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Smoking gun?

Friday, Jan 29, 2010

* ABC7’s Chuck Goudie ran a story tonight about remains found during excavation work at Burr Oak Cemetery in 2003

Comptroller Dan Hynes’ office was informed in late 2003 about the essence of the problem and that Hynes’ top cemetery official even held a meeting about human remains being discovered at Burr Oak.

The evidence…

[Hynes’] cemetery assistant attended a meeting on November 19, 2003 concerning human remains that had been discovered at Burr Oak.

According to a follow up letter from Hynes’ office to cemetery owners the next February, his now director of cemetery care stated, “I am writing in response to our meeting with you in November regarding the discovery of human remains at Burr Oak Cemetery.” The letter written on official comptroller stationary and signed by Percy Lucina, Hynes’ top cemetery aide.

* Hynes’ initial reaction was not exactly full and complete…

“The conversation you’re talking about was the fact that the cemetery wanted to create a mausoleum and they wanted to know what to do if there was a disruption of remains or burial grounds and we said our office doesn’t regulate the burial grounds.”

But emails provided by the comptroller’s office late Friday afternoon confirm that they were told human remains had been found at Burr Oak, not that cemetery officials were simply concerned they might be unearthed during future construction.

* I talked to Hynes tonight about his comments and here’s what he said…

“I think I just misspoke. What I was trying to get across was, not the possibility of finding [the remains], but the inadvertent discovery of them…

“What I’ve learned throughout the week is that they came to us and they disclosed to us that they were building this mausoleum and when they started excavating they discovered these bones. And they said ‘What do we do about this?’… We started researching it, and were perplexed by it… It’s consistent with what I’ve said all along, we don’t regulate burial grounds…

“I think what’s being attempted here [by the Quinn campaign] is to turn this into something where [the cemetery owners] revealed to us that there was a major scandal going on, [instead of] that they had unmarked graves and they were trying to deal with it.

“This smoking gun that Chuck Goudie thought he had was, in my opinion, validating what I’ve been saying all along. That they came to us, and we said we don’t deal with burial grounds…

“We don’t have the benefit of hindsight. [At the time it appeared that this was] a one hundred year old cemetery and they came upon some remains…”

The Quinn campaign put out a news release earlier this evening about the ABC7 report…

“This is an outrage against every family who has ever watched as someone they loved was laid to rest in a cemetery,” said Quinn for Illinois Communications Director Elizabeth Austin. “Comptroller Hynes was happy to send out dozens of news releases boasting about cleaning up weeds at pioneer cemeteries in downstate communities. But when he had to confront a real problem affecting real families, he turned his back on his official duties – and on the families who were counting on him.” […]

So why, in testimony to Governor Quinn’s Cemetery Oversight Task Force Hearing on Sept. 10, 2009, did Hynes insist: “Not only did we do our job, but we took immediate action in the situation of Burr Oak. We immediately moved to revoke the license.”

Even after more than five years, 22 separate complaints, and 12 different staff visits by Hynes employees to the cemetery site, Comptroller Hynes claimed his office had no indication that there was any problem at Burr Oak Cemetery.

Ms. Austin said this tonight after seeing the comptroller’s comments…

“It is incorrect for Hynes to say that he had no oversight over cemeteries.

“Comptroller Hynes also has claimed the Governor’s Cemetery Oversight Task Force has cleared him of any responsibility for what happened at Burr Oak. On the contrary, the Task Force specifically said the Comptroller’s powers were ‘comprehensive’ with respect to cemetery oversight.”

She’s right about that last part. Check page 36.

* The letter referenced in the ABC7 story and all other documents, including the e-mails can be seen by clicking here.

Here’s part of the first comptroller’s office e-mail, which was sent the day before the office met with Sllvy Cotton, the CEO of Perpetua Corp., which owned the cemetery. It’s from David Foley, who was a political hire in Hynes’ office…

I am uncertain if [Sllvy Cotton’s] request to meet with me concerns a consumer case I have been working on. Perpetua has not been specific as to why they want to meet with me.

And here’s the follow-up e-mail from the director of the comptroller’s cemetery care and burial trust division…

This is an update on our meeting with Sllvy Cotton, CEO, Perpetua Corp., who owns Burr Oak Cemetery and Cedar Park Cemetery. The reason for her meeting yesterday was simply for guidance/advice from our office re: construction plans for Burr Oak Cemetery. The main problem they are encountering is the discovery of human remains while they were in the process of cleaning/excavating a portion of land where the majority of their construction will occur. Before they proceed any further, they would like us to enlighten them on their ext step in the process.

