News Alert
Hoarder Fills House With Gas After Spending Night …

Radice Contract Re-Do, Red Light Camera, 911 Dispatcher Settlement Top Village Board Agenda

Before you go to Tuesday's village board meeting, you may want to play the numbers "000" in the Little Lotto.

Let's all think positive thoughts of flowers and spring.
Let's all think positive thoughts of flowers and spring.

Get out the ear plugs. Tonight’s (Tuesday’s) village board meeting has all the signs of a potential gavel-buster with electrifying speeches shored up from the unusually subdued board summit earlier this month.

Read the Pete Seeger Memorial “If I Had A Hammer” gavel-busting agenda.

So warm up the DVRs. Hopefully some of the hot air generated from tonight's village board meeting will chase away our polar vortex.

Here’s what we’ll be watching:

Now Appearing - An update by Oak Lawn Treasurer Pat O’Donnell on the village’s structural deficit. Bring coffee.

And the winner is … - Oak Lawn trustees will be reviewing the short list of proposals from red- light photo enforcement vendors. The village hopes to generate an additional $200,000 in revenue by adding two red light cameras to the the four already in place at four Oak Lawn intersections. The plan also calls for more aggressive collection of citations issued to red-light runners. The village manager is seeking trustees for their approval to prepare a new contract.

Re-do of the Radice contract - The village board will vote on a motion to approve a new personal services agreement with Steve Radice, target of a steamed Patch op-ed from former mayor Dave Heilmann earlier this month that Radice’s company was awarded an “insider’s contract.” Radice resigned from the Oak Lawn Planning and Development Commission last October when he accepted a part-time position as a village building inspector. He’s also been serving as an economic development wooing potential retailers to come to Oak Lawn. A portion of Radice’s salary was paid to his company, Bring It Inc., so the village wouldn’t have to provide health benefits, he said. Radice will be issued a personal services contract and paid as 1099 contractor. He still isn’t getting health insurance.

Settlement with 911 Dispatchers - Oak Lawn’s emergency telecommunications center was handed over to a private contractor last week after the village board voted 4-2 in November to outsource the 911 call center. Village Manager Larry Deetjen revealed at the last board meeting that it had tentatively settled all disputes and grievances with the dispatchers’ union after a nine-hour meeting with an arbitrator on Jan. 14. In turn, the Metropolitan Alliance of Police is expected to drop its lawsuit against the village. All the details, including a settlement figure are expected to be revealed tonight.

Appointments - Attorney Kevin Cunningham as village prosecutor and Odelson and Sterk Ltd., e.g. Burt Odelson’s law firm, as adjudicator and counsel for the police and fire commission. This should be interesting.

What’s not on the agenda? Expect a mention of Village Manager Larry Deetjen’s latest traffic mishap involving a village-owned vehicle. Deetjen confirmed that he sideswiped another vehicle while out on a snow-related call last Thursday. This time, Deetjen remained with the car and insisted on a Breathalyzer test, reportedly blowing a triple zero (that poor Crown Vic); and a case of cold feet.

The Oak Lawn Village Board meets at 7:30 p.m. on the second and fourth Tuesdays of the month at Village Hall, 9446 S. Raymond Dr. The meetings are free and open to the public.

