Dixon Mayor James Burke held a news conference Wednesday morning in Dixon, Ill., to address several issues regarding the arrest of City Comptroller Rita A. Crundwell on a federal charge of misappropriating $3.2 million in city funds.
Burke thanked the FBI for its efforts and ann0unced that Crundwell is suspended without pay pending resolution of the charges against her. He said he "literally became sick to my stomach" while meeting with agents on the case.
The mayor declined to answer any questions from reporters in attendance, including WNIJ's Susan Stephens. Here is the text of Mayor Burke's statement:
DIXON — Rita A. Crundwell, the Dixon city comptroller who was arrested Tuesday on a federal charge of defrauding the City of Dixon of more than $3.2 million in public funds since last fall, was released from federal custody Wednesday. Her freedom while she awaits trial, however, rests on a number of conditions agreed upon by her attorneys, federal prosecutors, and federal magistrate P. Michael Mahoney.
The head of the Illinois' largest organization for lawyers says the group supports allowing cameras in courtrooms. Illinois has been one of only 14 states where cameras were limited or prohibited in trial courtrooms. The Illinois Supreme Court approved a pilot program allowing media coverage in January. John Locallo is President of the Illinois State Bar Association. Speaking in Freeport, he says the new policy is another step toward transparency/
Taxpayers have some extra time this year to file their state and federal tax returns. The annual April 15th deadline falls on a Sunday. The following day, Monday, April 16th is a holiday in the District of Columbia. That means this year's deadline falls on Tuesday, April 17th. Officials say more people are filing online. You can file your state income tax return for free at www.tax.Illinois.gov
Illinois' Firearm Owners Identification program has a heap of problems. That's according to an audit released this week. The state Auditor General says some of those problems put public safety at risk. The report says too often state police don't know when they grant FOID cards if the applicant has a disqualifying mental health condition. The audit also found 70% of revoked registration cards never get back to police. The Illinois State Police says the number of requests for FOID cards has steadily increased over the past few years, but its resources are limited.
It looks like Illinois will keep most of its regional offices of education. A commission charged with reviewing the need for the offices and the position of Regional Superintendent released its recommendation today: it proposed cutting the number of offices from 44 to 35.
Along with the broad array of candidates seeking their party nomination to political office, a number of other issues will be presented for voters’ decisions. The most popular issue is electrical aggregation. This issue has been supported by government officials at all levels and by business and community leaders.