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  • Writer's pictureTricia Babischkin

Board Packet Review: 1/12/2021

With all the hearings of late, it might be easy to miss that we do actually have board business to conduct and as such there's a board meeting on Tuesday the 12th.

Before I begin the packet review, I urge you that if you are upset about the baseless accusations that Trustee Ryan Berman levied against residents in our community trying to prevent 4 new people who are trying to run for the board -- who followed all the rules and are trusting that truth and law will prevail, feel free to remind Trustee Berman of his job to be a good steward of our tax dollars and to not use them frivolously by bringing baseless objections to the Election Board. He is needlessly wasting our tax dollars on behalf of his fellow Trustees -- this is not doing the 'will of the people' in his role as Trustee. I would think that all those running for office who also entrusted with stewardship of our public funds would likewise chastise Mr. Berman for his baseless accusations and ask him to withdraw and/or resign. After all, in addition to this recent set of accusations at the last board meeting he wasted board time and village money (as we do pay for the lawyer to attend the meetings) to launch a personal attack on a resident. That diatribe at the end of the meeting was NOT public business; it was entirely personal.

And yes, I can almost hear the lecture-style response that Trustee Berman will likely give that there is another set of objections that will cost the village money in legal fees to -- the difference is key -- those are not baseless. In fact, it is not a hard argument that President Phil, Trustee Pam, Trustee Dan, and P&Z Commission Member Bill are the ones who at fault for spending that money as they failed to file correctly and used their position to attempt to correct their errors without following the easily accessible rules. Had they followed instructions in the first place, there would be no objection to their petitions -- but they did not -- another example of a blatant disregard for your taxes and the rules that ought to govern our village. Finally, before Mr. Berman asks the candidates to withdraw their objection, please remember that the candidates did not object to the incumbents’ petitions, a resident did. One of the few he didn’t accuse of forgery or fraud!

But back to the board packet:

I do wonder if our packets will ever acknowledge that Phil makes opening remarks in every meeting -- they ought to just make this an agenda item as he feels the need to clarify something(s) that he's been told about that are out there.

CONSENT AGENDA: 1. Request Approval of Minutes: a. December 22, 2020 Regular Village Board Meeting 2. Request Approval of Bill Lists: a. Accounts Payable Invoices Dated January 13, 2021 in the amount of $137,231.12 b. Accounts Payable PrePaid Invoices Dated December, 2020 in the amount of $9,046.91 .

3. Request Approval of Financial Statements: a. Village Financial Statements for the Periods May 1, 2020 through September 30, 2020

Who can explain the $120,000 loss in our impact fee fund? If this is a clerical error, I would expect that the exact same punishment be doled out to whoever is responsible that was given to our 23 year veteran employee who had an error in the April 2020 financials. (That punishment was the first time she was written up in 23 years and was part of the case built against her to fire her on the 30th of December.)

From August's Report:

From September's Report:

The difference in the cash balance of this one fund is $123,769!! As someone who is watching carefully for money that could be leaving the system -- this shift is utterly frightening. Should be VERY interesting on how that swing gets explained away.

While we are looking at the Cash Balance Sheet, remember when I called out that there's been years to make the supposed transfer from SSA #1 to SSA #8 and Phil and Jeannine BOTH claimed in the last meeting that the transfer was done years ago? If so, then explain two things to me:

  • Why does the balance sheet still have this disclaimer?

  • Why has SSA #8 had a negative balance for so long? It's not improving and yet in every budget and levy write up, CAO Smith mentions that this will balance out with this magic transfer from SSA #1.

b. RedTail Golf Club Financial Statements for the Periods May 1, 2020 through September 30, 2020 c. Lake Patrol Financial Statements for the Periods May 1, 2020 through September 30, 2020 4. Items Removed from Consent Agenda - If Any


5. Motion to Approve Ordinance No. 2021-(01) - A n Ordinance to Authorize the Sale or Disposal of Personal Property Owned by the Village of Lakewood

So -- I've been wondering about this sudden sell off of land on RedTail. Does it seem odd to anyone else that after years of no interest in that land at all, we've been selling a lot or two a meeting for the past few meetings? And now we are going to offer more for sale. So, naturally, this leads to a bit of digging. The first question every resident I've spoken to is "how are these lots SO cheap?" Now, according to the village's website, we don't sell land for less than 80% of the assessed value. So, I'm forced to ask, where do these "values" on the website come from? Who did the assessing?

Now, I'm all for land to be sold and taxes to come in from that land -- especially since anything that is owned by the Village is tax exempt -- but when I stop and say, "huh? that's odd." this certainly is one of those things. Keep in mind, given the by builder impact fee waivers that the board has been handing out, these lots aren't currently waived from fees -- will that change? Who knows. But it does look like we are putting more lots for sale.

6. Motion to Accept an Offer to Purchase RedTail Lot #20 in the Amount of $12,500

7. Motion to authorize the Chief Administrative Officer to Execute a Contract for the Purchase of RedTail Lot #20 in the Amount of $12,500

8. Reports and Comments: (To Begin No Later than 10:15 p.m.) Village Clerk Village Treasurer Chief Administrative Officer (Sign Post Design) Chief of Police

Village Attorney

Village President (Traffic Survey Results)

Village Trustees

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