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Library board votes to issue bonds

No timetable set for now, officials say

By Jane Charmelo

The Helen M. Plum Memorial
Library Board on Tuesday, Aug. 8,
voted to issue up to $25 million in
bonds, despite requests from residents
attending the meeting to postpone
the action.
As many as two dozen residents
attended the meeting that included a
public hearing on the matter, which
officials say is a legal proceeding.
After a tax-rate increase was approved
by voters in November 2016,
the measure would allow for the issuance
of up to $25 million in bonds
to demolish the current facility and
build a new library, temporarily relocate
the library, make construction
site improvements and furnish new
equipment and technology.
Prior to the meeting, library Director
Barb Kruser noted that if the measure
were to pass, the library is “not
going to issue bonds right away,”
adding that the library would have up
to three years to do so.
At the beginning of the meeting,
board Vice President John Larkin Jr.
read a statement that said the vote to
issue bonds—to be repaid over 20
years—is “a procedure we must do,”
adding the hearing is designed to
make sure “the public is informed,”
and said that should expenses exceed
$25 million, “[that] extra is not going
to come back as a tax to the people.”
Board member Virginia Carlson
also mentioned that in 20 years “the
board will vote to continue or discontinue
[the tax rate increase]. That’s
the only way we can do it.”
The line between public comment
prior to the vote and public participation
became blurred as residents
expressed frustration that the library
has not moved forward with its construction
“My personal opinion is that this
is premature,” said Ken Wojcik of
the board’s plan to vote on the bonds.
“It’s not a good idea to be talking
about bonds right now.”
“You don’t own the air rights,”
he continued, saying that the library
board appears to be “bullying” the
park district and that is “not the way
we used to do things in Lombard.”
“You’re putting the cart before
the horse,” said Robert Biddle. “You
have no business having a bond issue
at this point.”
Jamie Rachlin, who represents
bond issuer RBC Capital Markets,
responded to the comments, calling
the vote a procedural step, and emphasized
that “the board is not issuing
He also mentioned that “We won’t
know the amount of bonds [being issued]
until the architect gives the final
construction costs ... allowing for
the fact that costs might go up.”
He said that “might be a good
thing,” as the issuance of bonds is
capped at $25 million.”
“They could authorize more but
that’s not the plan right now,” Rachlin
said, meaning anything over
the $25 million would have to come
from the library’s operating budget.
“That’s where they have misrepresented
us,” Biddle said.
Kelly Mullins told the board, “You
have my money and nothing’s being
done. I want my money back.”
Board member Gary Brenniman
said he had no problem with postponing
the vote, but Carlson countered
that it is “just a step toward when we
want to sell bonds.”
Board member Allison Pinkett-
Floyd asked if there were any
financial ramifications to postponing
the vote, to which Rachlin responded,
“Probably not.”
The board unanimously approved
the move to issue bonds, after which
Mary Marshall, a retired librarian
and supporter of the library, thanked
the staff and board for their efforts to
build a new library and urged them to
stand firm in keeping it at the current
The library, she added, “is just as
important as Lilacia Park.”
Kruser related that the library and
park district boards and officials have
met recently, and “We left the meeting
feeling good. We think it went
well. There is more to come.”
However, the board seemingly put
the onus on the park district for delays
in beginning construction.
“It’s not on our back we have not
met [with the park district],” said
The library, responded Mullins,
“should revisit this whole thing. New
referendum, new numbers.”
“We have been totally transparent
the entire time,” said board member
Kristin Aasmundstad Walsh. “We’re
as upset as you are.”
“We’re in negotiations with the
park district. We’re asking them to
come to the table,” Pinkett-Floyd
At issue is an air rights agreement
between the park district and library
from the 1970s, when the library expanded
to the north on land donated
by the park district. The stipulation
was that the addition not surpass a
certain height overlooking adjacent
Lilacia Park.
Brenniman recounted that when
the library first presented its building
plans to the park district, “the park
district had no questions about our
Whatever the concerns, Pinkett-
Floyd said, “If they would let us
know what they were ... [we] would
She did acknowledge that once the
referendum issue was made public,
the park district “wanted to be very
neutral about it.”
On the Lombard Park District
website, the board of commissioners
issued a statement in March, citing
that the library district, in February
2016, “was notified that the park district
was concerned about the possibility
of any new library expansion
into Lilacia Park and were told that
any new building should not encroach
into Lilacia Park.”
The statement also noted that the
library district “presented to the residents
elevations and floor plans for
a new library that encroached into
Lilacia Park and was not within their
property lines.”
“The protection of Lilacia Park
from further development has been
a priority of the elected officials who
represent the Lombard Park District
and in that spirit, we have made every
effort to work cooperatively with
the library district,” the statement
Commissioners wrote that the
park district has “provided options
that could potentially save taxpayers’
dollars in moving, book storage
and temporary site costs; and assist
with their parking and storm water
According to information supplied
by library spokesperson Sue Wilsey,
when Kruser met with Lombard Park
District Executive Director Paul Friedrichs
in December 2016, “she was
told that the park district preferred to
do a land swap with the library and
offered the Southland Park property.”
However, the library had paid for
a study of the property and “determined
that it was not suitable for a
50,000-square-foot public library.”
Additionally, according to Wilsey,
back in 2006 the library “made a resolution”
to stay on its current property,
based on feedback from residents
who wanted the library to remain
close to downtown.
Wilsey noted that “several new
building concepts were presented to a
park liaison group,” along with a request
for a waiver of air rights to the
west of the current building “so that
one continuous second floor could be
She said that the library offered to
give “a large portion of its property
for expansion of Lilacia Park just
north of the new building.”
Wilsey described how the park
district discussed a land exchange for
property at Lombard Common park,
but architects for the library “saw
multiple challenges, including traffic
and parking increases, adjacent resident
concerns and a very expensive
storm water retention system.”
“We’re doing everything we can
to address their concerns,” said Pinkett-
Floyd, with board member Susan
Wiggins saying that discussions
going on in closed sessions, both at
the library and with the park district,
cannot be made public at this time.
When asked when and if there
would be any movement forward toward
building a new library, Carlson
responded, “Perhaps you should ask
the park district.”
Wilsey summed up that library
architects have presented a new design
for a 50,000-square-foot library
“that will be within the library property
lines and will not infringe on the
park’s air rights.”
“The library looks forward to
working with park officials in the
coming weeks and months to agree
on construction easements and other
building decisions,” Wilsey stated.

