Elmhurst Weekly: Alderman Mark Mulliner's Views on Issues Important to Elmhurst Taxpayers

Elmhurst Weekly: Alderman Mark Mulliner's Views on Issues Important to Elmhurst Taxpayers

In recent years, there have been measures offered up by the Illinois General Assembly to consolidate local governmental entities. Some in Springfield have suggested that local school or park districts should be consolidated into regional school or park districts. It is presumed by those individuals that this would somehow reduce overhead and save taxpayer dollars without sacrificing services.   I have a different vision.

As with much of what comes out of Springfield, the idea that larger entities will somehow function more efficiently than smaller entities is really counter intuitive.  What we really need for our local municipal entities to do is to work together; to partner together for the benefit of all taxpayers, for the common good. 

This is why I have led the City’s efforts, in coordination with the efforts of Park District Commissioner Spaeth, to form an Intergovernmental Committee to address and coordinate on areas of common concern. After this Committee was formed, the School District was also added. Composed of nine members, the Park/City/School Committee meets every other month and has coordinated the various agencies in several areas; the most recent examples relating to issues of parking and public safety.

One product of our Intergovernmental Committee was the re-positioning of the Prairie Path where it crosses Spring Road. Working together, the Park District and the City not only coordinated the movement of this path southward (so it is now right next to the stop sign; a safer location), but was also able to carve out some Park land in order for the City to add some much needed parking along Prairie Path Lane.

Another example of the work of our Committee is the recent addition and reconfiguration of parking spaces at East End Park (a/k/a Joe Newton Field).  There, the Park District agreed to give up some park space, in order for the City to improve the safety and number of parking spaces at East End Park. By working together, all of our stakeholders benefited.  The youth programs gained needed parking for their events.  And the residents around East End Park have also overwhelmingly endorsed the change.  This is my vision of how local government can and should work in 2013 and beyond.


