Sunday, March 07, 2010

Sewer Politics: Wasco's Sanitary District

Jeff Ward who's becoming one of my favorite Fox Valley reporters covers the convoluted story of the Wasco Sanitary District.
Our Feb. 14 discussion of the Fox Metro Water Reclamation District was convoluted enough, but that tale pales in comparison to the battles raging in the Wasco Sanitary District. In fact, it's so complex, we'll only have time to cover the main lawsuit.

Yes, the WSD sued the Fox Mill Homeowners Association in Wasco over an easement, and Fox Mill association board member and attorney James Newman sued the WSD over a Freedom of Information request.

But the big one is a federal racketeering suit against the three elected WSD trustees, President Raul Brizuela, Vice President Robert Skidmore and Trustee Gary Sindelar. That lawsuit, filed last year by Newman on behalf of plaintiffs Ed Fiala, Fox Mill Homeowners Association president, and home builder Tim Kobler, alleges a pattern of misconduct by those trustees. The WSD itself is not named in the suit.

Specifically, the plaintiffs are seeking the return of $2.6 million in sewer connect fees paid to Wasco development firm B&B Enterprises by developer Hank Harrison. They are seeking no monetary damages themselves. Harrison is the home builder behind the Norton Lake subdivision planned to be built at Route 64 and Hidden Oaks Road in St. Charles, which now falls within the WSD.
it gets pretty deep...too deep for me on a Sunday night, but the conclusion hits home...
People, I know this story doesn't affect very many of you, but it's a perfect example of why it's so important to pay attention to these low-level elections and appointments. Brizuela rightfully pointed out the board was duly elected by the citizens of the WSD. Sometimes you get what you pay for and sometimes you pay for what you get.
We don't pay enough attention to this local stuff and we get stuck with a big price tag as a result.

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