Since this sounds complicated and may have some legal implications we mentioned to her that we would follow up with her after we discussed this issue with our legal staff. Please let me know if you need any further information and we can discuss this on Monday as I am out of the office tomorrow.

Thanks,
[Percy Lucina, director of the comptroller’s cemetery care and burial trust division]

And here’s the follow-up letter from Director Lucina to the cemetery company’s CEO…

Dear Ms. Cotton:

I am writing in response to our meeting with you in November regarding the discovery of human remains at Burr Oak Cemetery.

The Cemetery Care division of the Office of the Comptroller only handles the licensure and regulation of cemeteries and those businesses (usually cemeteries and funeral homes) selling pre-need merchandise and services throughout the state, however, we would like to provide you with additional resources for your request to excavate and/or build.

Since this cemetery is possibly over 100 years old, we suggest you contact the Illinois Historic Preservation Agency. It is possible that this agency may grant you permission to proceed, this Office cannot do so. If not done so already, you should also contact the ICFHA [Illinois Cemetery and Funeral Home Association] for further guidance. The following is contact information…

Sincerely,

Percy W. Lucina
Deputy Director, CCBT
Illinois Office of the Comptroller

The comptroller’s people say that the Historic Preservation Agency had the legal authority over this situation.

* Hynes has a point about hindsight. The Quinn campaign has a point about inaction. ABC7 was at an event tonight with the governor and asked for his response. Expect a full-court press over the next few days while the governor and his campaign attempt to force this into the media bloodstream. The story was reportedly shopped around this week and nobody else bit, so we’ll see what happens. When the governor says something, most reporters usually report it.

There may also be much more to this story. The bad practices at that cemetery are said to go back a very long way. And I’m not sure yet that the cemetery owners were being totally up front with the comptroller’s office back then. That meeting may have been a probe to see what the comptroller’s office would do about their discovery. But since the comptroller’s office did nothing, we didn’t find out about the problems at Burr Oak until Sheriff Tom Dart made his fateful discovery.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

45 Comments
  1. - jack - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 10:14 pm:

    since this story was being shopped around all week and no one saw fit to print it–doesn’t the allegation seem to be a bit flimsy?


  2. - Chicago Cynic - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 10:15 pm:

    I’m having a hard time figuring out whether there’s a there there. Also, notwithstanding page 36, I am still confused about how much power the Comptroller’s office has over issues like this. I mean I get that they have administrative powers, but these seem more along the lines of police powers. Wish there was a clear line drawn.


  3. - jack - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 10:23 pm:

    c c- i agree with you. has anyone asked ihpa for a comment or any e mails they may have received to get to the bottom of this?


  4. - Little Lebowski Urban Achiever - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 10:32 pm:

    Pretty straight forward. Perpetua came to Hynes and said, we’re finding human remains laying around. Hynes said, “Uh oh”. Then punted. Didn’t do anything to correct the problem.

    I think the story has developed since it ran at 4. If I’m not mistaken at 10 they seem to have found an internal memo from Perpetua that said they suspected grave robbing.

    It led all the news tonight. Answering for why you didn’t do anything about human remains aint the way you want to close out a tied election.

    Full damage control now from Hynes. Oopsie.

    What’s very interesting about Hynes’ comment is that he says “what I’ve learned throughout the week.” Huh?


  5. - jack - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 10:36 pm:

    an internal memo from perpetua?? hmmmm. that’s interesting….
    can you share more about that?


  6. - wordslinger - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 10:41 pm:

    Funerals, cemeteries and voices from the grave. A lot of focus in this race on the hereafter rather than the here and now.

    The comptroller’s office tracks revenues and expenditures, cuts checks and hunts graverobbers. What could go wrong? The skill sets for all three tasks are so similar.


  7. - james - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 10:45 pm:

    Hynes: “It’s not my job, man.”

    Dart: “It’s not mine either, but it needs doing, so step aside.”


  8. - Chubs Mahoney - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 10:46 pm:

    Smells like incompetence in the Comptroller’s office.


  9. - Will County Woman - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 10:50 pm:

    I watched the Goudie report twice on the Internet.

    I really don’t see the need to go any further on this Burr Oak matter. Quinn halted the cemetery legislation in the summer. Quinn put together a task force to review matters. The task force decided that the oversight authority was vague and made its recommendations, and those recommendations have now been put into effect.

