Elmhurst Weekly: We need Independence and Transparency in City Government

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

Our government is founded on the concept of transparency. It works best with power that flows from the voters up; not when politicians decide what they want, and then attempt to push it through a committee. Last summer, our City Council faced an ethical crisis, a failure of leadership. We had a situation where the whole concept of integrity, of transparency, of open discourse was lacking from our city government. The leadership at the top had compromised itself to the point where a DuPage County State’s attorney issued an opinion that placed our former Mayor in legal jeopardy. 

During that tumultuous time, I was the lone voice on the City Council to speak up and publicly say “dual duty is wrong,” “this is not what we in Elmhurst want.”  And not only did I say it was wrong; more importantly, I pressed the issue. I not only pressed the issue on the Finance Committee, but I stood with thousands of Elmhurst voters who signed petitions for a right to vote; to outlaw this unethical practice. And this unethical practice was subsequently outlawed by an overwhelming 77% of Elmhurst citizens.

During that time, most of my colleagues held their opinions to themselves; or they made statements like “I am waiting to hear from the attorneys.” In my opinion, this was far more than a legal matter on which the lawyers might posture. Dual elected office duty was not just an ethical issue; it was a fundamental democratic issue. It was an issue that went to the core of the civics lessons we all learned in high school. If transparency means anything for an elected representative, it means an elected official should speak publicly on the basic question of the propriety of a politician holding two different elected offices with two different constituencies. My question for Elmhurst voters is this:  Do you want an Independent Mayor who speaks his mind on relevant issues?

Some say this is old news; I disagree. I believe that open and honest government is never old news. Elmhurst needs leaders that are transparent; leaders that air their views publicly; leaders that are willing to take a stand. Local government is supposed to be non-partisan. It is supposed to be based on the concept of citizen volunteers, not smooth politicians. We simply cannot afford to operate like the State of Illinois does; its leaders in the majority are dysfunctional and the state is broke! That is why I have been forthright in bringing my views on issues to the voters. Elmhurst needs a leader that is independent, a leader that does not just pay lip service to the concept of transparency. Elmhurst citizens deserve a leader that respects and embraces open and honest government. I am such a leader.


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Voice of Reason January 31, 2013 at 08:39 PM
doremus: for the most part, you post some thoughtful comments; i don't always agree with you, but you usually state your "case" in a fair manner. however, this time, I'm not sure what to make of your parsing of every little word. i'd say it's pretty hard to argue the factual proposition that 'the leaders in power are dysfunctional'. those people happen to ALL be democrats. the Republicans dont even have enough voting power to sustain a hypothetical veto (assuming a republican governor). And you just cannot dispute that our state is really messed up financially. TaxFoundation.org rated illinois in the bottom ten for business climate; we have the worst credit rating of ANY state; almost 95 billion (yes, BILLION) in unfunded pension liability; recent 67% income tax hike; should i go on ? And now the 'leadership' plans to incrementally dump teachers pension obligations on local school districts; cant wait for that to hit my tax bill. So has this guy tried to paint either of his opponents as dems or repubs ? if morley is a card carrying republican, who cares as long as he does not inject his party into the race; same goes for the other two. Personally, I appreciate the honesty !
Deke February 01, 2013 at 04:29 PM
Maybe he's just speaking the truth.
Doremus Jessup February 01, 2013 at 06:29 PM
V.O.R. What a pleasant surprise to have a cogent, lucid response to my comments here on the Patch, we could use a few more like you. I don't disagree with you that things are a hot mess down in Springfield. Many people to blame for the mess I suppose.Maybe a souped-up version of Social Security like the Railroad Retirement Board might be a way to fix the mess. As for my parsing every little word you might think I have an agenda and you would be right, it is thinly veiled, I imagine you can figure it out, but probably not a lot of the low information voters out there will. Happy Friday V.O.R. and welcome to the fray.
Robert Kolb February 01, 2013 at 08:14 PM
Elle: May I recommend the city of Elmhurst website, particularly the minutes, videos, and attendance records, as a huge indicator of the persuasions of any of the canidates. It is what convinced me to run for 5th ward Alderman- Bob Kolb If more common sense was in the budget; many dollars and cents could be save. Good Luck in your research
Robert Kolb February 01, 2013 at 08:22 PM
Peggy: As much as Alderman Healy supports the bike underpass, if he had been due diligent then it could have been in the planning stages for his last four years. There might be better solutions when considering the end objective. Since all other Prairie Path road crossings are bridges, would this not be cheaper, than moving sewers, waterlines, gas lines, excavating, etc. But for now, would not a stop sign cost less than 3.2 million. I believe finding a temporary cure, while exploring the endless possibilites, before throwing money in a hole - Robert Kevin "BOB" Kolb candidate for 5th ward Alderman


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