Meyer of Elgin. He’s smart, truly independent and advocates for lower taxes, spending restraint and term limits.”

    To read more visit the Chicago Tribune

    Congratulations Jeff!

    • RS says:

      From the paper that endorsed Barack Obama? How much credibility do you give a paper that flips coins to decide who to endorse?

      • Chuck Keysor says:

        RS: Just because the Tribune endorsed Obama, doesn’t mean that they are always wrong. Read their justification for endorsing Meyer. Their endorsement is not based upon the flip of a coin. Instead, it is totally logical, IF you accept the premise that the Madigan machine running the State of Illinois is a bad thing. If you agree with that, then you would gladly embrace the Trib’s endorsement of Jeff Meyer.

        The Daily Herald’s endorsement of Jeff Meyer pivoted on the exact same point as the Trib’s endorsement. The only people who are going to endorse Moeller are cogs in Madigan’s machine, or people who have no sense of the political landscape in Illinois.

        Chuck

        • paul says:

          Jeff Meyer is too kind.

          His campaign signs should read:
          No Molesters. No Moeller.

          The very same people, organizations, and money that BOUGHT us Farnham are now selling us Moeller. A sense of decency after putting a child molester in as State representative might be to step back and issue a public apology. Politics is war. Too bad Meyer refuses to engage the enemy. His positions are getting over-run as his campaign goes down to a smoldering defeat.

    • Zreebs says:

      I don’t see term limits as a good idea, and I don’t think it has worked well in California either. When you have term limits, there is minimal stability in state laws. And that makes it tough for business.

      • Chuck Keysor says:

        OK Zreebs, I am somewhat agreeing with you.

        In the ideal case, the voters should be able to decide when it is time to retire an elected official. The thing that makes it so hard to figure, is that the incumbents get so much free PR, and do mailings to their districts at no expense, it all builds positive images, that however false they may be, are hard for challengers to over-come.

        But at this point, I can only see letting the voters being the ones to retire long-time incumbents. Chuck

        • Zreebs says:

          I would argue that politicians should not be able to do mailings at no expense.

          • Chuck Keysor says:

            Well, since they write the laws and pass the budgets (sometimes) I don’t see their free mailing going away.

            Even look at Anna Moeller’s official mailing, dated July 2014, of which there were 19,338 copies! This was prepared by paid government staff, yet all it does is heap glowing praise on Anna for “Creating Jobs”, “Eliminating Waste”, “Rejecting Tax Increases”, “Fighting Skyrocketing Property Taxes” and “Preventing Lawmakers Facing Felony Charges From Collecting A Pension”. The only thing that makes this NOT be a campaign piece is that it does not say “Vote for Anna Moeller”. And we paid for this hype and spin with our tax dollars. And it works, because plenty of our liberal friends fall for this tripe hook line and sinker…..

            Chuck

          • Zreebs says:

            Fair comment - as long as you are equally critical when the GOP does the same thing.

            My only objections is that you imply liberals are the target audience of these mailings. When
            I lived in Texas, I probably got more of this garbage from conservatives than I do now. How about if we agree to oppose it by either party?

          • Chuck Keysor says:

            Zreebs. I must agree with you in that either side would naturally take advantage of free (to the office holder) production, printing and distribution of constituent targeted propaganda. It is simply human nature to use such opportunities for self promotion. The matter of how blatantly self-promotional these things are, is only a matter of minor degrees.

            This is the type of practice that should be ended, ie such taxpayer funded publications should be banned. If some politician wants to get good news out to their district, they should have to work to get in the newspaper, or be in the news at large.

            Because this is a governmentally created gift to elected officials, this could be ended in principle, as opposed to limiting campaign contributions which is a slippery slope, constitutional issue, which doesn’t seem to have ever worked anyway.

            Chuck

  37. bw says:

    Anna Moeller left her mark on Elgin when she was a member of the city council. Her record is there for all to see. A real liberal who cost the taxpayer plenty. She took it upon herself in closing down the TLC operation that cost the taxpayer $500,000 in legal fees. She used poor judgement when she had the Chief of Police shut down a legal service for poor women. The Tribune and Herald did not endorse her because she has nothing to offer in the Illinois GA Just another rubber stamp for MM

    The Tribune:
    “Moeller tells constituents that she’s independent of House Speaker Michael Madigan, but he’s largely bankrolling her campaign. We endorse attorney Jeffrey Meyer of Elgin. He’s smart, truly independent and advocates for lower taxes, spending restraint and term limits.”

  38. RS says:

    Don’t forget to attend the Nightmare tonight 6-11pm!

    http://www.dailyherald.com/article/20141023/news/141029397/

  39. RS says:

    Just noticed that one of the Gary serial killer’s victims was an Elgin native named Afrika Hardy.

    http://www.nwitimes.com/news/local/lake/hammond/family-raising-funds-to-send-victim-s-body-home/article_c84b6a35-abbc-5a2b-bcbe-daaf5a5a9adc.html

    Friends of Hardy have established a GoFundMe page aimed at raising funds to cover cremation and transportation of her remains back to Colorado.

    http://www.gofundme.com/HerNameIsAfrikka

  40. James Madison says:

    Listed below are 14 objective facts, without interjecting any opinion, about the state of America under the leadership of President Obama. Every statement is followed up with a link to a source where you can verify these facts for yourself.

    1. We’ve now had 63 straight months of economic expansion.

    That’s right, for 63 consecutive months the US economy has gotten progressively better. That includes 54 consecutive months of private sector job growth. Forbes magazine, no fan of President Obama, crunched the numbers and demonstrated how the economic recovery under President Obama has been better in just about every measurable way than the recovery under President Reagan.

    http://www.forbes.com/sites/adamhartung/2014/09/05/obama-outperforms-reagan-on-jobs-growth-and-investing/

    2. We are currently enjoying the longest period of private sector job creation in American history.

    Again, this statistic comes from the Forbes Magazine article listed above. In fact, we have now had 54 straight months of private sector job creation. That is the longest period of job creation since the Department of Labor has been keeping statistics. See the link below.

