Capitol - Your Illinois News Radar » Toia’s unregistered lobbying and Tunney’s “mistake”
SUBSCRIBE to Capitol Fax      Advertise Here      Mobile Version     Exclusive Subscriber Content     Updated Posts    Contact
To subscribe to Capitol Fax, click here.
Toia’s unregistered lobbying and Tunney’s “mistake”

Monday, Dec 7, 2020

* Crain’s last month

[Illinois Restaurant Association President Sam Toia] met with the governor in early November with plans to propose policy recommendations that include partial reopening. […]

Toia—already a high-energy, nonstop worker—is constantly working the phones. Boehm estimates he’s called Toia hundreds of times since the pandemic began. Ald. Tom Tunney, 44th, owner of the Ann Sather restaurant chain and a former chairman of the association, says Toia is talking to leaders as often as possible, too, even amid tensions.

“The mayor and the governor—this is pretty unusual—they’re talking to the restaurant association every week,” Tunney says. […]

Toia’s focus is on negotiating with Pritzker, whose orders take precedence over city rules.

Proposing policy recommendations, talking with the governor on a weekly basis, negotiating with the governor. Hmm.

* From the Illinois Lobbyist Registration Act

“Lobby” and “lobbying” means any communication with an official of the executive or legislative branch of State government as defined in subsection (c) for the ultimate purpose of influencing any executive, legislative, or administrative action.

Yet, Toia is not registered. I’ve been asking the Restaurant Association why he hasn’t registered for weeks, and the answer has been that he isn’t required to do so, even though he has registered with the city.

* Anyway, I was reminded of that long-dormant story when I read this one

Ald. Tom Tunney (44th) acknowledged Monday he “made a mistake” by allowing some of his regular customers to dine inside his Ann Sather Restaurants in defiance of state and city orders banning indoor dining. […]

On Monday, Tunney openly acknowledged having defied the governor’s order.

“We have, on occasion, sat regular diners in the back of the restaurant. I acknowledge that. It’s not OK. I made a mistake, and I’m owning up to it. I should have not sat regular customers in my restaurant whatsoever,” said Tunney, Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s handpicked chairman of the City Council’s Zoning Committee.

“I have a lot of repeat customers over the years. On a sporadic basis, I have let regular customers — very few and far between — in my store. I made an error.”

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - Marquee - Monday, Dec 7, 20 @ 1:48 pm:

    The Zoning committee chairman and a Zoning Board of Appeals member

  2. - James the Intolerant - Monday, Dec 7, 20 @ 1:48 pm:

    Tunney is owning up to it because it was made public.

  3. - lake county democrat - Monday, Dec 7, 20 @ 1:49 pm:

    Yet Tunney hung up on the Sun-Times reporter when they asked for an estimate of how many customers he had served. Sporadic my attic.

  4. - Rocket - Monday, Dec 7, 20 @ 1:52 pm:

    How can a registered lobbyist serve on a board or commission?

  5. - Gravy Bond - Monday, Dec 7, 20 @ 1:54 pm:

    I enjoy the Steak & Eggs Benedict at Ann’s.

  6. - Socially DIstant Watcher - Monday, Dec 7, 20 @ 1:56 pm:

    Toia’s going to say he’s not paid or reimbursed more than $500 for that work?

  7. - Watcher of the Skies - Monday, Dec 7, 20 @ 1:58 pm:

    All the businesses complying with the Governor and Mayor’s orders in this ward, and Tunney chooses to do that? He should resign.

  8. - Precinct Captain - Monday, Dec 7, 20 @ 2:00 pm:

    Health and safety protocols? Who needs ‘em, especially when you’re Alderman Tunney, who astute observers might remember promised to sell his restaurants when he became an alderman.

    But the just total refusal of even our leaders to try to stick this thing through reminds of this line from Charlie in It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia: “I live in give up America.”

  9. - NSide Political Observer - Monday, Dec 7, 20 @ 2:06 pm:

    Toia has desperately been hanging around politics and politicians for decades. At heart he’s more politician than lobbyist, but couldn’t get elected when he ran for commiteeman.

