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May 23, 2024

Heltsley Sticks It To Us – Burgin/Hopper Rake It In –

By Kirk Allen & John Kraft

On July 7, 2014


The Edgar County Board held a special meeting today and as expected, Mike Heltsley led the charge to ensure Burgin and Hopper didn’t have to face the arbitrator for the set-off determination by making the motion to pass the settlement for both of them.  We had previously reported this was about to happen, and was driven by Heltsley (here). His motion was seconded by Board member Alan Zuber. As it relates to Burgin, all voted in favor except Dan Bruner. The chairman failed to vote again.

Helstley’s second motion was seconded by Board member Dale English as it relates to Hopper. All voted in favor except the Chairman who failed to vote again.

Contrary to months of Mike Heltsley telling the world that this matter was going to cost the county $300,000.00 (this article), Mike was wrong again.  The total amount came to $186,030.58 which is over $113,000.00 less than claimed by Mr. Helstley.

I’m sure it will be touted and praised that Burgin and Hopper reduced what they were after in order to get a quick settlement, but the key point that people need to be aware of, is that it could have been significantly less if Heltsley didn’t “stick it to you” and had the matter been allowed to go to arbitration for set-off determinations. Instead of “made whole”, they were enriched.

— No motion was made to retain Burgin’s settlement funds as partial payment of the $100,000.00 that he still owes the taxpayers of Edgar County for the ambulance service contract (review our “Ten Years of Deceit” series).
— He was successful in squeezing an additional $64,000 in January of 2013 in a different lawsuit (here) stemming from an agreement with former sheriff Crippes.
— He was also a major player in Edgar County’s insurance paying out $162,738.00 in 2012 when he lost a federal civil rights lawsuit.

But him and those that support him think that we are costing the county money with a few FOIA requests. Think about that the next time you hear that one.

The document that says it all better than we could dream of is from the Attorney representing the county who pleaded with them to not settle this.  Read it for yourself!

[gview file=”” save=”1″]

As usual, here are the supporting documents for this article:

(Click here for Burgin Settlement document)

(Click here for Hopper Settlement document)

(Click Here for Sheriff’s justification to allow arbitrator determine set off)




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  • Disappointed
    Posted at 21:37h, 07 July

    If ANYONE – EVER talks about how nice a guy Tim Crippes is and what a great Sheriff he was – you aught to knock some sense into them, then and there. Does anyone know just how much Tim has cost this county, not just in $ but in other imnmeasurable losses ? With the personality he had once been known for as he grew up, he could have worked with anyone and accomplished much for the Sheriff’s Department AND the citizens, if he had just done it. What a waste – and a shame. This is what happens when people cast their vote for a man simply to further their own agenda, with no regard for job qualifications or lack thereof.

  • Old
    Posted at 22:06h, 07 July

    Remind me not to vote for Zuber or English in the next election. Both of you shit on the citizens of Edgar County. Shame on you both. Heltsey, how much did Hopper and Burgin promise you for your betrayal of the citizens who you serve. I hope it was worth it because as far as I’m concerned you are scum. I will not be voteing for anyone who passed this vote. You should all be scorned for the rest of your tenure on the board. This should have run it’s course with the arbitrator for the set off determination. Thank you Dan for voteing NO. You are an honorable man.

  • Kirk Allen
    Posted at 22:43h, 07 July

    As far as not voting for Zuber or English, you can only vote for one board member in your district. Dan voted Present on the Burgin agreement but did vote Yes on the Hopper one. Not sure why?

  • eric pratt
    Posted at 00:44h, 08 July

    Disappointed is exactly the word. Don’t any of these people understand what they are doing to the county they live in? Both Hopper and Burgin deserved as little as possible, and in my opinion could have been sued for their own behavior. None of this makes sense.

  • Old
    Posted at 05:58h, 08 July

    Kirk you are right but the fact remains, the county board members screwed the voters of the county, again.r We should keep this in mind at the next election and act accordingly. The ring leader(s) should be hung out to dry. The actiions of these board members over the last few years is disgusting, and they tell us they represent the voters? B.S., they are just taking care of themselves. With the exception of one or two. You know what they say about karma and paybacks? Well!!!! That money belongs to the voters, I think if the board members want to pay this money then it should come entirely out of their pockets not ours. We didn’t give them permission to spend our money like that. I know, a small amount will come out of their pockets along with ours, but it should all be paid by them. I think we need a woman or two on the board to provide balance and reason. Aren’t there any woman out there who will stand up to these guys? I don’t mean Adonna, she’s one of the problems we had before.

