2 Replies to “City of Chicago allows theft of water to big clout companies Video”

  1. Charged in probe that has claimed 15 city workers

    September 23, 2009

    BY MARK J. KONKOL Staff Reporter
    A Chicago zoning inspector was arrested Tuesday for allegedly taking bribes from a permit “expediter” cooperating with federal investigators, authorities said.

    Dominick Owens, 43, of Chicago, is accused of taking more than $20,000 in bribes in 2005 and 2006 for providing occupancy certificates for new construction residential buildings, according to a criminal complaint. Owens appeared before a judge Tuesday and was released without posting bond.

    Owens “has been put on administrative leave effective immediately,” said zoning department spokesman Peter Strazzabosco, who declined further comment.

    Owens’ arrest was part of Operation Crooked Code — an undercover city-federal investigation that has netted nearly two dozen people, including 15 city employees, on charges that cash bribes and lucrative gifts were paid to ignore building code violations and speed up paperwork. Owens allegedly had a corrupt relationship with the “expediter” since early 2005.

    In July 2006, Owens accepted $600 in exchange for providing occupancy permits for two single-family properties, one on West 37th Place and one on North Wolcott, according to the complaint.

    Zoning inspectors generally don’t inspect small residential properties, but builders are often willing to pay bribes to get occupancy certificates quickly and avoid unexpected visits from inspectors, according to an affidavit from the cooperating expediter. If you have information about alleged corruption in the permit process, you can call (866) 448-4754 (866) 448-4754 .

  2. This video makes me sick. To think that I can’t draw a glass of water without wondering whether some fat cat contractor let something gross seep in, just because he was too arrogant to follow the proper procedures. Thanks for posting.

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