Archive for the ‘ General Happenings ’ Category

Dekalb Zillow Home Value Index

Go play with the graph and other local stats by clicking here.

[Tip o’ hat to: D.J.]

“Job Training”

Yes, TIFs can be used for job training, according to the City of Chicago’s new movie. The “Chicago Reader’s” Ben Joravsky critiques the City of Chicago’s “movie” on YouTube, entitled “What’s a TIF?” Enjoy all the fun here: The mayor makes a TIF movie. The Oscar goes to the guy at 35 seconds, “nobody knows how they work.”

DeKalb Barbs Orange

Has anyone else seen the new street sign downtown in purple with the city’s three-leaf logo? The purple does not match anything else.

If anyone is going to spend tax dollars on new street signs, then they should be in DeKalb Barbs orange, using the school’s logo. Here is the D logo.

I bet a lot more people would want the street signs using the school colors. There are already several cities in Indiana that have their street signs using the local school’s colors and logos. One example is Brownsburg, Indiana, which is the hometown of basketball player Gordon Hayward. The Salt Lake Tribune thought highly of the city’s high school themed street signs.

A Different Perspective on Dixon

dixon archWhile the media and citizens are pointing fingers at Dixon and throwing out accusations of folks being asleep at the switch while their comptroller allegedly helped herself to tens of millions of dollars of taxpayer dollars, I have a different perspective to throw out there.

How did Dixon get by on less for all these years? How did Dixon keep the budgets trim when they allegedly had tens of millions of fewer dollars to spend all these years?
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“Red Tails” Opens Friday, January 20th

When the movie “Malcolm X” came out a few years ago, movie theaters in DeKalb did not show it. Only after some complaints did a theater then show it, while the NIU students were on spring break. Pathetic.

“Red Tails” opens this Friday. There should be *zero* controversy and I better not have to drive to another town to go see it. Otherwise, it is a sign that this town has not progressed at all.

Watch the trailer

A certain person has suggested I “correct” my posting called Sampling of Electric Bills, Old DHS and New, on the grounds that I got it wrong about why District 428 can’t pay its bills.

On the contrary, no correction is needed. Due to the small sample size and obvious adjustments made to one of the bills, I took pains NOT TO come to any conclusions.

No, the figures for the June charges and balance due for the new DHS were not accidentally transposed! There were significant downward adjustments made on that bill.

That is one reason why I am making no claims about the bill charges being particularly representative.

Yes, I did also say that I found the unpaid balances startling, but AGAIN: I drew no conclusion from it.

If this person were a member in good standing of the City Barbs community, I would invite him to post the ADDITIONAL information he’s found. Unfortunately, he was banned for life years ago and this kind of thing reinforces the decision.

Chuck Sweeney of the Rockford Register Star is beginning to feel sorry he ever supported an elected Forest Preserve Board for Winnebago County.

First thing out of the box, [county employee and Forest Preserve Board Chair Randy] Olson supported pouring tax money into fixing up golf courses to the tune of $1.4 million. They’d always had always had [sic] to pay for themselves from players’ fees in the past. Golf, however, is a declining activity. Did you know the director of golf for the forest preserve district makes $90,000?

Then Olson engineered a deal with fellow Courthouse Party member Donald J. Gasparini, former sheriff, to buy Gasparini’s three fishing holes on 18 acres adjacent to the popular Four Lakes Forest Preserve. Never mind that the district has said for years that it didn’t have the money to buy new land, and that the Gasparini property has never been identified as land the district wanted to acquire. They took the $216,000 out of the Operations Fund! The priority should have been dredging Four Lakes, but never mind.

Now, Olson wants to postpone for a year the annual culling of deer at the forest preserves. Is this a result of a conservationist’s study of land use management? Oh, no. Randy Olson went to the Plug & Pellet shooting club recently and the hunters there suggested it. Not enough deer in the preserves, they said. So, if we let the deer build up their numbers for a year, there will be more to hunt next year!

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Lewis Black is Coming to DeKalb

Rated PG-13 for language.

He’ll appear at the Egyptian Theatre October 6.

Vindication

From the 1973 Assembly on Home Rule in Illinois (my emphasis):

Municipal home rule referenda are dependent on implementing legislation as well as on constitutional authorization. Section 28-4 of the Election Code (“Referendums required by Constitution in respect to units of local government”)* sets forth the requirements for all referenda authorized by the local government article except for those provided for separately by the County Executive Act. Under this new section of the Election Code, a municipal home rule referendum may be initiated in one of two ways : (1) by resolution of the governing board of the local unit, or (2) by fiHng [sic] with the clerk of the local unit a petition signed by registered voters equal to 10 percent of the number who voted in the last general election in the unit.

Normally, you need signatures from 10% of the registered voters to place a public question on the ballot; but if you read through some of the material linked above, you’ll see that Illinois Home Rule plays by a different set of rules (and that it was designed to stay that way).

The City of DeKalb has roughly 23,000 registered voters. In the last couple municipal elections only about 6,000 of them actually have come out to vote.

So it looks like the Home Rule referendum group, aka Barb City Tea Company (aka Mac McIntyre, John Anderson et al) had with 782 petition signatures more than enough to get the question of retaining Home Rule certified for the 2009 Consolidated Election, and should not have been booted off the ballot.

Section 28-4 of the Election Code refers to a section of Chapter 46 of the Illinois Revised Statutes, which are not exactly the same as the Compiled Statutes (see disclaimer) and not readily available online as the Compiled are. However, placing the citation along with “Home Rule” in your search engine will yield the same citation in Illinois Municipal League and NIU publications.

Zombies Lurch Into Town Tomorrow

zombie babyDaily Chronicle:

Zombies are slated to meet at 5 p.m. at the Holmes Student Center at NIU, then walk along Lincoln Highway, Annie Glidden Road, Lucinda Avenue and along the DeKalb Nature Trail near the East Lagoon.

Brown said Saturday’s walk is a test-run and he hopes to help organize another one closer to Halloween. He said he was surprised by the response and support the event has gotten not only from students, but from people in the community.

Ahem.

DeKalb Zombie Walk 2011 Facebook page has nearly 600 participants signed up. The page includes a map and rules.