Monday, September 19, 2011

Boone County Government Audit is available

The CPA Audit for the fiscal year ending November 30, 2010 is now available on the county website.  You can download it at:


The normal link for the report is shown below, apparently the link for the 2010 Audit was inadvertently left off when the report was posted:



One important question which our citizenry should ask is regarding the controversial sales tax for the county jail.  Many of us thought that tax would end when the jail bonds are retired in 2018.  However footnote 5, page 25 of the audit indicates that the county has pledged the Public Safety Sales Tax until the 2008 Bonds which paid for the building of the county administration building are paid,that is 2028.   Possibly that is just an error if not, so much for the promise to end that tax in a timely manner.



Father Ospina issue plays on Channel 23

The following is taken from  To view the actual film clip go to: and click on the TV icon.

The TV commentator states that WIFR has “talked to Father Ospina but that he did not wish to make a comment”.


St. James’ “New Issue”: Father Diego Ospina?

The following letter was read aloud during the homily/sermon at all Masses this weekend.  The letter printed in English and Spanish was an insert in the weekly bulletin.


Father Ospina

Pray for St. James Parish.


The copy is not clear.  Here is the letter retyped.


September 17, 2011

Dear Parishioners of St. James Church:

I write you of a sad and disturbing matter that has touched St. James Parish and its community and of which you may have already heard.

Last weekend, Father Diego Ospina made statements  from the pulpit against the Mata family and in particular against Karina Mata and Father Ospina’s statements have harmed this family, and caused division among parishioners.

What Father Ospina said against Karina and her family was false, and what Father Ospina said was wrong.   The pulpit is not a place to solve parish problems.  It is a part of the altar, a sacred place, a place to proclaim and teach the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ.

The Diocese is extremely disheartened by the actions of Father Ospina.  This is not how our priests and our people should conduct themselves during Mass, or as a faith community.  We apologize on behalf of Father Ospina to the Mata family.  And we apologize that the parish became involved in what should have been a private issue resolved outside of the church.

People make errors in judgment.  We all know that perfection belongs to Christ alone.  Priests make mistakes.  What  happened last weekend was a mistake.  And now it is time to open your hearts and apologize if you have participated in any way in the dissemination of the untrue statements. And it is time to open your hearts and forgive, if you have been harmed by words that are un-Christian.  We would like the parish community to pray for harmony and unity among groups, following the will of Jesus that we remain as one.

These are difficult times we live in, and we ask for your prayers for Karina Mata and the Mata family, and we ask that you pray with us for unity and healing of your parish, and for your pastor, Father Geary, in his efforts to make people on in Christ; and for the peace and continued mutual understanding of each other.


Yours in Christ,


Reverend Monsignor Arquimedes Vallejo, JCD                                                       

Episcopal Vicar for Hispanic Ministry


Very Reverend Brian D. Grady

Episcopal Vicar for Clergy


The following biography of Father Ospina is taken from the St. James Parish website:

Rev. Diego Ospina

St. James Parish Staff

Rev. Diego Ospina, Parochial Vicar

Ordained to the priesthood May 21, 2005
Home Parish: St. Patrick, Rochelle, IL

My first call to the priesthood came when I was a small boy growing up in Ibague, Colombia. When I went to Mass with my Mother, I would think that in the future I would celebrate Mass like a priest. There were many things that influenced my decision to enter the seminary. My parents, my four brothers and sister were all supportive of my calling. I like to read about the missionaries in Africa and I admired Pope Paul II. I decided that God wanted me to bring Jesus' message to help people and heal souls.
I worked in fast-food restaurants for about four years. I liked all kinds of food, American, Chinese, Thai, Italian and, of course, Colombian. My favorite pastime activities are drawing, painting, reading and watching good movies.
While at the seminary, I found out that the United States needed Hispanic priests to serve the Hispanic population coming from Latin America. I decided to come to the Rockford Diocese in 2002.
My favorite devotion is to Our Lady of Fatima. I became devoted to her when I was a young boy and I pray to her always.
I hope to serve Our Lord by celebrating the Eucharist, giving the sacraments and teaching about Jesus. I want to work with the young people in the schools, visit homes and bring Christ to everybody.


Karina Mata is one of the three Youth Ministry leaders, see the recognition list from this week’s published bulletin shown below.



State treasurer's mailing sent to big-name donors

Report Questions Use of State Funds



This summer, the office of Illinois Treasurer Dan Rutherford sent a glossy summary of “successes” to a select 850 state residents — a majority of whom happen to be major campaign donors to the Pontiac Republican.

Rutherford, who party insiders say is strongly mulling a bid for governor, says it is “merely a coincidence” that nearly two-thirds of the recipients of the slick mailer are also donors to his political campaign.



Rutherford sent out the 11-page full-color booklet titled “No More Debt” on June 1. “Paid for by the state of Illinois. 850 copies,” it reads in small print on the back.

The mailing did not solicit donations, but highlighted what it portrayed as successes of the treasurer's first six months in office, citing newspaper editorials warning other constitutional officers to heed Rutherford's calls to freeze state spending and end borrowing.

Read more:

DeKalb County’s Budget

County budget shows recession still strong



The budget being presented to the DeKalb County Board this week is roughly $11 million less than last year’s as officials try to navigate through a continuing recession.
The $79 million budget for next year comes at a cost to many county departments, but as proposed, residents should see no increase in property tax bills for county expenses.

The county has proposed using $900,000 in reserves, which would lower the balance of the reserve fund to $9.1 million by the end of fiscal year 2012. The reserve balance would be at 34 percent of expenses, which is just above the county’s outside auditor’s recommendation of 25-30 percent. Because of that, County Administrator Ray Bockman said the county would be able to use the reserves at a similar level in 2013 if needed, but would then have to make a decision.

The assessed value for the county is expected to decline by 5.7 percent and the value of an average $200,000 home is projected to plummet to $186,000…..

The MAP – sheriff’s officers union – has an arbitrated settlement that offers a 6.1 percent salary increase. The Sycamore Campus and Highway Department AFSCME Union will get 2 percent increases in January and July while the Health Department AFSCME Union will get a 3 percent increase in January and 2 percent increase in July. Non-union employees will get a 1.5 percent increase in January.


Click on the following for more details on this DeKalb Chronicle story: