SUBSCRIBE to Capitol Fax      Advertise Here      Mobile Version     Exclusive Subscriber Content     Updated Posts    Contact
CapitolFax.com
To subscribe to Capitol Fax, click here.
Reform and renewal

Wednesday, Jun 11, 2014

* Give state grant money to the head of one of the most effective Democratic political organizations in the state, and surprises are few

Young job seekers in Chicago’s south suburbs stood to benefit from almost half a million dollars awarded by Gov. Pat Quinn’s now-defunct anti-violence grant program that’s under investigation.

But some of that money went to a local government official with ties to Thornton Township Supervisor Frank Zuccarelli, who is a south suburban power broker known for turning out the vote and a political supporter of Quinn, the Better Government Association has found.

Thornton Township Youth Director Jerry Weems, a Zuccarelli underling and campaign contributor, got part of his salary paid with state grant money; got nearly $10,000 for his own nonprofit; and even more money — $3,600 — for a company owned by his sister-in-law. […]

With the grant money, the nonprofit paid teens $8.50 an hour to pass out anti-violence literature at events. It also paid Weems’ own nonprofit organization, Vision Management Services, $9,600 in 2012 for leading young adult workshops on stress management, anger resolution and basic social skills, according to interviews and records.

The Youth Committee Program also gave Weems a salary of more than $14,000 total in 2011 and 2012 with grant funds. The payments were in addition to Weems’ annual township pay, currently $127,722. Separately, the Youth Committee Program paid Enhanced Skillstreaming Professionals Inc. $3,600 with grant funds in the fiscal year ending June 30, 2013. State records show that private company is owned by Toinette Hill, Weems’ sister-in-law. Hill declined to comment.

Again with paying kids to hand out anti-violence fliers. This is nothing but make-work. OK, it gets kids off the streets for a few hours, puts a few bucks in their pockets, but is it really accomplishing anything?

* Meanwhile

The legislative commission that last month opened hearings into Auditor General William Holland’s audit of Gov. Pat Quinn’s scandal-tainted Neighborhood Recovery Initiative announced Tuesday a new hearing date in July to continue delving into the report.

The Legislative Audit Commission has set July 16 and, if necessary, July 17 to continue hearing testimony on Quinn’s 2010 anti-violence grant program that is now under state and federal investigation.

- Posted by Rich Miller        


29 Comments
  1. - Harry - Wednesday, Jun 11, 14 @ 10:16 am:

    One wonders if Quinn has the self-awareness to ever ask himself what happened to the young reformer of the 1970s.


  2. - OneMan - Wednesday, Jun 11, 14 @ 10:21 am:

    A Quinn spokesman says politics had no bearing on the anti-violence grant award

    Cue laughing Rauner (and everyone else track here)


  3. - Leroy - Wednesday, Jun 11, 14 @ 10:21 am:

    “OK, it gets kids off the streets for a few hours, puts a few bucks in their pockets, but is it really accomplishing anything?”

    VERY few people in Illinois can get away with asking that question, and Rich is one of them.

    Thanks, Rich!


  4. - Wumpus - Wednesday, Jun 11, 14 @ 10:24 am:

    ==“OK, it gets kids off the streets for a few hours, puts a few bucks in their pockets, but is it really accomplishing anything?==

    It is training these kids for a career in sign spinning as Cash for Gold advertisers. While it is an honest job, no real skills are taught.


  5. - Ghost - Wednesday, Jun 11, 14 @ 10:24 am:

    On a side note, the money from this program would have been enough to give the States few merit comp employees who are responsible for managing the overwhelmingly large union work force merit raises. They have been frozen since 2008. Since that time union pay has gone up 48%.


  6. - Rich Miller - Wednesday, Jun 11, 14 @ 10:25 am:

    ===the money from this program would have been enough to give the States few merit comp employees… merit raises===

    Oh, for Pete’s sake.


  7. - JSlim - Wednesday, Jun 11, 14 @ 10:27 am:

    Why in hell is the Youth Services Director in a township pulling down $127,000+ in salary??!!


  8. - Yellow Dog Democrat - Wednesday, Jun 11, 14 @ 10:28 am:

    Rich-

    My understanding is that the Quinn administration designed the program to REQUIRE the kids hand out flyers. If you wanted the kids to do something else…pick up litter, paint parks…the answer was Nope.