andy skoundrianos January 29, 2014 at 02:07 PM
J epley in your unstable mind, you didn't read my post right I said I could care less if Steve Radice has a job with the village or not If you think it's illegal, like everything this administration does prove your case. OLG I wasn't speaking about you with the anonymous poster comment. Streit will be long gone before 2017 along with his anti- Oak Lawn rants and constant obstructionism and prepared political speeches at every meeting.
OakLawnGuy January 29, 2014 at 02:25 PM
Yeah it looks that way, and I'm sure the Mayor's party will put up a nominee, but that person could have a fight on their hands. Well, depending on if they're going to be backed by Illinois or not......
oak lawn voter January 29, 2014 at 02:26 PM
J Epley when developing the new game please include a square for Andy.
scouter January 29, 2014 at 04:25 PM
I am so tired of this crap! I thought that the new mayor was going to change things, I guess I was wrong. The reason Bob gets re-elected is because he listens and answers his constituents. Also area 3 is a group that likes someone who just doesn't automatically fall in line with everyone else...just saying. And I am so tired of people ASSuming that because more than 1 person has the view point, they MUST be the same person. I am not naive, and I do know that politico's have to push their own opinions, but come on people. How about trying for some truth and some honesty in ALL of our elected officials. It would be such a breath of fresh air. Just because someone has a difference of opinion does NOT automatically make him/her a bad guy! This mindset is WHY our government is so screwed up!
Mark January 29, 2014 at 04:46 PM
Don't get your shorts in a knot Andy!
OakLawnGuy January 29, 2014 at 05:58 PM
Scouter, the only time Bob ever listened to or answered anyone on my block was the 5 days before every election. Not defending the new powers-that-be, just sayin......and you're right about the commenters. While I am sure there are a few people playing the game that Mr Streit used to play where a couple people would create 15 or 20 IDs and comment on Southtown, Star and Sun Times stories, I am sure many of these commenters are individuals in and of themselves. I am positive of at least 5 or 6 of them. Plus me.
Mike Fields January 30, 2014 at 11:03 AM
The Oak Lawn Hater's behavior on here is becoming almost childlike. It seems every time Trustee Streit gets caught out telling lies and deceptions their response is to cover their ears and scream louder. If, as they say, they are trying to highlight any wrongdoing by village officials why are they not outraged by Streit using Oak Lawn resident's money to pay himself $1,000 dollars a month for an office on SW highway in addition to the Village salary and pension and insurance benefits he receives.
Time.To.Clean.Up.Oak.Lawn. January 30, 2014 at 11:18 AM
More attempts to lump everyone who disagrees with Bury in one category and to deflect..."nothing going on over here" strategy. People are waking up. The smugness alone of Bury and her gang of merry men riles the average joe. Toss in their antics and it's making voices come out. Nice try thou Mike Foelds.
Mike Fields January 30, 2014 at 11:31 AM
Time., Are you or are you not O.K with Trustee Streit using residents money to pay himself $1,000 every month ?
Billy Bulldozer January 30, 2014 at 01:33 PM
You better watch out what you say about Madame Mayor and Mr. Deetjen, you just may up with a speed camera, err I mean 'SAFETY' camera, at the end of your driveway.
Luther January 31, 2014 at 02:31 PM
Straight answer " Mike " YES I could care less if it's illegal prove it I know you have already tried and failed
andy skoundrianos January 31, 2014 at 05:50 PM
Luther you are stealing my intellectual property!!!
Luther January 31, 2014 at 10:16 PM
andy and intel.....nah, too easy.
Elizabeth Forsyth February 10, 2014 at 08:33 AM
Andy is not giving a straight answer because he has to check and ask what his answer is first. This Village Manager and Mayor are pathetic. What they did was 100 percent illegal and unethical. There has been no change brought by the Mayor. She also does as Larry tells her to do. I wish people and Andy would see Larry doesn't care about oak lawn. He's applied to numerous other jobs and if he is ever offered one he will leave. There is no loyalty to this village from him. That's why he doesn't care about shorting the PD and FD. He doesn't care about safety and longevity. Andy you have to admit I'm right. First opportunity and he's gone. Which I hope is sooner rather than later.
Billy Bulldozer February 10, 2014 at 09:42 AM
So what Ms. Forsyth is saying is that the Village Mayor is the puppet for the Village Manager? Usually it's the other way around but if the Village Manager officially ran for mayor then he wouldn't be able to collect his better than $160,000.00 per year from the village. That is; if he actually won the election. I wonder how long it will be before the residents of this town realize that the current Village Manager is laughing at every single resident of this town?
andy skoundrianos February 10, 2014 at 10:06 AM
