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McHenry Ethics Commission to consider complaints against Mayor Wayne Jett

Meeting set Tuesday to address alleged ordinance breach related to campaigning

McHenry Mayor Wayne Jett (left) and City Attorney David McArdle discuss an agenda item during a City Council meeting April 15.
McHenry Mayor Wayne Jett (left) and City Attorney David McArdle discuss an agenda item during a City Council meeting April 15.

The McHenry Ethics Commission will meet Tuesday to consider a host of complaints against Mayor Wayne Jett.

The special meeting will be at 7 p.m. at the McHenry Municipal Center,
333 S. Green St. The meeting will include a hearing and action on the complaint, according to the agenda.

This is the first time the newly established commission will meet. In addition to the hearing and action on the complaint itself, commissioners must set initial terms, elect a chairperson and adopt rules, according to the agenda.

McHenry resident Christopher Schurrer filed two complaints in July, one with the commission and another with the attorney general’s public access counselor.

Schurrer alleges that the city violated Open Meetings Act requirements, and that Jett breached ethics ordinances by campaigning for former 2nd Ward candidate Jim Walsh, as well as stating support for other candidates.

The 2nd Ward race was the only contested one in the April election.

The complaint filed with the attorney general’s public access counselor alleged that city officials improperly went into closed session during a
Dec. 30 meeting of the electoral board. The board had met to consider 2nd Ward Alderman Andrew Glab’s objection of Walsh’s petition to run.

The city gave Schurrer a recording of a closed-session meeting after speaking with the counselor earlier this month.

On Tuesday, the commission will consider the complaints filed with the city about Jett.

Schurrer alleged that Jett acted unethically by not recusing himself as chairman of the electoral board during the Dec. 30 meeting, campaigning for Walsh multiple times on city-controlled or mayoral platforms, and campaigning for a proposed expansion of the McHenry Recreation Center.

The expansion was put to referendum on the Nov. 6 ballot and failed. Jett had posted a message on his mayoral Facebook account in October asking whether people wanted yard signs in support of the effort.

Jett engaged in similar practices before the April election in support of Walsh.

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