Privatization is Mayor Daley's answer for Chicago City Workers "Good Night"

Christy Webber Workers 1.jpg
Mayor Daley and Alderman Mell have close friends with Christy Webber’s Landscaping. Show them this picture I took today as Mayor Daley prepares to fire and layoff hardworking City Workers. These two sleepy heads have a great boss, the Chicago Taxpayers. Please tell Christy the guys on Ashland were having a nice siesta also! Photo by Patrick McDonough

21 Replies to “Privatization is Mayor Daley's answer for Chicago City Workers "Good Night"”

  1. Daley nephew quits firm under federal scrutiny
    Posted by Dan Mihalopoulos at 11:30 a.m.; updated at 1:52 p.m. with statement

    Mayor Richard Daley’s nephew Robert Vanecko has quit a real estate firm he started whose city pension business is now under federal investigation.

    The company, DV Urban Realty, announced Vanecko’s resignation today, less than two weeks after federal prosecutors sent subpoenas to city employee pension funds that invested in DV Urban. Read the statement by clicking here: Download Vaneckostatement

    City pension fund boards had agreed to invest $68 million in DV Urban, which was led by Vanecko and longtime Daley ally Allison Davis.

    Pension fund officials had refused to comply with subpoenas from city Inspector General David Hoffman. Now the investments in DV Urban are the subject of a joint probe by Hoffman’s office and prosecutors under U.S. Atty. Patrick Fitzgerald.

    Vanecko no longer will be a general partner or investor in the real estate venture, according to today’s announcement.

    Asked last week about the joint city-federal investigation of his nephew, Daley replied, “That’s alright.”

  2. June 9, 2009

    BY FRAN SPIELMAN City Hall Reporter
    Chicago’s embattled parking meter contractor still isn’t writing parking tickets to augment city enforcement and won’t until myriad problems that have plagued the transition are fully resolved, a top mayoral aide said Tuesday.

    “The focus right now should be on getting it right, operating and maintaining the system and not focusing on writing tickets,” chief-of-staff Paul Volpe told the Chicago Sun-Times editorial board.

    » Click to enlarge image

    Daley’s chief-of-staff Paul Volpe tells the Chicago Sun-Times editorial board that getting the parking meter situation right is the most important thing.
    (Keith Hale/Sun-Times)

    “We haven’t even had the discussion on when they’re gonna resume. . . . [It won’t happen] until we are comfortable. . . . Our concern is making sure they focus their efforts and resources on putting pay-and-displays in and making sure they’re operating well.”

    The 75-year, $1.15 billion lease gave Chicago Parking Meters LLC and its designated operator, LAZ Parking, the right to issue parking tickets as frequently as every two hours at two-hour meters.

    LAZ issued roughly 120 tickets and 2,500 warning citations before ticket-writing was suspended March 31 in response to an avalanche of complaints about broken, overstuffed and improperly calibrated meters that over-charged motorists.

    The problems — and a steep schedule of rate hikes tied to the lease — have triggered a spike in vandalism and a drop-off in on-street parking.

    The contractor’s headaches were compounded last month by the breakdown of 250 pay-and-display boxes that forced the city to stop writing downtown parking tickets for an entire work day.

    “Could we have transitioned it better to the private operator? Did that enrage people? Did that have an impact on peoples’ lives that we now regret? Absolutely,” Volpe said.

    On Tuesday, Volpe and Chief Financial Officer Gene Saffold met with the editorial board to dispute an inspector general’s report highly critical of the parking meter deal and the price the city got.

    Volpe argued that the contractor’s performance has steadily improved, but not enough to resume writing tickets.

    And he acknowledged that steep rate hikes should have been put off until 3,000 pay-and-display boxes that accept credit cards were fully installed.

    “Part of the frustration [people felt is], ‘I’m carrying around $2 worth of quarters. . . . That’s part of what we regret,” Volpe said.

  3. Daley nephew gives up pension deal
    Robert Vanecko’s action comes at what sources say was family’s urging
    June 9, 2009

    BY FRAN SPIELMAN City Hall Reporter/[email protected]
    The tightly knit Daley family is struggling to solve an internal crisis caused by a nephew who they say refused to stop embarrassing his uncle.

