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April 19, 2024

Wesley Township – Clerk’s budget notice non-compliant with state law

By Kirk Allen & John Kraft

On June 17, 2019

Will Co. (ECWd) –

Wesley Township Clerk Sarah Norton has once again shown the township she is incapable of following the law and performing her duties as a Township Clerk.  Once again, we call for her resignation.

The Township has noticed up another meeting for Tuesday, June 18, 2019, and posted the same agenda as the last meeting that ended due to losing a quorum.  That meeting, as with the upcoming meeting, had on the agenda to adopt their budget.  During the last meeting, there were multiple people demanding to be provided a copy of the proposed budget as there was none available at the meeting.

What does the law say about budget notice and availability?

50 ILCS 330/36 – “Such notice shall state the time and place where copies of the tentative budget and appropriation ordinance are available for public inspection and the time and place of the hearing. It shall be the duty of the clerk, secretary, or other similar officer, of such municipality to make such tentative budget and appropriation ordinance available to public inspection, and to arrange for such public hearing or hearings.”

What did the publication contain?

Wesley Road District Budget Hearing
Notice of Public Hearing on the Road District Budget
Notice is hereby given that a public 
hearing on said Road District and Township Budgets and Appropriation Ordinances will be held at 7:00 p.m. on Thursday, June 13, 2019 at 21333 West Ballou Road, Wilmington, IL, in this TOWNSHIP OF WESLEY, and that final hearing and action on this ordinance will be taken at the meeting to be held at the same location at 7:00 p.m. on Thursday, June 13, 2019.
Sarah Norton
Wesley Township Clerk
Published in the Free Press
Advocate on Wednesday, May 8, 2019. – (Township publication at this link, Road District publication at this link.

What is missing?

“shall state the time and place where copies of the tentative budget and appropriation ordinance are available for public inspection”

While the Supervisor did tell people during the meeting that the budget was available at the library and other places when they asked to see a copy, it is clear the publication for the budget hearing was not compliant with the law as it failed to disclose one of the key mandates, telling the public where copies are available for inspection.

We believe any adoption of a budget during this June 18, 2019 meeting is improper as the legal notice failed to comply with the law.

As we see it, the only cure is to publish a proper notice, which would also require waiting 30 days from date of publication before having the budget hearing.

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