New clerk in town: Holbrook to replace Delaney

News-DemocratJune 24, 2013 

Tom Holbrook in a BND file photo.

DERIK HOLTMANN/BND

The St. Clair County Board has named former state Rep. Tom Holbrook as county clerk, to replace Bob Delaney.

Delaney resigned last week amid allegations that he sexually harassed and racially discriminated against employees. The Board unanimously approved Holbrook as Delaney's successor during a meeting on Monday at the St. Clair County Building.

Holbrook, 63, is serving as head of the Illinois Pollution Control Board. He said his last day on the state board would be June 30 and he plans to take the reigns of the clerkship on July 1. His appointment to the county post will expire in December 2014.

Holbrook said he has met with the employees of the County Clerk Department, at their request, and is working to ensure the state board and the county department have a "smooth transition."

"It's really an opportunity to help out the county," Holbrook said of his appointment on Monday night.

When there's a vacancy in an elected county government position, the County Board chairman has the authority to name a replacement, with approval from the County Board. By law, the replacement has to be from the same political party as the person who previously held the position. Delaney and Holbrook are both Democrats.

Holbrook will be taking a cut in salary to accept the county clerk position, though he has the option to begin accepting his state pension immediately after resigning from the Pollution Control Board.

He earns about $120,000 annually as chairman of the Control Board and would earn about $100,800 as county clerk. His term on the state board expires in 2014, at which time he would need to be reappointed by the governor and approved by the state senate.

Holbrook served as state representative for the 113th District from 1994 until his appointment as head of the Pollution Control Board in 2011. He served as a member of the St. Clair County Board from 1981 until 1994.

In other news, the Board set new rules for St. Ellen Park in O'Fallon, making it unlawful to possess any alcoholic beverages, including beer, in the park and to require a guardian to accompany anyone 12 years old or younger visiting the park.

The new rules also ban all motorized boats, whether electric or gas powered, from a small lake within the 85-acre park. Residents commonly use a fishing ramp leading to the lake, and motorized boats were previously allowed as long as the motors were not larger than a trolling motor.

The set of rules is a revision from a proposal first considered by the board in January. The rules do not include a previously sought ban on pets.

The new rules are similar to those at the county's other parks, such as Foley Park near Smithton and Silver Creek Preserve near Mascoutah. The park includes a 1.2-mile walking path and half-mile bike trail near Joseph Arthur Middle School.

Contact reporter Daniel Kelley at dkelley@bnd.com or 618-239-2501.

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