Chicago Department of Water Management Tommie Talley in Hot Water

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City Water Department official target of probe
By: Robert Herguth Dec. 23, 2008
(Crain’s) — A high-ranking city of Chicago official with ties to the Daley family’s 11th Ward Regular Democratic Organization is being investigated for allegedly dispatching water crews to work on private sites, including a politically connected Bridgeport church.
The city’s inspector general’s office is trying to find out whether Deputy Commissioner Tommie Talley improperly ordered Chicago Water Management workers to fix or improve sewer and water pipes for private owners who should be paying for such work themselves, sources say.
Mr. Talley hung up on a reporter who called him Tuesday to discuss the investigation. A spokesman for the Water Management Department declined to comment.
A source says investigators are looking into a number of locations, including Nativity of Our Lord Catholic Church, the Bridgeport parish in which Mayor Richard M. Daley was raised.
The pastor, the Rev. Daniel Brandt, says a sewer did clog in the spring, and city crews worked on the public right-of-way. But the church hired a contractor to handle repairs on parish property, costing “upwards of 10 grand.”
“I’d open up my books to them and open up my doors to them to let them know the work on the property was fully paid for,” Rev. Brandt said. “I’m sure there was a day and a time when the city would do things, but that’s just suicide now, especially in the high-profile parish that this is.”
“We go above and beyond to make sure we have all the permits. . . .Any improvements, we make sure we dot all our i’s and cross all the t’s.”
Mr. Talley is active in the 11th Ward Regular Democratic Organization, which is run by Cook County Commissioner John Daley, the mayor’s brother. Mr. Talley also once was part of an affiliated political group headed by former First Deputy Water Commissioner Donald Tomczak, who was convicted in the Hired Truck scandal.
Several years ago, Mr. Talley was given a 15-day suspension following a separate payroll scandal in the department.
David Hoffman, the city’s inspector general, declined to comment.

24 Replies to “Chicago Department of Water Management Tommie Talley in Hot Water”

  1. Its good to see that justice may come for some people. Patrick Fitzgerald needs to talk to individuals associated with this web site as we can certainly point out the favors done for people with clout. T.T has orcestrated many jobs involving tax payer money and FEDERAL MONEY for the clouted. FBI and U.S ATTORNEY need to investigate.

  2. How about all the Private Drain Program jobs done for commercial properties? Has Tommie Talley authorized these? How about the water service you ( T.T.) repaired on private property for a aldermans grandmother on overtime? Do all the taxpayers get the same service? If you know about things like this call the F.B.I. They would really like to hear from you.

