Burke’s 40 Off Book Employees Cost Taxpayer’s an Extra $1.4 Million a Year

When Mayor Rahm Emanuel and 47 alderman approved the 2018 budget for the Committee on Finance (COF), Ald. Edward Burke had misinformed them about the number of employees working for his committee and the amount of money that the city was paying for their salaries. Burke’s budget list 25 COF employees for the 2018 fiscal year.1 The COF said in Feb., 2018 that 65 employees were working in the COF.2 Currently Burke’s COF staff of 65 has 40 more employees than the 25 COF employees listed in his 2018 budget.

In Oct. 2017 the COF said it had 62 employees working in the COF.3 Since the COF admitted Burke’s committee had 62 COF employees in Oct., 2017, it means Burke lied about the size of his staff when he and his colleagues passed his 2018 COF budget for 25 employees in Nov., 2017.

Off book means, “not properly declared for accounting purposes.” Today Burke’s committee has 40 off book COF employees because Burke failed to properly declare 40 of his COF employees in the 2018 budget. Simple subtraction was all that was needed to determine Burke’s 40 off book COF employees (see below).

65 COF employees listed in Feb., 2018 FOIA
(25) COF employees listed in Chicago’s 2018 budget
40 Off Book COF Employees

The COF has 40 employees whose salaries were also unaccounted for in the 2018 budget. The city is currently spending additional money to pay the salaries of Burke’s 40 off book COF employees. In February, 2018, the COF admitted that the current cost of COF employees’ salaries is $3.2 million a year.2 Again, simple subtraction was all that was needed to determine that the city is paying out an additional $1.4 million a year for Burke’s off book COF salaries (see below).

$3.2 Million listed for COF employees’s salaries in the Feb., 2018 FOIA
($1.8) Million listed for COF employees’s salaries in 2018 Budget
$1.4 Million for the Off Book Salaries of Burke’s COF Employees

Burke Stopped the Inspector General Ordinance to Hide His Off Book Employees
In 2016 Burke put together a coalition of 25 aldermen to block the inspector general (IG) from auditing and investigating his COF. There have been countless accusations of Burke’s misconduct during his 39 year reign as an alderman. Stopping the IG from investigating his committee is by far the worse allegation against Burke because Burke had a city ordinance passed to protect his wrongdoing. Burke was improperly hiring and employing his off book staff at the same time he blocked the IG from investigating him. Thanks to the City Council passing the ordinance Burke proposed, no one at the IG’s office can investigate Burke’s committee. Sadly, the IG conducting a simple audit would have exposed Burke’s 40 off book COF employees and the additional $1.4 million yearly cost to taxpayers.

Besides the $1.4 million a year in COF off book salaries, the taxpayers must pay for Burke’s off book employees’ health insurance and pensions. The city is paying for part of every COF off book employee’s health insurance. In addition, taxpayers are also contributing to Burke’s off book COF employees’ pensions.

Burke has 20 COF employees who earn between $23,108 and $29,208 a year.2 Burke pays 20 COF employees in the $20,000 to $30,000 a year range so he can hire more people for his COF staff. Burke uses his COF employees for patronage, so the more COF employees he hires, the more people Burke has to campaign for him and his favored candidates. Unfortunately taxpayers must continue to foot the bill for health insurance, pensions, and salaries for all of Burke’s off book patronage hiring.

Call to Action
Exposing Ald. Burke’s political corruption is one thing, but stopping the corruption and preventing it from happening again is the ultimate goal. Below are four actions that will stop and prevent COF corruption practices that come at a hefty cost to taxpayers.