    So let’s not blame the nonprofits for that element.


  9. - Just Observing - Wednesday, Jun 11, 14 @ 10:28 am:

    === Again with paying kids to hand out anti-violence fliers. This is nothing but make-work. OK, it gets kids off the streets for a few hours, puts a few bucks in their pockets, but is it really accomplishing anything? ===

    And how many of these silly flyers actually were passed out. I’m willing to bet a good number of passers hung out in McDonald’s for a couple hours, threw the flyers in a dumpster, and came to collect their cash.


  10. - The Prince - Wednesday, Jun 11, 14 @ 10:30 am:

    Just Observing: Bingo.


  11. - Soccermom - Wednesday, Jun 11, 14 @ 10:33 am:

    Rich that is a mean headline.


  12. - OneMan - Wednesday, Jun 11, 14 @ 10:42 am:

    Why in hell is the Youth Services Director in a township pulling down $127,000+ in salary??!!

    Do not ask questions about comp or serving on multiple entities in Thornton Township…


  13. - Cassandra - Wednesday, Jun 11, 14 @ 10:42 am:

    I guess I have lived in Illinois too long, but this seems like kind of small potatoes to me. Isn’t this the other Illinois (currently Democratic)political patronage system, alive and kicking as usual under Reformer Quinn. Billions are given out in state grants and contracts, and lots of politically connected folks who couldn’t get on the public payroll are rewarded through the “nonprofits” and other entities which get those grants. No pesky Rutan considerations–pure political pull to get those jobs. Maybe the “nonprofits” involved believe they need to hire these somebodies somebody sent to get the grants.
    When in Rome.

    And when you live in one of the country’s most corrupt states, this stuff seems all too normal.


  14. - Nieva - Wednesday, Jun 11, 14 @ 10:44 am:

    So who drew these flyers up and how were those contracts awarded in such a hurry? Were they no bid? How about the printing? I hope they are digging a little deeper on the money spent for this project.


  15. - VanillaMan - Wednesday, Jun 11, 14 @ 10:48 am:

    “OK kids - line up!”

    “What we want you to do today is take this flier and pass it out to people around you.”

    “Now, we didn’t budget to print more than a flier for each of you. So what you will have to do is - if you are right-handed, duct tape a flier to your left hand. If you are left-handed, duct tape a flier to your right hand.”

    “OK - does everyone have a flier taped to a hand?”

    “Now watch me. I smile and lean towards another person and pretend to be handing them the flier taped to your other hand.”


  16. - Walker - Wednesday, Jun 11, 14 @ 10:50 am:

    @Leroy: I get your sentiment, but it’s not all so fearsome that only Rich can open his mouth without retribution.

    I’ve heard similar questions asked about Weems, Zuccarelli, and the waste of this and similar programs, by a lot of regular Dems with a desire for reform. The key is how do we kill or cure the beast.

    “Purity tests” around policy issues can slowly kill a party, as we can witness.

    But perhaps freedom from certain types of “legal corruption” might be the kind of purity test we can rally around among the Dems.

    There are plenty of Dem players who do not participate in such shenanigans.


  17. - Apacolypse Now - Wednesday, Jun 11, 14 @ 10:51 am:

    Sure looks like it kept Frank Zuccarelli off the streets, along with his other employees.


  18. - Amalia - Wednesday, Jun 11, 14 @ 10:56 am:

    trying to figure out if Zuccarelli should be a verb or a noun in regular use about politics in Illinois.


  19. - Rob Roy - Wednesday, Jun 11, 14 @ 10:58 am:

    Improve the job climate in IL and businesses would hire and the government would not have to redistribute money on poorly thought out overly expensive dig ditch and fill them type work.


  20. - Steve - Wednesday, Jun 11, 14 @ 11:00 am:

    -Again with paying kids to hand out anti-violence fliers. This is nothing but make-work. OK, it gets kids off the streets for a few hours, puts a few bucks in their pockets, but is it really accomplishing anything?-

    Rich is making fun here of future precinct captains. Handing out fliers can be the beginning to eventually running a property tax appeals business… I mean a ward organization.


  21. - Walker - Wednesday, Jun 11, 14 @ 11:07 am:

    @Steve: Good one.