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/fact-checker/wp/2014/09/15/obamas-claim-that-businesses-are-in-the-longest-uninterrupted-stretch-of-job-creation/

    3. Unemployment has dropped from 10.1% in October of 2009 to 5.9% and projected to reach 5.4% by summer of 2015.

    Not only has the unemployment rate dropped significantly, but since the recession ended, our economy as added over ten million new jobs. You can refer to the Forbes article above or check this article on PoliticsUSA.

    http://www.politicususa.com/2014/09/05/jobs-report.html

    4. The stock market continues to set new records since President Obama has been in office.

    Since early 2009 there has been a steady trend in stock market growth. The Dow Jones Industrial averages reached an all-time high of 17,098 in August, 2014. Since most Americans have 401K retirement investments in the stock market, this stock market growth benefits millions of middle class Americans.

    http://www.macrotrends.net/1358/dow-jones-industrial-average-last-10-years

    5. The Federal budget deficit is shrinking. It’s been reduced by two-thirds since 2009.

    The $1.4 trillion federal budget deficit that Obama inherited in 2009 was in a large part due to the high rate of unemployment. When millions of people were put out of work in 2008 and 2009, it resulted in far less income taxes and less economic activity to generate federal revenue. As ten million people have been put back to work, there have been billions more tax dollars generated. As a result, the deficit has been shrinking each year. The 2014 deficit is projected to be around $500 billion, the smallest deficit since 2007 and roughly 1/3 of what it was in 2009.

    http://www.usgovernmentspending.com/federal_deficit_chart.html

    6. Under President Obama, spending has increased only 1.4% annually, the lowest rate since Eisenhower was president.

    You may have heard critics say that President Obama is spending money wildly and running up our debt. According to this article from Forbes, Obama has increased spending by 1.4% annually, far less than President Reagan (8.7%) or George W. Bush (8.1%). In fact, Obama has increased spending less than any president since Eisenhower.

    http://www.forbes.com/sites/rickungar/2012/05/24/who-is-the-smallest-government-spender-since-eisenhower-would-you-believe-its-barack-obama/

    7. For 95% of American taxpayers, income taxes are lower now than just about any time in the previous 50 years.

    After President Obama took office, thousands of Tea Party members all over the country held rallies protesting Obama’s tax increases. At that time, President Obama had actually passed several tax cuts to stimulate the economy. Most of the Tea Partiers who were protesting had only seen their taxes decrease under Obama. Yet polls indicated that most Tea Party members wrongly believed their taxes had gone up.
    In fact, the only people whose income taxes have gone up during Obama’s presidency are those making $400,000 per year or more. That’s less than 2% of the population. Today, for the vast majority of people, tax rates are exactly where they were when Obama first took office or lower. The article below from the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities explains this in greater detail.

    http://www.cbpp.org/cms/?fa=view&id=3151

    8. Our dependence on foreign oil has shrunk due to record domestic oil production and improved fuel efficiency standards.

    While some people claim that oil production has declined under President Obama, the truth is just the opposite. Oil production has reached record highs. The United States now produces so much oil that we export more oil and gasoline than we import.

    http://www.indexmundi.com/g/g.aspx?c=us&v=88

    9. At least 7 million more Americans now have health insurance than before.
    Depending on whose numbers you use, between 7 and 10 million Americans acquired health insurance due to the Affordable Care Act. Now that those 7 to 10 million Americans have insurance, the rest of us are no longer on the hook to pay for their health care when they get sick. This saves the American people billions of dollars in the long run.

    http://www.nbcnews.com/health/health-care/obamacare-helped-10-million-get-insurance-gallup-finds-n78446

    10. The Affordable Care Act has added years to the life of Medicare.

    The Medicare trust fund had been on course to run out of money by the end of 2016. But due to cost savings from the Affordable Care Act and lower healthcare expenses, Medicare’s trust fund is now stable until the year 2030 without cutting benefits.

    http://online.wsj.com/articles/medicare-social-security-headed-in-different-directions-1406564712

    11. Since passage of the Affordable Care Act, we are seeing the slowest rate of increase in healthcare costs since 1960.

    Contrary to the predictions from Republicans, health care costs have increased at a much slower pace since the passage of the ACA.

    http://www.whitehouse.gov/sites/default/files/docs/healthcostreport_final_noembargo_v2.pdf

    12. We currently have fewer soldiers, sailors and airmen in war zones than any time in over 10 years.

    With the end of the Iraq war and the steady withdrawal of troops from Afghanistan, we have fewer people in war zones now than any time since 2002.
    13. There have been zero successful attacks by al Qaeda on US soil since Obama became president.
    Despite Dick Cheney’s claim that if voters elect a Democrat as president, we’ll be “hit again and hit hard” by al Qaeda, we have actually been far safer from terrorist attacks on US soil in recent years than we were under the previous president. There have been several unsuccessful attacks against the US under both presidents, but under Obama, al Qaeda has been largely unsuccessful in striking the US on our home soil.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Timeline_of_al-Qaeda_attacks

    14. We now successfully catch and deport more illegal immigrants than ever before.

    Despite the publicity from busloads of children who illegally entered the country, the numbers prove that President Obama has deported more illegal immigrants than any other president.

    http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/statements/2012/aug/10/american-principles-action/has-barack-obama-deported-more-people-any-other-pr/

    All of the facts stated above can be confirmed through multiple sources, yet most Americans are not aware of all of this positive news. I invite you to do your own research and check these facts for yourself.
    The truth is, most other presidents would envy President Obama’s record despite the fact that he inherited the worst economic crash since the Great Depression.

    Here’s a bonus. If you feel particularly ambitious, feel free to research these additional facts.

    1. Since Obama became president, our economy has gone from losing 800,000 jobs per month to adding 200,000 jobs per month. That’s a net improvement under Obama of about 1 million jobs per month!

    2. Before Obama became president, our financial system was in ruins and millions of people were at risk of losing their life savings. Now, the financial loopholes have been fixed and we are no longer at risk of another financial collapse.

    3. In 5 years under Obama the economy has created twice as many jobs as were created in 8 years under George W. Bush.

    4. President Obama passed credit card reforms that protects consumers from excessive fees, rate hikes, deceptive marketing and unreasonable due dates.

    5. Thanks to “Obamacare”, senior citizens have saved billions of dollars on prescription drugs.

    6. The Affordable Care Act requires insurance companies to spend at least 80% of your premiums on health care. As a result millions of Americans have received refunds from their health insurance companies.

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/07/24/health-insurance-rebates_n_5614570.html

    Despite the unprecedented obstructionism and record number of filibusters used by Republicans to kill even the most routine legislation, the fact remains, in almost every measurable way, the American people are profoundly better off today than they were before President Obama took office.

    • Chuck Keysor says:

      Funny, extensive polling shows most people still think we are in a recession!

      Yes, taxes are lower, because most people’s wages are down. And lots of these new jobs are simply part time. If I got a job at Walmart, working for minimum wage for 20 hours, I would be counted as employed…. A long fall from my 27 years as a degreed electrical engineer.

      And all this expansion you are happy about, in past recessions, has only taken a year or 18 months to come on, as part of natural economic cycles….. All post WW2 recessions have come and gone quickly. But the President and the FED policies have stretched out this effective recession for 5 extra YEARS! This is just as FDR dragged out the depression in the late 1930’s by his disastrous tax changes in 1937.

      Chuck

      • Zreebs says:

        Some of the new jobs are part time, but the truth is that “average weekly hours” that people work is now about where it was before the great recession.

        http://data.bls.gov/pdq/SurveyOutputServlet?request_action=wh&graph_name=CE_cesbref2

        The great recession was the deapest recession since the depression. I would argue that the recession would have been a second depression if it weren’t for actions by Obama (and Bush). The recovery has been slower than what most people would like, but it is worthwhile in reminding you that it was Mitt Romney who promised that he would lower the unemployment rate to 6% by the end of his first term. Obama has already exceeded that target in less than two years.

