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Rants and Raves

It's an ugly but common reality in public administration. A new genius is hired. They immediately start buying new toys and then proceed to justify the expense with a new policy enforcement. Such is the case with the City of DeKalb's Management Analyst and FOIA officer, Aaron Stevens. The City of...
DeKalb County Taxpayers began with my own property tax appeal. I received notice of an assessment change with no details to support it and since I had made no changes to my property, I began to do some digging, beginning with gathering the data I would need. I would...
With permission I'm sharing this exchange between former 3rd ward alderman Pam Verbic and the Mayor and city council. As this is commentary in lieu of attending the official public hearing we think it should be shared with the public and not filed away. As is clearly obvious Mrs. Verbic does...
If you are driving in DeKalb and commit a crime your car will be towed. To get your car back you will pay a $500 administrative tow fee plus the actual towing, impoundment and storage fees charged by the associated towing contractors. Do the crime? Pay the fine. I get that. By...
“Today, you have a chance to do what is right, to follow the law and to regain the trust of students, parents, faculty, staff, and citizens of DeKalb.” -- Misty Haji-Sheikh; 5th ward DeKalb resident, DeKalb County Board member (District 7) and unsuccessful candidate for Mayor of DeKalb Haji-Sheikh’s attorney, Charles...
City Hall Sign

Who Do You Trust?

Is it possible that public trust and confidence in local government has hit an all-time low for the City of DeKalb? Many remember a time when most people had a healthy distrust of national government, but local government usually got the benefit of the doubt. Over the last few years,...
If it's news happening here that's news to us. We are DeKalb County Online. Pretty catchy slogan, ehhh? When we saw Ryan Scott's (from DeKalb) video of his experience at an Illinois State Police Checkpoint here in DeKalb and saw where he was sharing and linking the video to we shared...
The resignation of NIU President Doug Baker is yet another setback for the university. Enrollment is on a steady decline and while some attribution can go to high tuition fees arising from its dependency on shaky (at best) state funding NIU suffers most from its word-of-mouth advertising. That word...
Over the past few years when problems arise with City of DeKalb or Northern Illinois University staff, it seems the best way to resolve these issues is to offer them money and make them and the problem go away. Perhaps we shouldn't be too surprised now, as it has...
When politics guide the judicial branch of government everyone loses. Here's hoping Judge William Brady removes the stench of local politics from the pursuit of justice in the State of Illinois vs Jack McCullough for the 1957 kidnap and murder of Maria Ridulph. He should grant the motion for...
In a well-known song from the Musical "Wicked," Glinda and Elphaba sing about how they have been changed for the better. With recent changes in the City of DeKalb Government, including Jerry Smith's election as Mayor, the appointment of Lynn Fazekas as City Clerk and Bill Nicklas being hired as City...
Observations from the lobby of the Egyptian Theater on Candidate Night The meet and greet session of a local candidate night forum is golden. Shake hands with the candidate and ask them point blank about an issue important to you. Listen. Then in the voting booth you're filling in the...