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July 20, 2024

Algonquin Township Road District – Unionization had nothing to do with Rabine Group – Ed Komenda missed the facts, Editors failed the public.

By Kirk Allen & John Kraft

On June 21, 2018

McHenry Co. (ECWd) –

One of the primary issues that created all the legal turmoil for the Algonquin Road District was the secret unionization of the Road District prior to Bob Miller’s departure as Highway Commissioner.

Ed Komenda with the Northwest Herald claimed this unionization was because: “The Rabine sighting scared them”. Rabine being a paving company that was contacted by the current Highway Commissioner prior to taking office.  The reporting attempted to bolster that position by quoting similar claims from a union representative and former Road District employee Derek Lee, son-in-law of the former Highway Commissioner Bob Miller.

The evidence we have obtained and will lay out in detail in this article will expose key facts that paint a much different picture than the one being “told” by Komenda and the Northwest Herald.

Key quotes of interest from Ed Komenda in the NWH:

  • “That is exactly why they unionized,” Fahey said. “They were afraid of the privatization and outsourcing of their jobs. He had Rabine on the roads.” 
  • “Why did the Algonquin Township Highway Department employees unionize?  In short, the answer is simple: The Rabine sighting scared them.”
  • “We had heard his plan was to completely privatize the road district, meaning we would be out of jobs,” Lee said. “We saw Rabine driving around and assumed he was putting together a quote of what it would cost to do the roads. It made us all a little nervous.”
  • “Between Feb. 28, 2017, and May 15, 2017, a group of Algonquin Township Highway Department employees spotted a red Rabine Group vehicle driving roads, stopping and surveying at certain intersections.”

The above statements have no evidence to support them.  What we have obtained actually disproves them!

We have always asked, Says Who and With What Proof?  To us, the proof is not just some person’s word, as their word is nothing more than the first part of our two-part criteria.  Let this be an example why reporting quotes without supporting facts is not a good idea.

Rich Fahey, Local 150’s business representative is quoted that the exact reason the Road District unionized is they were afraid of the privatization and outsourcing of their jobs because he (Gasser) had Rabine on the roads.  Komenda echoes that position with his quote: “The Rabine sighting scared them”. 

According to Komenda and apparently his Editors, these claimed sightings of Rabine is the reason for unionization of the Algonquin Township Road District.

100% totally false!   

What Proof?

The paper trail and timeline!

Let’s start with Komenda’s claimed timeline of February 28th through May 15, 2017. It would appear the paper was unable to identify the actual dates this paving company was on the road so they threw a broad timeline out there to support their narrative that just happens to be from the date Gasser won the primary to the day he took office.

Let’s work backward from May 15, 2017, and show how this fabricated timeline crumbles under a basic analysis of facts, as does the employee and union representative’s quotes.

  • Considering the effective date of the collective bargaining agreement is May 1, 2017, how would sightings after that date have anything to do with unionization?

Alleged timeline now narrows to February 28th – May 1, 2017?

Alleged timeline now narrows to February 28th – April 25, 2017?

  • April 21, 2017, Derek Lee emails Bob Miller with suggested changes to the collective bargaining agreement, (called contract in the email), as suggested by his wife, Miller’s daughter, Rebecca Lee. Changes to the CBA point to it being well under way by this date, thus sightings after that date would have nothing to do with unionization.  

Alleged timeline now narrows to February 28th – April 21, 2017?

  • On April 10th, the Illinois Labor Relations Board certified the bargaining unit, as reported here.

Alleged timeline now narrows to February 28th – April 10, 2017?

Alleged timeline now narrows to February 28th-March 15, 2017?

Alleged timeline now narrows to February 28th-March 9, 2017?

Alleged timeline now narrows to February 28th-March 7, 2017?

  • March 6, 2017, Bob Miller receives an email with an attachment.  The subject is “Warren Township Union 150 contract.”.  That clearly indicates Bob Miller is working on this unionization process and looking at contracts or possibly collective bargaining agreements.  

Alleged timeline finally narrows to February 28th-March 6, 2017?

As you can see, the subject of unions was under Bob Miller’s awareness as early as March 6, 2017.  The fact he is obtaining a union contract from another Township raises many questions as to who really started this process but before we dive into that, which is worthy of its own article, look at the timeline.

Facts have narrowed the Komenda narrative from forty-six days to 7.  Yes, 7 whole days are all that is left to support the narrative that the reason the employees unionized was that of Rabine vehicles being spotted out on the road.  How did Komenda and his Editors miss eight key points that clearly dispute the Komenda timeline?