Pass a Chicago Inspector General Ordinance that allows the IG to investigate aldermanic programs and committees beginning with the COF.
The second Mayor Emanuel signs the IG ordinance, the IG should start an audit of Ald. Burke’s Committee on Finance for the last seven years.
Remove Ald. Burke as City Council Committee on Finance Chairman. During Council Wars in the 1980s, a judge ruled that the City Council is a separate branch of government and has a right to organize itself. Aldermen don’t have to wait until after the 2019 elections to end Burke’s 30 year reign as COF chairman. How ironic that thanks to Burke and the rest of the Vrdolyak 29’s actions in the 1980s, a majority of aldermen may vote in 2018 to remove Burke as COF Chairmen.
Transfer the management of the Workers’ Compensation program from the COF to the executive branch of government. Except for Chicago no city or state in the country has a legislative committee managing it workers’ comp program. Professionals should run Chicago workers’ comp instead of a bunch of political hacks that work for Ald. Burke.
Notes

Alderman Burke and Rahm Emanuel in the Crosshairs. Feds Investigate Corruption

Mayor Rahm Emanuel Lied in Federal Court
Emanuel Restarts Corrupt Political Practices that Previously Led to 60 Convictions

Mayor Rahm Emanuel told a whopper of a lie on June 16, 2014 in U.S. Magistrate Judge Sidney Schenkier’s standing room only courtroom. Dozens of Chicago style political discrimination victims, journalists, and other interested parties all came together for the historic removal of the federal court monitor. Mayor Richard M. Daley’s administration rigged interviews for job applicants who secretly campaigned for Daley backed candidates for 16 years. Consequently, in 2004 Judge Wayne Andersen appointed Noelle Brennan as a federal court monitor to oversee the City of Chicago’s personnel decisions. About 60 city employees either plead guilty or were convicted for their role in Chicago’s job and election rigging scheme. It took 10 years, a new mayor, the retirement of Judge Andersen, and the City of Chicago spending over $200 million in civil rights settlements, legal fees and human resource changes before Judge Schenkier agreed to end the federal court’s oversight.
Mayor Emanuel and the city agreed to follow a Hiring Plan in return for the removal of the federal court monitor. Some of the Hiring Plan’s anti-corruption rules and procedures were making the Human Resource Department the “gatekeeper” of all city jobs instead of the mayor’s office, giving the Inspector General Office (IGO) hiring oversight and investigative authority. The IGO’s webpage states that it took over the federal court monitor’s duties on the day Emanuel testified in federal court.
Judge Schenkier said, the city has “… a set of rules, procedures and internal policing requirements to keep politics out of hiring.” The IGO’s investigative authority is the “internal policing” that Judge Schenkier referenced. Mayor Emanuel also acknowledged that the IGO must continue its work in order to keep politics out of city hiring. Emanuel testified, “We must remain vigilant, working cooperatively with Inspector General Ferguson and his hiring oversight team to help keep us on this path from which we must never stray again.”
On Feb. 10, 2016 the City Council voted to restrict the IGO’s investigative authority. Thus, 18 months after Mayor Emanuel pledged to work cooperatively with the IGO, Emanuel was complicit in taking away the IGO’s investigation powers that he agreed to follow in federal court. Mayor Emanuel published nine press releases for ordinances that were approved on the day the City Council voted to reduce the IGO’s authority, but none of Emanuel’s nine press releases addresses the hot-button issue of the IGO’s reduced authority that the mayor said was essential to stopping corruption when he spoke in federal court.
Mayor Rahm Emanuel lied in federal court when he promised to stay “vigilant” and “cooperate” with the IGO to keep Chicago moving forward. Emanuel sticking his head in the sand while his political allies passed the water-downed IGO ordinance is obstructionism, not the cooperation that Emanuel publicly pledged. The IGO has the expertise, experience, and resources to root out corruption. When Mayor Emanuel gave his blessings to handcuff the IGO, he was anything but vigilant as he had promised to maintain. If Mayor Emanuel truly meant what he said in federal court, he would have vetoed the IGO ordinance without a moment’s hesitation. Instead of Emanuel being true to his words in federal court, Emanuel acted like a coward by saying he merely went along with the aldermen.
The next section discusses how corruption and another potential civil rights lawsuit have resulted from Emanuel’s failure to veto the ordinance that restricts the IGO’s investigative authority.
Mayor Emanuel’s Lies are Preventing IGO Investigation
On February 23, 2016 I filed a complaint with the IGO because Alderman Burke is managing the Chicago’s Workers Compensation Division through his aldermanic Committee on Finance (COF). The workers’ compensation program belongs in the executive branch of government as it is everywhere else in this country, not in Burke’s legislative committee. The next day Chicago Sun Times reporter Fran Spielman published a story in which attorney Michael Shakman said he agreed with me. Mr. Shakman said he made a mistake by allowing patronage employees to run Chicago’s Worker’s Compensation Division. Four days after my IGO complaint, the Sun Times published an editorial that called for moving Chicago’s workers comp program from Ald. Burke’s committee to a city department.
The Richard M. Daley administration committed political discrimination because it awarded government jobs and promotions in a quid pro quo exchange for campaign work. Candidates, such as Mayor Richard M. Daley and Rahm Emanuel, did not pay for their campaign workers. The city compensated Daley and Emanuel’s congressional campaign workers in the form of new city employment and promotions that came from rigged job interviews. Instead of rewarding campaign workers with jobs and promotions, Alderman Burke is rewarding disability pay and benefits to injured city workers who are affiliated with his and the mayor’s political machine. Mayor Emanuel’s failure to veto the restrictive IG ordinance is creating a liability that could cost millions of dollars in another civil rights class action lawsuit.
The Hiring Plan listed the job titles and job classifications for employees who work in Ald. Burke’s COF. Furthermore, Burke failed to seek the Department of Human Resources (DHR) commissioner’s permission to change 22 COF employees’ job titles as the Hiring Plan required. Ald. Burke also failed to notify the IGO of changes to his employees’ job titles as he was required. When I became aware that 22 of Alderman Burke’s COF employees had one job title for the COF and one job title for the DHR , I filed a second IGO complaint (See table Below).
Committee on Finance Employees who have a Human Resources Job Title Different from their COF Job Titles