    At some point Quinn and Elizabeth Austin have to understand that it is overkill and reads and just continued politicalization of the Burr Oaks issue on their part. At this point their pushing for something to come of it other than Hynes lose the election. It’s at that point that the media has to decide if they are being manipulated for someone’s political purposes/gain or if there is a legitmate need to press the matter so that there is action on the issue.

    the action on the issue has already taken place: we have the task force recommendations in place so that what happened at Burr Oak doesn’t happen again.

    so now, the media is just being manipulated for political purposes by Quinn.


  10. - i am confused - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 10:55 pm:

    In 1999 and 2000, Hynes was Mr. Cemetery Reform. But when he’s running against Barack Obama, he can’t be bothered? What gives?


  11. - Little Lebowski Urban Achiever - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 10:56 pm:

    If I’m not mistaken at 10 they seem to have found an internal memo from Perpetua that said they suspected grave robbing. ”

    Dear Hynes staffer, please notice the “if I’m not mistaken”. It’s hard to follow all the ways in which the Comproller’s office screwed this up.

    Burr Oak execs told the Comptroller’s office there were human remains laying around… and did nothing. Sounds like something you would probably tell your boss.

    Quinn said a long time ago, “Comptrollers who live in glass houses…”


  12. - Cindy Lou - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 10:56 pm:

    –”Smells like incompetence in the Comptroller’s office”–

    Not yet, to me. I have not heard yet if the cemetery contacted HPA nor what if any was addressed at the time of referral. Is there no state laws/regulations giving guidelines to unearthed bodies even if in a cemetery setting?

    It was Utah, not Illinois, but roughly 10 years ago when parts of my family and fellow travelers were unearthed by a backhoe operator while rebuilding a monument (Mountain Meadows Massacre) it certainly was not the Comptrollers Office that was contacted on what to do.


  13. - Will County Woman - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 10:56 pm:

    that shoul read: the media are being manipulated for political purposes by quinn.

    @james - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 10:45 pm

    there were alleged crimes committed at Burr Oaks, which is probably why Dart stepped. We should remember, those of us who have followed this issue, that the local police were asked to look into problems at Burr Oak (and Mary Mitchell of the Sun-Times wrote about this) and didn’t investigate fully.

    Burr Oaks is a terribly complicated and tragic issue. But, it has reportedly been resolved by the task force and its recommendations.


  14. - Chubs Mahoney - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 11:01 pm:

    WCW, please. “Overkill”? “Politicalization”?

    Not one time have you criticized Dan Hynes for overkill in the smear ads he’s running. Or for his crass politicization of Harold Washington’s words.

    Your comments here, as usual, are the mark of a desperate apologist.


  15. - Little Lebowski Urban Achiever - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 11:01 pm:

    “I really don’t see the need to go any further on this Burr Oak matter. Quinn halted the cemetery legislation in the summer. Quinn put together a task force to review matters. The task force decided that the oversight authority was vague and made its recommendations, and those recommendations have now been put into effect.”

    Comptroller’s regulatory authority was “comprehensive”.

    Overkill? It led all the news.

    WCW, as a said earlier today, you’d make a very lousy press flack.


  16. - jack - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 11:07 pm:

    little lebowski- i want to know more about the memo. just watched the 10pm broadcast on this via their site. it looks like there was a memo that was an in house corporation document that you talked about. but, it seems that it was held internally and not reported to the state. wondering what you think about what is going on here. then, the news station suddenly has it. is there a way to find out if it was ever received by any state office previously? thanks


  17. - Wizard of Ozzie - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 11:10 pm:

    “But, it has reportedly been resolved by the task force and its recommendations.”

    That’s a gem. If there was this “gaping hole in regulatory authority” as Hynes says, and he’s responsible for cemeteries, then why ooooh why didn’t he do anything about to have the laws changed. Until Burr Oak. Until it was a political issue. He has a legislative staff. Did they introduce any bills to fix this gap that they must have been aware of? Nope.

    Hynes’ doesn’t do anything. What has he accomplished in office? He stood up to Ryan and Rod by doing what? Writing letters? Did he do anything to stop them. No. Give me a break. 12 years in office and not one substantive accomplishment to point to. That’s why we get Willie Horton and Harold Washington.

    WCW has shown that she is obviously a Hynes staffer. Only campaign staffers would be checking cap fax on a friday night unless they are as dorky as me and wanted to see if anything was up on this massive story.

    The next few days should be fun.


  18. - Will County Woman - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 11:20 pm:

    @ i am confused…

    This whole week I have been thinking about the Harold Washington tape and I swear I know it verbatim. Over the past several months, Quinn hasn’t governed much. But, he certainly has campaigned a great deal.

