Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Community Forum-Last Minute Notice (As Usual)

WHEN: Thursday, September 27 at 7:00 PM

WHERE: Mundelein Center Auditorium- Loyola University
1020 W. Sheridan Road

Many thanks to Craig at The Broken Heart of Rogers Park for sharing this with us, since there is no mention of this important meeting on Alderman Joe Moore's official site today.

With Craig's permission, I'm taking the lazy road tonight, and cutting and pasting the announcement from his blog, as follows:

Dear Readers:

As local elected officials, we have an obligation to our constituents to provide them with a voice in Springfield. This year, we spoke with many local groups and organizations about their needs and concerns to help deliver improved services.

When crafted a new state budget, we worked to pass a responsible spending plan that serves those most in need, including persons with disabilities, immigrant and refugee families, the homeless and individuals suffering from AIDS. Further, we worked to provide needed funding for local schools, park districts, fire stations, municipalities, economic development and to assist our senior citizens.

This funding was secured in order to provide our most needy residents with the services they rely on. However, Gov. Rod Blagojevich disagreed. He not only cut these crucial local projects from the budget, but in doing so he insulted the integrity of many worthy community groups by labeling the funding as 'pork'. Now the ability of these organizations to provide needed programs to the families they serve has been severely damaged.We are hosting a community forum at 7pm on Thursday, Sept. 27, at the Mundelein Center Auditorium of Loyola University, 1020 W. Sheridan Road to hear from area community organizations and local governments about how the governor's harmful budget cuts may affect their operations and ability to provide services.

We encourage anyone who is concerned about the loss of these needed projects to attend this hearing. It is important that we build the necessary support for an override of the governor's vetoes, and your attendance at this forum can help build the necessary momentum. We look forward to seeing you there.


Now, this is what I call Transparancy in Government. Here we are, two days in front of the most important community meeting of the year, and none of our elected officials, least of all our 49th Ward AlderBeast, sees fit to put an announcement on his or her official site, or send e-mail notices, or in any other manner inform citizens of this event so that they can mark their calendars and make plans. No doubt notice of this meeting will appear tomorrow or the day of the event itself, on Moore's site and those of other officials, so they can claimed they served notice of the event while making sure that short enough notice was given that many busy citizens have made other plans that cannot be postponed, and that attendance at the meeting will therefore be very minimal.

I unfortunately cannot attend, as I have a business event I must attend and had already arranged, so I hope another blogger attends and reports on the event. I also hope many citizens attend and make themselves heard at this event.

Monday, September 24, 2007

Edgewater Beach Neighbors Association Meeting

The Edgewater Beach Neighbors Association will meet tomorrow, Tuesday, at 7:00 PM, at the Edgewater Presbysterian Church, 1020 W. Bryn Mawr.

Matters to be discussed include:

* Proposal for development at St. Andrew's Greek Orthodox Church, at Sheridan &
* Nomination of Officers
* Foster Avenue Beautification

Renters and homeowners are welcome to join in all monthly meetings.

More information is available at: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Edgewater_Beach_Neighbors

Friday, September 21, 2007

Housing Horror of the Week: Lakeview Highrise Evacuated Because of Asbestos

This week, I'm starting a new feature called Housing Horror of the Week, to cover egregious abuses of homebuyers and renters by sleazy, unscrupulous developers and landlords; and insensitive, ham-fisted government officials.

This week's horror is yet another recent condo conversion, at 2930 N. Sheridan Road in Lakeview. The mostly-vacated building was still being renovated when a worker disturbed some asbestos pipe insulation, necessitating the immediate evacuation of the building's remaining residents, including new condo buyers who had just recently moved in.

My problem with the evacuation at this building was not the fact that it was done, which was only appropriate and necessary, but with the way it was conducted. Residents were given very short notice, apparantly less than 24 hours, to gather what personal effects they could and clear out. No assistance, such as help locating a place to sleep on such short notice, was offered, and the residents were evicted so quickly most of them did not have time to gather clothing and toiletries sufficient for an overnight stay elsewhere, let alone a month.

I'll be bringing more Housing Horror stories as they emerge and I can verify the story. This one appeared in the Chicago Tribune (title link)