  3. Pat a friend of mine told me about your blog, wow Tommie Talley in hot water because of something like this hahahahahaha I knew he would get caught some day, let me tell you what I know about Tommie, when I worked in the south district, Tommie was the 4-12 foreman, almost every occasion I had to work overtime with his crew he would give me the clipboard with the sheets he signed in and out and told me to take care of the crew, where he would go? I do not know but this happened at least 10 times or more,after he made district foreman he did give me a ton of overtime (without me giving him anything in return too, imagine that)when I had the hydrant truck he called me on my cell phone and told me his mothers water heater was out at noon, he (asked) me to go replace it, she lived less than a mile from the south district yard, I took care of her water heater for her on city time, the new one was in a box in the basement, one Christmas eve we where digging out and thawing the hydrants at the hospital on 76 and Stony, he called and said he wanted me to get him 2 pies from Bakers Square on 79 and Cicero, I told him what we where doing, he said drop it and go get his pies, this was at 11 AM on Christmas eve, when I gave him the pies he said thanks and walked away without giving me any money for the pies. (I guess that was payment for the overtime, even though when the overtime was offered I was the only plumber in the yard and never declined overtime)The next summer all of the south district was working OT from 4:30 – 8:30 PM making B-boxes operable, one Friday we where scheduled to work OT and a laborer on my truck left at 3 PM and said he would be in the yard at 4 to work the OT (at this time that stuff was common practice, not one person that worked in the Water Dept. at that time can say they did not do anything like that)well the laborer fucked up and got arrested with a handgun in a drug area, when he was arrested he lied and told the police he was a hydrant inspector, when IG came to interview him at the police station he told them he was a hydrant inspector also but they already knew who he was and what he did for the city, I was charged with falsifying time sheets and got 10 days for it, I did not cry about it and took it like a man, At the same time I started getting approached about joining a few political organizations, ( 11th ward, HDO, 13 ward and DT’s crew,) I always declined because Gerry Sullivan and 130 got me my job, then the shit started, On a Saturday afternoon we where headed back in to make the PM truck ready to go and we got called to a fire, half way there the fire was called “struck” and I notified the leak desk that we where going back in to the south dist. to get the other truck ready when I got back Tommie Talley was waiting for me on the dock and started screaming that I was not doing my job, that Monday I got a letter of reprimand and refused to sign. well the Mayors cousin Richie the booted me off the hydrant truck, I was sent to a leak crew, while my wife was pregnant I had one vacation day left, she went into labor at 5 AM on a Thursday and I called Tommie to inform him and to put me down for a V day, my wife did not give birth until 2 AM the next morning and I did not get home until 6AM I called Tommie again and explained the situation to him and to put me in for absent no pay, then on Monday morning I went in to hand out the cigars and Tommie had a letter of reprimand waiting for me for taking the AN on Friday, During all the other disputes I was involved in 130 did ZERO for me that’s right absolutely NOTHING (after all the time I gave up for 130 over the years) at my hearing for the AN I resigned and I also left 130 for the greener pastures of being MY OWN BOSS, Working for the Water dept. and being a 130 member was awesome and I loved it most of the time, but all the BS and no support from MY UNION just got to me, especially when my union representative Tom McManus is and was a district superintendant on a leave of absence from the city to be a union rep ( he will have a great pension-s) But Tommie Talley had a hand in all of this, I hope he get to Minn. in time to see Don Tomczak and maybe even share a cell with him.

  4. Oh and a church is considered a commercial property, the cities PDP does not cover private drains on commercial property the church is responsible for the entire sewer all the way to the main. so if he did this he is WRONG and the priest should be informed of this and Nativity should reimburse the city for the work that the city performed

  5. What does Tom Talley have to do with Nativity of Our Lord Church? Everyone has read the article in Crain’s and Father Dan Brandt to the reporter that there was a clog on the church side of sewer system and the parish paid to have it repaired. Case closed, no city time or money went to fixing the problem.

    I saw the picture that you posted month back at the time of this issue and if I can recall the city had a vactor truck in the middle of the street. Why wouldn’t the city send someone out to clean the main sewer at the request of the taxpayer? When should the city crews work on the streets? Only when there is an emergency? No they should be there maintaining the property of the city.

    What I would hope that you would have done, was asked the sewer department for the contents of the truck that worked on the sewer. If you would have done that you most likely would have found leaves, muck, paper and other debris. So should the Church have paid to have the city sewer cleaned? I don’t think so.

    This story has no legs, because the truth is what the truth is. The church paid to have the sewer repaired on its property and the city cleaned out the sewer and/or catch basin by the church.

    Pat, stop looking for innocent acts to carry your cross. It is not our fault that you resided out of the city of Chicago and were passed over for promotions. Get over it and have the IG talk to father Dan Brandt. When he shows them the checks, you should publicly recant what you have written. I doubt you will for that would take integrity.

  6. THe I.G. has no integrity, they have been given hard evidence on many situations of the clouted, they do nothing, I.G. is a fraud. They are King Richards secret police, FEDS must investigate the I.G. If T.T. screwed you screw him back, call 312-421-6700 tell the nice people at the F.B.I. your story, and get that brown stuff off the bottom of your shoe.

  7. Hey what about the know it all guy from 75th & western Ed Greb. Heard he was a real winner. Not many people showed up at his retirement party

  8. December 25, 2008

    Water Department investigators are at the scene of a water main break on the North Side’s Golf Coast neighborhood.

    The main broke late Wednesday at 873 N. Rush St., according to a Near North District police officer. “There is free flowing water,” the officer said.

    The water did not appear to be overflowing onto sidewalks and did not affect any buildings, according a witness at the scene, who said the break was on Rush Street between Chestnut Street and Delaware Place.