NAME DHR Job Title COF JobTitle
Maria Estrada — Legislative Aide — Adjuster
Janet Galvin Legislative Aide Director of Workers Comp
Mao Hong Legislative Aide Systems Administrator
Linda Jagminas Legislative Aide Director of Claims and Rebates
Mary Kate Manion Legislative Aide Secretary of Committee on Finance
Alicia Martinez Clerk of the City Council Adjuster
William Marutzky Legislative Aide Adjuster
Kathleen McNamara Legislative Aide SC Adjuster
Arturo Medina Legislative Aide Adjuster
Andrea Miceli Legislative Aide Secretary of Committee on Finance
Laura Montoya Manager of Information Systems Director of Policy
Michelle Murphy Director of Workers Compensation Assistant Chief Administration Officer
Stephen Niketopoulos Legislative Aide SC Adjuster
Ellen O’Gara Legislative Aide Adjuster
Megan Panik Legislative Aide Adjuster
Kyra Robinson Legislative Aide Adjuster
Moni Rohde Legislative Aide Systems Administrator
Monica Somerville Legislative Research Analyst Executive Director of Claims
Lisa Soto Legislative Aide Adjuster
Marita Thomas Legislative Aide Adjuster
Sherry Williams Legislative Aide SC Adjuster
Ethel Nancy Legislative Aide Adjuster

Ald. Ed Burke also created eight (8) new job classifications for his COF employees (See table below). The job classifications Burke created were not in the budget, nor were these jobs listed in the Hiring Plan. Burke creating job classifications on his own accord violates the Hiring Plan that Mayor Emanuel and the city agreed to follow in federal court. Unfortunately, Mayor Emanuel’s failure to veto the IGO ordinance prevents the IGO from investigating 22 of Burke’s employees using of two job titles and Burke’s creation of eight new job classifications in violation of the Hiring Plan.

Committee on Finance Job Classifications Created by Chairman Alderman Edward Burke

Ald. Burke ordering his employees to use two separate job titles is prima facia evidence of wrongdoing. Burke is purposely being deceitful and duplicitous because he wants to retain as many of his COF jobs for his own personal and political gain. On the one hand, the COF’s proper use of his employees job titles with the DHR keeps Ald. Burke and the COF in good stead with the DHR. On the other hand, COF employee’s use of unofficial job titles in the performance of their work make it appear that members of the Ald Burke’s staff are something other than the patronage employees that they really are. The COF’s abuse of job titles makes it seem COF employees are making independent and fair decisions based on fact, but the sad truth is the COF often decides Workers Comp cases based on political affiliation to Ald. Burke. We will never know the extent of Burke and the COF’s wrongdoing until Mayor Emanuel and the aldermen reinstate the IGO’s investigative power or the Justice Department investigates Burke’s committee for a third time.
Endnote
Please note that I only said Mayor Rahm Emanuel lied in federal court. Judge Schenkier did not have any of the witnesses who testified on June 16, 2014 swear to tell the truth, including Emanuel, myself, and everybody else who spoke at the hearing. Because he did not swear to tell the truth before he addressed the court, I deem Mayor Emanuel a liar, but not a perjurer.