    His office issued no statement this week in response to the Trib’s reporting of rapes at nursing homes. His office issued no statements about the offenders who were removed from nursing homes by attorney general madigan this week, eventhough IDPH has oversight on nursing homes, Damon Arnold did not step up but Lisa Madigan has and did.

    Quinn’s office issued no statements about the recent attacks on prison personnel, the most recent occuring at Stateville last week or the week before. We definitely did not hear from the administration about the Pickneyville hostage-taking incident in December. This all the while he was trying to control damage to protect his political image over the secret early prison release fiasco. When a business exploded in the quad cities area sending debris for miles, and killing someone a mile away, we heard nothing from the Quinn administration. This occured during the height of discussions to move Gitmo Cuba to Thomson, which is the same region of the state where the explosion occured.

    IDPH press releases for the month of jan 2010
    http://www.idph.state.il.us/public/press10.htm

    Governor Quinn’s Office press releases month of jan 2010
    http://www.illinois.gov/PressReleases/ShowbyM.cfm?SID=2

    In mid/late September after the Tribune writes about nursing home safety problems, in response Governor Quinn convenes task force to look into nursing home saftey issues. We are immediately told that the task force is expected to conclude its review and make its final recommendations on January 31st of 2010. Not sure how and why that date was chosen, but am being too cynical to think it was chosen with the feb 2nd primary in mind? Quinn in his latest tv ad asks tells us that “we know him”. Of course we do. We know he’s going to work in the nursing home task force stuff to get media right before the primary. Just like Mayor Washington told us, Quinn uses his office as a PR plantation.

    If he had not gotten federal money to announce new projects right before the primary, as well as money from the bond sale and Ford’s annoucement of jobs, what on earth would he have reported about this week?


  19. - Little Lebowski Urban Achiever - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 11:21 pm:

    “A five-page memo, marked confidential and obtained by the I-Team, reveals that Burr Oak’s chief executive, Slivy Cotton, feared in 2003 that there was a grave selling plot underway.”

    http://abclocal.go.com/wls/story?section=news/iteam&id=7246921

    Jack, per your request. I’m telling you about that.


  20. - i am confused - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 11:24 pm:

    “Burr Oaks is a terribly complicated and tragic issue. But, it has reportedly been resolved by the task force and its recommendations.”
    Yeah, they recommended taking it away from the Comptroller because he wasn’t up to the job.


  21. - jack - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 11:29 pm:

    thanks little lebowski. just read it.

    if no state agency received it, all of this still looks bad. they should have investigated further, or asked another state agency to do so. if this corporation did hide this from the state, they should be subpoenaed and prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. wouldn’t it be appropiate to ask the attorney general to do this immediately?


  22. - Will County Woman - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 11:30 pm:

    @ Chubs Mahoney
    I am hardly an apologist for dan hynes. I thought he mishandled Goudie’s question today. Which is why I watched the Goudie piece twice and then follow-up by looking at Hynes’ testimony last summer before the task force. I really do feel that the quinn camp is politicizing this to no-end.

    @ Little Lebowski Urban Achiever

    I am glad that you mention that. After watching the Goudie piece, to be fair I decided to watch the cemetery task force last day of testimony, which included Dan Hynes and Lisa Madigan. I wanted to see how Hynes answered the task forces’ questions. I must say that Rep’s Dunkin and Brady should have been ashamed of themsleves. rep. Davis was excellent in her questions/comments as was Andrea Zopp and others whose names I cannot recall off the top of my head. ken dunkin totally sucks the air out of a room, but i digress.

    To address your point the task force agreed that authority was not comprehensive in that there were too many hands in the pot in some places and then no hands in the pot in other places. As a result there was a problem as to who is really suppose to keep an eye on the ball, and that predated Hynes assuming the comptroller role. Now IDPH is going to have the oversight.


  23. - Chubs Mahoney - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 11:35 pm:

    WCW,
    You are persistent but really incoherent. What is your day job? Seriously, do you work for the Hynes campaign? I’m kind of fascinated.


  24. - Will County Woman - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 11:43 pm:

    I have stated before that I do not work for the Hynes camp. I fully admit that my spelling and grammar are not good, but my points are still valid and legitimate. So, what I lack in style I make up for in substance.


  25. - Lester Holt's Mustache - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 11:56 pm:

    I don’t think Chubs is talking about your spelling, grammar, style, or substance. I assume he is reffering to you various conclusions.