    Water Dept. investigators were sent to the scene and have shut down an area of Rush Street, according to Water Dept. spokesman Tom LaPorte. The break affected about a block-and-a-half of the street.

    LaPorte said water breaks are not uncommon in cold temperatures, especially when temperatures rapidly fluctuate.

    Investigators remained at the scene at 12:15 a.m.

  9. The I.G. “investigates” wrong doing, but dosnt do any thing about alot of hard fact evidence, so are they co-conspirators? Are they obstructing justice?Only a thorough investigation by U.S.Attorney office will get answers and expose the secret police(I.G.) Just remember who signs the paychecks for the I.G. Im sure T.T. will get every thing he did to people back to him a hundred times over. It seems Talleys ego and arrogance are as big as balloon heads head aka (Tom McManus). It would be great if all the people screwed by Local 130 head to federal court, and get all their dues money back. We need new leader ship at local 130, we need to impeach Jim Sullivan and get people in who care for all of its members. I hope F.B.I. raids +51 and Plumbers local 130, they need to do this quickly. I wonder why Talley allows The state reps to come and go as they please, where does L Arroyo swipe in at? Need to Check the security swipe at jardine and compare times.

  10. This is what the PDP states: “The City may now repair sewer drain tiles coming from private residences, of up to four units, that are broken under the public way. This is the area from the city sidewalk to the center of the street.”

    All the work that was done at Nativity Church was done on the property of the church. Nothing was done under the sidewalk or to the middle of the street. Even though people refer to the PDP program, this was not the case. The city was contacted to clean the main sewer and catch basins, because water was standing in the streets. They did what they were supposed to do for the residents of the city.

    All you complainers should find other things to worry about. When you are wrong, you’re wrong. Just because Pat McDonough took a picture and posted it on his blog of a truck in front of Nativity Church does not make this an issue. He should have been commending the workers for doing their job.


  11. Water main break impacts Holy Name Cathedral
    December 25, 2008 at 11:06 AM | Comments (1)
    A water main break on the Gold Coast Wednesday night coincided with churchgoers leaving Holy Name Cathedral for midnight mass.

    The break occurred at 870 N. Rush St., forcing the temporary shut down of a part of Rush street until crews could dig and find the leak, said water department spokesman Tom LaPorte.

    LaPorte said crews fixed the problem fairly quickly and those attending mass at the church at 735 N. State St. probably weren’t too disrupted since that portion of Rush isn’t a major route for traffic going to Lake Shore Drive.

    LaPorte said the break likely came from the recent severe change in temperatures Wednesday, putting a strain on pipes, some of which are 100 years old.

    “Yesterday it was warm in the morning and frigid in the afternoon. If there’s a weakness in a pipe, it’s exacerbated by the fluctuation in temperatures,” he said.

    With temperatures in the single digits and teens on Thursday and expected to rise to the mid-30s on Friday, there is the potential for more problems.

    “It wouldn’t surprise me to see increases in breaks when the temperatures fluctuate as much as they have been,” LaPorte said.

  12. Hello Patrick,
    I got a few things to say about Mr. TT, Is he a dumb-dumb? I was at a hearing with this guy, and he seamed to me, like a guy that has no idea how things work, When another city worker and I ( I help with other city workers involved in all coruption)
    where in this meeting, Mr.TT was so mean spirited, he accused this other city worker of falsehood! Mr. T took this Laborer off the Hydrant Truck, and put on this guy with less years, because of Political clout?
    When the Laborer complained about losing so much money in overtime, because these Laborers on the Hydrant truck work weekends at double time and time and a half. But I have seen this guys clout, when I was on the investagating truck this Tom Talley would call the foreman on duty to go RIGHT NOW! to this address and fix what ever the problem was! My question was what about the other people on the list? Do we ignore the others on our list to investagate, or do we just shut up? So in my opinion, PUT THIS GUY IN JAIL!! This is what I say! “If your involved in any cover-up you should go to jail” I got a question to ask my fellow “whislte blowers” What do you think about a foreman that covers things up? like letting certain city workers come to the job site late, letting them go home earlier,longer lunch’s, coming back from the doctors visit 2 hours later? or how about this one letting them go to the doctors office while on city time? others with NO CLOUT are TOLD to go on their own time. Does Mr. Kolomay know anything about this? My other question is are their more witness’s able to come forward? and testify? what would a LIE DETECTOR TEST PROVE? and would the city be able to use these test? You can only cover up corruption for only so long before it bites you right back in the koolooowwwww !! I would love to see this done before the BUYOUT happens.
    What your feelings on this Patty???