  • Nutjob958
    Posted at 06:42h, 08 July

    Once again lame politics and favoritism raises it’s ugly and brainless head.

  • Frank Lindo
    Posted at 16:05h, 09 July

    After reading your article, i’m still wondering how one board member can “Stick it to us”…when as it relates to Burgin, all voted in favor except Dan Bruner and as it relates to Hopper all voted in favor except the Chairman who failed to vote again. Please explain

  • franklin
    Posted at 20:41h, 09 July

    very good Frank Lindo
    Nothing will ever be said about board member Voight even though he is as much a fault as the other board members

    • Kirk Allen
      Posted at 08:46h, 10 July

      As John explained, the “stick it to us” was referenced because it was Heltsley that got exactly what he wanted. And yes, all those who voted for it are as much to blame, including Voight.

  • Frank Lindo
    Posted at 07:10h, 10 July

    So John, you recycled an old title that doesn’t pertain to this article…that’s very bad “journalism.” Article titles should always relate to the subject matter. I suggest you either change the article title or delete this garbage.

    • jmkraft
      Posted at 09:07h, 10 July

      The title and the previous article had everything to do with this article. It was Mike that said he wanted to stick it to him, but he can’t think far enough ahead to realize that by sticking it to the sheriff, he is actually sticking it to the taxpayers.

  • ED's Detective
    Posted at 07:25h, 10 July

    The total cost for this was$244,755.11which includes county part of taxes and slepp. So Mike was pretty close. If u add Wat the attorney fees are it is at the 300,000 mark or over.

    • Kirk Allen
      Posted at 09:09h, 10 July

      The attorney costs were NO WHERE near what you claim. Put up or shut up! POST the checks to support your false claim!

    • jmkraft
      Posted at 09:10h, 10 July

      Like the article stated, had they waited for arbitration and the set-off, it could have been considerably less that what was paid.
      But in an effort to “stick it to him” that did not happen.

      What are the attorney fees? Since you know, why don’t you tell us?

  • Kirk Allen
    Posted at 09:12h, 10 July

    Hey Frank, go read the title of the past one and then this one. It was not recycled. This title DOES relate to the article because it was MIKE HELSTLEY that made the motion! Had he not made the motion would someone else have made it? It took some time to get even a second on Burgins. Helstley is the one who stuck it to us by making the motion.

  • Charlie Ipswitch
    Posted at 12:30h, 10 July

    …nice editing and changing of the article and the responses…when you twist facts around trying to create your own truth, you end up chasing your tail trying to make up stuff to make it all jibe. I would quit while I was ahead, you watchdogs look like complete liars.

  • Frank Lindo
    Posted at 14:06h, 10 July

    Kirk – You’re letting your personal feelings against Heltsley get in the way of accurate journalism. I’ll state it again: The title of your article doesn’t relate to the subject matter. One board member cannot “stick it to us” when the majority vote in favor. You’re claim that he stuck it to us by making the motion doesn’t HOLD WATER. Here’s an idea for a new title: Edgar County Board votes UNANIMOUSLY in favor of Burgin/Hopper Settlement.

    • jmkraft
      Posted at 14:58h, 10 July

      Your suggestion for a new title would be a lie. The board DID NOT vote unanimously in favor of the Burgin/Hopper settlement.

    • Kirk Allen
      Posted at 15:18h, 10 July

      Frank your suggestion is laughable at best. It was NOT a unanimous vote so why would we report that?

  • franklin
    Posted at 15:45h, 10 July

    were there any no votes yes or no chairman didnt vote brunner one present one yes

    • jmkraft
      Posted at 16:45h, 10 July


      What you typed above still does not equal unanimous.

  • Frank Lindo
    Posted at 15:57h, 10 July

    Thanks for editing my response, I never put the word UNANIMOUSLY in there. My original post read, Edgar County Board votes in favor of Burgin/Hopper Settlement…Why would I say UNANIMOUSLY, when I stated 2 sentences before that it was a MAJORITY vote in favor.