  26. - Lester Holt's Mustache - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 11:57 pm:

    Sorry, referring. Not reffering.


  27. - Chubs Mahoney - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 11:57 pm:

    But do you have a day job? It’s not your spelling and grammar that make your posts incoherent sometimes. You contribute frequently here, but when you stray down so many different paths your ideas are hard to follow.


  28. - Chubs Mahoney - Saturday, Jan 30, 10 @ 12:03 am:

    FYI - I am Ed Maloney’s cousin, Chubs Mahoney.


  29. - Rich Miller - Saturday, Jan 30, 10 @ 12:03 am:

    Thanks, LLUA, my new post is now up.


  30. - Chubs Mahoney - Saturday, Jan 30, 10 @ 12:03 am:

    We have another cousin, Ron Balogna.


  31. - L.T. - Saturday, Jan 30, 10 @ 12:03 am:

    It seems to me Hynes is trying to have it both ways.

    He keeps claiming he has no authority over burials and that his office only audits cemetery funds.

    But consider:

    1) His office spent years putting out press releases declaring the Comptroller as the state’s cemetery watchdog (as reported by WGN tonight.) They even put out a toll free hotline for citizen’s to call with complaints about high grass and vandalism. (That ain’t financial auditing.)

    2) In his explanations tonight, Hynes claimed that the discussions his office had with Burr Oak in 2003 were related to questions Burr Oak had about building a mausoleum. If his office only did auditing, why did they have a face-to-face meeting with Burr Oak regarding mausoleum construction? Why would Burr Oak approach the Comptroller with questions about operational matters if it didn’t fall with in the Comptroller’s regulatory authority?

    3) And what’s most perplexing (and inconsistent,) is that if Hynes was powerless to advise or crackdown on Burr Oak in 2003, why did his office immediately take action to revoke Burr Oak’s license when the grave re-selling scandal broke last Summer?

    If he had the authority to revoke Burr Oak’s license in 2009 after the scandal became public and got national headlines, he at the very least had the authority to ask a few tough questions 2003. Instead, he punted.

    This is a big deal folks because the Comptroller’s Office has soooooo few actual duties. They write checks for the state and regulate cemeteries. That’s it! Dan Hynes is selling himself as a good government manager and criticizing Quinn for lacking those skills. Hynes inaction regarding Burr Oak destroys the main arguement his candidacy has been making.


  32. - Chubs Mahoney - Saturday, Jan 30, 10 @ 12:17 am:

    LT is dead-on.

    Oh, and someone should ask the funeral directors about that trust fund the comptroller manages.


  33. - Will County Woman - Saturday, Jan 30, 10 @ 12:19 am:

    #1. My conclusions aren’t varied. In fact I am
    very consistent in postions.

    #2. Yes, I do work. But do you object to, or have a problem with, people owning laptops? is it okay with you that i own a laptop?

    let’s not focus on me, let’s focus on the issues…


  34. - Will County Woman - Saturday, Jan 30, 10 @ 12:35 am:

    I’m going to take a look at the link to page #36, but I found this:

    “But it [the cemetery task force]stopped short of saying Hynes – who audits cemetery finances and is Quinn’s rival in next year’s Democratic gubernatorial primary – could have prevented up to 300 bodies allegedly being dug up so their burial plots could be resold at the historic African-American cemetery near Alsip.

    http://archives.chicagotribune.com/2009/sep/16/news/chi-cemetery-task-force-16sep16


  35. - Chubs Mahoney - Saturday, Jan 30, 10 @ 12:36 am:

    WCW, I agree that you are consistent. Mustache guy said otherwise.

    No problem that you post on CapFax a lot, even if at work. I’d just say the volume/timing of your pro-Dan/Anti-Quinn posts suggests you work for Dan.


  36. - Bookworm - Saturday, Jan 30, 10 @ 12:37 am:

    “Funerals, cemeteries and voices from the grave. A lot of focus in this race on the hereafter rather than the here and now.”

    Should Hynes get past the primary, and this issue continue to (pardon the pun) haunt him, Halloween (two days before the general election) could be scarier than ever….


  37. - Rich Miller - Saturday, Jan 30, 10 @ 12:53 am:

    People, calm down. I’m leaving comments open as a courtesy. I can revoke it at any time. I can also go back and delete your goofy back and forths. Take a breath, leave the talking points out of this and move along.


