Skillicorn calls for McHenry County township consolidation referendum
Nunda Township's decision to add former Algonquin Township Highway Commissioner Robert Miller, accused of unethical behavior, to its payroll last summer has a McHenry County lawmaker calling for a township consolidation referendum.
"When I read that Nunda Township has hired the disgraced former Algonquin Township highway commissioner who is being investigated by the FBI, I was outraged," Rep. Allen Skillicorn (R-East Dundee) said during a McHenry Times interview. "Under current law, the McHenry County board can add a township consolidation referendum for the next election."
It's time to do just that, Skillicorn said. "Considering the ethical failures of multiple townships, what is ... the county board waiting for?" he asked.
Skillicorn has represented the 66th House District since he first was elected to the seat in 2016, and he is running for re-election next year. The 66th House District includes parts or all of Algonquin, Dundee, Elgin, Grafton and Rutland townships.
Skillicorn's comments came after Nunda Township Road Commissioner Mike Lesperance hired Miller last summer. Nundo Township reportedly also added Miller's son-in-law to its payroll.
Miller, who currently is engaged in a legal battle with his successor, Andrew Gasser, has been accused by the Edgar County Watchdogs of using a township credit card to purchase "Blink cameras" and tickets to Disneyland while he was highway commissioner.
The heated election earlier this year between Miller and Gasser included allegations about long-standing nepotism. Miller's father and grandfather had been Algonquin Township highway commissioners, and the three men in total held the office for more than half a century.
Miller's wife and two sons-in-law also were on the payroll of Algonquin Township's highway department, which is responsible for approximately 50 miles of road. That history led Chicago-based conservative radio talk show host Dan Proft, after Gasser's win, to refer to Miller's time in that office as an "egregious example of the kleptocracy that pervades Illinois." Proft also is a principal in Local Government Information Services, which owns this publication.
In addition to those allegations, a YouTube video also surfaced that seemed to show Algonquin Township Highway Department employees behaving very badly.
Gasser defeated Miller in February's Republican primary, breezed through the election in April unopposed and officially took office in May. Lawsuits began shortly after.