Racist emails scandal moves beyond Chicago as Illinois opens investigation into state employee’s role

State officials are investigating a longtime employee whose personal email address is a source of racist, sexist and anti-gay emails at the center of the Chicago water department’s burgeoning scandal, including a fake “Chicago Safari” tour making light of the shootings of children in black and Hispanic neighborhoods

The state began a review into Frank Capuzi — an investigator with the Workers’ Compensation Commission and son of a former Republican state lawmaker — following Tribune inquiries into offensive emails forwarded from his address to a water department boss and others.

The state’s actions mark the first time the email scandal has created fresh headaches for another government body.

“The Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission is currently investigating the highly offensive and inexcusable email messages from one of its employees,” said commission spokesman Ben Noble. “After a complete and thorough administrative review, the commission will determine what actions may be appropriate.”

Capuzi hung up on a reporter and did not respond to follow-up emails sent to his work and personal addresses. He has worked for the state since 1975 and makes more than $114,000 per year.

Capuzi, 62, was a longtime GOP committeeman on the West Side, having won the 26th Ward post as recently as 2008 and the 27th Ward at least as far back as the early 1980s, according to records from the Chicago Board of Elections.

The “Chicago Safari” email was among at least four of the most offensive ones that circulated among water department bosses that came from Capuzi’s personal address.

The city redacted the address in the messages released via open records requests. The Tribune through interviews and sources, confirmed it was Capuzi’s personal AOL address. It is the same email address Capuzi listed in the past as a contact for his political work.

Even though Capuzi didn’t use his government email address, Chad Fornoff, executive director of the state Executive Ethics Commission, said that this type of matter should be referred to the executive inspector general for investigation into whether any violations of state law, rules or policies have occurred, including conduct unbecoming a state employee.

Gov. Bruce Rauner’s administration’s code of personal conduct states, in part, that employees should conduct themselves “with integrity and in a manner that reflects favorably upon the state.” That code, a union bargaining agreement and the state ethics law are all part of the review, the commission said.

The Rauner administration confirmed that the Workers’ Compensation Commission had launched an investigation. The commission is a quasi-independent body with members appointed by the governor and currently has six Republicans and four Democrats. “The administration was not previously aware of these emails, and the language used is inappropriate and unacceptable,” said Rauner’s spokeswoman Laurel Patrick.

The revelation of how the offensive messages found their way into the water department comes amid the city inspector general’s ongoing investigation into the sharing of racist, sexist and anti-gay emails among city water workers and their bosses.

Inspector General Joseph Ferguson’s findings have led to five high-level water department bosses being ousted, including Commissioner Barrett Murphy; his deputy, William Bresnahan; and Paul Hansen, a district superintendent and the son of former Democratic Ald. Bernie Hansen (44th). The Tribune reported earlier this week that a private contract employee was caught up in the scandal and has been blocked from working on city projects.

The Tribune, under a public records request, had obtained nearly 1,300 emails from the water department, including several emails forwarded from Capuzi to Hansen.

The Tribune found that at least four offensive emails shared with Hansen and others came from Capuzi’s address. The email threads include the names as “Frank Capuzi,” “Frank” and “F. Capuzi.”

A July 2013 email with the subject line “Chicago Safari Tickets” states that if “you didn’t book a Chicago safari adventure,” for the Independence Day weekend, “you missed” the shootings of a 5-year-old boy and two others in West Pullman; the shooting of a 7-year-old boy in Chatham; and the fatal shooting of a 14-year-old boy in Humboldt Park.

“We guarantee that you will see at least one kill and five crime scenes per three day tour. You’ll also see lots and lots of animals in their natural habitat. Call and book your Chicago Safari today,” the email reads. An image shows four white people in safari gear taking pictures of several black people trying to break into a car.