  38. - Will County Woman - Saturday, Jan 30, 10 @ 12:58 am:

    i cannot open that link for page 36, but because I watched the task force testimony friday evening and it is still fresh in my mind, the only person who kept saying that the comptroller had ‘comprehensive’ oversight was rep. dunkin. Maybe rep brady said it too.

    here’s what’s fishy to me:

    when the task force concluded and gave its recommendations all of the media in effect reported that Hynes had been absolved of responsibility in the burr oak matter, basically reporting just as the trib did in the link in my previous post.

    Quinn being the type of person that he is would have immdiately seized upon any misstatements absolving dan hynes in an attempt to set the record straight. he would have corrected everyone in the media if hynes really had “comprehensive” oversight as austin claims.

    I’m actually trying to find the task force report on line–still cannot open that link.


  39. - Chubs Mahoney - Saturday, Jan 30, 10 @ 1:03 am:

    http://tinyurl.com/IL-Cem

    It works.


  40. - Ookabooka - Saturday, Jan 30, 10 @ 1:22 am:

    If anyone would bother to read the statute, the law is clear that the oversighte falls in the comptrollers lap. Why the comptroller, is a question for the legislators but it was Hynes duty and he failed miserably. Talk about incompetence? He brought this on in his negative campaign so why is he not owning up to it? The duty per law go read…is his. It was his duty and he failed. The importance of the story is he had knowledge since 2003. The Task Force as I read their opinion lays blames on the comptroller. Stop reading someone elses interpretation and read for yourself. Everyone wants to put their own spin but the best way to make a decision is become informed. For me, it is hard for the Hynes campaign to cry fowl when they have ran such negative campaigns. I wish someone could relay some real facts as to the early release of prisoners because I would really like to know. How early were these prisoners released? I have no idea do you? The law in most cases gives day for day credit for every prisoner. So lets say a prisoner is given 2 years in DOC. Day for day automatically reduces that to 1 year per law. They automatically get 6 months good time off that per law. If they do any special counseling, schooling, etc they get further credit per law. Any time they spend in county jail is credited to their DOC time per law. A DUI per law is not considered a violent crime. The law defines violent crimes and DUI is not one of them. So all this hoopla about violent criminals is mind boggling for an informed voter. I would like to see some real facts. So if he let some prisoners out 30 days early is that a big factor? Either they are reformed or not. But, if he let prisoners out years early then I have a problem. If there is no money, what are our alternatives. It is clear that the US has more people in DOC than in any other country. It costs what 30,000 per prisoner per year? We need new solutions…If I had to choose between paying for guards outrageous pay and education, I am sure I would say put the money to education.
    As for Hynes what is his plan for the budget? Pass a constitutional amendment - good luck with that! What is his plan B? I have not heard one have you? Since he is overly critical of Quinn in his short tenure, how does he plan to make a difference in say 6 months? As I see it, not possible with his plan. Why is no one calling him out on this? He has no plan, just negative ads. I am sorry but use a ad from 20 years ago from a dead man who can’t now respond shows very little ethics to me. Most of us if we go back 20 years realize how much we have grown and changed. Just b/c we were young and immature 20 years ago doesn’t mean we still are. The fact that the Hynes campaign didn’t have permission to use the footage should make anyone with any real ethics cringe. Is it okay for him to break the law? I think not.


  41. - Wizard of Ozzie - Saturday, Jan 30, 10 @ 1:24 am:

    “But it [the cemetery task force]stopped short of saying Hynes – who audits cemetery finances and is Quinn’s rival in next year’s Democratic gubernatorial primary – could have prevented up to 300 bodies allegedly being dug up so their burial plots could be resold at the historic African-American cemetery near Alsip.”

    That’s because the task force didn’t have this information. That’s the whole point. He could have avoided this by doing his job.

    And WCW, you watched the task force hearing? Really? Because I was there, it was only taped by the state. You are obviously an employee of the Comptroller’s office, or worse, you are a Hynes campaign worker who got the tape from the state. Which one is it? How did you have access to the tape on a Friday night?


  42. - Will County Woman - Saturday, Jan 30, 10 @ 1:32 am:

    ok. read page 36. (definitely have to go bed by 2am—gotta work tomorrow)

    My only issue for now is the wording e.g.,

    “the task force, therefore, considers…”

    prior to that the task force notes that the issue of contention.

    I’m going to try to read the whole thing later.


  43. - Will County Woman - Saturday, Jan 30, 10 @ 1:57 am:

    Wizzie, I watched the final hearing through this link. you can too. enjoy! :)

    http://www2.illinois.gov/cemeterytaskforce/Pages/default.aspx


  44. - Wizard of Ozzie - Saturday, Jan 30, 10 @ 2:27 am:

    I stand corrected.

