Editorials

East St. Louis Township taxpayers nearly get fleeced again

Alvin Parks talks about Hamilton case

Alvin Parks, the newly elected East St. Louis Township Supervisor, says as much as $600,000 in taxpayer money could be missing from one of the poorest communities in Illinois.
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Alvin Parks, the newly elected East St. Louis Township Supervisor, says as much as $600,000 in taxpayer money could be missing from one of the poorest communities in Illinois.

East St. Louis Township taxpayers are due a win, because the folks in charge of that needless government layer have been making them losers for a long time.

There was a win when Supervisor Alvin Parks was recently blocked from hiring his sister for $40,000 a year to do the job he should be doing. There might be another win with the mysterious disappearance of the plan to make former school board president, party boss and state lawmaker’s dad Lonzo Greenwood a $25,000-a-year consultant. There was a third win when Trustee Willie Ricco Moore rejected a plan to give jobs to his two daughters.

Why would Moore reject hiring family members and continuing the city’s fine tradition of nepotism?

“We don’t have any money. We need to find ways to cut,” Moore said.

Hallelujah and amen. Finally someone is getting it.

The township could provide a meeting place for lonely seniors and provide meals to the homebound. It could provide transportation to those without. It could go away and let the impoverished community keep the roughly $1.6 million in taxes collected for it, of which only 18 cents of every $1 went to help the poor.

Instead it was an ATM for convicted former supervisor Oliver W. Hamilton, now in the federal prison camp in Marion. He was convicted of stealing $40,000, spent $230,000 on himself from township coffers, and a grand total of $600,000 is missing.

It was about to be a jobs program for the Parks family.

So much potential for corruption. So little potential for good. Eliminate East St. Louis Township.

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