The emails states that safari guests will stay in a hotel with triple deadbolt locks and window bars, but the safari guides cannot “guarantee Bell Hops won’t run off with your luggage.” The safari promises the rooms will be “99% free of drug needles and crack pipes.”

The Tribune on Friday obtained the Chicago safari email, uncovered as part of the inspector general’s investigation, through a public records request.

Another titled “Watermelon Protection” was sent to Hansen in July 2014 and included an image that depicted a scarecrow, dressed in a white KKK robe and pointed hood, amid a watermelon patch.

Hansen, in turn, forwarded the email to Murphy. “I don’t understand,” Hansen wrote in the email to Murphy.

There is a March 2014 email received by “F Capuzi” then forwarded by “Frank” to Hansen with the subject line “The World’s Shortest Essay — Gotta Love the Texas School Systems.”

The email contained a joke that spares few in its offensiveness. It refers to an essay contest held for Texas teens that had to include elements of religion, royalty, racism, disability and homosexuality. The “winning” essay read: “My God,” cried the Queen, “That one-legged nigger is a queer.”

In turn, Hansen forwarded the email to Bresnahan and two other water department bosses.

Paul Hansen was a supervisor in the water department who allegedly used his city email to negotiate firearms deals. (July 18, 2017)
An April 2017 email forwarded from Capuzi’s address announces that “Today is Heterosexual Male Pride Day!” It makes that declaration after showing a series of photographs of steaks grilling, a row of beer taps and a naked woman.

The body of the email states: “To all of my friends who are tired of taking a BACK SEAT to gays, lesbians, homosexuals, trans genders, women soldiers, bra burners, female boy scouts, women libbers, tree huggers, and eco-commie-environ-freaks, the looney left, Greens, social justice warriors and worse of all — those fucking Democrats!”

Hansen could not be reached for comment. Capuzi’s boss, Robert Ruiz, said he did not know about the emails and declined to comment further.

Paul Finamore, a Chicago area businessman and longtime friend of Capuzi, was listed as receiving some of the emails and said he was appalled at the content when shown the watermelon protection and the shortest essay emails.

“Oh, my God,” Finamore said after he reviewed the emails at the Tribune’s request. “I don’t remember seeing anything of this, to tell you the truth.”

Finamore, the chief executive officer of Hairline Creations Inc., said Capuzi was a groomsman for his 1989 wedding party and that the two had hunted together.

“This man is a racist,” Finamore said. “You’ve got to know this guy. He’s a good, good guy.”

[email protected]

[email protected]

Sun-Times misses the point with Joe Ferguson Clown Prince of the Inspector General

Joe Ferguson, Chicago Inspector General first in line to steal credit. Ole Joe, tells everyone he separates the wheat from the chaff. When a Chicago City workers calls, or emails the O.I.G. you would expect an investigation. You would expect an interview to obtain a proper response to your concerns. I know for a fact when David Hoffman, the outstanding inspector general ran things, his staff was top notch and professional.
Not the case for phony Joe Ferguson, the psychic inspector general that know everything. Emails are not returned. Joe has not done a fucking thing about the corrupt promotion system still in place at the Department of Water Management. Joe covered up for Paul Hansen for over a decade.

But what we do know is the following, Joe Ferguson tips off the Sun-Times on a regular basis. Joe Ferguson tips off all departments when he faxes over inquires for information.
Joe Ferguson does not expose Chicago Commissioners that stall and refuse to discipline workers. When you ask for a FOIA from the Inspector General, they stall. Same treatment when you file complaints against corrupt FOIA officers covering up crime in Chicago. One thing we know for sure, Joe retaliated against whistleblowers and is a puppet of Rahm Emanuel. Most of the challenged I.G. complaints are dismissed in court as a farse. Most I.G. employees are part time pass through college grads waiting for a real job. But don’t worry, Joe will be the first in line to pose for pictures and take credit he does not deserve. P.S. Joe, remove that ugly mole from your nose.

Sun-Times Editorial Board
Just when you think Chicago municipal government is fully joining the modern world, somebody tugs open a closet door and out tumble the patronage hacks, the mopes who sleep on the job and the two-bit office bigots who really should shut up.