    I’m surprised he hasn’t run for public office again. Presumably he could be a Dem version of Oberweis–the Milk Dud.

  10. - Oswego Willy - Monday, Dec 7, 20 @ 2:07 pm:

    I’m always confused why those in these positions choose ways that seemingly go against what they honestly hope for an outcome?

    Can’t register? Really? Can’t do that?

    Gotta be open for a select few? Really? Gotta do that?

    I look to those leading to do the simple things as easily as when they need to do the difficult things to be part of the solution and lead within these easy rules.

    Will both see a bigger picture to their situations or will they see these “gotcha” moments as ways they are victims to others looking for these moments?

  11. - Amalia - Monday, Dec 7, 20 @ 2:10 pm:

    Serving a side of arrogance with those cinnamon rolls.

  12. - Rutro - Monday, Dec 7, 20 @ 2:14 pm:

    Is there something that would deter him from registering?

  13. - 1st Ward - Monday, Dec 7, 20 @ 2:21 pm:

    Anything less than revocation of his business/liquor license by the Gov and the Mayor removing from committees is a slap in the face. Given some other recent issues with Tunney as well resignation from city council might be appropriate.

  14. - Crash - Monday, Dec 7, 20 @ 2:34 pm:

    I’m sort of surprised by Tunney not because he opened but because I did a search and could not find evidence of him speaking out against the Governor’s and Mayor’s restaurant orders. I sort of assumed he of all people would be out there talking about the impact on the industry and I haven’t found evidence of it.

    I get him breaking the rules. The industry is being killed. What I don’t get is his failure to use his posiiton to support the entire industry. Someone in power needs to speak up and he’s one of the few who could do it effectively.

  15. - 4 percent - Monday, Dec 7, 20 @ 2:35 pm:

    The Secretary of State should investigate and penalize Sam for failing to register. He’s flaunted the law for years.

  16. - Three Dimensional Checkers - Monday, Dec 7, 20 @ 2:37 pm:

    Registration for thee, not for me. It is pretty rampant in certain circles.

  17. - 47th Ward - Monday, Dec 7, 20 @ 2:41 pm:

    How many of Tunney’s “regular customers” are also elected officials?

  18. - 1st Ward - Monday, Dec 7, 20 @ 2:48 pm:

    “I get him breaking the rules.”

    Chicago Alders starting salary is 6 figures. The restaurant is likely (if not certainly) a secondary source of revenue for him unlike the owner of a diner who doesn’t view the diner as passive income or a hobby but their livelihood.

  19. - Been There - Monday, Dec 7, 20 @ 2:49 pm:

    I don’t see any grey area where Sam should not be registered. He is obviously compensated to do that. But I guarantee if we were still going to the Capitol to lobby the association would find the $300 plus their cost to register him. Just so he could get the badge and not have to empty his pockets at security.

  20. - 1st Ward - Monday, Dec 7, 20 @ 2:57 pm:

    “I get him breaking the rules.”

    He receives a 6 figure salary as an alder. How many restaurant owners have 6 figure side jobs or are owning restaurants as a “hobby” or secondary source of income?

  21. - Centennial - Monday, Dec 7, 20 @ 2:59 pm:

    Why would Toia not register? It’s a simple compliance issue.

    Although, in his defense (I guess) lots of others pretend to do “advocacy” and not register. Doesn’t make of any of it kosher though.

  22. - Todd - Monday, Dec 7, 20 @ 3:38 pm:

    its another example that while the Mayor demands compliance from her subjects, she does what ever she wants because, after all she has to look good on TV as a public figure.

    Fine example of leadership for the alderman who is just another one of the hypocrites expecting compliance from those in the ward then doing just the opposite.

    you only get to govern so long as you have the consent of the governed, and from the looks of it in many places that consent is lacking.

  23. - Derek - Monday, Dec 7, 20 @ 3:45 pm:

    Tunney should know better. But I’ll still vote for him over whatever stooge the Ricketts put up. Tunney does a good job for the ward.

  24. - Montrose - Monday, Dec 7, 20 @ 4:04 pm:

    What a silly thing for Toia to avoid doing. Just register. Avoiding it and making excuses for why you don’t need to only leads to more questions and speculation.

