Friday, July 22, 2016

Commander Kelm speaks out in Boone County Journal regarding Health Department, its governing board and the County Board

Boone County Health Department: The self feeding government entity in Boone County concerned with self preservation who out of a 1.1 million dollar budget spends 88% for wages and benefits for their 18 employees. (Their 2015 annual report taken offline).

Now the Boone County Health Department is stamping their feet at both boards ( Boone County Board & health department boards that is) trying to ride the backs of the not for profits for more fees.

There are some great people in the health department in Boone County, there are maybe 4 or 5 on their health department board that can think on their own and make rational decisions on their own in my opinion. The rest are lemming followers, who will “sing back” to the health department what ever the health department wants them to sing back. I have personally observed this in the very few meetings I attended. In my opinion, if you want to watch a very weak board in action, go to a health board meeting and watch the board dance to the tune of the ones they are supposed to manage.

Now on the Boone County Board Health and Human Service committee: Jeff Carlisle (chairman) and Cathy Ward (member) will not be “lead around by the nose” by the health department. Thank heavens we have 4 on the county board with some backbone.

Ms. Frank wants us to believe that we are all in extreme danger with food-borne illness, that is about all I have ever observed her chant. The fact is when I sent in a freedom of information act request, asking for the last 5 of food-borne outbreaks occurring in Boone County, the health department replied there may have been one. They could did not give me a date, people involved, cost to inspect or correct. Until I see some ink on the paper how do we even know one incidence happened? Is it worth $5.5 million over a 5 year period? I truly do not think so. Yesterday I told the 1 incident had nothing to do with a restaurant or church. It was a private event.

Lets look at fees for food permits.

Since 2006, our food permit fees at the VFW have increased more than 522 percent. The VFW paid $450 for a food permit in 2015; McDonald's & Burger King paid $205 per year; Belvidere Ace, $120; Subway Gateway, $205; The Brick, $240; Buchanan Street Pub, $140; Buchanan Street Bar and Grill, $450; Tropical Oasis, $260; Pizza Hut, $240; Maria's Pizza, $450; Arby's, $450; and Starbucks, $240. Moose Lodge (tax except by stature) $450. The fees are all over the place with no rhyme or reason.

When I asked the Health Department why there was a more than 100 percent difference in fees between the VFW and McDonald's, I was told that the VFW was considered “high risk.” Again, I would like to point out that the McDonald's fee is $205 and Belvidere Ace is $120. One sells food 24/7 (McDonald's), the other sells soda and candy bars and gives away popped popcorn (Ace Hardware).

Now, the Health Department wants all nonprofits to pay fees. The sky is falling and the Health Department says, "We are in the red. We need more money. We need more fees, now!"

My concern is, if you have budget problems, why, in 2013, did you, the Health Department, give your staff $56,000 in wage increases? In three years, that raise has grown to more than $168,000. It is reported that Cindy Frank gave herself a 55 percent pay increase. I am curious if this was really true? I know we all dream of a “cushy” lifetime, an 8-to-5 government job with most weekends and all major holidays off, and raises to our own pay whenever we can. But in the real world outside of government that does not happen.

The Health Department now proposes hiring an administrator for $90,675 in 2017. Boone County Health Department, hello, have you ever heard of truly working to have a balanced budget in place? Maybe you need to combine some jobs or have some layoffs so you can then be in the black. All of your money comes from local, state or federal taxes, (grants) our money.

Do we really need a health department? Not really. Many feel, myself included, they are just one huge duplication of many services we already have. Many “fees” could be paid right at the circuit clerks office. For 1.1million dollars I think you could pay for a few more staff at the clerks office. The Crusader Clinic is just down the street for medical services. The health department is not there nights and weekends. There must be no danger on weekends or evenings of food-borne illness. Maybe they have an answering machine and can get back the next day or Monday?

•Put this money to the Sheriffs Department and Fire Protection. Now there is where the men and women are out there 24/7 looking out for us, truly keeping us safe. Lets trim all the expensive “fat hanging on the bone” in the health department.

•This is the opinion of Greg Kelm Commander VFW Post 1461 since 2006, President of Boone County Veteran's Club since 2006. Please email comments to

An indication that Feingold is winning?