Ms. Forsyth who do you have to check with for your answers? You have an agenda just like everyone else. Hypocrisy abounds on these posts hidden agendas,personal grudges,political motives.
Elizabeth Forsyth February 10, 2014 at 10:30 AM
Andy, I don't check with anyone. I am capable to speak for myself and use facts alone. What hidden agenda do you think I have ? Or grudge? There is none. I base my statements on fact alone which speaks for itself. Unlike you I am not blind to the fact that the Manager does make the decisions and doesn't care about this town. It's a fact. If he was really concerned about oak lawn and it's residents, he wouldn't be applying with other towns for the same position. Or putting the residents in jeopardy by depleting their pubic safety employees.
OakLawnGuy February 10, 2014 at 11:06 AM
Gotta say, Andy - she worked there. She sat in the chair. You may have friends or contacts on the Board or inside information or 20 years on the gadfly job or whatever, but she walked the walk.
andy skoundrianos February 10, 2014 at 11:24 AM
OLG you are using this staffing issue if employees to take shots at the manager who you obviously do not like and want to get rid of. Just like Streit and Quinlan who suddenly are pro union people now that they are in t h e
andy skoundrianos February 10, 2014 at 11:32 AM
Minority and it's politically advantageous to be with the workerss when they never have been before.I do not hope for the village to fail to prove a point.
Elizabeth Forsyth February 10, 2014 at 11:32 AM
Ok again. Here you are with the distractions Andy. Believe me I get it, I know you think Larry is your friend and I've seen you in his office numerous times. I have no doubt that he is nice to you because you are so viocal on his behalf. I'm sure he feeds you just enough information, to keep you loyal. Nothing to pertinent and nothing of real value. Am I right? Fact is fact. Let's get past the who likes who and blah blah. That is the mere reason politics today are so screwed up. Everyone wants to blame the person before him or this one or that one. Bottom line is this, Larry may be a great guy. I have never come out and said a derogatory remake about him personally. What I speak of is his decisions and those of the mayor. Regardless of what happen before, they have a duty to these residents to do right on their behalf. As well as the trustees. Let's all grow up and learn to take responsibility for own actions. Just like my 5 year old daughter is being taught in school. Stop the blame game and suck it up, man up and do the right thing.
Elizabeth Forsyth February 10, 2014 at 11:34 AM
I don't want to see it fail either. Because that would mean an fixer firefighter or child was killed because of the lack of knowledge and experience or the understaffing of needed services. I'm saying mistakes are made that can be rectified. So make it right by the residents.
Billy Bulldozer February 10, 2014 at 11:54 AM
I am merely an Oak Lawn resident, longtime, and I would like to know; just how police & fire dispatch got so dis-functional, allegedly, to the point that it had to be outsourced? To my knowledge dispatch has worked extremely well over the years, to the point that other local municipalities relied on OUR dispatch personnel to handle their needs. Why this sudden need for outsourcing? Was it just a cost cutting measure? If yes, then it was REALLY shortsighted. As for the "settlement" reached between all parties EXCEPT the personnel staffing dispatch, it was a bad deal. The settlement should have included not only lost wages to those not hired by Norcomm but the settlement should have also included wage differential payments to those hired by Norcomm at a lower hourly wage. I think a labor attorney working for the dispatch staffers would have a field day with this one. I am a non-attorney and I am not a paid spokesman for the dispatchers.
Elizabeth Forsyth February 10, 2014 at 12:13 PM
There was no need for outsourcing. The other towns paid into Oak Lawn Central because of their superior services. The Director of the radio room made 3 operators supervisors and never replaced them. From the beginning supervisors have always been counted in the staffing levels. There were never budget issues before her tenure. She decided to take the Team Leaders out of the count two years ago and then she changed that. Her choosing to take ten out of the mix caused tens of thousands of dollars in overtime. She at any time could have fixed this. But she was for outsourcing because of her failure in knowing how to actually run a radio room. This huge overtime also was her justifying the outsourcing. Her lacking leadership and skill is solely to blame for the outsourcing. She like the manager could have rectified this situation instead they chose to sign a contract then come back a month later and claim they are broke. The center os paid hundreds of thousands of dollars a year from the other towns. Plus all of their 911 funds on your phone bill and all wireless surcharge money. It's a shame. Now norcomm comes in and hires all part time people at 13 bucks an hour. No benefits. They are making out huge on the deal. The village got the raw deal with Norcomm because someone will get hurt by this. I can guarantee the first officer severely hurt, his family will go full force after the village and norcomm and win. The officers and firefighters have been adamantly against this. They have made their dissatisfaction clear with the Director, yet nothing changes. That alone will help when they go after the village. It's bad all around. For everyone.
