Forest Park commissioners and the mayor teed off on each other for the third straight meeting Monday evening highlighting just how divided and contentious things have become this election season.
Mayor Anthony Calderone came to the meeting armed with two copies of the Forest Park Review to challenge comments that commissioners Rory Hoskins and Marty Tellalian have made during the campaign about the village’s spending. He also criticized the Review’s reporting on monthly village finance reports.
“It’s a lie,” said Calderone, in reference to a Review report last month that on Jan. 31, the village had spent $2.1 million more than it had received in revenue. After the meeting he acknowledged that he should have said “misrepresentation.”
Tellalian, who is running for mayor against Calderone, said that although the reports were a one-day “snapshot” of the village’s finances, it was inaccurate to call them lies. Tellalian also noted that, once again, the village’s finance report states that as of Feb. 28 the village had spent $2.6 million more than it took in during the current fiscal year.
Finance Director Judy Kovacs and Village Administrator Tim Gillian addressed the matter as well.
The village is estimating a $417,000 surplus at the end of fiscal year 2011, once sales tax and property tax revenues come in, according to Kovacs’ accounting reports. What’s more, Gillian pointed out that the village has spent nearly $500,000 less to date than it did at this point last year.
When the nearly 30 minutes of intense discussion ended, the board granted Walmart the zoning variations it needs to expand its 1300 Desplaines Ave. store by 25,000 square feet.
The actual business before the board took about 10 minutes.