Rob Sherman News
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October 12, 2010
Sherman declares candidacy
for Buffalo Grove Village Clerk
I announce my candidacy for Village Clerk of Buffalo Grove in the municipal election of April 5, 2011, and I intend to win.
The incumbent, the popular and personable Jan Sirabian, has, unfortunately, demonstrated that she is no longer reliable. Whether it's advancing age, loss of motivation or Lisa Stone driving her nuts, Jan has repeatedly failed the citizens of Buffalo Grove by botching the job, over and over, during this term.
The top two jobs of Village Clerk is to safeguard Village records and to record a proper set of Minutes of public meetings.
Jan has lost the audio tape of an Executive Session of the Village Board. That's where Village Trustees meet privately, behind closed doors, to discuss such things as sale or acquisition of real estate, collective bargaining and the hiring or termination of personnel. The Illinois Open Meetings Act allows such private discussions of a limited number of public matters. For example, the owner of a piece of real estate might substantially increase the price of the property if the owner knew that the government was looking to buy it. A prospective employee who currently has a job, somewhere else, may not want his current employer to know that he's looking around for something else.
Jan has even lost her keys to Village Hall, and then didn't report the keys missing for something like eighteen months.
Her proposed Minutes (back-up copy) of the recent Finance Committee meeting, which lasted close to three hours, consisted of one sentence containing six substantive words: "Staff members presented reports and updates." The State Open Meetings Act requires that Minutes contain a "summary of discussion." Jan's Minutes were one six-word sentence to summarize all of the discussions that took place, by staff and by Trustees, over a three-hour period, on several highly controversial issues of tax policy, such as whether we need to raise taxes and, if so, which ones and by how much.
Not only that. Jan's Minutes of the Finance Committee meeting were entitled Minutes of the Committee of the Whole, demonstrating that Jan didn't even know where she was at the time. Jan then listed two Trustees as being absent, even though those two Trustees aren't even on the Finance Committee. They are, however, up for re-election in April, so that can't be helpful to them.
The job of Village Clerk is to get these things right. People are human, so I recognize that somebody might make a mistake, somewhere along the line, but it surely is unprecedented for one Village Clerk to make so many major screw-ups in so short a time. Jan has become the Brooks Conrad of municipal government.
When your Minutes of a three-hour meeting consist of one six-word sentence, that says that you're not even trying, any more.
It's time for a change.
So, what are my qualifications? Why do I think that I could do the job better?
I have a long track record of getting both of those key jobs right (securing the assets and reporting the Minutes properly).
First, in regards to security, I have been a highly visible public figure for a long time, so properly securing our things and defending them from loss has been a very high priority for decades. I've never lost anything.
On the same subject, I'm an airplane pilot. The FAA requires that I keep a pilot log book and an aircraft maintenance log book, among other documents. A pilot can't be losing his log books! I wouldn't be flying anywhere if I lost my log books, and I surely wouldn't be able to fly if I lost the keys to my airplane!
I keep all of my flying log books secure and have never lost any of them. I keep the keys to my airplane in a specific, safe place at all times and have never lost them, either.
Next, I've been a legal secretary for two decades for one of the civil rights lawyers that has worked with me on social justice issues, so I know how to type, and do it with speed and accuracy.
I've been a professional journalist for decades, so I know how to keep track of what happens at a meeting and accurately report same in news stories or, in this case, in Minutes of a meeting.
I've attended innumerable Village Board and other government meetings, so I'm intimately familiar with what goes on, there. From the first day that I'm Village Clerk of Buffalo Grove, I'll fully understand what's going on at Village meetings, so I'll be able to report them accurately in Minutes without having to guess about the meaning of something that took place.
I can do the job.
In past elections that I've run in, voters have indicated that they prefer to have somebody else making policy decisions. I accept that decision of the voters, which is why I didn't run for State Rep, again, this year.
As a candidate for Village Clerk, however, I'm running for the purpose of providing a technical service that has nothing to do with my opinions about religion or anything else. I'm not running for the purpose of making any policy decisions on social issues, religious issues or tax policy. I'm running to do a job that solely involves performing technical duties accurately, completely and reliably.
The choice may come down to an incumbent who has demonstrated that she is no longer capable of doing the job reliably, or me, who is very well qualified to do the job accurately, completely and reliably.
I look forward to the voters' decision in April, 2011. If they decide that they prefer incompetence to having an atheist hold public office, that's fine with me. At least they had a chance to vote for somebody who can do the job accurately, completely and reliably.
Please call me at (847) 870-0700 or e-mail me if you are a registered voter in Buffalo Grove and would like to sign my Nominating Petition. I need several hundred signatures to get on the ballot, so your signature matters.
I'll be announcing dates and times when I'll be at specific locations where you can come and sign my nominating petition and talk to me about the campaign.
I'll also be announcing how to contribute money to help me offset certain necessary expenses of running this campaign, such as the cost of my Election Law attorney, who will make sure that all of the papers that I file are drawn up properly. You wouldn't want me to be kicked off the ballot on a technicality. Besides, that wouldn't demonstrate very good skills for being Village Clerk.
Previous Rob Sherman News stories about this subject matter:
Monday, October 11: Sherman renews call for Buffalo Grove Village Clerk to resign
Wednesday, October 6: Term Limits of 32 years proposed for Buffalo Grove elected officials
Tues, 10/5: New scandal regarding Buffalo Grove "Minutes": Was it Finance Committee or Comm of the Whole?
Monday, October 4: Buffalo Grove Village Clerk doesn't get it in dispute over meeting Minutes
Sunday, October 3: Buffalo Grove Trustee backs Sherman in dispute over meeting Minutes
Saturday, October 2: Illinois Open Meetings Act backs Sherman in dispute over Buffalo Grove meeting Minutes
Friday, October 1: Sherman to challenge Minutes of Buffalo Grove Committee of the Whole meeting
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