        Chuck’s point that people’s wages have not been increasing is a fair point. I would argue that a lot of this has to do with things such as robotics that eliminate the need for people. Robotics will be here to stay. The stagnant wages is also attributed to outsourcing. Personally, I would be inclined to require a tax penalty to companies that outsource.

        • James Madison says:

          Zreebs, Chuck,

          this list was not an attempt to minimize the impact of the recession and the lack of job creation after the recovery. It was simply a recognition that Obama is not a “failed presidency” as FOX News and Republicons are fond of parroting.

          This was more than a post-WWII recession. This was the chickens coming home to roost after 30 years of ‘voodoo economics’ and outsourcing American jobs by all Presidents from Reagan through Bush 43.

          The financial bubble that was a product of the savings and loan industry resulted in business closures, loss of investment by owners and people going to jail. This financial bubble that stole trillions from American taxpayers and was the result of criminal exercises by banks and investment companies resulted in only one company failing (Lehman Bros).

          All of the bi-lateral treaties, NAFTA, CAFTA, etc. has only resulted in millions of jobs that were formerly held by the middle class in American being shipped to lower cost countries. Companies such as GE and others have an effective marginal tax rate of zero while Wal-Mart is able to hire workers at such a low rate of pay that they qualify for SNAP and other supplemental programs.

          The US taxpayer effectively is supporting the bottom line of these companies. Why? A political collusion of incumbency by both parties. A politician’s only imperative is to stay in office. There are no “Profiles in Courage” left. There are very few politicians (and certainly none in Illinois) that put the peoples interest ahead of their own.

          You are right Chuck. This is a lousy recovery. Too many families are forced to make ends meet by working multiple jobs. Meanwhile, as in other posts on these threads, the public school system is lambasted for failure to educate and assist students in lifting themselves from their circumstances.

          This country is too wealthy to have such a disparity between the CEO’s salary and the person who is last on the org chart.

          Reagan decided that “free enterprise” was more important than democracy and here we are, 30+ years later, reaping the results of those policies. The only winners in this game are the plutocracy of America and the politicians of both persuasions.

    • RS says:

      I already knew Obama was the greatest president ever when he won the Nobel Peace Prize.

  41. Margaret Miller says:

    Who is the real Anna Moeller?

    Please watch the video and share accordingly! 

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TfE0HpXHVsU

    • Zreebs says:

      I can’t say that this ad is convincing. Eliminating big donations would be nice, but until both candidates agree to it, it seems a little tough to throw stones.

      • bw says:

        Some people just never get it. Bottom line Moeller is in Madigan’s pocket. Her election will mean more of the same. She brings nothing new to the GA. Illinois needs leadership from it’s GA members. We don’t need more of the same old politics. A vote for Moeller is a vote for the status quo. Just more of the same. It will be a sad day in Illinois politics if she wins.

        • Chuck Keysor says:

          AMEN bw! Chuck

        • Zreebs says:

          So if someone from the KKK were to conribute heavily to a candidate, does that mean that the candidate is in the KKK’s pocket. I would argue no. But if you are to be consistent, then you would have to say “yes”.

          • Chuck Keysor says:

            Zreebs, I think if any candidate were to be found out to be getting KKK donations, that there would be an uproar, and the funds would be returned, and apologies and spinning would take place to mitigate the fall-out.

            In other words, your example is intellectually disconnected from the point you are desperately trying to make.

            The fact of the matter is, EVERYONE knows that Madigan controls the Illinois House. And he is the king of the Illinois Democratic machine, extending his power far beyond the Illinois House. We are not talking about a contrived boggy man (such as your KKK scenario). Madigan runs the machine that runs our bankrupt state. As Madigan gets his power from commanding his army of robots, he is a master of controlling others. Giving Anna over $100,000 for a campaign has to be about the best way there could be for Madigan to exert his power over Moeller, short maybe of out-right black mail. But since black mail is illegal, and paying over $100,000 to Moeller’s campaign is legal, and highly effective, there is no need to resort to blackmail.

            IF Anna were going to independent of Madigan, she would have refused his donations, or capped them at some manageable amount like $2,000. But she didn’t do that, because she needs the money, and she knows she will have to dance to Madigan’s tune if she gets elected. To think otherwise is simply not realistic.

            Chuck

          • RS says:

            Well, Madigan is synonymous with the Democratic Party in Illinois. It’s to be expected that every Democratic candidate in the state will get money from their party/Madigan (who is the state chairman). Candidates normally receive money from their party. Which is why it’s troubling that the Illinois Republican Party is not putting money into this race.

            I don’t think it reflects well on Rauner either that he’s not supporting the entire ticket. Somebody with pockets deep as his should be putting money into all races not just his own.

    • Chuck Keysor says:

      Oh, Zreebs, you made the point that implied BOTH sides were accepting HUGE campaign contributions. Go to the Illinois Campaign disclosure site and look at Meyer’s contributions. Last time I looked, it was all small change compared to Madigan’s jaw dropping, gratitude inspiring/demanding donations to Moeller’s campaign. Get your facts straight, both sides are not hauling in big bucks! Chuck

      • Zreebs says:

        Speaking frankly, if I were running for political office, I would be reluctant to deny any campaign contributions - unless I felt that accepting them would be more harmful to my campaign than rejecting them. I suppose there have probably been a few candidates on both sides of the aisle that have turned down very large contributions, but that certainly doesn’t mean Meyer is one of those candidates. Most likely, no one has offered him the big bucks.

        Rauner has made some pretty hefty donations to candidates running in Illinois. Should those candidates have rejected his donations? Would this make you less likely to vote for those candidates?

        I would support campaign reform that would disallow huge campaign contributions. Hopefully, you would too? But until those laws are changed that prevent huge campaign contributions, you can’t blame both sides for accepting huge campaign contributions.

        • Chuck Keysor says:

          Zreebs, I agree that probably nobody has offered Jeff Meyer big bucks……

          I would speculate that Jeff Meyer would probably accept a large campaign donation if it came his way, IF it came from an acceptable source. For example, he would certainly reject a gift from your example of the KKK. He would certainly ask himself the same question you posed above, “would such a donation be harmful to my campaign?”

          That is where Anna Moeller’s acceptance of an avalanche of cash from Michael Madigan should be seen as troubling. The ONLY person she has said she would be independent of IS Michael Madigan, which she said at the LWV forum. Well, IF Anna Moeller applied your correct and logic evaluation, Anna should have said, “Gee, a key point of my campaign is that I will be independent of Michael Madigan…. Hmmm, how will it look if I accept an avalanche of money from Michael Madigan???? Hmmm, I’ll grab the money and run (for office), and hope that there are enough robotic Democratic voters who will fail to question this obvious inconsistency! That way I can have my cake and eat it too……..”

          Chuck

    • Chuck Keysor says:

      Thanks Margaret for sharing the video!