andy skoundrianos February 10, 2014 at 12:16 PM
Ms. Forsyth I understand you are mad at management because you lost your job Once again I understand this. You have every right to raise your concerns and comments, but so do I. Freindships have nothing to do with it. We have a real crisis in pension liability and deficit here in Oak Lawn. I don't expect everyone to agree with my views. I certainly do not know what goes on with the telecommunications dept, management or the employees. If the job is not being done the people will be held accountable I certainly hope no ones safety is being compromised. I just have problems with politicians who could care less about the employees using your story to score political points when they really are not for the workers just for their own personal political gains. We will agree to disagree on these issues
Elizabeth Forsyth February 10, 2014 at 12:34 PM
Do you know Andy that the dispatchers pension is totally different than the police. It's private. The pension issue has nothing to do with the deficit or state or village. IMRF is private. You should care about the new people. So they will be held accountable, so that's how you will justify a child or police officer being killed. Oh well ya know the part timer was held accountable, are you kidding me. That's just asinine. If there was such a deficit problem why would Larry pay off a 6 million dollar bond and not put that money towards the pensions. You cannot blame police officers for the pension problems. These men and women will lay down their lives for someone they have never met. They do a job the public is scared of but has no problem blaming them. You run away from the scene of a shooting yet our officers run in. They deserve their pensions and have earned every cent of it. If the village really cared they would lay off the Christmas lights and support the men and women who protect and serve those they swore to protect. You are making this personal because you continue to bring it back to the politicians you don't agree with. The budget issue and problems with it are Larry's alone. He should adjust accordingly but he chooses to follow what he wants, without regard to the officers firemen or residents. That's just malicious and stupid. He works for the residents and the village but does what he wants to. I have a huge issue with that. The firemen run into burning building and save lives. They have seen things you can't even imagine or handle for that matter. They like the police deserve and have earned those pensions. It's sad the village board can't respect the job they do. Or you for that matter!
OakLawnGuy February 10, 2014 at 12:39 PM
As with the State of Illinois, the Village tries to plug their budget gap by moving useful, practical dollars from one area without serious consideration for taking fluff or excess dollars from another. That it takes a union out of Mr Deetjen's hair is just a cherry on the sundae for him.
Billy Bulldozer February 10, 2014 at 01:50 PM
Larry Deetjen, the Village of Oak Lawn Manager, is waving the "look how I saved the Village of Oak Lawn money" flag in hopes that it can be used by him as a stepping stone to a position in another city, village, or town. I laughed when I found out about his personal web site, is that a "Go Daddy" production and will Danica Patrick be starring in his commercials? As I mentioned before: Larry Deetjen is only out for Larry Deetjen and NOT the residents of Oak Lawn.
andy skoundrianos February 10, 2014 at 02:30 PM
Ms. Forsyth you don't know me or my thoughts on respecting the jobs our public employees do. I have lived in Oak Lawn for over 46 years I have been involved actively in our village for over 21 years. We have the best fire dept and police dept period. I never have questioned the abilities of our great workers. I state once again I know you are upset, because i disagree with some of your comments does not mean I disrespect employees of the jobs they do. In America we have the right to differ on views. Blame the manager all you want but don't tell me your union leadership didn't sell you guys down the river too especially since the rank and file didn't like the agreement.
Elizabeth Forsyth February 10, 2014 at 02:35 PM
You not agreeing with me doesn't upset me at all. Nor am I disgruntled. Yes our union sold us out. I have never disputed that. Again though, this was done by Larry Deetjan. He pushed for this and has a total disregard for resident safety. We do have the best police and fire department. It's sad that the Village Manager doesn't feel the same.


More »
Got a question? Something on your mind? Talk to your community, directly.
Note Article
Just a short thought to get the word out quickly about anything in your neighborhood.
Share something with your neighbors.What's on your mind?What's on your mind?Make an announcement, speak your mind, or sell somethingPost something