When was Rabine actually on the road?  

That is a question that should have been confirmed before publishing a bunch of quotes that now are disproven with an actual paper trail.

Rabine Group was actually on the road doing their study for three days, April 12-14th, 2017.

So if Rabine, according to their own letter, was on the roads three days in April, 12-14th, the entire narrative pushed by the union representative, Road District employee and the local reporter and Editors absolutely crumbles because the decision to unionize was locked in place no later than March 15, 2017, a whole month before Rabine was ever even on the roads doing the study.

What did they say?

  • He had Rabine on the roads.” –  Well after the unionization was locked in place!
  • The Rabine sighting scared them.” – Scared them?  Why were they scared since unionization was locked in place before they ever saw them? 
  • We saw Rabine driving around and assumed he was putting together a quote of what it would cost to do the roads. It made us all a little nervous.” – Really?  Made you a little nervous?  Why would you be a little nervous when you were emailing key contract points to your father-in-law before you could have ever seen Rabine driving around at Gasser’s request? 
  • “Between Feb. 28, 2017, and May 15, 2017, a group of Algonquin Township Highway Department employees spotted a red Rabine Group vehicle driving roads, stopping and surveying at certain intersections.”  – The only time they could have spotted Rabine doing this study was April 12-14th, 2017, thus blowing their fabricated timeline out of the water, as do all the facts that point to actual unionization long before any Rabine vehicle was on the road! 

The entire narrative presented by Komenda appears to be based on false information that is clearly disputed by the paper trail created by some of the very people involved in the unionization process.

It would appear there is an attempt to create a narrative that draws attention away from the actual self-dealing that took place in the entire collective bargaining process.  When the person in charge is secretly getting emails from his son-in-law, an employee, who presents suggested changes to the collective bargaining agreement based off of suggestions from his wife, the daughter of the person in charge, it makes it clear this was not a fair and proper negotiation process.


Rabine being on the road doing their study had absolutely nothing to do with the Road District employees unionizing.  Ed Komenda got it wrong as did his Editors.  They should print a retraction and apology for such a blatant disregard for the facts.


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  • Cindy
    Posted at 23:41h, 21 June Reply

    Everyone involved in this collusion have proved themselves to be corrupt if not outright criminal in their intentions. Why would anyone expect the local Ministry of Truth newspaper to do any legitimate reporting?

  • Michael Tauler
    Posted at 08:04h, 22 June Reply

    Oh look! a letter dated last week Friday, 20 days after Ed’s article, says the facts are different.

    Would you care to explain how Ed’s direct quoting of Rich Fahey is not a fact?

    Would you care to explain how Ed’s direct quoting of Derek Lee s not a fact?

    Quotes that lead to the conclusion “Why did the Algonquin Township Highway Department employees unionize? In short, the answer is simple: The Rabine sighting scared them.”

    A conclusion that came about because Rabine did not respond to Ed, they could have responded to Ed with the exact same letter but they chose not to.

    By the way that letter also says:

    “Rabine Paving LLC Compiled the information in to a lengthy report and met with Mr. Gasser to discuss the assessment process”

    But when Ed submitted a FOIA for the Rabine report the response from Gasser was “There are no reports.”

    So we have a reporter who published a story based on the information from and direct quotes of people directly involved being called a liar by people who lied about the existence of a report (IN RESPONSE TO A FOIA REQUEST, NONE THE LESS) and by a letter fabricated 20 days AFTER the article was published.

    hmmmmm… sounds like someone is trying to revise history to me.

    • Kirk Allen
      Posted at 10:58h, 22 June Reply

      A quote is not a fact. It is a persons opinion. In order for it to be a fact it needs to have support. A proper reporting would not have drawn a conclusion from opinions. The document is NOT subject to FOIA. There was no lie about the report. Gasser DID NOT have a copy of that report. We saw reporting at the College of DuPage do the same thing. Report peoples words as fact without ever confirming those quotes to be accurate. Rabine aside, the paper trail that was in the public record PROVES he drew a conclusion that was in contradiction to the opinions he reported.

      • Michael Tauler
        Posted at 12:03h, 22 June Reply

        Reporting a quote is reporting a fact, the fact in and of itself is the quote. it is factual that these people said these things, full stop.

        If I ask someone “why did you do this thing?” I can then report to others the FACT that they said why they did the thing.