    Sources said Robert Vanecko was told nearly two years ago that his uncle, Mayor Daley, wanted him out of a risky real estate venture involving city employee pension funds. Another Daley nephew, Patrick Thompson, was given the same directive one week earlier — and promptly dropped out as an attorney representing the Children’s Museum at heated community meetings on the controversial Daley-backed plan to build a new Children’s Museum in Grant Park.

    » Click to enlarge image

    “Everyone wishes this wasn’t going on. In hindsight, it looks bad.” A Daley family member talking about Robert Vanecko’s (left) pension deals.
    (Sun-Times photos)

    RELATED STORIES
    PDF: Vanecko resignation announcement
    Unlike his cousin, Robert Vanecko ignored the mayor’s advice — apparently until this week.
    Vanecko “has resigned as a general partner for DV Urban Realty,” according to an e-mail sent Monday afternoon to police pension board members from John J. Gallagher Jr., executive director of the pension fund. “A press release will be issued [today] about this resignation, and other than that, no further information was provided at this time.”

    It was unclear whether Vanecko can get completely out of the pension-fund deals because of the collapse of the real estate market. Meanwhile, the Daley family is stuck with a headline that won’t quit and a federal investigation into how DV Urban won $68 million in pension investments in the first place.

    “It’s a terrible situation. Everyone wishes this wasn’t going on. In hindsight, it looks bad. And it’s obvious this is gonna continue,” said one family member, who asked to remain anonymous.

    “It’s not easy watching your nephew being trashed. We all feel sorry for him. But he’s finding out what we all learned 30 years ago — that if you stay around [government] long enough, you’re gonna get burned.”

    Sources said other family members have been trying for some time to persuade Vanecko to dissolve his partnership with developer Allison Davis because of the perception that Daley family clout landed the deal.

    Vanecko told them he was in the process of getting out, sources said. But that apparently didn’t happen until this week.

    Mayor Daley was described as livid and distraught about the controversy, but dead-set against touching off a family feud by publicly criticizing Vanecko, the eldest of Richard J. Daley’s 22 grandchildren.

    In September 2007, the Chicago Sun-Times disclosed Vanecko had formed a partnership with Davis and persuaded city employee pension funds to invest $68 million with their start-up company.

    Davis and Vanecko are guaranteed $8 million in management fees — $2.7 million of it paid so far — under the deal that expires in 2014. They can also share in any profits from their real estate investments.

    They’ve invested pension funds in eight Chicago properties, but that portfolio has declined in value.

    Attempts to reach Vanecko and Davis were unsuccessful.

    Mayor Daley has insisted he had no control over how city employee pension funds invest their money — or over the professional lives of his nieces and nephews. “It could be any business. They could be in real estate. They could be in development. They could be anything,” the mayor said.

    Asked whether city pension funds should be making such speculative investments at a time when they’re saddled with unfunded liabilities, he said, “I am not on that board. They make decisions.”

    Last month, a federal grand jury subpoenaed pension fund records after pension officials refused to comply with similar subpoenas issued by Inspector General David Hoffman. It’s Hoffman’s second joint investigation with federal authorities into Vanecko’s businesses.

    The other involves the undisclosed ownership stake Vanecko and the mayor’s son, Patrick Daley, held in a sewer cleaning company that won millions of dollars in no-bid contract extensions from City Hall.

    Vanecko and Patrick Daley have said they sold their investment in the company in late 2004. That’s when Patrick Daley enlisted in the Army and Vanecko forged his partnership with Davis.

    Last week, the Sun-Times disclosed City Hall has paid nearly $500,000 in the last 15 months to lease space at a South Side site owned by DV Urban, which bought the land with city pension money.

    Contributing: Tim Novak and Chris Fusco

  4. Everyone who comments on here except maybe 1 person is a “Democrat”. I bet everyone on here voted for Lisa Madigan. She’s the attorney general who refuses to investigate Daley. people, grow up and vote in the republican party for one term. Let your politicians and your party know that they better be accountable, then you can vote back in your party. But you all of you give the Democratic party a free pass to be this corrupt,…..well you need to stop bitching about everyone. You reap the seeds you sow!
    (Response) I fixed it.