    I have made my point. The title of your article doesn’t relate to the subject matter. You can spin it however you like…It’s not fair to say that Mike “stuck it to us” by making a motion that ALL VOTED IN FAVOR except Bruner. Change the title or delete your garbage, or just edit my response AGAIN.

    • jmkraft
      Posted at 16:45h, 10 July

      If you keep getting on here and lying about what you, yourself typed, I will simply delete your comments. We have no interest in editing your responses, simply because they were wrong. Now you are trying to cover your tracks by claiming we edited the response again. I have no idea why you would contradict yourself when you posted, I cannot read your mind.

      It is fair to say the Heltsley “stuck it to us” because those are the words that came out of his own mouth in previous meetings about this settlement.

    • Kirk Allen
      Posted at 18:07h, 10 July

      Frank you are a liar. I responded using your words of unanimously and you know damn good and well you wrote that. What you originally posted was “all voted in favor except Dan Bruner and as it relates to Hopper all voted in favor except the Chairman who failed to vote again.”

      That was not true as it relates to Burgin because ALL did not vote. How can the Chairman not vote and you consider ALL voted? Screen capture you posts from now on because you lies are not going to be tolerated. The only point you have made is that you have a problem with truth.

  • Rodney Adlake
    Posted at 20:25h, 10 July

    Notice how the protectors of the status quo come out to troll the boards here and try to make the reporters/messengers out to be the bad guys. The spotlight wasn’t cast on this crooked bunch of thieves at the board until the watchdogs got on the job. No local media cared how bad and rotten this government is. Why do you think 25 percent of the people in the state of Illinois say it is the worst state to live in? Why do you think Illinois ranks last in trust of governmental leaders? Because of the lies, thieves, and outright psychopaths running things locally and at the state level. And because enough idiots and fan clubbers are willing to keep their friends in office, no matter how rotten they are. WATCHDOGS…KEEP IT UP! GOOD WORK!

  • franklin
    Posted at 07:25h, 11 July

    The chairman failed to vote again.
    Please explain

    • jmkraft
      Posted at 07:30h, 11 July

      He did not vote.
      He is required to vote.
      How much of an explanation do you need?

    • Kirk Allen
      Posted at 08:44h, 11 July

      (55 ILCS 5/2-1006) (from Ch. 34, par. 2-1006)
      Sec. 2-1006. Open meetings. The county board shall sit with open doors, and all persons may attend their meetings. The vote on all propositions to appropriate money from the county treasury shall be taken by “ayes” and “nays” and entered on the record of the meeting.
      (Source: P.A. 86-962.)

      The Chairman is a member of the County Board. By law, he is required to vote. “Shall be taken by “ayes” and “nays” and entered on the record of the meeting.”

      Please tell me you Franklin that you understand that simple law!

  • franklin
    Posted at 12:54h, 11 July

    Many counties in illinois chairman only votes to break tie
    So if you are so correct I would submit your civil rights law suits to each and every county
    looked at several countys voting rule and even found were chairman is elected as chairman at large for county
    and doesnt vote unless there is a tie

  • Kirk Allen
    Posted at 13:31h, 11 July

    If the chairman is elected then you are correct, he is to vote only to break a tie and that is spelled out specifically by statute. When not elected, they are required to vote by law. The fact some counties draft policies that violate the law doesn’t make it right.

    Please explain how those not voting when they should is a civil rights violation? How are my civil rights violated?

    • franklin
      Posted at 13:53h, 11 July

      You Are not in his district but did you claim same against PATRICK AND JOHN FILLED BECA– USE HIS VOTE WAS LOST DO TO CHAIR NOT VOTING

      • jmkraft
        Posted at 14:52h, 11 July

        Franklin – Yes, it is still part of the ongoing lawsuit, and it played a big part of it. When they refuse to vote, it takes away the rights of the citizen to vote and have their vote count.

      • Kirk Allen
        Posted at 15:13h, 11 July

        Franklin, its “filed” and “due” to chair not voting however that filing WAS NOT a civil rights case.

  • John Doe
    Posted at 20:28h, 14 July

    Watchdogs: Don’t let them get you off-track on their little details.