On May 22nd, 2015, members of our group went to the courthouse to support Anne Shaw and Ronda Locke in their voter fraud lawsuit against 1st Ward Alderman ‘Proco’ Joe Moreno. It was an eye-opening experience for us as we witnessed the Chicago ‘Machine’ in action as the case was dismissed by the judge. All those rumors and jokes about our city are true, the law is set up to protect public officials and allowing them to commit fraud.
Despite having 51 signed affidavits of voter fraud, they were unable to present them as evidence. Shaw & Locke were seeking a run-off election for relief and because of short time table (5 days after Feb. election) and little legal precedence for allowing a run-offs in Illinois, the judge dismissed the case before the fraud evidence could have been presented to the court.
Why would we support this case, it has nothing to do with housing? Alderman have great power in the neighborhoods to change zoning and allocate TIF funds. During the 2015 election cycle, our leadership voted to support progressive alderman candidates that were not in the pockets of developers. Yes, it is true that Joe Moreno has used the Affordable Requirement Ordinance (ARO) to have some affordable units built in the 1st Ward, but he also takes thousands of dollars in contributions from developers that are looking to drastically change the landscape of Logan Square for the sole purpose of making large profits and building luxury housing for people who do not already live here. At community meetings he often makes remarks that he is taking this money and giving it back, like a modern day Robin Hood, but there is no direct evidence or transparency available to the public to support this notion.
What we do know about him is that he is very passionate about not listening to the voices of the community as large-scale developments along Milwaukee Ave. are green lighted by him without community input. When the community met with him on Ward night in April, backed by a petition with hundreds of signatures to have a community meeting to better discuss the Twin Towers project, he was late, gave us a 15 minute time limit and was inflammatory and hostile.
The new developments along Milwaukee Ave. will severely change the fabric of the neighborhood and are not an affordable option to many who live in the community. Simple supply and demand will not solve the housing crisis in Logan Square.