This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

fittnessfanatic January 20, 2013 at 05:27 AM
Really appreciate the fix up at the Spring road and prairie path. Also like the fact tht you look out for us in the 7th
B Rush January 20, 2013 at 11:57 AM
this is exactly what a mayor should do.... impressed!
Doremus Jessup January 20, 2013 at 01:31 PM
Mr Mulliner, I am following your campaign and I have to say you may have lost my vote with this statement,"It is presumed by those individuals that this would somehow reduce overhead and save taxpayer dollars without sacrificing services. I have a different vision." Start getting rid of some damn taxing districts, enough is enough. Here is a fact for you to chew on. "Illinois is among the worst states in categories such as its level of public debt, long-term pension liability and financing of public education. But it’s No. 1 in taxing districts with nearly 7,000 — about 2,100 more than second-place Pennsylvania." http://southtownstar.suntimes.com/opinions/17597974-474/our-view-a-board-office-that-needs-to-go-away.html
fittnessfanatic January 20, 2013 at 05:57 PM
#doremus jessup It is a clear indication that when the larger form of government tries/is involved with the school system it is a major cluster mess up. Just look at the pension issue, that no one wants to take the blame for, Mike Madigan, or the U.S government, the secretary of education, what are they doing, except issuing mandates on local schools. It is a taxpayers savings to have separate school, and park districts here in Illinois. If we want quality programs we need to have the qualified individals experts in their field of study to run the programs. if we were to consolidate either your bill would go up, or services would suffer, and it would cost more to the consumer.
TJ January 20, 2013 at 07:33 PM
Alderman Mulliner is up to it again. First, he flip flops on TIF (he was for until he started running for Mayor, now he's against). Next, he agreed with city staff against the need for an underpass at the prairie path and york, until he found out city staff was actually for that underpass. Now, he's taking credit for the city, park district, city joint committee and trying to loop in Spaeth (who is also running for re-election, btw) as well. NOTHING could be farther from the truth. The joint city, park, school committee has been in place for at LEAST 10 years, well before Spaeth took office. Mulliner is a flip flopper who now seems to want to take credit for the actions of others.
Bob Howard January 20, 2013 at 08:32 PM
@ tj: as a Park District member of the Park/City/School committee (along w Mr. Spaeth), you should be aware that there had NEVER been a committee that included all 3 entities (prior to this one's inception). The fact of the matter is that Commissioner Spaeth was one of the driving forces behind the creation of this committee. As of 2008, the Park District had separate intergovernmental committees with both the school district and the library board, but not the city. (many years ago, a special committee was formed between the city and the park district, but this was for the limited purpose of handling land swap, negotiation, and other issues associated with closing the old library and building the new library at its new location in Wilder Park) The Park/City/School committee first began meeting in 2009. So if you really want the truth, you might want to foia the letters between Elmhurst Mayors and the Elmhurst Park District from 2008 and 2009 (that relate to the inception of this committee). Or, if you insist on printing more falsities, I will find them and post them for you.
TJ January 20, 2013 at 10:41 PM
Bob - the Committee DID exist, it just never met, or hardly ever met. If Commissioner Spaeth, through you, wants to take credit for getting the Committee to meet, so be it. However, Mulliner had nothing to do with that. As one of Mulliner's campaign chairmen (along with Colette Kubiesa, wife of former city attorney Ken Kubiesa) I would expect you to rush to his defense, but he is taking credit for things he had nothing to do with. I actually hope Mulliner keeps doing these blogs. It just creates more ammunition for down the road to point out the differences between what he writes/says as candidate for mayor and what he's done as an alderman the last 12 years. Minutes and voting records make powerful tools against false claims or sudden position changes.
Lincoln Parent January 21, 2013 at 04:05 PM
The Prairie Path move at Spring Road was a direct result of the Prairie Path move at Berkley Avenue. The city worked with the county to make sure both moves happened. It was not the park district who gave up the land, it was the county. It is county property, the park district just cuts the grass and picks up the trash. The Spring Road move coincided with the repaving project on Spring Road. The move was not the result of any joint committee action. The residents north of the Prairie Path who worked so hard to make both moves reality won't be happy with Mulliner trying to take credit for their actions and efforts.
Lincoln Parent January 21, 2013 at 04:48 PM
No, the moral of the story is that someone running for mayor should run on their record and not try to take credit for the actions of others. I guess the election will be the ultimate lie detector test.
Jim Court January 21, 2013 at 05:32 PM
Long ago I offered the Park District a property that adjoins East End Park to create a large amount of additional parking. It already had storm sewers and lighting and would have been a huge benefit to those who use the tennis courts, the pool, and the baseball field. It initially received a very positive response but later to seem to get lost in the shuffle. I tried to convince the Board to think of this in the context of a hundred years from now. I was far from impressed with the Board limited view. Truthfully I think that the park district has become a huge source of politically connected jobs that gives officials much clout. I also question the expensive overseas trips that benefit park district employees and compete unfairly with the private sector. I also asked them about gazebos/ shelters for all of the Parks and received no response. I asked for a drain for the East End tennis court and nothing was done. It is a very simple and very inexpensive fix. Grass gets cut during droughts when it is not needed and trees that should be trimmed are ignored. Many people from outside the District were using the pool due to the poorly designed entry. Eventually this was marginally addressed. Excessive ticketing still takes place and additional parking could be added along Schiller St. but little is done. It is very hard to get anyone to listen. This should be improved.
Bob Howard January 21, 2013 at 06:30 PM
Mr. Court: i want to thank you not only for your thoughtful comments, but for the fact that you have the decency to offer them in your own name. I have been a Park Commissioner for only four years; but in that time, I can only say that I have never heard from any one on ANY of the issues that you raise here, and all of our e-mail addresses are listed on our web site. Some of these issues may pre-date my involvement, but I can tell you that I was in the minority when the Board voted to delete a Gazebo from the Wilder Park Plan. Like you, I favor Gazebos/Shelters in all Parks, but I am only one vote. However, i do have to take issue with your "clout" sentence. We actually have a very strict anti-nepotism Board policy (which actually forced a member of one Board member's family to lose their park district job when he was elected to the Board). thank you for your input.
B Rush January 21, 2013 at 07:23 PM
i never met him how is mulliner doing when he is on the committee those of you on it might say
fittnessfanatic January 22, 2013 at 01:12 PM
All of you are just amazing. I can't wait to read each day.
Jim Court January 23, 2013 at 03:52 AM
Bob, I may be wrong about the nepotism. Someone who works for the city made this statement to me. It does seem as if the pools have an extraordinary large number of workers. I never want to be perceived as a disgruntled complainer. Every thing I discuss has only one purpose. To see Elmhurst continuously improve, nothing more.


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
See more »