Current Issues Facing Wood Dale


52 Million in Debt



When Ken Johnson left office, the City of Wood Dale had $22,000,000 in cash reserves. In seven short years under the current administration the City of Wood Dale has reduced its cash reserves down to $9,000,000 and run up debt of over $52,000,00. That’s right, $52,000,000. Where did the money go?

Examples of Wasteful Spending;

  • Overbuilt City of Wood Dale sewer plant increasing its capacity to provide for a town of 32,000 people. Wood Dale only has 14,750 people. Sewer Treatment Plant $32,000,000

  • Clock Tower $1,350,000

  • Rehab stores on Front Street $200,000

  • New street signs $250,000

  • Purchased Helen’s Restaurant $380,000

  • Purchased houses behind Helen’s Restaurant $500,000

  • Bought Suburban Bank $1,000,000

  • Rehab Simba Daycare $50,000

  • Ready Electric Building $802,000

Wood Dale - Flooding

KJ Flood copy.jpg

Flooding remains a serious issue in Wood Dale. When Ken Johnson was an Alderman, Wood Dale, in partnership with the County of DuPage built the Wood Dale Itasca Reservoir. Wood Dale purchased and donated 15 acres to the County of DuPage where the reservoir was built.

Also, the Tall Oaks Retention basin was constructed in Ward One while Ken Johnson was in office.

In addition, 20 homes were voluntarily purchased along Salt Creek that continually flooded and turned into open space. Funding was obtained from the Federal, State, and County of DuPage to purchase these homes. The property is now open space and those residents have been spared flooding year after year.

Now it's time to finish the job and solve the Ward 3 flooding problem. The current administration has diverted one half of the utility taxes which should be dedicated to infrastructure improvements (flood proofing) and diverted the money to other projects such as the clock tower.

Ken Johnson will use all utility tax money strictly for roads, sewer, storm sewer and infrastructure improvements only.


What has Ken Johnson done in the past to help with flooding? I volunteered to serve on the Wood Dale environmental committee. We successfully lobbied to rebuild the Box Culvert under Lake Street. Due to it being oversized it was causing stormwater to back up into Wood Dale. Second, on that committee, we forced the old Brookwood Country Club to remove the illegal berms it had built along Salt Creek.

As Alderman, I lobbied and obtain funding to buy out over 20 homes on Salt Creek that habitually flooded. As Alderman, I supported the creation of the Tall Oaks Reservoir Basin in Ward 1 to eliminate area flooding.

As Alderman, I voted to donate Wood Dale purchased land to create the Wood Dale Itasca Reservoir. It provides 14,000-acre-feet stormwater storage protecting a large portion of Wood Dale.

As Mayor, I organized a group including Mayor Johnson of Elk Grove, Mayor Hartwig of Addison, Mayor Marcucci of Elmhurst and Mary Mueller of Lombard to lobby Cook and DuPage Counties to modify the dam at Busse Woods to provide additional flood protection for Wood Dale residents.

I also served on the Regional Plan Commission for DuPage County where we helped coordinate and plan Regional stormwater relief such as the Elmhurst Stone Quarry. If anyone in Wood Dale has done more than I to help solve Wood Dale's flooding issues please name that person and list his or her, accomplishments.

Residents of Wood Dale, Don't you think the $1.35 Million-Dollars that was spent on the clock tower should have been used to help reduce flooding?

Wood Dale - Commercial Vacancies


During the current administration the City has lost an overwhelming number of mom and pop businesses. This has been caused by the reduced traffic on Irving Park Road and an overaggressive City of Wood Dale building department that created an annual commercial occupancy certificate program that is driving businesses out of town and preventing new businesses from coming into town. Some of the businesses lost are:

Shopping Centers:

Warnimont Hardware
Marklunds Resale
Advanced Printing
Drapery Store
Tiki Lounge
Beauty Salon

Shopping Center:

Currency Exchange
Pool Parlor

Commercial Strip Center
behind Burger King:

Wood Dale Cleaners
315 West Irving Park Road
317 West Irving Park Road

Additional Businesses lost
on Irving Park Road:

404 West Irving Park Road
306 West Irving Park Road
372 West Irving Park Road (Napa Auto)
144 East Irving Park Road
273 East Irving Park Road
339 East Irving Park Road
402 East Irving Park Road
414 East Irving Park Road
417 East Irving Park Road
421 East Irving Park Road

Click on the Interactive Map to view businesses lost.

Businesses lost
on Wood Dale Road:

343 N. Wood Dale Rd.
359 N. Wood Dale Rd.
369 N. Wood Dale Rd.
371 N. Wood Dale Rd.
375 N. Wood Dale Rd.

Numerous other businesses, are barely hanging on.

Each time we lose a business and the related sales and property taxes the tax burden is increased on you the single family, townhome, and condominium home owner.

Ken Johnson will repeal the over burdensome Commercial Occupancy Code and Wood Dale Administrative Hearing Act.

We should be able to solve any problems with our local Wood Dale businesses and residents first by talking and working together rather than jumping immediately to prosecution of our businesses and residents.

These practices do not create a business friendly environment.

All Male Leadership


When Ken Johnson previously served it was his pleasure to work with some outstanding female Aldermen and planning commissioners. Under current administration ALL decision makers are male, except one member of the Zoning Board of Appeals. That is 95.5% male dominated decision making with a token 4.5% female representation.

Mayor & Aldermen
9 men

Nunzio Pulice

Gandolfo Messina
Peter Jakab
Roy Wesley
Art Woods
Sonny Sorrentino
Anthony Catalano
Eugene Wesley
Michael Susmarski

Community Development Committee 7 men

Ron Damasco
Rick St Marie
Richard Peterson
Dave Shimanek
Brad Karich
George Vant
Dave Woods

Building Code Board of Review
4 men 1 woman

Ron Herf
Marsha Camras
John Carzino
Sam Sciotino
Jeff Stanek

Marsha Camras is the only female voting decision member holding office in the City of Wood Dale.

In addition to the lack of women serving in our community in leadership positions, our dominant ethnic group- Hispanic- 24% of our population has no representation in Wood Dale.

One of 21 decision makers is a woman—1 of 21= .047%