      Rumor has it that the liberals on the council are starting to think of their own hides. Should Moeller win, they see Jeff Meyer as a possible council contender that would easily knock off liberals from the council.

      They may be gathering the wagons, and be willing to throw Anna under the wheels to help Jeff Meyer win his House race to help preserve the liberal majority on the Elgin City Council……….

      Chuck

      • Jennifer says:

        Meyer would be a two-time loser in that case and less appealing. I don’t think the “liberals” on the council have much to worry about. Liberals wouldn’t vote for Jeff. Shaw would be the one who should worry since he and Meyer would be splitting the conservative vote.

        • Chuck Keysor says:

          Hmmm, we all know how the liberals did in the last Council election: Three unabashed conservatives and one self-described fiscal conservative/social liberal. There is nothing to indicate the tide has changed, so the concern among the liberals up for re-election should be legitimate.

          Plus, the liberal Steffen and Powell have a record of voting for the trash tax, the natural gas tax, the electrical tax, the leaf rake out tax, the increased sales tax as well as the monthly water bill.

          And, Mike Noland lost for State Rep, then lost for the City Council, before winning the State Senate race. That is a recent, local case for being able to persist to victory.

          Chuck

          • Chuck Keysor says:

            Duhhhhh, here is the corrected post,,, Chuck

            Hmmm, we all know how the liberals did in the last Council election, they BOMBED! The winners were three unabashed conservatives and one self-described fiscal conservative/social liberal. There is nothing to indicate the tide has changed, so the concern among the liberals up for re-election should be legitimate.

            Plus, the liberal Steffen and Powell have a record of voting for the trash tax, the natural gas tax, the electrical tax, the leaf rake out tax, the increased sales tax as well as the monthly water bill.

            And, Mike Noland lost for State Rep, then lost for the City Council, before winning the State Senate race. That is a recent, local case for being able to persist to victory.

            Chuck

        • Jennifer says:

          Go back and look at the vote totals for the last City Council race, Chuck. The so-called “liberal” candidates garnered more votes amongst them than the conservative candidates. The reason they lost individually is because there were too many of them and they split the vote.

          • Chuck Keysor says:

            Dream on Jennifer. The liberals lost because of what they represent.

            OK, if you want proof, check out the two year race,,,, a total conservative, Toby Shaw, versus an outright liberal, rain tax denier, Craig Dresang,,,,,,,,,,,, one on one. Conservative versus liberal,,,, Toby blew the doors off of Dresang’s little liberal bandwagon………… What does that say about your theory?????

            If you would have put Prigge or Gavin ONE ON ONE against any one of the liberals, Prigge and Gavin would have clobbered them as well.

            Chuck

  42. Margaret Miller says:

    http://www.dailyherald.com/article/20141027/news/141028516/

    Farnham guilty plea possible in December?
     
    Former state Rep. Keith Farnham, charged with possession of child pornography earlier this year, might plead guilty to the charges when he next appears in federal court on Dec. 3.

    Farnham, 67, will enter a change of plea at his next court date, a spokesman for the U.S. attorney’s office said after a status hearing for Farnham Monday. That suggests the Elgin Democrat, who initially pleaded not guilty to the charges, will reverse himself and enter a guilty plea at his next hearing.

    Farnham, who had been running for re-election, resigned his seat March 19 after federal agents raided his home. Federal authorities say they recovered images of child pornography on several computers, including one owned by the state.

    Farnham was released on an individual recognizance bond in April and ordered confined to his home except for physician visits, counseling sessions and meetings with his attorney. U.S. District Judge Jeffrey T. Gilbert also prohibited Farnham using a computer, accessing the Internet or having unsupervised contact with anyone younger than 18.

    A former commercial painter, Farnham was first elected to the Illinois House in 2008.

    Federal prosecutors declined to comment on Monday’s proceedings. Defense attorney Terry Ekl did not immediately return calls.

    In July, Ekl referred to the possibility of resolving the case without a trial. But neither he nor federal prosecutors have acknowledged any plea negotiations.?

  43. Margaret Miller says:

    Many thoughts on this but looking to hear from Elginites.

    http://www.dailyherald.com/article/20141024/news/141028856/

    Facebook post gets heat from Elgin police
     
    The Elgin Police Department is taking issue with a Facebook post they say misrepresented the injuries suffered by a female cabdriver involved in an altercation.

    The post was made by Anthony Pedote, a planning and zoning commissioner in Elgin, who said police mishandled their response to Wednesday morning’s altercation between the cabdriver and an SUV driver.

    He posted on the Facebook page “What’s Happening in Elgin IL?” which has more than 3,360 members, on Thursday offering $300 for information about the incident. He posted the same on his own private page.

    The posts, which have since been deleted, included a photo of a person with a head injury with stitches.

    However, the photo was not of the cabdriver, but a random photo off the Internet, Pedote said, adding he was acting as a private citizen, not as a commissioner.

    The 34-year-old cabdriver and the 59-year-old driver of an SUV got into the altercation shortly after 9 a.m. Wednesday on the 600 block of Sherman Avenue, according to the police report.

    The cab was stopped in the middle of the street because a landscaping truck was blocking its path. The driver behind her started honking when the truck drove off but the cab didn’t move. Then the SUV driver got out and approached the cab.

    That’s where the two accounts differ, with each driver saying the other was the aggressor. No witnesses could be found at the scene to corroborate either side, police said.

    No one’s been charged in the altercation, but the investigation is ongoing, Elgin Police Cmdr. Glenn Theriault said.

    Pedote says he has no tolerance for violence against women, and believes the cabdriver. “I know her. I’ve had the opportunity to be a customer,” he said.

    The cabdriver, who had swelling under her hairline, refused medical treatment at the scene, police said. The other driver’s glasses were broken.

    The cabdriver later went to the hospital, where she was treated and released the same day, Pedote said.

    Pedote said he eventually added a comment to his Facebook post clarifying the photo was not of the cabdriver.

    “The picture was merely to say, ‘Hey, this grabs your attention.’ It wasn’t to sensationalize it,” he said.

    Police responded with a post on its own Facebook page Friday saying that the information posted by Pedote — whom police didn’t name — was false.

    “He admitted he intentionally misled the Facebook community to create a dramatic effect to the exaggerated claims he was making pertaining to the incident,” police stated on Facebook. “This serves as an excellent reminder that you can’t believe everything you read on the Internet.”

    Pedote said it wasn’t his intention to be misleading.

    “I expressed the facts as best as I had knowledge of them,” he said. “They want to make this about the photo because it detracts from the issue.”

    Theriault said police wanted to set the record straight.

    “EPD investigates all cases fairly and impartially, and takes the appropriate action when necessary.”

    Pedote said he also went to the site of the altercation on Thursday morning and handed out fliers in English and Spanish seeking witnesses.

  44. Cruex says:

    Mr. Madison cannot come up with 14 positive points about Democrat Anna Moeller since she was elected to the city council and appointed as State Representative. Can anyone come up with just 4?