Conservative group cancels $2.2 million in ads for Johnson

  • Updated Jul 20, 2016

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — A conservative group funded by the Koch brothers that is backing Sen. Ron Johnson canceled $2.2 million worth of ads it had planned to run to help the Republican in August and September, a blow to his re-election campaign as he tries to win a rematch against Democrat Russ Feingold.

Feingold has been outraising Johnson and leading in the polls in the closely watched race. Democrats are hoping to pick up the Senate seat as they try to regain majority control in the Senate.

The super PAC Freedom Partners Action Fund ran about $2 million worth of ads attacking Feingold in May. It was slated to run another $2.2 million in pro-Johnson ads over the next two months, but a Democratic media tracker said Wednesday that they had been canceled.

"We are realigning our television advertising strategy to ensure maximum impact across key Senate races," Freedom Partners spokesman James Davis wrote in an email. "We will continue direct citizen outreach through our grassroots activists, volunteer phone calls, digital media and direct mail. Last weekend alone network grassroots organizations made almost half a million contact attempts to targeted audiences."

The bad news for Johnson comes a day after he spoke in prime time at the Republican National Convention, a late-reversal from his long-held position that he was going to skip the gathering to campaign in Wisconsin. It also comes the day after the National Republican Senatorial Committee said it was delaying until October $1.3 million in ads it originally planned to run over the next two months.

Johnson campaign spokesman Brian Reisinger tried to downplay the effect of the ad cancellation by the group funded by influential billionaire conservatives Charles and David Koch.

"We just had our strongest fundraising quarter ever and the polls show this race tight," Reisinger said. "We are comfortable and confident and believe we have the support to run a winning campaign. The voters already fired Senator Feingold once, and they will reject him again."

In the three-month period ending in June, Johnson raised $2.8 million, up from $2.1 million in the first three months. That put him in the top three of all Senate Republicans. But he still trails Feingold, who served 18 years in the Senate before Johnson defeated him in 2010. Through the first six months of the year, Feingold raised about $7.4 million, compared with $4.9 million for Johnson. Feingold also had more money on hand at the end of June — $7.2 million compared with $6.3 million for Johnson.

A Marquette University Law School poll released last week showed Feingold ahead of Johnson by 5 points among likely voters and 7 points among registered voters. The race has tightened considerably since January, when Feingold was up by 12 points over Johnson among registered voters.

Johnson has benefited from spending by outside groups, which had outspent Feingold's campaign by about $5 million to $1 million from the April 5 primary through late June. In addition to Freedom Partners, the ads benefiting Johnson have come from Americans for Prosperity, another Koch brothers group, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, Let America Work and the Judicial Crisis Network.

"Senator Johnson has always relied on the Koch Brothers and these outside groups to run his campaign for him, so this must come as a disappointment for their model legislator," said Feingold spokesman Michael Tyler in an emailed statement.

Associated Press writer Julie Bykowicz in Cleveland contributed to this report.

Above is from:


In 2011 email Gov. Rauner calls half of CPS teachers 'virtually illiterate'


Thursday, July 21, 2016 08:56PM


An email written by Governor Bruce Rauner has surfaced where he called half of Chicago Public Schools teachers "virtually illiterate."
The email was written in 2011, before Rauner was governor, and was sent to Mayor Rahm Emanuel and other top education reform activists in the city.

A judge ordered the mayor's administration to release a batch of emails Thursday and this email was one of them.
Illinois Federation of Teachers president Dan Montgomery released a statement saying, in part: "Governor Bruce Rauner's statement that half of Chicago teachers are 'virtually illiterate' is a grotesque affront to the thousands of dedicated, hardworking, and talented educators and, indeed, the children who learn from them and love them."
Montgomery continues, "While Rauner publicly claims to love Illinois teachers, his private emails reveal the appalling truth: he holds them in contempt. No public servant, let alone a governor, is fit to oversee the education of our children when he or she has so little regard for those who teach."
A spokesperson for the governor released a statement which read, in part, "This particular email was sent out of frustration at the pace of change in our public school system. The Governor regrets writing it and apologizes to CPS educators for making an unfair, untrue comment."

Above is from