Feels like old times, you know?

That’s how we felt last week when we learned that goofs in the city’s Department of Water Management had been caught bouncing around emails that were racist, sexist and homophobic.

EDITORIAL

We can’t say we were surprised. The Department of Water Management has a long history of corruption and bigotry. But didn’t this stuff pretty much end when a federal court killed patronage politics? Once a judge handed down a series of rulings beginning in the late 1970s, known as the Shakman decrees, that banned hiring based on family or political loyalty, Uncle Al in Streets and San could no longer hire Cousin Bob or protect him when he screwed up.

Or so we thought.

We asked Don Rose, the veteran political consultant.

“Somehow, a few old-style patronage havens continue to exist,” he said with a shrug. “We’ll have these little sewers around for a few years.”
Elected officials, Rose said, are loath to give up “what few patronage privileges remain.”

In the meantime, all we can do is hold people to account when the sewage bubbles up.

On that score, Mayor Rahm Emanuel had no choice but to fire Barrett Murphy, the head of the Department of Water Management. Murphy may be more new school than old school, or so we’re told, but he was aware of the offensive emails and apparently did nothing about them.

The very way the emails were discovered by City Inspector General Joe Ferguson tells you something about the department’s continued hinky ways. Ferguson was investigating allegations that an employee was using his city email account to sell guns. Who uses the company email to sell guns?

And the employee in question was Paul Hansen, a son of former longtime Ald. Bernie Hansen.

Paul Hansen, as reporter Fran Spielman notes, has the kind of checkered past that once was common among a certain substrata of clout-protected city workers. Among the classic knocks against him — this really is old-school Chicago — is that he allegedly used political clout in 2010 to get his job back after a DUI conviction. Given that part of Hansen’s job was to drive around town to check on work sites, you might wonder about that.

But, then, this is the same Department of Water Management run 14 years ago by a deputy commissioner, Donald Tomczak, who went to prison for utterly ignoring all that Shakman stuff and doling out jobs, promotions and overtime to an army of political workers. It’s the same department at the center of the Sun-Times’ 2004 “Hired Trucks” investigation, in which we learned the city was hiring private truck companies with excellent political connections to do little or no work.

When Emanuel fired Barrett last week, he acknowledged that the Department of Water Management still has its issues. He said there should be a “reset button hit as it related to the culture.”

The good news is that the Department of Water Management, by anybody’s honest reckoning, is no longer the norm among city departments. It is more of a cultural zombie, popping back to life just when you thought it might be dead. Federal court orders, federal prosecutions and political evolutions, such as how local elections are funded and fought, have led to dramatic reforms.

Key to that progress has been the creation of an office of inspector general by many units of local governments, including Ferguson’s office for City Hall.

Even as the old ways die out, the best inspectors general remain on zombie patrol.

Paul "Manson" Hansen DUI UPDATE Inspector General still does nothing

Paul Hansen City of Chicago 2.jpg
From the Chicago DUI Blog. Who keeps covering up for Paul Hansen, lets add the Office of the Inspector General. More on Paul Hansen soon. Seems all the complaints Paul Hansen has gotten into is still covered-up by bosses. What happened to the assault claims and the claims at the Illinois Department of Human Rights? Please read this blog update on Paul Hansen. Rahm Emanuel talks a big game, but he needs to control his goons. Enjoy.. Former Ald. Bernie Hansen’s Son Gets Promoted After DUI Stop
By Steven Tanner on December 23, 2010 9:07 AM
Just six months after he was put on unpaid leave for a DUI arrest, Chicago Department of Water Management employee Paul Hansen was given a job promotion, according to the Chicago Sun-Times. His father just so happens to be former Ald. Bernie Hansen (44th).
Paul Hansen is Chicago’s new district superintendent of water distribution, a $103,632 position that netted him a 6 percent raise.
But while an Examiner story about the promotion suggests the former politician’s son benefited from nepotism, the Sun-Times article seemed to conclude that he’s just really good at what he does and deserved the job. In any event, it’s certainly awkward timing.
Paul Hansen was stopped for speeding, told the officer he had “four or five” beers and was questioned for DUI. He refused a breathalyzer test but was charged with DUI anyway; then he pleaded guilty to reckless driving and had his license suspended for a year.
It’s not clear whether he used his connections, as the Examiner suggested, or just had a really good Chicago DUI lawyer.
The Examiner didn’t cite any sources indicating a conflict of interests or the presence of other shenanigans.
After he was arrested, he reportedly asked the officer “if something could be worked out,” stating he knew the state’s attorney, according to the Sun-Times. That certainly should raise a few eyebrows.
The Sun-Times article indicated he formally applied for the job, was tested and interviewed with a federal hiring monitor present and was reviewed by the inspector general. Mayoral aide Lisa Schrader said the IG “found no issues with the hiring process and no basis to object.”
Water Management spokesman Tom LaPorte called Paul Hansen a “very effective employee” who “gets things done.”
Most Chicago DUI lawyers would tell you that drunk driving never helps your career. And while there’s no factual indication that Paul Hansen is corrupt, his story still raises questions.