  45. SIE says:

    I came across this post on the City of Elgin’s Facebook page.

    https://www.facebook.com/cityofelgin/photos/a.497860150029.300723.97640945029/10152819660435030/?type=1&comment_id=10152820302615030&offset=0&total_comments=3

    I’m pretty sure the word “Deficient” is used correct. Its clear the same old stop spending at all cost is the message. I really wonder what type of community someone who advocates this envisions.

  46. SIE says:

    I know this interweb thing is confusing to some but I’m pretty sure when a link is posted there really isn’t a need to also copy the entire text that is in that link.

    • Margaret Miller says:

      sie,

      I believe you are speaking to many with your comment.

      Don’t worry, the bandwidth can handle it.

  47. SIE says:

    And this one

    https://www.facebook.com/cityofelgin/posts/10152819328010030?comment_id=10152819403850030&offset=0&total_comments=13

    Children from Elgin attend summer camp and swim lessons and participate in soccer leagues among many other things. These activities do cost money but they are subsidized by the cities Parks and Rec department so tax dollars do go toward them.

    According to that post we need to shut all these activities down immediately. Elgin should not pay for anyone’s “entertainment”.

    I seriously think someone doesn’t have a clue of what society entails.

  48. SIE says:

    Ironically I was incorrect in my post. Clearly the word “deficient” was not use correct.

    That FB post paled in comparison to the next one I found.

    Apparently it has been decreed that the city of Elgin must not pay for anyone’s entertainment. So parents find another place to have your kids play basketball or learn to swim or attend camp.

  49. SIE says:

    I am sure some Elgin police members will be involved in making sure it is a safe Halloween. Tax dollars pay for the police

    Someone needs to tell them that it has been decreed that no entertainment shall be paid for by the city. Therefore Halloween must be cancelled…in Elgin. It of course will go on in every other city, village and town along with swim lessons, summer camp, soccer leagues, etc.

    Elgin, the city where there is no entertainment.

    • Margaret Miller says:

      sie,

      You must be really aggravated that my interests extend further than leaf bags. Your determined need to play gotcha with my posts should be beneath you but alas it’s not. You should be pleased that I made it easy for you to find me as I post under my name and not an alias.

      Such an extreme exaggerated interpretation from someone who apparently doesn’t have a leaf bag to stand on as your continual single issue.

      You could always make your own entertainment and hide yourself under all those leaves and jump out and scare people as they walk by. That would be in the spirit of Halloween and maybe entertaining to all.

      Thanks BR_ _e for the additional press on my opinion.

      • SIE says:

        Taxes should not pay for entertainment. Taxes should not pay for essential services. Taxes should not pay for quality of life issues. Taxes should not pay for planting trees. Taxes should not pay for paving streets. Taxes should not…

        I don’t want anything in my city.

  50. SIE says:

    Tax dollars should not go to anything other than what I deem worthy. What is wasteful and unnecessary is for me, not society to decide.

    No ones opinion but mine matters. If I think spending public money on a project doesn’t benefit me than that money should not be spent. Everyone pays tax dollars but I will decide what is a worthy return on their investment. I want a city that spends nothing on entertainment. I want a city that spends nothing on quality of life issues. I want a city that spends nothing on essential city services.

    Unless I approve. I have spoken.

    • Margaret Miller says:

      sie,

      With all the important things happening in this city, the 2015 budget and in this election cycle, you choose to troll other sites for my post comments and place your own spin on them. How sad for you.

      Why don’t you give your opinion about the Anna Moeller video, the budget, the stabbing, or the rash of car break ins?

      I guess if an issue is anything but leaf bags, you don’t have an opinion.

      Good night, try to sleep well.

    • Margaret Miller says:

      Let me help you out.

      Margaret Miller: We have been asked for suggestions regarding the budget! After all, it’s your money they are spending. How about a 10 percent cut across the board for every department. Stop all programs from the Sustainability Committee. Stop all duplication memberships and lobbyists. No more signing on to State + Fed programs or grants that leave taxpayers with legacy costs such as bike lanes. No more money to businesses for their signage or grease traps. How about privatization of public works and code enforcement? That would start to do away for high salaries + pensions. Demand the Police start to buy their own equipment from their drug asset money. A five year freeze on million dollar fire equipment as we have what we need. No more bailouts for organizations, example ESO. More to come later!

      • bw says:

        MM:

        Your list of suggestions for budget cuts makes a lot of sense. The problem is that the current manager and council lack the courage and intelligence to follow any of what you purpose. It is a sad day for the citizens of Elgin in following anything this council acts upon. They lack the ability and mental capacity to do what is right for the community. Expect the stats quo in drafting and passing any kind of meaningful budget as shown in their yearly operation in governing a city the size of Elgin.

  51. SIE says:

    Someone needs to realze its not always about them.

    A citizen expressed his displeasure of not being provided with leaf bags. Then he said that if the city won’t provide bags they should pick up his leaves from the curb like they do for residents that are deemed worthy of such an essential service.

    The fact that tax dollars go to a program that only selected residents benefit from doesn’t seems like an issue that would be concern.

    • SIE says:

      Let’s try that last sentence again.

      The fact that tax dollars go to a program that only benefits selected residents seems like it would be a concern.

    • me again says:

      Let’s try that last sentence again.

      The fact that tax dollars go to a program that only benefits selected residents seems like it would be a concern.

  52. SIE says:

    Not sure why this hasn’t been discussed. Tax dollars go to the program. Maybe getting rid of garbage is considered an acceptable use of tax dollars. Or maybe not.

    http://www.dailyherald.com/article/20141023/news/141029163/

    • SIE says:

      Not one comment about garbage rates going up. Positive or negative. But hugely long (again unnecessarily quoting the entire link) about fiber optics. Buena suerte.

      • Chuck Keysor says:

        SIE, I’m glad you brought it up! Now, can you bring some insight into the subject? Who do you blame for this? Are we getting a good rate? Should other fees/taxes be reduced to compensate? Can you think of any alternatives that would allow the garbage costs to be reduced? Chuck

  53. RS says:

    Elgin needs to adopt a “Dig Once” policy:

    http://www.govtech.com/local/Supervisor-Wants-San-Francisco-to-Seize-Opening-to-Lay-Wi-Fi-Cable-.html

    Supervisor David Chiu’s “Dig Once” proposal would require private and public agencies digging up streets for other work to allow the placement of city-owned conduits that can be used for fiber-optic cables.

    Here’s another site to check out:

    http://www.muninetworks.org

    If city officials are not proactive about fiber, Elgin will never get it and it will see an exodus of businesses and the most prosperous people in the community. People and businesses will migrate to where they can get Internet at standard speeds and in the near future, 1 Gbps is going to be the standard speed.

    If Elgin leaders do nothing now, Elgin can end up two decades behind cities like Naperville. It’ll be when telecom companies have rolled out everywhere else (more prosperous communities where they will get the faster ROI) and then decide to roll out into poor old Elgin when they have nothing else to do. By then the only people remaining in Elgin are going to be poor people who don’t use the Internet and probably don’t even speak English.

