DuPage Co. (ECWd) –
In a stunning upset to the establishment endorsements, the clean slate candidates have won the election and must now prepare for the fixes badly needed at COD. Our thoughts on the tasks ahead that need serious attention are listed below in no particular order.
The First Meeting
Within 48 hours of the canvass of the vote by the DuPage Election commission, the newly elected College of DuPage trustees should, pursuant to Illinois state law, hold a properly noticed public organizational meeting. At that point some of the current trustees will, ex vi legis, no longer be trustees.
If Robert Breuder, or any COD official, attempts to block or in any manner frustrate this meeting and notice procedures, application should be immediately made for an emergency ex-parte writ in the 18th Judicial Circuit Court. Respondents named would be anyone attempting to block or frustrate this meeting. The writ might even have to be enforced, after service, by the DuPage County Sheriff because the COD police would still be under the control of Breuder and Birt. Extreme measures? Yes. Some might even argue not extreme enough. But there has been, and still exists, a culture and daily practice of lawlessness and cronyism at COD. Evidence of this (and a main point in the pleading) is the attempted early March 2015 blocking of the meet the candidate meeting at COD by Breuder.
After the call to order, the pledge of allegiance, an election of a new chairman and any other appropriate housekeeping matters are concluded, the board should consider passing the following items for immediate action:
- Adopt a “consent to search” to be provided to all law enforcement agencies currently investigating COD.
- Initiate an immediate order to prevent any withholding and/or destruction of public records.
- Robert Breuder and Thomas Glaser are dismissed for cause, instanter.
- Appointment of an acting college president.
- Immediate suspension of all relationships and authorizations with Res Publica, any and all law firms empowered to represent COD and the Crowe Horvath auditing firm.
- Prohibit College President and employees from interfering in any way with the first amendment rights of the Student Newspaper – move over-site back to where it used to be and not under control of Breuder or his cronies.
- Notification to Max McGraw Hunt Club that all relationships are immediately suspended and to return any unused dues to COD.
- Authorization to engage a top drawer, squeaky clean auditing firm to conduct a FORENSIC AUDIT of COD. A non-forensic audit by the Illinois Auditor General will not be appropriate to the level of damage Breuder and Glaser have visited upon COD and the taxpayers and the AG is unable to conduct a forensic audit. Certainly Kathy Hamilton would have some expertise locating a suitable forensic auditing firm. There are several reasons for this. First, recent audits have been conducted and found no wrongdoing and problems even though facts proved there were problems. Second, it will give the students, faculty, COD employees and taxpayers assurance that the new board means business and intends to see that the rule of law and not the rule of men prevails at COD. Third, it will give notice to all law enforcement officials, if any, currently conducting investigations into COD of recent revelations of fraud, theft, misconduct, misapplication of funds and other criminal matters, that the first priority of the board is to clean up this mess. Even if the forensic audit were to cost $1 million, what is that compared to the hundreds of millions of dollars in damages wrought by Breuder and Glaser?
- Pursue all options to claw back Breuder’s $763,000 golden parachute.
- Seriously consider suspending operations at the Waterfall Restaurant and Inn at the end of the current semester until completion of the audit in order to stop the hemorrhaging of money.
- The immediate naming of the Homeland Security Building after the Medal of Honor recipient. Breuder has brought an embarrassment to the reputation of the board so they have cause to not name that building after him.
- Any authorized reimbursements shall be limited to published IRS Per Diem rates – and only outside 75 miles of the corporate boundaries of the District.
- DEFINE reimbursements to trustees for expenses incurred as their duty – should only be mileage unless attending board pre-approved conferences, etc.
- Mandate all airfare to conferences or any other college business be COACH / cheapest fare.
- Rollback the public speaking policy approved last fall, admit the change violated the law and established college policy.
- Properly amend the Public speaking policy at board meetings to eliminate “classes” of speakers.
- Expressly permit public speakers at board meetings the use of the projection system if in use at the meeting in question.
- Direct the college attorney to provide ALL correspondence between them, the college, and Res Publica – prior to, during, and after the most recent Res Publica contract was awarded.
- Establish a definition for “Professional Services”
- Rescind the “censure” and declare it to be a violation of constitutional free speech rights, clearly outside the authority of the Board, and institute a policy prohibiting any “censure” of trustees in the future.
- Employees and trustees:
- Cancel all “house accounts” at the Waterleaf and Inn.
- Prohibit all “charge” accounts at Waterleaf and Inn.
- Prohibit all reimbursements of food/beverage at Waterleaf and the Inn.
- Prohibit reimbursements for food/beverage incurred while working.
- Enforce the “zero compensation” law for all trustees, which would include no more receiving meals/food/beverages etc. outside authorized pre-appoved conferences.
- Prohibit reimbursements for hotel stays and meal reimbursement within 75 miles of district corporate boundaries.
This list is by no means complete, however, after what we have uncovered it would be a good start to bringing the people’s trust back into their local community college.