Enjoy a picture of Occupy Chicago poster Children, John D'Amico, John Madigoon, and Local 130 Goon

John D'Amico Mike Madigan Final.jpg The Chicago Occupy movement is moving forward with a lighting pace. The City of Chicago has many residents with no future and a dismal job outlook. The tax base in Chicago is maxed out, and the Rahm Emanuel gang is ready to sell assets to Rahm’s cronies. I thought Rahm would be different than Daley and his goons, but he got a taste for the high life. This is a picture of Johnny ‘Da Nose” D’Amico. Johnny is a State Representative and a full time Chicago Department of Water Management employee. While people starve, John D’Amico drives a blue Water Department truck around and has been seen outside his district. That is OK because he is a made man with Rahm Emanuel. John was sent out to scout for Rahm long before the public was aware of the fixed mayoral election. Johnny is with Michael “pasty face” Madigan. Lil Mike knows the ole double dipping routine as well as Johnny D’Amico. These two goons are with a Local 130 dude with a horrible hair die job if ever I have seen one. This goon testified to the FEDS about fixed Plumbing Licenses in Chicago. This little fraud by the James Sullivan goons and the Plumber’s Union is unraveling at a Hearing for Dean “Mia Tai” Slawek. I am also happy to report a major victory by Tim Novak and the Chicago Sun-Times for their coverage of David Koschman. Everyone should have their fair day in court. Thanks to that brave judge for helping a mother’s worst nightmare. Photo improved by Patrick McDonough.

Dennis Fleming, a Daley leftover stinking up Justice in Chicago?

Chicago Department of Human Resources Poster 1.jpg Dennis M. Fleming, an attorney, chairman of the Chicago License Appeal Commission, administrative law judge and hearing officer spent the last two days making a mockery of Justice in Chicago. I spent the last two days at the City of Chicago Department of Human Resources watching one city worker after another walking out of an appeal hearing. Simply put, Bruce Randazzo is attempting to clear his name from a disciplinary action the Department of Water Management made against him. Bruce Randazzo is a politically active Democrat on the Northwest side of Chicago. Bruce Randazzo has stood up to corruption and reported several incidents that should have been actively investigated by the Chicago Office of the Inspector General. In all fairness to the OIG, I am not privy to the status of any investigation since I am active city employee. (Disclaimer)
So why am I concerned? The City of Chicago uses Hearing Officers as a political carrot to judicial wan bees. I am seeing the use of Hearing Officers in too many situations in Chicago. If you receive a parking ticket in Chicago, a Building Code Violation, you could get an appointed flunky lawyer not familiar with the laws that apply to your situation. I have firsthand seen too much unprofessionalism at the Building Violations Court. Maybe if the OIG steps downstairs once in a while, we can straighten that out. I really believe Chicago taxpayers should demand and want a real judge free from any political process deciding what is legal and right.
So… back to the story, Bruce Randazzo was in the Hearing Board on January 11 and 12, making his side of the case. I made the appropriate phone calls because the hearing officer was not allowing much evidence into the record. I overheard city worker after city worker laughing about the hearing judge attempting to shut down any avenue that was not favorable to the city. When ordinary working folks smell a fix, it’s a fix. When city workers smell a fix, it is defiantly a fix. My impression is Fleming got a phone call from an attorney representing one of the witnesses for the city. Two critical witnesses famous for their political work walked in and then right out of the hearing. I cannot fathom how the hearing officer can make a determination without hearing evidence.
If you are a City of Chicago employee and want to clear your name, you might be wasting money hiring an attorney. I waited in City Hall room 1100 all day on January 11, 2012 waiting to testify. No one from Plumber’s Local 130 ever showed up. I was told a Local 130 representative could not show up because it was the city’s fault that they did not notify the union. I drove back to the yard at 4900 Sunnyside and then my tires were slashed. I was expecting a representative to show from the Union today but no one showed up. I got a call when I was in the hearing testifying. When I was testifying, I got the impression the hearing officer never understood the rules that allow more openness in admitting evidence than the circuit court. I was also happy to hear Chicago Clout was mentioned during the proceedings. I admit Rahm Emanuel is a much better Mayor than Daley ever was. Emanuel is ten times the Mayor, but he needs to clean out the old Daley holdouts. I would like to make a spin on the legal system. The Chicago legal system is like making sausages, but as a plumber the legal sausages sometimes look like sh*t.
I will have more details soon. Enjoy.