Experience the solar eclipse at the Helen Plum Library

Helen Plum Library is now giving
away free CE and ISO certified safe
solar eclipse glasses to card holders
at 5 p.m. while supplies last. Glasses
will be available at the front circulation
desk for Helen Plum Library
card holders and members of their
Additional pairs will be available
at the Helen Plum Eclipse Event held
on the north plaza deck on Monday,
Aug. 21, from 12:30 until 2 p.m. Join
the library for Sunny Lemonade and
Moon Pies, and a great vantage point
for viewing the eclipse.
NASA predicts that the peak
eclipse will pass over Lombard at
1:19 p.m., when the moon is expected
to obscure 87 percent of the sun.
During the eclipse, the temperature
will drop, stars can appear, and birds
can even become confused and start
chirping their nighttime songs.
You can trust Helen Plum Library
to keep your eyes safe, so that once
all the fun is over, you can get back
to books. No registration is necessary.
For more information about any
of the programs or services available
at Helen Plum Library visit www.
helenplum.org or call 630-627-0316.
The Helen Plum Library is located in
downtown Lombard at 110 W. Maple
St. and is open Monday through Friday
from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m., Saturday
from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday
from 1-5 p.m.

Residents reminded to use caution and follow safety tips when viewing solar eclipse

Residents and visitors to Lombard
will be able to view a partial solar
eclipse at approximately 11:54 a.m.,
on Monday.
The Lombard Fire Department
is reminding anyone interested in
viewing the event to use caution due
to a risk of eye damage.
“There have been reports of ineffective
eclipse glasses being sold in
the area and we’re reminding residents
that if you’re going to view
this event, you should follow safety
tips from NASA,” said Assistant Fire
Chief Jerry Howell. “We’re also asking
parents to make sure that children
know not to look at the sun during
the event.” Since Lombard is outside
the path of total eclipse, residents are
advised to never view any part of the
eclipse without eye protection.
Safety tips from NASA (https://
eclipse2017.nasa.gov/safety) include:
• The only safe way to look directly
at the uneclipsed or partially
eclipsed sun is through special-purpose
solar filters, such as “eclipse
glasses” or hand-held solar viewers.
Homemade filters or ordinary sunglasses,
even very dark ones, are
not safe for looking at the sun; they
transmit thousands of times too much
• Always inspect your solar filter
glasses before use; if scratched or
damaged, discard it. Read and follow
any instructions.
• Always supervise children using
solar filter glasses.
• Stand still and cover your eyes
with your eclipse glasses or solar
viewer before looking up at the
bright sun. After looking at the sun,
turn away and remove your filter—
do not remove it while looking at the
• Do not look at the uneclipsed
or partially eclipsed sun through an
unfiltered camera, telescope, binoculars,
or other optical device.
• Similarly, do not look at the sun
through a camera, a telescope, binoculars,
or any other optical device
while using your eclipse glasses or
hand-held solar viewer—the concentrated
solar rays will damage the
filter and enter your eye(s), causing
serious injury.
• Seek expert advice from an astronomer
before using a solar filter
with a camera, a telescope, binoculars,
or any other optical device. Note
that solar filters must be attached to
the front of any telescope, binoculars,
camera lens, or other optics.
• If you normally wear eyeglasses,
keep them on. Put your eclipse glasses
on over them, or hold your handheld