  22. - DuPage - Wednesday, Jun 11, 14 @ 11:11 am:

    @Ghost 10:24=2008. Since that time union pay has gone up 48%.=

    Specifically, What union workers have got a 48% increase?


  23. - Sir Reel - Wednesday, Jun 11, 14 @ 11:25 am:

    Looks like Weems reams the taxpayers of Thornton Township to the tune of $127,000 a year. I wonder what township staff who have something more serious than directing youth make?


  24. - A guy... - Wednesday, Jun 11, 14 @ 11:26 am:

    Passing out fliers is the threshold for moving millions of dollars into neighborhoods…for votes. And Derrick “the dufus” just got smacked for a $7K letter. Welcome to the State of Insanity.


  25. - 1776 - Wednesday, Jun 11, 14 @ 11:56 am:

    Is Jerry Weems any relation to Malcolm Weems who left CMS to work on Quinn’s campaign?


  26. - CirularFiringSquad - Wednesday, Jun 11, 14 @ 12:33 pm:

    Wow it took the magoos at the BGA two years to figure this one out?
    BTW how far along are they on the search of Rauner’s 4oo biz schemes?


  27. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Jun 11, 14 @ 12:39 pm:

    This reeks of a policy of funneling State funds to party ops through “good name” programs, gong a token amount to a shell program, then distributing it bugs bunny style (one for you, two for me, one for you, two for me)


  28. - Jerome Horwitz - Wednesday, Jun 11, 14 @ 1:32 pm:

    When I think about how not-for-profit organizations have financially struggled through cuts in funding and delays in payments over the past six years, this story makes me sick.


  29. - Ghost - Wednesday, Jun 11, 14 @ 2:05 pm:

    I am sure Pete would have been happy for a raise :)


TrackBack URI

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.


* Durbin sides with Holland against Quinn
* Nursing home bankruptcy trial gets underway
* SUBSCRIBERS ONLY - Political events calendar
* Davis' poll shows him leading big
* Rauner on patronage: Zero if elected
* You're gonna need a bigger boat, Bruce
* SUBSCRIBERS ONLY - Supplement to today’s edition: Crosstabs, mail, TV buys
* SUBSCRIBERS ONLY - Today's edition of Capitol Fax (use all CAPS in password)
* *** UPDATED x1 - Frerichs response *** Former Democratic state treasurer endorses Cross - Cites bipartisanship, Israel bonds as reasons (COMMENTS OPENED)
* Prison reform group responds to new Rauner ad (COMMENTS OPENED)
* Quinn hit on botched early prisoner release program (COMMENTS OPENED)
* Yesterday's blog posts

Support CapitolFax.com
Visit our advertisers...

...............

...............


Search This Blog...

Search the 98th General Assembly By Bill Number
(example: HB0001)

Search the 98th General Assembly By Keyword

          
        * Google employees noted using Android L on Nexus 4
        * McAfee announces 2015 editions of its antivirus and security suites
        * Oculus producing a game for Samsung Gear VR
        * New sources describe Google’s plans for an HTC Nexus 9
        * Telenav Copies Foursquare’s Swarm With New Social App, HopOver
        * Google Chrome hack allows Android apps to run on any desktop
        * Record broken: iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus sales top 10 million in opening weekend

        * Facebook adds page admin panel next to News Feed
        * Reachability: A gimmick or an effective way to use the bigger iPhone 6 with one hand?
        * Many Games Playable On PlayStation TV This October
        * Samsung Galaxy Alpha From AT&T Arriving This September 26th
        * Best Robotic Toys in 2014 for the Man Who Loves to be Entertained
        * Integrate, Rather Than Emulate, the Behavior of Your Role Models
        * Stained Glass Driverless Sleeper Car Looks Unique

        * Podcast: Goodbye, Captain.
        * The road to the AL Central pennant goes through the White Sox
        * Danks cruises with abundance of support
        * Bassitt eyes revenge against first-place Tigers
        * White Sox 10, Rays 5: Indoor fireworks
        * Danks cruises with abundance of support
        * Rays add run after out at first overturned


        Main Menu
        Home
        Illinois
        YouTube
        Pundit rankings
        Obama
        Subscriber Content
        Durbin
        Burris
        Blagojevich Trial
        Advertising
        Updated Posts
        Polls