Chicago Clout thanks Chicago Sun-Times and Fran Spielman for Human Resources Story

Fired city inspector is back at work
'BETRAYAL OF PUBLIC TRUST' | His job was to bust people for working with no permit — he did side job with no permit
December 23, 2009
BY FRAN SPIELMAN City Hall Reporter
A $93,840-a-year Chicago plumbing inspector caught doing a side job with no permit, city license or secondary employment form allowing him to perform the "side job" is back on his main job.
The Human Resources Board, which is appointed by Mayor Daley, has overturned James Kendrick's firing and converted his punishment to a five-month suspension without pay, which he has already served. Kendrick returned to work Thursday for the first time since July 17. He refused to comment.
The board agreed that Kendrick's behavior "warranted substantial discipline," but not the firing ordered by Buildings Commis- sioner Richard Monocchio, said Buildings Department spokesman Bill McCaffrey.
"We felt justified in terminating him. This was a betrayal of the public trust. He's a plumbing inspector in the Troubled Buildings Bureau. He . . . knows that, in order to work, you need a permit," McCaffrey said.
The Chicago Sun-Times reported last summer that Kendrick was installing a flood-control system for a homeowner in the 3500 block of North Octavia when he inadvertently broke the water pipe leading to the home.
When Water Management investigators arrived, they found that the homeowner who hired Kendrick had not obtained a permit and that Kendrick did not have city licenses to perform the work.
The violations were particularly egregious because Kendrick was assigned to a task force that busts people for working without permits. He was further accused of asking investigators for city-owned parts — lead packs and copper — to repair the broken pipe.
Pat McDonough, one of the responding investigators, was "disgusted" by the board's reversal.
"They have people engaging in criminal activity who come back to work, then they go after and fire people who don't have political clout," McDonough said, describing himself.
"They destroy their lives, take away their pensions and force them to spend their pensions fighting to get their jobs back," he said. "It sends the wrong message to guys like us who put our lives on the line squealing on these guys. Why bother blowing the whistle or showing up in court?"
McDonough helped blow the whistle on the Hired Truck scandal, got fired in 2005 for allegedly violating the city's residency requirement and was hired back after a city hearing officer reversed his firing.
In between, there was explosive testimony at McDonough's hearing from a co-worker who claimed overtime was for sale at Water Management and that gambling was rampant on city time at city work sites.
In the final ruling, hearing officer Carl McCormick described a work site "akin to a hellish nightmare" where bribery and bullying reigned supreme. He said it was "difficult to envision a worksite more indecent."
The reversal of Kendrick's firing comes one week after an Office of Compliance survey showed Chicago employees report only half the incidents of misconduct they witness — compared to two-thirds in other cities –because they don't think anything will change or because they fear retaliation.
"It sends a horrible message to all city workers," McDonough said.
Mayor Daley needs to figure out people are broke and tired of corruption in Chicago. Thank you again to Fran Spieman, she has a bright light and uses it!!!