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Illinois Tollway reduces obstacles to meetings, moves board room –

CHICAGO, IL. (ECWd) –

We received a complaint that people were forced to show identification and state their names just to enter the building where Tollway meetings were held, and forwarded that complaint to Illinois Tollway Authority Board Chairman Bob Schillerstrom.

Here is what we sent:

We have received a complaint that a person must show identification in order to enter the building to attend a Tollway Authority board meeting. Requiring identification to enter a building to attend a public meeting is, or can be construed as, a form of intimidation and could effectively stop some people from attending the meeting. I suggest it violates the Open Meetings Act by implementing unreasonable rules in order to attend a public meeting. If I can enter into the State Capitol and the offices of all the legislators without showing identification or signing in, and enter every courthouse in this state without showing identification, why would I ever have to show identification to attend a Tollway meeting? Thanks for your consideration of this issue, and please eliminate the identification requirements to attend a public meeting of the Authority.

Chairman Schillerstrom responded stating he agreed with our analysis and informed us of the steps taken to remove this obstacle.

He further stated in his letter that “we recognize the importance of having open meetings in an otherwise secure building. Our building is secure for the safety of our employees. Due to this problem, we are making changes to our building and will relocate our boardroom form the central part of the third floor to our first floor by the public entrance. People will then be able to simply enter and leave our meetings without any impediment and will still be segregated from the employee section of the building.

This is an example of how things should work when clear violations are identified.  We thank them for taking corrective action.

Read his letter below, or at this link (here):

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2 replies »

  1. The least of the Tollway’s problems is requiring ID’s to get to monthly or Committee meetings. While moving to the 1st floor is helpful, how about the secret staff meetings where the Tollway basically awards 100s of millions of no bid engineering and consulting contracts when the Tollway Board, normally without discussion, approves the backroom recommendations.?Using this method the Tollway recently gave a $150-million no bid contract to an engineering firm that employs the Tollway Chair’s daughter as a marketing manager and the Tollway’s Chief Engineer’s son as an engineer. And then there is the $6.6-million sub-contracts for public relations to the firm owned by the wife of a State Representative with no vote of the Tollway Board. Dig a little deeper into this ethically challenged organization.

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