David Hoffman for U.S. Senate meeting at the Chicago downtown headquarters

David Hoffman U.S. Senate.jpg Tonight was a very good start for the Chicago branch of David Hoffman’s organization in his quest to become the next U.S. Senator from Illinois. I admit I did not look very nice tonight when I arrived to his meeting but was welcomed. I have had such an untrusting opinion of Illinois politicians for so long; I never thought I could trust again. I really and truly trust David Hoffman and the group he assembled to get him into higher office. I was excited to see a large and diverse group of people that want David to succeed. I also noticed Alderman Joe Moore present; Joe was one of the earlier Chicago politicians to endorse David Hoffman. Alderman Moore was a great help in answering legal questions on David’s petition drive. David gave a great speech and pep talk to the troops. I want to give a disclaimer on this website, I intend to support David Hoffman’s bid for U.S. Senate in every way possible. He is the best candidate, but most importantly, he can deliver the victory for the Illinois Democratic Party. I was also very happy to see Chicago city employees donating their time for petitions and donating money. David’s mother Carol personally welcomed the supporters at the door of his headquarters. If you want to improve the system, contact Mr. Hoffman’s campaign office and get involved now, click here: http://www.hoffmanforillinois.com/index.asp Lets keep Obama’s former seat . Photo by Patrick McDonough

2 Replies to “David Hoffman for U.S. Senate meeting at the Chicago downtown headquarters”

  1. Fixing housing before it’s bad
    Meeting airs frustrations, possible solutions for condo owners
    09/30/2009 10:00 PM
    State Rep. Ken Dunkin grew up in one of the red-colored buildings in Cabrini-Green. While that public housing development gained more than its fair share of notoriety over the years, Dunkin declared his first dwelling surpassed his more recent housing conditions.

    “The quality of construction in the red buildings where I lived were great!” he exclaimed last week at a town hall meeting about condominium turnover issues organized by Ald. Robert Fioretti’s office.

    The rehabbed condo unit his family bought on the south end of his district, on the other hand, has been a “horrific experience,” mold and flooding the issue.

    Buyers, he said “were played like fiddles.”

    Dunkin is not alone in his frustration with the quality of his home. The real estate boom left in its wake more than a few condo buildings, be they large or small, new construction or a conversion, struggling to pay for unanticipated repairs.

    The highest-profile situations serve as a cautionary note to buyers. In the South Loop, for example, the condo board at 1717 S. Prairie levied a $6.5 million special assessment to pay for repairs; the association remains embroiled in litigation with the building’s developers. Last week, the Sun-Times reported the board governing East Side Lofts, 1601 S. Indiana, lost a lawsuit against the building’s developer, putting residents on the hook for more than $4 million in work on the building.

    At Fioretti’s meeting, homeowners told of water mains buried incorrectly causing pipes to freeze in the winter. Developers also ignored the state’s condo law, handing incomplete financial data to building associations, according to those in attendance.

    There was a sense of frustration that new construction units could be mired with problems so soon after they had been thrown up.

    The meeting came a day after a Department of Building inspector was arrested by the FBI for allegedly taking a bribe in 2006 in exchange for a certificate of occupancy, which signal the city believes a unit is fit to live in. The federal agency’s ongoing investigation is called Operation Crooked Code; a building inspector was also arrested in August.

    Mark Limanni, a deputy commissioner and legal counsel in the Department of Buildings, acknowledged to audience members the formerly hot housing market left his department scrambling.

    “The boom that undertook the conversion of many of these industrial buildings, particularly in the 2nd Ward, into condominium units, has really allowed a lot of transactions to go forward that the Department of Buildings could not keep up with,” he said.

    One recent effort on the city’s part to address the issue includes the Bad Developer Task Force, a collaboration between the law, business affairs and community development departments, but legislative changes appear in the mix as well.

    Two specific fixes were discussed at last week’s meeting.

    One proposes creating an escrow account filled by a percentage of a unit’s sales price that would either be released to the building developer after a certain period of time or applied to repairs needed after closing.

    The second idea calls for establishing arbitration for repair issues that arise after the building’s association turns over from developer to resident control.

    Part of the challenge of passing a new consumer right ordinance in Chicago, Fioretti told audience members, is a “pro-builder” city council.

    State Rep. Harry Osterman (14th), who represents a North Side district, estimated debate about changes in the state’s condo act would start in Springfield by early 2010 at the latest. Osterman chaired a Condo Advisory Council that gathered testimony at public meetings about re-writing the state’s law.

    The escrow system and arbitration could be inserted in the state’s bill, he said.

    But, giving the law teeth means indentifying an enforcement mechanism, which currently does not exist in state government (“There’s no clear government entity where people can get answers on small or big problems,” Osterman said).

    Budgetary constraints, however, could limit the state’s ability to create a new body to take on that responsibility.

    Osterman said other issues repeatedly broached during the Condo Advisory Council meetings included complaints about boards acting non-democratically and worries about the impact of home foreclosures on buildings large and small.

    Dunkin, in a follow-up call, said legislation could include expanding liability and going after the banks and insurance companies as well as developers.

    Even if the debate shifts to Springfield, some residents grappling with problems are still looking for reasons to trust the city’s management of condo construction and conversions.

    “I love this city and feel like you guys should have my back on this,” said Teria Stamatis, a Near West Side resident who had to move out of her home during the summer because of chronic mold issues. “And I don’t feel that way.”

    Contact: mmaidenberg@chicagojournal.com

  2. Daley is so happy to see him go…. Now he can play his games without someone like hoffman looking over his back.
    (Resoinse) I wish David kept his job like Alexi, but he must have a reason.

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