  5. PAT>>>>>>>>
    Everyone who comments on here except maybe 1 person is a DEMOCRAT!!!!!. I bet everyone on here voted for Lisa Madigan. She’s the attorney general who refuses to investigate Daley. people, grow up and vote in the republican party for one term. Let your politicians and your party know that they better be accountable, then you can vote back in your party. But all of you give the Democratic party a free pass to be this corrupt,…..well you need to stop bitching about everyone. You reap the seeds you sow!

  6. that poor gentleman has a disability, you must leave him alone or face the consequences, he has narcolepsy, he falls asleep when inactive, he will sue if his job is threatened

  7. I keep asking myself 2 questions:
    1. How much does my business representative make?
    2. How much should someone be paid for participating in a boycott?

  8. With all due respect, there are many city drivers who do the same thing. Some are on their lunch break when they are sleep like this, which this guy could be alo, but alot of time, they are not. I know personally,

    That being said, I think the main issue is the city’s lack of discipline with the city. And, everyone thinks that all city worker’s are just as bad as the one’s that get caught sleeping, etc…

  9. 7 aldermen opted not to take furloughs
    After Web posting, 3 put in requests, joining city workers who have been forced to take days off
    By Dan Mihalopoulos | Tribune reporter
    June 11, 2009
    Seven Chicago aldermen have yet to take any unpaid days off for more than two years, even as Mayor Richard Daley wants city workers to take as many as 16 furlough days this year to help deal with a growing budget deficit.

    Within hours of the Tribune posting the list online Wednesday, three of the seven aldermen called the city clerk’s office to each schedule six days off.

    City Hall employees already have been forced to take as many as two furlough days in 2007 and six last year. But most elected officials took no more than three unpaid days last year, according to city budget documents obtained by the Tribune through the state’s public records law.

    Aldermen George Cardenas (12th), Frank Olivo (13th), Howard Brookins (21st), Daniel Solis (25th), Scott Waguespack (32nd), Richard Mell (33rd) and Brian Doherty (41st) had not taken any unpaid days off since January 2007. The other 43 aldermen, as well as Daley, Clerk Miguel del Valle and Treasurer Stephanie Neely, have voluntarily accepted at least some days without pay.

    On Wednesday, Mell, Cardenas and Solis called the clerk’s office to schedule some days off, said a del Valle spokeswoman.

    Cardenas said he thought that his office had filed the paperwork for him to have his pay deducted and was surprised to read that he had been paid his full salary. “Honestly, I didn’t check the [pay] stubs,” he said Wednesday.

    Like Cardenas, Solis said he would take six days off to make up for not doing so last year, and also would forgo pay for however many furlough days the city workforce eventually must take this year.

    Solis sent a letter to the clerk’s office Wednesday informing them of “an oversight and misunderstanding on my part” and asking them to reduce his paycheck.

    Waguespack said he did not take any furlough days because he declined the pay raise aldermen were due to receive this year.

    City Council members are paid $110,556 this year, up from $104,101. Nobody can force them to take days off, but many said they voluntarily do so to show solidarity with city workers. Only four aldermen — James Balcer (11th), Virginia Rugai (19th), Patrick Levar (45th) and Joe Moore (49th) — took as many furlough days as any other city worker in the past year.

    Daley recently proposed as many as 16 days off for non-union workers, hoping to spur labor unions that represent most employees to willingly submit to the same hardship. But that initiative stalled against council opposition.

    In August, the Tribune reported Daley and 30 of the 50 aldermen had not taken furlough days since January 2007. At the time, Daley spokeswoman Jacquelyn Heard attributed it to “an oversight on the part of staff who forgot to remind him to take days off.”

    Heard promised Daley would rectify that mistake. Indeed, the $216,000-a-year mayor took five furlough days during the Democratic National Convention and also accepted no pay for Nov. 28, Dec. 24 and Jan. 2, when the city government shut down to save money.

