Well, if the elected official’s name is Kevin Burns then you hear it quite a bit. For example:
1. Red light cameras. In a press release, in a series of emails, and in his stump speeches, the Mayor repeatedly and vociferously stated that, “Geneva doesn’t write right-on-red tickets.” But when I FOIAd that data and proved that 40 percent of Geneva’s camera tickets were going to “illegal” right turns, Mayor Burns suddenly claimed he never made any claim to the contrary.
But when confronted with his own written press release words, the Mayor essentially said he’d misquoted himself. What he really meant was, “Genava doesn’t write MANY right on red camera citations.”
Oh! That’s very different. Nevermind! And nevermind that, in my book, almost half of the tickets issued is MANY! The truth is, the Mayor blatantly lied because he thought no one would check.
Sadly, Brenda Schory and the Chronicle never do.
2. Campaign emails. In another one of those 43 blog posts, the Mayor once again referred to his embarrassing county chair campaign emails as a “miscue” not even worthy of the state’s attorney’s attention. In other words, using a city cell phone to conduct campaign business was OK because “he goofed.” (There’s that word again.)
What Mayor Burns doesn’t understand is, it wasn’t the act of sending those emails, it was the juvenile things contained in them. It was referring to his opponent’s wife as a “beast” and disparaging her wardrobe, making fun of Rep. Randy Hultgren’s appearance at a prayer dinner, and plans to insert Democrat Sue Klinkhamer in the race just to take “shots” at Lauzen that were the real problem.
While I certainly harbor some juvenile tendencies myself, at least I do it out in the open for everyone to see. Mayor Burns did it via email because he thought no one would check.
3. Geneva’s Tax Rate. As I pointed out on in a previous blog post, when Mayor Burns claimed our tax rate had tumbled from .73 to .53, he “goofed” again! Geneva’s tax rate is actually .64 (.65 if you’re rounding up). Perhaps we should be impressed that, this time, he was only off by a factor of two!
When you consider city fees, rate increases, and our assessments, that .9 is virtually meaningless. We all know our property taxes have gone up.
But the real issue is, the Mayor knew damned well what the city tax rate was, he thought he could get away with fudging it because no one would check.
It’s true! Mayor Burns is a great mayor – as long as nobody checks!