  25. - eh? - Monday, Dec 7, 20 @ 4:32 pm:

    It’s common knowledge that Sam has never been registered despite him participating personally in meetings with policymakers.

    It is just accepted and understood that certain things apply to some while not others under the Dome.

    Nothing will happen and this will be forgotten.

  26. - Advocate - Monday, Dec 7, 20 @ 4:57 pm:

    Toia would have to report all his meals and expenses spent on legislators. He doesn’t want to. So he doesn’t register. Hasn’t even when we did go to Springfield and he might have wanted to bypass the more stringent security.

  27. - Been There - Monday, Dec 7, 20 @ 5:16 pm:

    === Toia would have to report all his meals and expenses spent on legislators. He doesn’t want to. So he doesn’t register. Hasn’t even when we did go to Springfield and he might have wanted to bypass the more stringent security.===

    Well that’s pretty much the whole point of the law. The rest of us have to do it every two weeks whether we spend or not. But in the end it’s pretty easy to do.

    === Nothing will happen and this will be forgotten.===

    Well then I want a refund. I figure about 20 years at $300 per the SOS should give me back about $6000. And probably about $500 for the fines I get every once in awhile and don’t file on time.

  28. - West Side the Best Side - Monday, Dec 7, 20 @ 7:36 pm:

    Tunney’s actions are the kinds of things that just hurt the fight against Covid when we’ve got leaders who go the “Do as I say, not as I do” route.

  29. - Da Big Bad Wolf - Wednesday, Dec 9, 20 @ 8:19 am:

    === Anything less than revocation of his business/liquor license by the Gov and the Mayor removing from committees is a slap in the face. Given some other recent issues with Tunney as well resignation from city council might be appropriate.===

    He did get fined over $10,000. As far as continuing being an alderman that is up to his constituents.

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

* Reader comments closed for the weekend
* Report: Exelon wants $353 million annual subsidy for just two nuke plants
* State Fair grandstand stagehands must be vaxed - Sammy Hagar announced for August 12
* It's just a bill
* Question of the day
* The shark has officially been jumped
* Governor Pritzker Said On The Campaign Trail: “I’m In Favor Of Fair Maps.”
* 1,841 new confirmed and probable cases; 49 additional deaths; 1,708 hospitalized; 425 in ICU; 2.5 percent average case positivity rate; 3.1 percent average test positivity rate; 72,767 average daily doses
* Rabine wants state to opt out of federal unemployment bonus
* Lightfoot takes heat for first half, but while poll shows her above water she's far below her winning margin
* Edgar to Republicans: Don't "scare the folks up north"
* ARP funds, state revenues higher than expected, but Leader Harris urges caution
* Musical interlude: Safety Dance
* Deputy governor says IDVA kept information from her and lied about LaSalle
* Another day, another threatened lawsuit
* Open thread
* SUBSCRIBERS ONLY - Today's edition of Capitol Fax (use all CAPS in password)
* Yesterday's stories

Visit our advertisers...











Main Menu
Pundit rankings
Subscriber Content
Blagojevich Trial
Updated Posts

May 2021
April 2021
March 2021
February 2021
January 2021
December 2020
November 2020
October 2020
September 2020
August 2020
July 2020
June 2020
May 2020
April 2020
March 2020
February 2020
January 2020
December 2019
November 2019
October 2019
September 2019
August 2019
July 2019
June 2019
May 2019
April 2019
March 2019
February 2019
January 2019
December 2018
November 2018
October 2018
September 2018
August 2018
July 2018
June 2018
May 2018
April 2018
March 2018
February 2018
January 2018
December 2017
November 2017
October 2017
September 2017
August 2017
July 2017
June 2017
May 2017
April 2017
March 2017
February 2017
January 2017
December 2016
November 2016
October 2016
September 2016
August 2016
July 2016
June 2016
May 2016
April 2016
March 2016
February 2016
January 2016
December 2015
November 2015
October 2015
September 2015
August 2015
July 2015
June 2015
May 2015
April 2015
March 2015
February 2015
January 2015
December 2014
November 2014
October 2014
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


RSS Feed 2.0
Comments RSS 2.0

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