Public Watchdog.org

IL AG Spanks Maine Twp.’s Morask, Jones And Gialamas

05.25.18

It wasn’t until January 24 of this year that we published our first-ever post about Maine Township government. Since then, we’ve published several more, on 02.08.2018, 02.13.2018, 04.02.2018, and on 04.24.2018.

Why did we ignore this backwater unit of local government for so long? Because the area it serves is primarily outside Park Ridge, the unofficial boundary of this blog’s focus. And because its budget is barely more than the Park Ridge Library’s.

But when the voters elected a bi-partisan group of Trustees – Dave Carrabotta (R), Claire McKenzie (D) and Susan Sweeney (R), whom we have labeled “The Reformers” – our curiosity overwhelmed our common sense. Soon we found ourselves ensnared by the institutionalized bad government administered by Supervisor Laura Morask and her puppet-Trustee Kim Jones; the non-Assessor Susan Moylan-Krey; Clerk Peter Gialamas, Road (& Track) Superintendent Wally Kazmierczak and various others drawing public paychecks from a unit of government time forgot.

This post is about a recent decision by the Public Access Bureau of Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan’s office that Morask, Jones and Gialamas “did not follow the proper procedure for approving the destruction of a closed session verbatim recording during its November 28, 2017 meeting.”

The Cliff’s Notes version of this goat rodeo is that on November 28, 2017 Morask – rarely right but never in doubt – insisted that The Reformers must abstain from the vote on destroying the verbatim audio recording of the March 22, 2016 closed session meeting because they weren’t trustees back in March 2016; and that Gialamas got to vote because he (along with Morask and Jones) was a trustee back then.

The Reformers had been trustees for only six months at that point and clearly weren’t yet ready for prime time: Even though Carrabotta and McKenzie are attorneys, and Sweeney has been active in local government for quite a while, they meekly acceded to Morask’s demand that they abstain.

Meanwhile, Gialamas – who should have known better and probably did – went along with the charade and became the ostensible third vote in what purported to be the majority of Trustees needed to authorize the destruction of the verbatim recording of those March 22, 2016 closed-session proceedings.

The Attorney General’s Office, however, disagreed.

“Accordingly, this office concludes that the Board violated OMA by destroying the recording without three of the five Board members affirmatively voting to approve the motion to authorize the destruction of the recording.”

Because the recording already had been destroyed, however, whatever evidence of dreaming or scheming it may have contained has been lost to the ages.

Since that time, The Reformers appear to have raised their games sufficiently to challenge Morask’s attempts at iron-fisted rule. Hopefully they have learned from this episode – and from Morask’s and Moylan-Krey’s secret appeal of The Reformers’ refusal to certify that the non-Assessor position requires the 1,000 hours of work annually to qualify it for a public pension – to just say “No!” to everything Morask says or proposes, at least until they can independently verify that it’s true and accurate.

And speaking of truth and accuracy, this post would not be complete without our giving a giant PublicWatchdog bark-out to the real hero of this situation: Kirk Allen, one (along with John Kraft) of the Edgar County Watchdogs who submitted the Request for Review of Morask’s/Jones’/Gialamas’ IOMA violation to the Illinois AG’s office.

Even though they are based down in Edgar County (located along the Indiana border south of Danville IL and just west of Terre Haute IN), those two retirees appear to be kicking butt and taking names well beyond their county’s borders, including investigating – along with OpenTheBooks.com’s Adam Andrzejewski – the since-discredited and fired College of DuPage president Robert Breuder; and looking into the mismanagement of the Algonquin Township Road District.

Changing Illinois’ culture of mismanagement, waste and corruption isn’t going to happen overnight, nor in a sweeping broad-brush manner. It will take a lot of people chipping away at the local level, electing and appointing officials committed to H.I.T.A. (Honesty, Integrity, Transparency and Accountability) and rejecting those who are not.

But it can be done.

And the Edgar County Watchdogs just showed Morask, Jones and Gialamas how.

To read or post comments, click on title.

5 comments so far

Good for Lisa Madigan’s office, she finally does something of value after all these years.

Morask is either incompetent or bad news. She’s been in township government for how long and she doesn’t even understand the OMA?

EDITOR’S NOTE: We’re betting Morask, Jones and Gialamas knew exactly what they were doing, and they had the approval of then-Twp. Atty. Dowd. The question is: What were they trying to hide?

Dowd’s gone, now we just need to get rid of Morask and Jones. But if the Reformers stick together and don’t let themselves get bullied by Morask, they can defeat anything those other two want to do.

Stay the course, Reformers.

I agree that The Reformers have to bring their A games every night because otherwise Morask and Jones will eat their lunches. And The Reformers shouldn’t count on the new attorneys to play it straight up any more than the old attorney, Dowd, did, because these attorneys were Morask’s and Jones’ first choice before The Reformers forced them into the interview charade with other law firms that had no chance of getting chosen once McKenzie flipped.

What people have to realize is that McKenzie’s a Democrat and Morask/Jones/Gialamas/Moylan-Krey/Kazmierczak are RINOs, or Democrats in “Republican” clothing. So I am looking for McKenzie to start voting with the RINO’s as a sign that order has been restored to the evil empire of Bob Dudycz, Bob Provenzano, Gary Warner, Carol Teschky, etc.

‘Bout time! Morask has been slapped by the ARDC a couple of times and now the AG. When is she going to realize that the laws apply to she and her cronies, not just the rest of us common folks? Why do we put up with her? What a creep!

EDITOR’S NOTE: We could find only one disciplinary action against her on the ARDC website, a 30-day suspension in 2013.

That being said, we suspect the reason Morask “and her cronies” do what they do is that nobody ever told them “no” before, much less challenge them with the laws that apply to them.

Morask, Jones and Gialamas were all part of the same Republican ticket as Carrabotta and Sweeney. I’m glad Carrabotta and Sweeney are doing what they are doing, but how did they get on the same ticket?

EDITOR’S NOTE: That’s partisan politics for you.



Leave a comment
Line and paragraph breaks automatic, e-mail address never displayed, HTML allowed: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>