    ***** What happened to WAYNE STRNAD????**********

  13. T.T. has a long history of not being on the job, rumor has it Obamah will appoint T.T. to oversee infrastructure for the whole country, as part of a dream team. T.T. The USA will be ruined just like the water dept.

  14. BY MARY WISNIEWSKIStaff Reporter
    The city wants you to help prevent flooding.

    Officials are asking residents to clear snow and ice from catch basins on the streets outside their homes, which would allow rain and melting snow to flow into sewers as temperatures spike.

    John Spatz, commissioner of the city’s Department of Water Management, said he has crews out through tonight and tomorrow breaking up ice and snow around catch basins, but the crews need assistance. If residents can’t get out with a shovel themselves, they should at least avoid parking over catch basins so city crews can get to them, officials said.

    “It’s everyone’s responsibility, and if we work together we can avoid many of the problems this flooding can cause,” said Spatz.

    A catch basin is a grate on the street that allows water to drain into sewers. There are usually about six or seven per block, Spatz said.

    The city has seen over 20 inches of snow so far this December — well above the month’s average of 8 inches, noted Streets and Sanitation commissioner Michael Picardi. Picardi said that as of 1:30 p.m., plows and salt trucks had covered 75 percent of the city’s side streets.

    A flash-flood watch is in effect for tonight and tomorrow, with the danger coming from melting snow combined with potentially torrential rain tomorrow.

  15. I cleared four catchbasins on Webster west of Halsted this afternoon
    What a workout chopping thru the ice. Burned off all the Christmas candy I ate.

  16. You deserve a lot of credit for this bust. You have been talking about Tom Talley for years. Isn’t Tom Talley the one that sent you down to the IG when you first got wrongfully terminated

  17. I have 2 floor drains in my basement. every time it rains i get sewage back up in my basement. i have had my sewer line rodded 3 times and I finally called 311 and they advised me of the PDP program. I know this has to be on the city because I have stuff in my basement that there is no way came from my toilet. Please help!!!

  18. It is kind of ironic that the media is now criticizing Blagojevich/Burris/Rush for using the race card when the puppet like media was fawning all over Obama who was effectively using the race card and guilt more effectively than Wallace.

    The media (and the Sun Times was an extension of the Obama campaign with the exception of Tim Novak) lacked any journalistic ethics of objectivity and did not do a formal vetting process or any real investigation.
    Because of the media’s lying and ignoring the corruption in Illinois and Chicago we are now left with an interesting Constitutional dilemma regarding the appointment to the Senate seat by our corrupt governor.

    The media has released the internal report by the Obama team that exonerates the Obama team. What did you think Rahm Emmanuel did when he was fundraising? He was swearing and wanted something (Money) for something (favors, contracts, jobs) which is called quid pro qou. Rahm Emmanuel and Rod Blagojevich are basically the same type of person. Egomaniac, vulgar, and corrupt.

    It is truly ironic that the media allowed a race based campaign on the historic premise of electing he first biracial President but ignored his paucity of accomplishments and the corruption in which he was spawned.

    Blagojevich is just doing what Obama did with race.