    Wow. That sucks to say.


  45. - Wizard of Ozzie - Saturday, Jan 30, 10 @ 8:00 am:

    My bad. You’re right.

    Looked through Hynes testimony. He “acted swiftly”. Ha. One, I thought he couldn’t act. What could he do in 2009 that he couldn’t in 2003. Second, swiftly? Hmmmmm. Those two words are a real problem for Mr. It’s Not my Fault


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* Frerichs: Don't use new federal rules on 529 programs for state taxes
* "Watchdog" flatly denies getting money from Illinois Policy Institute, but group funded 98 percent of budget
* Governor promised "superstar" appointee a year ago, hasn't delivered
* Chicago survives the first cut in Amazon HQ2 sweepstakes
* Rauner to air entire Blagojevich/Pritzker audio this weekend
* Adlai III endorses Biss
* Yesterday's stories

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* Illinois Seeking “Right to Sunscreen”..
* How to reverse Illinois’ exodus and improve min.....
* Illinois clinic provides abortions via telemedi.....
* Morning Spin: Pritzker, Kennedy, Biss to square.....
* Dawn Patrol: Rauner promises property tax fix -.....
* Illinois education officials want to double sta.....


* Ex-mayor of Chicago suburb pleads guilty in bribery scheme
* University of Illinois board chairman re-elected to 2nd term
* Grants will help students pay for trip to Lincoln museum
* Court in Chicago to hear arguments on sanctuary cities
* 30-year sentence for man in sexual assault of elderly woman
* Champaign man pleads guilty in '85 murder case
* Champaign man pleads guilty in '85 murder case
* 80-year-old accused of bank robbery has decades-old record
* Officer's lawyers plan change of venue poll in McDonald case
* Illinois man pleads guilty in 1985 death of 15-year-old girl

* U of I trustees approve 4th-straight tuition freeze
* Rauner to air extended ad of Pritzker, Blagojevich on wiretap
* Mendoza to keynote Women's March Saturday in Springfield
* Chicago mayor vows to step up Amazon second headquarters bid
* Under the Dome Podcast: More Blago-Pritzker talk, Rauner confirms Duke is racist
* U of I withdrew 35 job offers after background checks
* Frerichs: Can't get tax break for using college savings plan on private K-12 tuition
* Illinois governor to air extended ad of rival, Blagojevich on wiretap
* Chicago a finalist for Amazon's second headquarters
* 2 Illinois governor candidates spend $26M in last 3 months

* Discover topping credit-card rivals in growth—and bad loans
* What should a corporation value above all else?
* United to offer upgraded economy section on some global flights
* What Chicago is up against in Amazon HQ2 race
* Emanuel, Rauner clash in wake of Amazon news


* 2-Minute Drill: Joel Embiid’s dating game, let Zach LaVine go, what bong?
* ‘The Final Year’: Camera rolls as Obama team shows how the diplomacy is made
* 2018 Hyundai Accent gets rework — is reborn
* Once ‘pro-choice,’ Trump now steps to forefront of anti-abortion movement
* California prosecutors say couple’s abuse of 12 shackled kids became torture
* Suspects in carjacked Mustang lead cops on nearly hour-long chase around Chicago
* 18-year-old woman shot in Englewood
* Police: Burglars stealing electronics from Roseland, West Pullman homes
* Drone rescue off Australian beach heralded as world-first
* Dear Abby: Does former farm kid have to be lonely?


* 'Don't think they won't shoot': Man speaks after being fired at during attempted Oak Park carjacking
* LINDA C. BLACK HOROSCOPES for 1/19/18
* New Zealand prime minister to take six-week maternity leave: 'I am not the first woman to multitask'
* Morning Spin: Pritzker, Kennedy, Biss to square off in livestream with Tribune editorial board today
* Future of pill-induced abortion: Women can already receive pills by mail in 4 states, what's next?
* Illinois clinic provides abortions via telemedicine, a method prohibited in 19 states
* The feminist war on common sense
* College student worries about abuse allegation
* Five-bedroom home near green space: $1.5M
* Police chase stolen Mustang from the Gold Coast to the South Side


