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April 20, 2024

Is this why Bill Thomas has free reign in Atlanta? Gifts-Bonuses-Travel Payments?

By John Kraft & Kirk Allen

On January 19, 2018


Atlanta Public Library District – Many have wondered why the Board of Trustees of a Library District would allow such shenanigan’s to happen in Atlanta, Illinois over the course of the past several years.

From alleged false grant applications, clear and continued conflicts of interest, family members of trustees on the payroll, circumvention of prevailing wage act, highly questionable and suspect financial reporting, mixing of personal and public bank accounts, and inaccurate reporting of financial status to the Secretary of State – just to name a few.

Then the Board sits there quiet as a church mouse, even voting to blindly pay bills (and voluntarily gift away their statutory duty of exclusive control of library funds) three months before any bills have even been received – and one of the final checks written for the year being one for “Bonus and Gifts” written to Board Member and Board Treasurer, Bill Thomas – written to himself. What a deal! There was no board meeting to authorize a bonus and/or gift to a board member or anyone else – especially when the law explicitly states “shall serve without compensation…” – one would think a trustee of a library district would know how to read and interpret such a 4-word phrase.

Another questionable check was written to another Library Board Member, Lori Cotton, allegedly for “Rental income Union Hall” – which may be another illegal payment to a board member. Of course, we are looking into these questions surrounding this payment. It might be deposit reimbursement, however, it should have been labeled as such. We will provide an update on the purpose of this check.

Another questionable check was written to a company owned by Bill Thomas for travel expenses. It was written to Teleologic Learning Co. What is the Library doing paying for travel expenses to the company owned by a Board member?

Then we receive this photo (taken a couple days ago), and since photos are worth a thousand words, we will leave you without comment other than to say the conversation at this table was allegedly about how Bill Thomas was in charge of this and in charge of that and how “he” knows how to bring visitors to town, etc… (the guy on Bill Thomas’s left is the Chairman of the Atlanta Public Library Board (and employee of the City of Atlanta)).

Who paid for this meal?



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  • Atlanta Deserves Better
    Posted at 11:53h, 19 January

    It is certainly disappointing to see that Lori and the other trustees sit there and never question anything. Maybe they do question things in the secret meetings they have before and after the public meetings that are not posted to the public but we see them happening. They just had one Tuesday night on 1/16. As someone who has worked with Lori in the past I’m shocked and disappointed that she is continuing to be involved in this. The entire board needs to be arrested.

    • jmkraft
      Posted at 11:57h, 19 January

      send us the info on the “meeting” on 1/16.

  • John Q. Public
    Posted at 19:28h, 19 January

    Where is the State’s Attorney on this ?

    • jmkraft
      Posted at 19:32h, 19 January


  • Cindy
    Posted at 09:20h, 20 January

    Apparently the whole of Illinois is ignorant and on the take. Our motto: Run for any office and feather your own nest. (Everybody does it!)