viewer in front of them.
Additionally, it is recommended
to avoid driving during the eclipse as
the temporary darkness could cause
confusion to drivers.
For more information visit https://
eclipse2017.nasa.gov/safety and

Breen: State Board of Education
numbers for Senate Bill 1 are outdated


Not having official numbers from
the nonpartisan Illinois State Board
of Education didn’t keep critics of
Gov. Bruce Rauner’s changes to
the Democrats’ school funding reform
bill from opposing the measure
during a committee hearing on Aug.
In order for general state aid to
go to school districts, the budget
imposed by lawmakers last month
requires an evidence-based school
funding model. Such a model is
found in Senate Bill 1, which Democrats
sat on for two full months before
sending it to Gov. Bruce Rauner
in early August.
Using his veto authority, Rauner
changed the bill in several ways
when he finally got it. One change
was to remove what he and Republicans
characterize as a Chicago Public
Schools pension bailout worth hundreds
of millions of dollars.
On Aug. 9, House Democrats invited
school administrators from half
a dozen school districts to Chicago
to testify against Rauner’s changes
during a nearly four-hour committee
hearing. Despite the hearing being in
Chicago, Democrats acknowledged
CPS was not asked to testify.
Regardless, Rep. Peter Breen,
R-Lombard, said the critics lack any
“We’ve got the Illinois State
Board of Education, which is a neutral
scoring agency on this, still looking
at the numbers from the amendatory
veto,” Breen said, “and so we’re
all sitting here guessing.”
Numbers from ISBE were transmitted
to Rauner’s administration on
Aug. 7, but Rauner said Aug. 9 that
his staff found errors and requested
ISBE rework the numbers. It’s unclear
when the numbers will be released,
but Rauner said once they’re
done and reviewed they’ll be put out
as soon as possible.
Breen also pointed out during the
committee hearing that ISBE numbers
for Senate Bill 1 are outdated
because it distributes several hundred
million dollars less than what
lawmakers ended up approving, and
no more recent calculations have
been released.
“I know there’s at least ... $450
million somewhere floating around
in the ether,” Breen said.
Hundreds of miles away in Peoria,
SB1 sponsor state Sen. Andy Manar,
D-Bunker Hill, held a news conference
blasting the governor’s changes
as something that will hurt school
districts across the state, but provided
no data to back up his claims.
On Sunday, the Senate voted
38-19 mostly along party lines to
override the governor’s amendatory
veto of the measure. State Sen. Sam
McCann, R-Plainview, was the only
Republican to support the override
effort. All Democrats voted to override.
Last week, the House scheduled
a floor session for Wednesday, Aug.
16, the same day as Governor’s Day
at the Illinois State Fair in Springfield.
Breen said it’s obvious there won’t
be a vote to agree with the governor’s
changes and an override won’t pass
the House because it doesn’t have a
supermajority of Democrats. He said
it’s time to find an agreeable solution
so taxpayers know their money is being
spent appropriately.
“Why would we not fix these issues
and … try to get as much money
to the kids that need it?” Breen said.
State Rep. La Shawn Ford, D-Chicago,
“I would urge my colleagues that
care about the students to craft a
more perfect bill,” Ford said.
There are a several bills lawmakers
can gut and replace to deal with
an evidence-based funding model.
It’s just unclear if and when that will
happen if SB1 dies and lawmakers
have to start over from scratch.
Rauner last week urged lawmakers
to keep working toward a solution.