    It is also at least interesting (if not sad and a waste of money) that Illinois really doesn’t need a junior Senator because Obama has resigned since the election and before that he was only there 40% of the time (absent 60% of the time) and has been running for President since he was elected to the Senate in 2004 and officially announced in 2006. So what did Obama do in the US Senate (besides getting a paycheck, pension and health care on the taxpayers dime?) NOTHING Obama did nothing as US Senator and was absent most of the time–now that Obama is gone and we have NO Senator we do not even miss him–isn’t that ironic?
    We have NO US Senator in Illinois and it doesn’t matter because Obama did nothing as US Senator. We have no representation at a time that Israel is attacking Hamas, Muslim terrorists are attacking Mumbai, we are supposed to bail out the car manufacturers, mortgage crisis and much much more. But we cannot debate or even discuss any major issues because we are distracted by the National Enquirer and Entertainment Tonight type journalism of the Chicago Sun Times and the the way (perhaps unintentionally) Obama has demeaned and lowered the level of political discourse to Obama’s girl, soundbites, Obama on the beach, and verbal platitudes that hide the political corruption of Valerie Jarrett (Chicago CTA and Planning and Development), Rahm Emmanuel (the f bomb fundraiser and liar for the Clintons), Lyrch Arne Duncan and the highest murders in a school district–but glad Obama has a hoops buddy, and Billy (Investment banking and insider deals for him and his son that we all pay for) Daley on the transition team, maybe add real estate Danny Solis’s sister that Clinton puked out and you have a real Chicago team–Chicago the most stressed city according to Forbes, highest murder rate, highest sales tax, high unemployment rates, highest foreclosures and evictions–let Obama do to the US what they did to Chicago but we can hear a great speech and he has some African blood.

    Blago is doing what the Obama team did on race.
    We don’t seem to need a US Senator because it doesn’t matter and the last Senator didn’t do anything.

  19. Audit chief hired after Hired Truck scandal is fired
    CITY HALL | ‘We recovered a lot of money, got program cleaned up,’ director says
    Recommend (25) Comments

    January 9, 2009

    BY FRAN SPIELMAN City Hall Reporter/
    The man who took over Chicago’s scandal-scarred Hired Truck Program when Mayor Daley needed it most has been fired from his $130,000-a-year city job.

    Bob Benson, director of internal audit, said he was stunned when two unidentified men showed up at his DePaul Center office, 333 S. State, at 7:30 a.m. Dec. 29 and showed him the door.

    » Click to enlarge image

    Bob Benson has been fired from his $130,000-a-year city job.
    (Sun-Times file)

    “The reason I was given is that the Office of Compliance wants to take internal audit in a different direction. I don’t know why they’d want to do that. Our internal audit department had done a good job for the 5½ years I’d been there,” said Benson, 63.

    “We recovered a lot of money for the city. We helped out in improving internal controls within the departments. I was the project manager [for Hired Truck] after Angelo Torres was dismissed. We got the program cleaned up. We decided to terminate it and bring it back into the city. I just didn’t anticipate this. I thought things were going fairly well.”

    Anthony Boswell, the Office of Compliance director, hung up on a Chicago Sun-Times reporter who called to ask why Benson was fired.

    That left mayoral press secretary Jacquelyn Heard to explain. She said Boswell has the prerogative to choose his own team and “decided he wanted to go in a different direction. He didn’t say why.”

    Fifteen months ago, Daley created the Office of Compliance because he didn’t trust his corruption-fighting inspector general to police city hiring. Boswell, a Denver attorney, was brought in to run it.

    Inspector General David Hoffman protested, warning that the new office — with powers strikingly similar to his own — could undermine the “effectiveness and independence” of his office.

    Last summer, Boswell caused a stir when he tried to fire the city’s sexual harassment officer, claiming she failed to follow a new chain of command requiring her to report to three men, including Boswell.

    Andra Gomberg appealed to Hoffman, claiming she was punished for refusing Boswell’s demand to rule as “unfounded” a sexual harassment complaint she considered legitimate.

    The inspector general’s investigation of the dispute is still pending.

  20. after paying the water bill without notice of shut off and waiting on the phone for 35 minutes, the City said they can not turn water on for 48 hours.
    It does not matter if someone is dying, it will be 48 hours.

  21. Talley is crooked as they come. Not sure what the healine means “bad things happen to good people”?????
    He was terminated and Graham said it wasn’t because of his work….he didn’t do any work…..he sent his lackies out. Talley is a political book licker….ask Tomsack

  22. Talley is crooked as they come. Not sure what the healine means “bad things happen to good people”?????
    He was terminated and Graham said it wasn’t because of his work….he didn’t do any work…..he sent his lackies out. Talley is a political book licker….ask Tomsack

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