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Our View: Leadership void in Hebron

Published: Thursday, March 13, 2014 5:30 a.m. CDT • Updated: Sunday, April 13, 2014 11:10 a.m. CDT

Newspaper candidate endorsements represent the majority of an editorial board.

Sometimes there isn’t universal agreement. Such as in politics and life, there is compromise.

There was no disagreement or compromise last spring and really nothing to discuss when we endorsed incumbent Hebron Village President Frank Beatty over challenger John Jacobson.

Here’s a paragraph we included in our endorsement of Beatty:

“Jacobson faces charges of unlawful delivery of a controlled substance, a Class 1 felony, and unlawful possession of a controlled substance. McHenry County Sheriff’s deputies stopped Jacobson on Jan. 15 and said they found less than 3 grams of crack cocaine in his vehicle.”

In spite of that, Jacobson won the village president election with 61 percent of the vote.

Since being elected, Jacobson has pleaded guilty to a reduced charge based on that traffic stop and picked up new charges of driving under the influence just over the border in Wisconsin.

Many Americans laugh at the antics of Toronto Mayor Rob Ford. We doubt Hebron residents find it particularly funny.

Trustees now describe a chaotic environment in village government. Most of the top staff have left, and so has a Hebron police officer who ticketed Jacobson for DUI a few years ago. He was fired after Jacobson took office.

Obviously, Hebron voters wanted to get rid of Beatty. Just as likely, they were frustrated about high water bills that were the result of infrastructure improvements made in anticipation of new development that never came when the housing market crashed.

Regardless, Jacobson, who was fired from his janitor position at McHenry County College for emailing pornography despite earlier warnings, among other things, was a poor choice for village president.

Unless Jacobson resigns, or is convicted of a felony, it’s a decision Hebron will have to live with. In the interim, it’s time for individuals to step up and fill what is clearly a leadership void in the village.

Hebron residents deserve better.

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