Tag Archives: Paul Schuch

Elburn businessman sues County Board chairman

by Keith Beebe
KANE COUNTY—An Elburn resident filed an injunction against Kane County Board Chairman Karen McConnaughay regarding pay raises given out to county officials.

James MacRunnels, an Elburn businessman and Kane County Board chairman candidate in 2008, filed the injunction on Dec. 14. The lawsuit alleges that McConnaughay, throughout her tenure as County Board chairman, has provided pay raises to 14 county officials and employees without seeking approval from either the Executive Committee or County Board.

The lawsuit identifies IT Executive Director Roger Fahnestock, former Development Department Director Phil Bus, HR Management Executive Director Shelia McCraven, Finance Executive Director Cheryl Patelli, Health Department Executive Director Paul Keuhnert, Deputy Director of Transportation Tom Rickert, Supervisor of Assessments Mark Armstrong, former Economic Development Director Chris Aiston, Facilities, Subdivision and Environmental Resources Director Tim Harbaugh, Family Health Division Director Theresa Heaton, Water Resources Director Paul Schuch, Network Services Director Robert Shive, IT Chief Financial Officer Bill Lake and Community Health Assistant Director Michael Isaacson as the officials who have been given pay raises or had their salary established by McConnaughay without Executive Committee or County Board compliance.

“I would like (Karen McConnaughay) to admit that she violated county statutes by giving out these pay raises,” MacRunnels said. “I asked my County Board member if he was aware of these raises, and he was not aware (of it). At that point in time, I said the only action I have as a citizen is to get involved and file the suit against her.”

MacRunnels said he believes McConnaughay should have to admit to newspapers and all 90,000 households in Kane County that she gave out unauthorized pay raises.

“That’s punishment enough, but she needs to step up and do that,” he said.

The lawsuit cites a Kane County code that establishes the Executive Committee’s jurisdiction over all matters pertaining to the compensation of all members of the County Board, the rules of order of the County Board, fees, salaries, clerk-hiring for and in all departments of the county, and the amount of the salary and per diem compensation of all county officers not otherwise set by law.

“MacRunnels is talking about a county code where the Executive Committee sets the salaries for the executive directors,” McConnaughay said. “Back in the early ’90s, the Executive Committee delegated that responsibility to the employee’s review, and the setting of salaries to the County Board chairman and to the respective committee chair.”

McConnaughay also said she doesn’t think the lawsuit has any merit.

“The state’s attorney will represent the chairman’s interest in this (matter),” she said.

County to facilitate solution to village flooding

by Susan O’Neill
A meeting about the flooding in Mallard Point scheduled for the beginning of June cannot come soon enough for resident Mike Schoenberger. Schoenberger described himself as the “latest casualty in Mallard Point” during a Village Board meeting on Tuesday.

Schoenberger, who lives on Brook-haven in the subdivision, told board members that in the past week and a half, he has been pumping 150,000 gallons of water a day in a futile attempt to keep his finished basement dry.

During previous meetings with the village, Mallard Point residents have complained of standing water, flooded basements and excessive electric bills to continually run two and sometimes three sump pumps.

During the construction of Mallard Point Subdivision in the early 1990s, the developer improved an existing wetland for use as a storm water management facility. A developer bankruptcy, the lack of a homeowners association and other problems continued to plague the subdivision.

The recent heavy rains have brought the situation to a head.

Earlier this year, the village hired Trotter & Associates to conduct a study of the problem. Engineer Mark Bushnell found mud and overgrown vegetation blocking the water flow from the subdivision, causing the neighborhood’s drainage problems and flooding. Bushnell estimated the area has 17 acres of excess storm water.

The village has removed a large amount of the vegetation to allow the water to drain slowly to the south. However, the spring’s heavy rains have worsened the problem, creating more flooding and rendering useless the acres of farm land to the south.

Paul Schuch, Kane County’s Director of Water Resources, will facilitate the discussion during the Wednesday, June 3, meeting of village officials, the Rob Roy Drainage District Board, Trotter & Associates and Tom Huddleston, an expert on drain tiles, to try to find a solution to the problems.

“The county deals with this issue on a county-wide basis,” Village Administrator Brent Eichelberger said.

Karen Romero, a neighbor of Schoenberger, said she is becoming more and more frustrated with the situation.

“It’s a health issue,” she said on Tuesday. “I’m at the point where I’m going to call the Health Department.”