        Archives
        September 2014
        August 2014
        July 2014
        June 2014
        May 2014
        April 2014
        March 2014
        February 2014
        January 2014
        December 2013
        November 2013
        October 2013
        September 2013
        August 2013
        July 2013
        June 2013
        May 2013
        April 2013
        March 2013
        February 2013
        January 2013
        December 2012
        November 2012
        October 2012
        September 2012
        August 2012
        July 2012
        June 2012
        May 2012
        April 2012
        March 2012
        February 2012
        January 2012
        December 2011
        November 2011
        October 2011
        September 2011
        August 2011
        July 2011
        June 2011
        May 2011
        April 2011
        March 2011
        February 2011
        January 2011
        December 2010
        November 2010
        October 2010
        September 2010
        August 2010
        July 2010
        June 2010
        May 2010
        April 2010
        March 2010
        February 2010
        January 2010
        December 2009
        November 2009
        October 2009
        September 2009
        August 2009
        July 2009
        June 2009
        May 2009
        April 2009
        March 2009
        February 2009
        January 2009
        December 2008
        November 2008
        October 2008
        September 2008
        August 2008
        July 2008
        June 2008
        May 2008
        April 2008
        March 2008
        February 2008
        January 2008
        December 2007
        November 2007
        October 2007
        September 2007
        August 2007
        July 2007
        June 2007
        May 2007
        April 2007
        March 2007
        February 2007
        January 2007
        December 2006
        November 2006
        October 2006
        September 2006
        August 2006
        July 2006
        June 2006
        May 2006
        April 2006
        March 2006
        February 2006
        January 2006
        December 2005
        April 2005
        March 2005
        February 2005
        January 2005
        December 2004
        November 2004
        October 2004

        Blog*Spot Archives
        November 2005
        October 2005
        September 2005
        August 2005
        July 2005
        June 2005
        May 2005

        Syndication

        RSS Feed 2.0
        Comments RSS 2.0
        WordPress

        Loading


        * City seeks to regulate ridesharing firms..
        * Wait continues for mobile ticketing on Metra..
        * Poll: Davis Holds Large Lead in Top Illinois Co.....
        * New poll shows Quinn and Rauner in a dead heat..
        * Griffin Donates $1M To Rauner's Illinois Gov. C.....


        * Libertarian could help tip Illinois governor race
        * 2 people killed, 1 hurt in collision near Elmwood
        * Slain girl's mother speaks at Effingham memorial
        * Illinois man died of hypothermia in South Dakota
        * 4 men held without bond in Chicago boy's death
        * Chicago Latinos optimistic about new archbishop
        * Court: Illinois inmate must pay prison costs
        * Ground broken on new Chicago veterans' home
        * CTA: Fewer people trespassing on train tracks
        * GOP's Rauner gets another $1M from hedge fund CEO

        * Don’t bet on gaming expansion — yet
        * GOP's Rauner gets another $1M from hedge fund CEO
        * Former Illinois prisoners get help reintegrating
        * Court: Lincoln inmate must use $20K settlement to pay incarceration costs
        * Deadline ahead for Illinois marijuana businesses
        * Gov. Quinn picks up Sierra Club endorsement
        * Statehouse Insider: Rauner hit with double whammy
        * More than $59M collected from state retirees; refunds coming eventually
        * Lawmaker wants pumpkin to be official Illinois pie
        * Quinn: No pension ‘Plan B’ before court ruling

        * Five reasons to brave crowds for the David Bowie blockbuster
        * Rauner learns politics is rougher than private equity
        * Indiana Toll Road operator files Chapter 11
        * Scramble is on for tenants to anchor a third office tower
        * A grandmother can be CEO — or president


        * Seminars, fairs aimed to help with ‘confusing’ CPS enrollment process
        * Hispanic families embrace Cupich
        * Area Catholics optimistic about Cupich
        * Defendant in Joliet double-murder waives right to jury trial
        * Nation needs to address end-of-life care
        * Joshua Miner to go on trial in gruesome Jan. 2013 double homicide
        * Four held without bond in shooting death of 9-year-old