        Your “April 21, 2017, Derek Lee emails Bob Miller “, “March 9th, 2017 email from Bob Miller to Ron Lukasik”, “March 7, 2017, Miller sends the same email to James Kelly.”, and “March 6, 2017, Bob Miller receives an email” records do not have full email headers and in fact could easily be done up in word

        Without the full headers there is no proof they are emails to anyone outside the admins of the mail servers who can cross-reference the timestamps with the server logs.

        htt p://www.filedropper. com/notreal

        I submit this as PROOF that without full headers your documents I mentioned mean nothing.

        • Kirk Allen
          Posted at 20:29h, 22 June Reply

          Want to place any money where your mouth is? I can email you the actual emails. I also have just confirmed from yet another third party the contract that was sent and that public body provided it, confirming it was sent as the attachment. If they mean nothing and are not true then let the senders say so! LOL. I have so much proof they are real it’s a joke that your silly enough to make the claim you are. Please keep talking, the humor is appreciated. LOL

          • Michael Tauler
            Posted at 20:42h, 22 June

            Then post the full hedder, I will admit I am wrong, I have done it before and I don’t pretend to know all.

            My point stands until proven otherwise, the PDF is missing crucial information.

            I made no accusation as to it being false or even if it is false that your group did it, I just pointed out that it is possible to fake.

            Also, I see you haven’t bought up the “quotes are not facts” will YOU admit I am right and concede that point?

          • Kirk Allen
            Posted at 21:04h, 22 June

            The content of the quote is not fact. Citing what a person says is nothing but reporting. Did he cite what the person said? Yes, but then he takes the same position as the quote without any validation of the content. Send me your email. I will forward you the exact email that is from Outlook. My source is 100% accurate that these emails are 100% accurate. I really don’t care if you want to believe it.

          • Michael Tauler
            Posted at 21:38h, 22 June

            Did make a claim to the content of the quote?

            No, I said the quote is a fact, it is a fact they said one of the reasons for joining the union was because of Rabine.

            Post the full headers publicly, if your right and I am wrong it will only help your position.

          • Kirk Allen
            Posted at 22:13h, 22 June

            Yes, they said what Ed said they said, and it was not true based on the facts!

          • Kirk Allen
            Posted at 22:14h, 22 June

            I don’t need any help with our position.

          • Michael Tauler
            Posted at 21:02h, 23 June

            Comming up on almost 24 hours andy post about your link not being the headers is still not visible…..

          • Michael Tauler
            Posted at 11:34h, 24 June

            More then 24 hours now… still have not released my post from the moderation queue and still have not posted the full headers.

          • jmkraft
            Posted at 20:09h, 24 June

            Probably because public records obtained via FOIA are admissible in Court as authentic. Did you see the dropbox link yet?

          • Michael Tauler
            Posted at 20:17h, 24 June

            Yes I did see the Dropbox link, and the full hedder is not in your screenshot, a screenshot of the email open in outlook is not the headers.

          • jmkraft
            Posted at 20:38h, 24 June

            That’s all you are getting.

        • Michael Tauler
          Posted at 20:57h, 24 June Reply

          Well then, I stand by my statement, your PDF is too easy to fake and proves nothing.

          If you actually had an email it would be easy to post the headers since you refuse… your proof is worthless, as is illustrated by my example PDF.

          To add to that; the fact that I requested the headers and you posted a screenshot as if that was what I was requesting, and then refused to post actually what I requested… doing makes me highly suspicious of any of your findings, and also makes me think that you just might know that what you have is not genuine.

          • jmkraft
            Posted at 21:16h, 24 June

            As I said before, public records obtained thru FOIA are admissible in court as authentic. Think what you want, we know what we have.

    • Crystal Laker
      Posted at 17:02h, 22 June Reply

      …says Mike Tauler who has been caught with his pants down while talking about himself at meetings – yet dutifully reported on as news by Ed Komenda and the Northworst Herald.

      Tauler claimed to be an internet expert and said the the Highway Commissioner was incorrect on what C-Cleaner was. Ed Komenda and the Northworst Herald ran a story and then had to post on online retraction after it was discovered he was incorrect. However the damage was already done during the meeting.

      Ed Komenda is no reporter and Michael Tauler is nothing more than a troll.

      • Michael Tauler
        Posted at 20:27h, 22 June Reply

        Yes says Mike Tauler who wet around to not only the Facebook groups but the NW Herald and McHenry country blog and owns his mistakes like a man.

        Unlike Gasser’s whining sniveling behind, who won’t even own up to one single mistake he makes, so much of being a righteous man of God with integrity.

        But hey! I put my real name with my options, so what is your excuse “Crystal Laker”.

        On a side note, I posted I a reply to Kurk on my lunch break, as of this post it’s not visible….

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