    If we have not been laying fiber all these years that we have been digging up the downtown and so on, that was a mistake that we need to rectify immediately.

    We are slow out of the gate and have a lot of catching up to do.

    We should convene a task force or working group or whatever and figure this out. Involve DNA, chamber of commerce, the city’s economic development people, etc.

    The future of Elgin depends on what we do NOW. Not ten years from now when it will be too late. Everybody will already have left by then. Nobody’s going to hang around waiting for 1Gbps in Elgin when they can just move to Naperville, etc.

    From now on, everything in the downtown needs to account for fiber. When they refurbish the Tower Building for example, the developer should be told to wire the whole thing in preparation for 1Gbps Internet. Ethernet cables/outlets are now required again as WiFi seems to be speed-limited. Downtown needs to be 100% fiber from now on. Fiber, Fiber, Fiber!!!

    Got that? FIber!!

    • Margaret Miller says:

      As I see your point, the comparison of Elgin to Naperville is a far off dream.

      The better comparison on all line items (medium incomes, number of businesses, demographics, home values, etc)is Aurora and they are doing better than Elgin on many fronts.

      WiFi isn’t the answer to the problems of businesses in Elgin.

      Perhaps instead of a WiFi investment, we could look at what our code enforcement department needs to do their proper job.

      • RS says:

        I don’t believe in comparing Elgin to Aurora because I don’t think Elgin should be engaged in a race to the bottom. Both of these cities will get left behind while cities like Naperville attract the best and brightest. In one place you have a vicious circle and in another place you have a virtuous circle.

        There is going to be a huge digital divide in this country and Elgin is going to end up on the wrong side of it if we ignore the trends. The future is fiber optic 1Gbps Internet.

        We don’t want to end up like one of those two million unfortunate souls in rural and poor areas of America that are still using dial-up Internet because broadband service is not available where they live. You can bet your bottom dollar that no technology company is located in any of those areas. They are backwaters, and that’s what we are looking at here in Elgin if we don’t take corrective action.

        There’s an AT&T building in downtown Elgin. We need to figure out how we can exploit that to bring fiber Internet to downtown residents and businesses. There are some obvious major subscribers there if service is offered: city hall (and all city-owned offices and so on), the library, U-46…

        And it would lead to a boom in coffee shops downtown as people will start going there all the time to use the faster Internet. And this will be sustainable for a long time, as a general roll-out of fiber in surrounding areas (especially the rest of Elgin) will take decades.

        • Margaret Miller says:

          Who pays for the subscriptions?

          In order to obtain these dreams people and the city need money. This current economy does not allow for it right now.

          So, you either raise taxes again another 38 percent or you do without until the spending and revenue is stable.

          New coffee shops in downtown. If that were the answer Starbucks would already be there getting their foothold in the best location. As I agree the current foot traffic and lack of businesses don’t support it no business savvy company wants to wait 5-10 years until a city gets their act together.

          • RS says:

            The subscribers pay. It’s not going to be a free service.

            Just noticed that there’s an Illinois Gigabit Communities Challenge. Why didn’t we apply?

            http://www2.illinois.gov/gov/gigabit/Pages/Status.aspx

            Even Hoffman Estates applied. And Aurora actually won a grant!

            They have 60 miles of fiber!

            http://www.onlightaurora.com/news/

            Rush-Copley Medical Center has become the first healthcare facility to utilize Aurora’s 60+ mile fiber optic network through a partnership with OnLight Aurora, a not-for-profit organization which brings the advantages of the network to the City’s community anchor institutions.

            Wow, I had no idea we had fallen so far behind Aurora!

            http://www.muninetworks.org/content/onlight-aurora-partners-city-better-connectivity-illinois

            The 60-mile network, constructed from 2008 - 2011, cost approximately $7 million to deploy. At the beginning of the process, payback was estimated at 10 years. While the short-term goal was to cut municipal connectivity costs, community leaders intended to expand its use in other ways. The City now saves approximately $485,000 each year from having eliminated leased lines. ..

            In 2011, Aurora received a Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality (CMAQ) grant from the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) administered through the Illinois Department of Transportation. When the FHWA sought communities for the pilot program and accompanying grant, Aurora’s existing fiber network was a plus. During construction of the city network, Aurora had installed extra fiber strands in its conduit. City traffic engineers used several strands to synchronize intersections to improve traffic flow. The grant, of approximately $12 million, upgraded 60 traffic signals. It also allowed Aurora to eliminate all remaining debt on the network.

            “We have been able to see better movement of traffic, which alleviates congestion and air quality,” said Eric Gallt, the city’s Traffic Engineer. The fiber loop enables city traffic officials “to see what is going on remotely, and it decreased the cost of the project by 50 percent or more.”

            That same year, Mayor Tom Weisner formed a broadband task force to field specific ideas for best utilizing the fiber optic network. In 2012 the group created non-profit OnLight Aurora. The organization received a $25,000 grant and a three-year $150,000 loan from the City. OnLight and Aurora entered into a 20-year agreement for OnLight to lease network fiber strands from the City. OnLight would then lease access to the fiber backbone to other entities at affordable rates.

            In 2012, OnLight Aurora received a $1 million Illinois Gigabit Communities Challenge award. The Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity awarded the grant as seed money. OnLight Aurora also received another $1 million in matching public and private funds. The organization used the funds to offset costs of connecting customers and to expand to better reach developing business parks and healthcare facilities. Schools, medical centers, social services agencies, arts & entertainment entities, and businesses now connect to the network at speeds of up to 10 Gbps.

            In August 2013, Indian Prairie School District 204 announced its plans to expand its technology program. The connection allows the District to connect two of its data centers. District 204 obtains a 10 Gbps connection from OnLight Aurora for $39,600 per year. OnLight provides ample bandwidth for the district’s bring-your-own-device initiative. A portion of the $1 million Illinois Gigabit Communities Challenge grant paid for the cost of connecting the fiber.

            http://dark-fiber.tmcnet.com/topics/dark-fiber/articles/369436-onlight-aurora-commences-fiber-optic-connectivity-multi-tenant.htm

            OnLight Aurora officials affirm that “the old Metropolitan Business Building at Stolp Avenue and Downer Place has now been connected to the network.” The present day has OnLight carrying out other lateral connections to the network; for instance, the building which houses River’s Edge Café, among other tenants in downtown Aurora, is undergoing fiber optic connectivity, stated Dan Hites, owner of the River’s Edge Café and Aurora Downtown Board member.

            The availability of fiber connections will likely attract companies to make the move in the area to be connected to the city’s fiber ring. This already happened, in fact, in the case of JJX Packaging, a packaging and design firm that has decided to locate its startup offices in downtown area in part because of the access to the fiber optic network. The company, in fact, needs to keep in close contacts with other manufacturers, including the Chinese companies that provide the packaging it uses for its business.

            According the recent Beacon-News article, OnLight Aurora’s undertaking in connecting tenant buildings to the city’s dark fiber network ring is only beginning; the plan is to expand its technology infrastructure to reach more residents so they too can gain access to high-speed connections and use the Aurora’s bandwidth and Internet.