        * Little Village shooting closes violent weekend: 3 killed, 30 wounded
        * Wait continues for mobile ticketing on Metra
        * Colin Kaepernick used racial slur during Bears game: report
        * Racist graffiti sprayed on cars, garages, home in Morgan Park
        * 4 dead dogs, others sick and emaciated, found at Dolton animal hospital
        * 2nd Joliet trial to revisit grisly details of killings
        * Police issue alerts about sexual assaults in Lakeview, Galewood
        * Streets and San worker, wife charged in tow truck scam
        * 3 wounded in afternoon, overnight South Side shootings
        * Glen Ellyn police searching for missing autistic woman


        * Cupich to be next Chicago archbishop
        * Listen to State Week - September 19, 2014
        * Quinn Defends Public Education, Though He's A Product of Private Schools
        * Chris Mooney: More Evidence-Based Policymaking Needed
        * African Drumming At Southwind Park On Saturday
        * Investors gather in Chicago seeking cannabis businesses
        * Climate, Space Create Challenges For Local Food
        * Can A Governor Really Create Jobs?
        * How do you find high school dropouts?
        * Governor's Race Has A Third Contender; Judge Keeps Libertarians On Ballot


        * Don’t bet on gaming expansion — yet
        * Thomas Schneider and Jay Scott: Building strong families to curb child abuse, neglect
        * GOP's Rauner gets another $1M from hedge fund CEO
        * Former Illinois prisoners get help reintegrating
        * Court: Lincoln inmate must use $20K settlement to pay incarceration costs
        * Deadline ahead for Illinois marijuana businesses
        * Gov. Quinn picks up Sierra Club endorsement
        * Our Opinion: Springfield needs Magro project
        * Angie Muhs: Open government is worth fighting for
        * Statehouse Insider: Rauner hit with double whammy


        * Pentagon: Chinese hackers did not impact Transcom's mission
        * Red Cross seeking blood during Liver Awareness Month
        * Man died suspiciously during city's 200th anniversary party
        * Apple: 10 million iPhone 6 and 6 Plus sold
        * 'The Lion King' earns record box office
        * Activision hires Giuliani to fight Noriega lawsuit
        * Father McGivney to break ground on new school building Monday
        * Weekend Wrap: DeKalb's Brown dazzles again
        * Marion man killed in single-vehicle crash
        * Daily business briefing: German drug company buying Sigma-Aldrich


        * A red convertible he couldn't get off his mind
        * Sugar Grove rallies around ill former library director
        * Walk to Remember honors babies who died too soon
        * ‘We know his brother is watching over him'
        * ‘Here we were, facing the hardest decision of our lives'

        * Representative Jan Schakowsky Sends Letter...
        * Rep. candidate pushes to uphold marriage b...
        * Reps. Schakowsky and Waxman Introduce Bill...
        * Statement by Representative Jan Schakowsky...
        * FAA Rejects Call For New O'Hare Noise Stud...
        * Representatives Quigley, Duckworth, Schako...
        * Representative Jan Schakowsky Statement on...
        * Representative Jan Schakowsky Statement in...
        * Representative Jan Schakowsky Statement on...
        * Rep. Jan Schakowsky discounts threat from ...

        * Syria vote isn't last word from Congress o......
        * Syria vote isn't last word from Congress o......
        * Obama's Mideast war plan to face sterner e......
        * Obama's Mideast war plan to face sterner e......
        * Syria vote isn't last word from Congress o......

        * Democrat Giannoulias backs Republican Cros......

        * Kiss of death.
        * Rabble Rousers.
        * Thorner: Oberweis sets a positive campaign tone in Lake Forest
        * Enyart "let down" Illinois' 12th CD, new NRCC ad says
        * New Poll: Rauner and Quinn in statistical dead heat
        * Steinem to stump for Quinn
        * Mark Levin apologizes for America to families of fallen soldiers
        * Carter: What’s Up With the Democrats In Illinois?
        * Family Business: Gutierrez pays wife from campaign funds
        * Like Dozier, REALTORS® choose to make a difference


        * Quinn still refusing to fire 20 political cronies
        * Illinois Chamber of Commerce Endorses Rauner for Governor
        * Rauner Web Ad: “Cut from the Same Cloth”
        * Illinois Department of Human Rights Commemorates International Day of Peace
        * Quinn Misleads Public on IDOT Again




            Hosted by MCS SUBSCRIBE to Capitol Fax Advertise Here Mobile Version Contact Rich Miller