» Sheriff Offers To Help Review Police Shootings In Suburban Cook County
» A Prescription For Fruits And Veggies: One Solution To Food Insecurity in Illinois
» A Call For Transparency
» 2 Illinois Governor Candidates Spend $26M In Last 3 Months
» State Board of Education: Double School Funding Now
» Lawmakers Demand Fast Internet For Rural Schools
» 2 Dreamers Discuss Helping Other Immigrants Amid Uncertainty
» Rauner Spokesman: 'Governor Believes David Duke Is A Racist'
» Rauner Signs Law To Help Women Behind Bars
» A Poor Neighborhood In Chicago Looks To Cuba To Fight Infant Mortality


* Point: Trump's stance gives hope to an Iranian majority that longs for freedom
* Counterpoint: Trump's assertive policies rally Iranian support for the Ayatollahs
* Thumbs Up: To investing in infrastructure
* Eugene Robinson: An administration with no credibility cannot lead
* U of I trustees approve 4th-straight tuition freeze
* Rauner to air extended ad of Pritzker, Blagojevich on wiretap
* Mendoza to keynote Women's March Saturday in Springfield
* Chicago mayor vows to step up Amazon second headquarters bid
* Under the Dome Podcast: More Blago-Pritzker talk, Rauner confirms Duke is racist
* U of I withdrew 35 job offers after background checks


* These 2 new devices are helping St. Elizabeth’s make strides in heart care
* Hospice of Southern Illinois needs volunteers
* Downtown Belleville’s popcorn shop wants you to pick its next flavor
* Def Leppard, Journey to rock Busch Stadium
* Selzer named cancer center development director
* End of HIV needs community support
* Area Calendar 1/19/18
* Daily Digest 1/19/18
* Police reports
* Fire calls


* Feder: Cumulus opts out of White Sox, Bulls, 101 WKQX, The Loop
* Digger the dog still missing, but lawsuit over escape settled
* Dawn Patrol: Rauner promises property tax fix
* Why these suburban women are still energized by Women's March
* Glen Ellyn to study new Metra train station, pedestrian tunnel

* Sen Dick Durbin: President Trump used 'hat...
* Hultgren makes strong mark on nation's new...
* Dissident artist Ai Weiwei and US Rep. Ran...
* Subcommittee on Financial Institutions and...
* Lawmakers back renaming Warrenville post o...
* Teacher raised in Yorkville running agains...
* Tioga State Bank president and CEO address...
* Suburban Democrats line up to challenge Ro...
* Kane County assessor: No guarantee your ta...
* Hultgren joins fellow lawmakers fighting t...

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* This RSS feed URL is deprecated...

* Guitarist Randy Randall on how No Age have adapted to family time—and what their odd new album title means
* This Week on Filmstruck: Anna Magnani
* Chicago makes 1st Amazon.com cut, but does that mean one makes the team
* Swedish trumpeter Goran Kajfes combines psych, prog, and African music into a vision all his own
* Anita Alvarez’s campaign consultants gave her talking points before she announced charges against Jason Van Dyke, and other Chicago news
* Gov rejects handing more powers over to McHenry County Bd Chairman
* Rauner calls for bill to ban Madigan from appealing property taxes
* New IR Poll: Who will win Illinois' 2018 Democrat Party gubernatorial primary?
* Thorner: Chicago celebrates life in single digit temps
* Illinois Review poll draws attention as Ives supporters outnumber Rauner's


* Illinois Awarded Funds to Offer Advanced Training on Detecting Impaired Driving
* Illinois EPA Announces Upcoming Household Hazardous Waste Collection Events
* IEMA Highlights Emergency Preparedness for People with Access and Functional Needs in May - Ready Illinois website offers preparedness tips for people, caregivers
* First Lady Launches Illinois Family Connects
* Governor and Lt. Governor Unveil 2016 Journal of Local Government Shared Service Best Practices

  
* Both Apple and Samsung targeted by Italian antitrust probe into planned obsolescence
* T-Mobile and MetroPCS destroy the competition in J.D. Power satisfaction ratings
* South Korea, Italy also calling out Apple for slowing iPhones
* Investigations into Apple's iPhone Battery Slowdowns Spread to Italy and South Korea
* No G7 at MWC, but ‘upgraded’ LG V30 with improved AI features could be on display
* Affordable LG X4+ goes official with rugged design, Hi-Fi DAC, LG Pay support
* Why do Sony Xperia phones still exist? “The next paradigm shift.”

* Inbox: Who replaces Rodon in the rotation?
* 2018 South Side Sox Hall of Fame Ballot
* With maturity comes lofty expectations for Eloy
* Collins ranked MLB's No. 9 catching prospect
* With maturity comes lofty expectations for Eloy
* Pirates rebuild not met with enthusiasm
* Moncada guiding Robert during mini-camp


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