            The new fiber optic connections are sure to set downtown Aurora apart from other downtowns across the state, Hites said and, according to Mervine “in the coming years, the network will act as a significant economic development driver in the city.”

            So it looks like Aurora has long been moving forward and Elgin is going to be left in the dust all by itself wondering what happened, where did we go wrong?

            We’ve been sleeping at the wheel and it’s time to wake up!

        • Margaret Miller says:

          RS,

          From your post…

          “OnLight Aurora also received another $1 million in matching public and private funds.”

          The translation of public funds is higher taxes on the already strapped taxpayer. We don’t have the money! Who is going to go out and solicit funds?

          Should we grow government and if we do, who pays the salaries, benefits and pensions of these new hires? The taxpayer, that’s who.

  54. Chuck Keysor says:

    Margaret, again, you are correct that Elgin and Aurora are the realistic comparisons. However, I have long contended with many posters, that if you employed 100 crack code enforcement agents, and made them attack every flake of pealing paint, that Elgin’s demographics wouldn’t improve. The test scores of the schools would not change. The crime rate would not change.

    Even with a complete code crack down, Elgin would still be a cheaper place to live than Aurora, and we so we would still attract the same demographics that make Elgin what it is.

    And as a note, I have seen where code cracks down on a property, and the end result is a property that is worse than it was before. How could that be? In the world of old house lovers (of which I am a citizen), there is a concept called “benign neglect” which means that old houses are more likely to be preserved in their original state (desired by those who admire well conceived and executed architecture) when they are left alone. When code goes after a property, people will launch off into all manner of historically destructive projects, which in almost all cases would never get undone, due to the financial impracticalities of unscrambling a “remuddled” old house.

    One of the trashiest houses in my neighborhood, is code compliant. The owner of this rental/multi-unit is always working on it. He thinks it looks fabulous, but it is a hacked up visual mess, full of low end tenants, who all seem to drink to excess. But they are quiet and don’t dump junk out in the yard. If every building in Elgin were like this code compliant building, Elgin would slide even further down into the dumpster of life. Code enforcement is not the answer to anything, except to increase the payroll in City Hall.

    No one has ever posted a logical explanation as to how having a code crack down would alter Elgin’s bleak statistics.

    Chuck

    • RS says:

      Good points, Chuck!

    • Margaret Miller says:

      Chuck,
      Thank you! You got my point on the comparison. Elgin will never be a Naperville for so many reasons.

      I used code enforcement as an example of something that Elgin needs/requires more than the wantings of WiFi and bike paths.

      A city must look appropriately and attractive to others. Hard to do when our code enforcement is so very small and the personal pride and energy of many has diminished.

      The Tower Building landmark was/is condemned! What does that say to others about the city, landlords or code enforcement? Looks great in a photo but you cannot enter or walk by it.

      Elgin has much to offer but its not attractive to people looking for a new location for their home or business.

      Putting the state of U46 aside as one of the biggest deterrents to new young families moving in, take a drive around the city’s center and go one mile further in any direction, on both sides of the river, you constantly see over crowding, too many cars in the driveways and on the streets, work trucks, screenless windows, graffiti, garbage cans lining the home’s front yard, etc. Its not welcoming nor attractive.

      With that said, we can barely take care of what we have. The income levels, disposable or not, are just not here. The revenue from the Boat and the boat lease agreement is not what it was. So how do we afford every persons one dream or upgraded software program that they feel will make Elgin a great place to live?

      Until the pride is restored at all levels, Elgin will always remain exactly what it is. You fill in the blank.

  55. Tim Palmer says:

    Hey Chuck, thanks. I didn’t know the Tribune endorsed Meyer too. Just what good has she done for the people of Elgin. NOTHING because if she did the newspapers would have endorsed her but nothing.

    • bw says:

      The news can see the writing on the wall. They that Anna brings to the GA. It will be a sad day if she wins. She is not fit to serve.

  56. Anonymous says:

    State commission denies Elgin charter group’s appeal

    In a unanimous vote Tuesday, a state commission denied the Elgin Charter School Initiative’s appeal of its charter application, upholding an earlier rejection by the Elgin Area School District U-46 school board.
    http://www.dailyherald.com/article/20141028/news/141028168/

    • RS says:

      Illinois State Charter School Commission members said they were impressed with aspects of the application and urged group leaders to take more time to address concerns raised about finances and how the school would cater to its target audience of at-risk students.

      Nowaczewski said the charter school proposal did not meet the commission’s standards in any of four categories — education plan, organizational plan, business plan and evidence of capacity.

      She noted that the education plan lacked detail on assessments and how they would be implemented.

      Nowaczewski acknowledged the community support for the charter school proposal but added the charter school board “lacks collective substance and experience to manage, govern and deliver.”

      I would have supported a charter school in that location, but I guess the state board saw this initiative for what it is: a publicly-funded private NENA school. That’s why they made the point about the “target audience of at-risk students,” and basically called bull*!#t.

      So it’s probably unlikely that the group will resubmit an application.

      Sigh…oh dear, what’s going to happen to my Goldberg Laundry Building…

      Hmm. Maybe we can lease THIS location to the Chinese people! How about it? Tell the vets they can take the Trout Park property and tell the Chinese to lease the Rakow Campus. Hey, it comes with playing fields and maybe even a Bertrand Goldberg laundry building. I like this idea!

  57. bw says:

    Good move by the state commission. Someone is getting smarter.

  58. Cruex says:

    If anyone does not know who to vote for in the State rep race, read Anna Moeller’s and Jeff Meyer’s answers to a campaign finance question in a Courier News article. She never answered the question and made it worse by dodging it. Honesty seems to be a real problem for her. I don’t know if Jeff Meyer is the answer but I will side with an honest person every time.

    How much money have you spent so far, and how much do you expect to spend running for this seat?

    Jeff Meyer’s response
    To date (Sept. 22), my campaign committee has expended approximately $4,000 in this race. I anticipate raising and spending approximately $20,000 through Election Day.
    By way of comparison, State election disclosures reveal that, to date, my opponent has accepted approximately $39,000 from political committees controlled by Illinois House Speaker, Michael Madigan and approximately $49,000 from special-interest political action committees.

    Anna Moeller’s response
    I’m honored to enjoy the support of many individuals and organizations throughout the 43rd District. I intend to run a competitive campaign, which will allow me to effectively communicate with the voters in the 43rd district to share with them my vision for how to move our community and state forward.

    • Chuck Keysor says:

      Cruex, I read that Courier interview yesterday, and the passage you cited jumped out at me too! I am glad you posted this. And, for other readers, the bits Cruex posted were complete, and not taken out of context. How could Anna not answer such a simple question?????

      This reminds me of another situation with Anna, that has long troubled me! When Anna was running for the City Council in 2011, she participated in the LWV forum, and the candidates were asked about how much money they planned to spend on their campaign. Anna answered (not a perfect quote, but the effect is correct) that she and her husband did not have much money to spend, and that she would run a very modest campaign that they could pay for themselves.