  10. Did you see Daley today talk to the press without taking questions. He addressed his jaboff nephews theft of pension funds by showing some emotion and giving a brief statement saying he wont take questions. He never looked at the camera. He looked like he was dazed. He played it off like we should feel sorry for him and his family rift. He never once talked about the loss of employees pension fund money. He said he had no knowledge of it. LET ME TELL YOU THAT HE DID! The jagoff nephew of his stole all that pension money to later split it with Daleys jagoff son Patrick who is in hiding now. This fucker has got to go and its up to us to mobilize and throw this asshole Daley out of office along with the do nothing aldermen. Daley, you deserve no respect you pr%ck
    (Response) He looked like that many times before, but will this works again?

  11. The difference here at chicagoclout is that you must be one of Pat’t buddies or Posse to have civil right and you dont have to follow the rules.

    If you are a someone who hold Pat or his buddies accountable you dont have civil rights or you are harrassing people.

    Here is a great example..

    If you look back on this blog you see that Pat and his posse assume you are guilt of something if your name appears on the Clout List.

    Well if you look at the clout list you will see Pat name and also a Michael McGann as well. However they are not guilt of anything because well they are not. Right Pat

  12. Wow, hey Pat, you got these people that are afraid to leave their names on here, Well here is my name “BRUCE RANDAZZO” look that up on the clout list, and come back and tell me I get favors like some other HDO people on this list. Come on step into the light do not be afraid, it will be ok to rat out the corruption, hey Pat, there is so much coruption in this Water Management Department, so much more than Streets and Sans. You got people here in the Water Management Department that have No clue as to what corruption is. I got a question for these “clouted people” if the feds came to ask you questions (and they will- it just takes time-but they will get the guys that are in the corruption)would your clout protect you, or would they give you up saying it was your fault. Would you go to jail for your clout? just asking a question here.
    Hey Pat these corupt people have no idea what is coming, that the feds already have these people under watch. These people that sneak out of the yard, Are the Metra guys real Metra guys or are they FEDS?

  13. Now you laid off city workers can think about how much your “job for life” city jobs are really worth, now tell me, how many hours did you spend campaigning for your puke alderman? How many political donations did you make to King Daley? Why is he not taking care of you? Where are your (and mine) hack union reps???
    Hopefully, this is only a start to trimming back the slugs in local government.
    GO DALEY!!!!

  14. Send the photo to the Inspector General, and take photo’s of private guards sleeping at city sites.
    (Response) I did.

  15. Kass hit it on the head. This Patrick Fitzgerald has 10 times more ammo than he needs to get A$shole Daley. Why is he just playing with himself?

  16. David Hoffmans investigation of Daleys nephew is really going after mayor Daley. Tapes of meetings are destroyed, the inspector general was stonewalled so he brought in the feds. Daleys top aides were present when the pension boards voted to give Vanecko the money. Daley is denying everything. This one is going to come to light based on destroyed evidence and emails. There are too many people involved on all the decisions being made. Daley can silence a top aide or two, but when there are 6 people each on 5 different boards and when many aides are involved and emails are kept the truth is gonna get out on this one. David Hoffman is young and aggressive. The corrupt Patrick Fitzgerald is not calling all the shots here. This is gonna be a great one!

  17. And The Crooked Patrick Daley is in hiding. I am waiting for these indictments………….

  18. Local 134 Member:

    If we were to lose our city jobs, how is that a win for you?

    What would you gain directly by us losing?

    Think about it.

    (Response) Please be more specific. Thanks

  19. Hi Patrick,
    This crew is a residential crew. We maintain over 300 Chicago residences per week. I only hope they are on their lunch, anyone that knows me knows I do not tolerate sleeping on the job, or any other thing that is offensive or wrong, I really try to run a tight ship. I am a resident/taxpayer of the city of Chicago so I get it when folks aren’t putting in their fair share or respectful of their job.

    My crews take either 2-15minute breaks (per our union agreement) or skip those for a 1 hour lunch, usually at 12pm.

    Next time you call the office or take a photo… please, please time stamp it or at least give me the exact location so I can personally catch them if it isn’t during lunch!!!

    Christy

    (Response) Now that is a great businessperson! Now if someone has an Alderman call you will you back off the employee? I know you work hard Christy.

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