Lombard police: Drunk and impaired drivers
will be met with zero tolerance this Labor Day

Labor Day weekend road trips and local
celebrations are fun and festive, but the Lombard
Police Department is reminding residents that due
to alcohol and drug impaired drivers, it is also
This Labor Day, Lombard officers are partnering
with the Illinois Department of Transportation to stop
drunk drivers and help save lives.
The high-visibility “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over”
crackdown runs from Aug. 21-Sept. 5.
During this period, law enforcement will show
zero tolerance for impaired driving or seat belt law
violators. The Lombard Police Department will be
out in full force to discourage drunk and drugged
driving and a roadside safety checkpoint is scheduled
for the overnight hours of Friday, Sept. 1.
“Residents need to understand that driving
impaired does not have an upside,” said Lombard
Traffic Unit Officer Paula Rojas. “More than 10,000
people die every year from impaired driving because
some people like to pretend that certain laws don’t
apply to them, but to be clear: In every state, for
every person, it is illegal to drive with a BAC of .08
or higher.”
The National Highway Traffic Safety
Administration has made it even easier to get home
safely when you’ve been drinking, with the free
SaferRide mobile app, available through iTunes and
Google Play. The app allows you to call pre-selected
contacts or a taxi, and also identifies your location so
you can be picked up.
Officer Rojas and the Lombard Police Department
want you to know that two easy steps to help avoid
a tragic crash or an arrest for drunk driving are to
always designate a sober driver and to never let
friends drive drunk. Other important tips include:
• You can be held liable and prosecuted if someone
you serve is involved in a drunk-driving crash.
• Make sure all of your guests designate a sober
driver in advance, or help arrange ride-sharing with
other sober drivers.
• Serve food and include non-alcoholic beverages
if hosting a party.
• Give your car keys to a designated sober driver
before the party begins.
• Take the keys away friends who attempt to drive
drunk and call them a ride.
• If you do not have a designated driver, ask a
sober friend for a ride home, call a cab, sober friend
or family member to pick you up, or just stay where
you are and sleep it off until you are sober. Just don’t
drive drunk!
• Always buckle up; it is your best defense against
a drunk driver.
The Labor Day “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over”
crackdown is made possible by federal highway
safety funds administered by the Illinois Department
of Transportation.
For more information visit www.villageoflombard.

Tri-Town Toast fundraiser Sept. 9

Tri-Town YMCA will be raising
glasses and raising funds for program
scholarships at its ninth annual
wine-tasting event on Saturday, Sept.
9, 1-5 p.m.
The event, open to the over-21
public, will be held at and hosted by
Famous Liquors, located at 105 E.
Roosevelt Road in Lombard. For $20
at the door, attendees will be able to
sample spirits, wines, and beers, including
some local favorites. Early-
bird tickets are available for $15
online at www.tritownymca.org. All
attendees will receive 12 tasting tickets.
“This is a great event for friends
to enjoy together while supporting an
organization that really makes a difference
on a local level. Many families
benefit from Y scholarships or
subsidies,” said Whitney Cimaglia,
Tri-Town YMCA Board president
and Toast event chair.
Vendor tasting booths will be set
up inside Famous Liquors. Cheese
samples and appetizers will also be
available from Trader Joes and Old
Town Pizza. Raffle prizes and silent
auction items, featuring local establishments
as well as Cubs jerseys
signed by Joe Maddon and Kyle
Schwarber, will complete an action-
filled afternoon. The silent auction
is open online at www.cherryfish.
com/tritowntoast or is available
by downloading the Cherryfish app.
“We are so excited to have handcrafted
beers from Noon Whistle and
spirits from Burke Beverage, along
with premium wines from Quara,
Scotto Cellars and Quintessential.
We will feature 90-plus wines and
wineries that have been seen in
‘Wine Enthusiast’ and ‘Wine Spectator,’”
said Jeff Sukowski, owner of
Famous Liquors.
The event is also sponsored by
Republic Bank, Terra Vista of Oakbrook
Terrace, Hidden Key Escapes
of Naperville and Jim Hendry, MLB
executive with the New York Yankees.
“This is the second year that
we have partnered with Tri-Town
YMCA,” said Sukowski. “They’ve
worked to make this event better than
ever with the addition of some great
auction items and baseball memorabilia.
It’s a pleasure to be associated
with an organization that has been
serving this area for more than 50
For more information, contact
Tri-Town YMCA.