      In that same election, Dave Kaptain was publicly saying he probably wouldn’t even spend the money for a mass mailing to the voters, because of its high cost.

      Well, just a few days later, two mailers came in my mail, and they looked very similar. One was from Ed Schock, and one was from Anna Moeller! I went, hmmmm, how did this poor lady, who is running a campaign on a shoe string able to afford a mailer, that Dave Kaptain thought he would probably not be able to afford. (Kaptain DID later send out mass emailings, but the point of their considerable expense is not nullified.)

      So that situation showed total lack of candor and transparency on Anna’s part in connection with election financing!!!! And it also showed Anna as relying on a well financed backer (Ed Schock) to even get her start on the City Council! So this is double parallel with her present race for State Rep…..

      Chuck

  59. bw says:

    Anna Moeller’s response
    I’m honored to enjoy the support of many individuals and organizations throughout the 43rd District. I intend to run a competitive campaign, which will allow me to effectively communicate with the voters in the 43rd district to share with them my vision for how to move our community and state forward.

    When is she going to start? So far she has failed at everything she has attempted. You can’t fool me Anna. You and your spouse living off the taxpayers. Dipping twice in the government cookie jar. Nice if you can get away with it.

    • Jerry Garcia says:

      I have always thought that dipping you hand in the cookie jar was bad. Help me understand, using a simile or a metaphor, how being a middle school teacher is bad thing like dipping your hand in the cookie jar.

      • bw says:

        Being a school teacher is an honorable profession. Two people from the same household collecting a salary from the taxpayers is not right. I know it is done all of the time but that don’t make it right in my opinion.

  60. Chuck Keysor says:

    Hello Allen. If you check your email, you’ll find your newest Elgin OCTAVE email. For those of you not so lucky,,,,, Here is the primary content of that mass email! Chuck

    Hello Voters of the Illinois House of Representatives 43rd District:
    I am writing to urge that you Vote for Jeff Meyer on Tuesday, November 4th so that he can become the next Representative of the 43rd District. Your vote for Jeff is a vote for the tax- payers and a vote to bring an independent advocate for our district to Springfield. Jeff’s priority will be to do what is best for his constituents, and NOT what is best for the Madigan machine!

    As Chairman of the Elgin OCTAVE, it has been my honor to work with Jeff Meyer for more than 3 years. Jeff and I have worked side by side in the Elgin OCTAVE to fight AGAINST the Elgin Business License, the Elgin Municipal Fire Alarm Monopoly, the massive tax increases imposed by the Elgin City Council in December 2011 and most recently, in our successful fight against the Elgin Rain Tax. His record fighting these abuses proves that his loyalty is to the taxpayers.
    From my personal experience working with Jeff Meyer, I know that he is an intelligent man of energy, integrity, and enthusiasm. Your vote for Jeff will be a vote for independent representation in Springfield for every resident of the 43rd District.

    My work in the Elgin OCTAVE has also brought me into repeated opposition to Anna Moeller. What I can tell you, based upon my personal experience, is that you must beware of Anna Moeller! Her present campaign image does not match her 3 year voting record on Elgin’s City Council.

    Anna Moeller would like you to believe that she is against raising your taxes. But on the Elgin City Council, she voted for the massive tax increases of December 2011, which introduced Elgin’s monthly water bill, the “trash tax”, the natural gas tax, the electrical tax, and the leaf rake out fee as well as increasing Elgin’s sales tax to the highest level permitted under state law. These new taxes were so excessive, that the City of Elgin created an unprecedented budget surplus which is now around $13,000,000! And last fall, Anna Moeller voted to kill every proposed tax relief measure! Anna Moeller’s term on the Elgin City Council has proved that she is NO friend of the taxpayer!

    Anna Moeller would like the voters to believe that she is a friend of business. Yet in January 2012, after one of the largest protests ever staged by the business community at Elgin’s City Hall, which called for the repeal of Elgin’s Business License, Anna voted to keep the business license. And she supported having City staff crack down on businesses which did not obtain an Elgin Business License. Anna is NO friend of business!

    Anna would like everyone to believe that she’ll be independent of the Madigan machine. But while on the Elgin City Council, she was no rebel. She overwhelmingly voted with the council majority and supported the recommendations of the City Manager and City Staff.  Anna Moeller was NOT independent on the Elgin City Council.

    And I have recently seen that Anna Moeller has accepted far over $100,000 in campaign contributions from the Madigan Machine.  It is irrational to expect that after getting so much money from a machine that is known for controlling so many people, that Anna could ever be allowed to vote against Madigan’s majority when her vote would be decisive.  Anna will NOT be independent from the Madigan Machine!

    Jeff Meyer has a proven track record of fighting on behalf of the taxpayers.  Jeff will NOT be a cog in the Madigan Machine! That was key to why Jeff Meyer was endorsed by the Daily Herald AND the Chicago Tribune.  So PLEASE, vote for Jeff Meyer for State Representative this November 4th.

    Thank you, Chuck Keysor/Chairman of the Elgin OCTAVE

    • bw says:

      Chuck,

      A great post that tells what Anna Moeller is all about. Someone needed too explain her liberal, high spending record to the voting public. Her record on the city council did nothing that would help the residents of Elgin make ends meat. I don’t think she has any idea how us senior citizens live day to day on a fixed income trying too decide if we buy food or medicine. The high cost of medicine, even with Plan D, makes us cut back as we must make a 30 day supply last at least 60 or more days.
      Anna, as a council member, kept voting in favor of addition cost for us to pay each month. She is always pandering her position to the voters, telling them what they want to hear. If they vote for her they can expect more of the same tax and spend policies of Michael Madigan.

    • RS says:

      Well that was a very persuasive argument! Maybe somebody else can post something about why we should vote for Anna Moeller?

      • bw says:

        You have her pic on photos of Elginites.org since she got the appointment. I guess that is a reason to vote for her.

        • Chuck Keysor says:

          bw is NOT joking! I was surprised by two friends who voted for her when she ran for council, because they told me they liked the way looked! They were not joking, these were serious people that I thought were long past such hormonal influences! Chuck

          • Chuck Keysor says:

            I am getting too sloppy! I need to proof read BEFORE I submit, not after….. duh…….. Chuck

            bw was NOT joking! I was surprised by two friends of mine who voted for Anna when she ran for council, because they told me they liked the way she looked! They were not joking…. These were serious people that I thought were long past such hormonal influences! Chuck

  61. Allen Skillicorn says:

    Anna’s registered lobbyist credentials:

  62. bw says:

    We get sick and tired of U-46 and their financial mess. Wish they could live within the budget. I was told by someone in the know that the Supreme Court is going to rule against the GA in the state pension case. What is next Mike? All the more reason too vote for Jeff Meyer.

  63. RS says:

    October is now over and this thread is closed!

    Please move all discussions to November open thread.