Sen. Cullerton works to streamline state purchases

Illinois now has a streamlined
process to improve the way state
government entities purchase goods
and services.
Villa Park Democrat Tom Cullerton’s
bipartisan initiative, Senate
Bill 8, is a reform aimed at taxpayer
savings that was signed into law recently.
“Eliminating red tape and streamlining
the purchasing process will
make it easier for local businesses
to bid on state contracts,” Cullerton
said. “Our local businesses are
the heart of our economy. It’s our
duty to make this process easier and
more transparent to help encourage
economic development in our communities.”
This new law expands the ability
of state universities to purchase
needed products and services without
having to navigate through costly
and time-consuming red tape. Illinois
would be allowed to enter into
joint purchasing agreements with
other governmental units, and vendors
would be given more flexibility
when registering or submitting a
“This new bipartisan law will
speed up the process and save valuable
taxpayer dollars, all while helping
our local businesses grow and
prosper,” Cullerton said.
This reform was initiated due to
concerns that procurement rules can
be difficult for vendors, state agencies
and universities to navigate.
Cullerton has also been working
to pass a series of structural reforms.
They include a government consolidation
plan, term limits for legislative
leaders, workers compensation
reform and changes to the school
funding formula.
Another bill Cullerton is urging
the governor to sign is Senate Bill
3, a proven bipartisan government
consolidation model to spread DuPage
County’s success throughout the
Cullerton worked with DuPage
County Chairman Dan Cronin to
eliminate duplicative units of government
and simplify the process
that allows government entities to
consolidate. The DuPage County
model is expected to save taxpayers
$100 million, so Cullerton has
worked to make the model available
to other counties throughout Illinois.
Illinois has more than 7,000 units
of government that are often duplicative
and outdated, so Cullerton
envisions large savings to local taxpayers
across the state. Senate Bill 3
would enable Illinois to consolidate
more units of government than any
other state in the nation.
“This one small step will improve
government services and lower
property taxes without making a
sacrifice in services received,” Cullerton
said. “Every day Gov. Rauner
puts off signing this reform is a lost
opportunity to guarantee government
is evolving with the needs of
the people. The time to act is now.”

Elmhurst-Edward Health among Most Wired

For the third year in a row, Edward-
Elmhurst Health has been
named as one the nation’s Most
Wired Hospitals and Health Systems.
The recognition is based on
the 2017 Most Wired survey by the
American Hospital Association and
Clearwater Compliance, a provider
of healthcare compliance and cyber
risk management solutions.
Edward-Elmhurst, a system that
includes Edward Hospital in Naperville,
Elmhurst Hospital and
Linden Oaks Behavioral Health,
also made the Most Wired list in
2015 and 2016. Prior to their recognition
as part of a system, Elmhurst
Hospital made the list in 2013 and
2014, and Edward Hospital was
named in 2014.
The annual Most Wired survey
is a leading industry barometer that
measures information technology
(IT) use and adoption among hospitals
nationwide. Nearly 700 organizations,
representing 2,158 hospitals
(39 percent of all hospitals
in the U.S.), took part in the 2017
According to the survey’s results,
Most Wired hospitals are
using smart phones, telehealth and
remote monitoring to create more
ways for patients to access health
care services and capture health information.
Edward-Elmhurst’s “Most
Wired” efforts include:
• MyChart patient portal (https://
Available online and via mobile
app, patients can communicate
with their doctor, manage appointments,
access test results, request
prescription renewals and more.
• Real-time online scheduling
for doctor visits and tests: New and
current patients can visit www.eehealth.
org/make-an-appointment to
schedule an appointment with one
of more than 120 physicians, physician
assistants or advance practice
clinicians with Edward Medical
Group, Elmhurst Clinic, Elmhurst
Medical Associates and Elmhurst
Memorial Medical Group. Patients
can also schedule lab tests, mammograms,
heart scans and other
• Use of CardioMEMS and Reveal
LINQ, implanted devices that
allow physicians to remotely monitor
the conditions of patients with
heart conditions.
• Real-time Wait Times: Available
for ER, Immediate Care and
Walk-In Clinics at www.EEHealth.
• HealthAware (www.eehealth.
org/health-aware): Free, online assessments
measure risk for addiction,
anxiety, breast cancer, colon
cancer, depression, diabetes, heart
disease, lung cancer, sleep disorders
and stroke.
In addition, Edward-Elmhurst is
enhancing and developing a wide
variety of tools and programs, such
as video and e-visits, price-shopping
tools for health care services
and more.