City Attorney ShawnTe Raines has No Municipal Attorney Experience
Posted in the Dixmoor Forum
#1 Jan 17, 2014
Prior to joining Sanchez Daniels & Hoffman, ShawnTe Raines practiced personal injury law in both federal and state court. Her practice areas include construction negligence, premise liability, nursing home negligence, and civil rights violations. During her practice as a personal injury attorney, she has been successful at negotiating settlements and arbitrating cases with difficult liability. In addition to the previous areas of practice, her practice areas now include Labor and Employment Law, School Law, and Civil Rights Litigation.
ShawnTe currently serves as general counsel for a local school district and manages all aspects of Union and non-Union employee discipline from the initial disciplinary action through the Union grievance process. She also has experience litigating claims filed with the Illinois Department of Human Rights, Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and Federal District Court pursuant to Title VII, the Americans with Disabilities Act, the age Discrimination Employment Act, and other constitutional violations pursuant to 42 U.S.C.§1983.
#2 Jan 17, 2014
It is the public policy of this State that public bodies exist to aid in the conduct of the people’s business and that the people have a right to be informed as to the conduct of their business.
- Illinois Open Meetings Act, 5 ILCS 120/1.
Pursuant to the fundamental philosophy of the American constitutional form of government, it is declared to be the public policy of the State of Illinois that all persons are entitled to full and complete information regarding the affairs of government and the official acts and policies of those who represent them as public officials and public employees consistent with the terms of this Act. Such access is necessary to enable the people to fulfill their duties of discussing public issues fully and freely, making informed political judgments and monitoring governme
#3 Jan 18, 2014
"Government should be hiring people based on the merits. Period. Because it is our public money and we expect that our money will be spent wisely and that means you hire the best people for the job."
— David Hoffman, former Chicago inspector general and federal prosecutor.
#4 Jan 18, 2014
The Blue Island attorney is married to Robbins city attorney/State Rep. Chris Welsh~~~~connected to State Rep. Bob Rita.
#5 Jan 18, 2014
From a wooden wheel cart to automobiles that think for us and even drive us, from smoke signals and the pony express to electronic devices that search the world for us, and more being discovered today. From log cabins to million dollar homes and mansions in prestige areas and bountiful food for all.
With all these conveniences our lives will be judged on all the good we do in life. That goodness will be our legacy and a better place when the call comes.
— Pat Tuleja
#6 Jan 18, 2014
Never interrupt your enemy when he is making a mistake.
#7 Mar 8, 2014
'Gifted attorney' rejected for federal post because of one case
It is a sad day for justice when a gifted attorney is denied an opportunity to run the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division because he defended a man on death row.
When you strip away the politics surrounding Debo Adegbile’s nomination, that’s what it boils down to.
Adegbile is being punished for giving Mumia Abu-Jamal, who was convicted for killing a police officer three decades ago, the defense that our constitution guarantees.
Abu-Jamal was convicted for the 1981 murder of Daniel Faulkner in Philadelphia. His conviction and death sentence was a cause that was taken up by celebrities and civil rights activists across the country.
Although Adegbile’s defeat will be treated as a political blow to President Barack Obama, the truth is it is a punch in the gut for justice.
Because law enforcement groups fiercely opposed Adegbile’s nomination over his work with the NAACP legal defense team on behalf of Abu-Jamal, it was expected that he would be confirmed by a slim margin.
Abu-Jamal, a former journalist and Black Panther, has maintained his innocence, and is seen by his supporters as a political prisoner.
Law enforcement, however, consider Abu-Jamal a common murderer who tried to get got off the hook after gunning down a police officer.
Will the work Shawn te Raines, did or did not do in Blue Island come back to haunt her as it did Debo Adegbile?
'What a tangled web we weave, when we practice to deceive'?
#8 Mar 8, 2014
The entanglement of poorly written policies and ordinances have already begun to negatively impact and financially damage Blue Island.
#9 Mar 8, 2014
Agree, the money grab has started.
#10 Mar 9, 2014
The money grab has not started; it is been perpetuated.
#11 Apr 13, 2014
Former aide to Obama pal Whitaker pleads guilty
SPRINGFIELD --- The one-time top aide to former state public health chief Dr. Eric Whitaker pleaded guilty today in a $400,000 federal bribery and kickback scheme on state grants she controlled.
Quinshaunta Golden, 45, of Homewood, entered her plea in federal court in a deal where prosecutors agreed to ask a judge to sentence her to no more than 10 years and a month in prison.
Whitaker, a close friend of President Barack Obama, has said he is fully cooperating with the government and not involved "in any way" with the alleged crimes in the case. Whitaker reiterated that through a spokeswoman when the Tribune reported the plea agreement earlier this week. Whitaker is not named in the case.
Golden, the niece of Democratic U.S. Rep. Danny Davis of Chicago, admitted to two counts involving bribery, theft, embezzlement and obstruction of justice for trying to cover up her crimes. Golden was Whitaker's chief of staff when they served together at the Illinois Department of Public Health for several years until late 2007. She had oversight of millions of dollars in grants.
After the hearing, a tearful Golden hugged supporters. Her sentencing hearing has been scheduled for Aug. 18, and she remains released on bond until then.
“I know she regrets it,” said Bill Roberts, Golden’s attorney.“She’s sorry for her actions and her conduct, but she accepted responsibility for her actions by pleading guilty.”
Assistant U.S. Attorney Gregory Harris said Golden “corruptly” solicited kickbacks in exchange for state grants for several years beginning in 2006.
Golden told a judge she is receiving psychiatric help and has taken “quite a bit of medication,” including a Valium before the hearing to calm her nerves.
When they indicted Golden last year, prosecutors alleged that starting in 2006, she directed grants to a security firm to evaluate potential nursing home residents for felonies. The firm previously has been identified as V.I.P. Security & Detective Service in Evergreen Park. A 2009 Tribune investigation determined that state evaluations in which V.I.P. Security took part sometimes missed ex-convicts' violent crimes and downplayed the risk they posed to other nursing home residents.
Under Golden, the state public health agency also issued grants to nonprofits run by Leon Dingle Jr. Golden is accused of having Dingle hire a paid consultant, identified in the indictment only as Individual A. The consultant collected more than $1 million in grant and contract money given to Dingle's groups and the security firm and was supposed to kick back half the money to Golden, the indictment states.
Individual A is described as an associate of Golden's and a paid consultant of V.I.P. Security who allegedly paid more than $400,000 to Golden as part of the scheme, according to the indictment. In the plea agreement, the government alleges the highest payment that made its way to Golden was as much as $70,000, but Golden contends the largest was no more than $50,000.
Dingle, who served several years as a commissioner for the Illinois Medical District, and his wife, Karin, have pleaded not guilty in a 2012 federal money-laundering case. They are charged with diverting $3.7 million in state funds for cancer- and AIDS-related programs for luxury cars, sports tickets and vacations.
As a grand jury probe heated up in February 2012, Golden sought to influence the testimony of the consultant, including urging the individual to say the grant money was used "for gambling and other personal expenses," prosecutors said.
Roxanne Bryant Jackson headed up human resources at the state health department when Whitaker and Golden were there. Jackson later was director of V.I.P. Security, which was owned by her brother, Bennie Bryant III. Reached by phone Monday, Jackson said she no longer worked at V.I.P., knew nothing about Golden's plea and had no further comment.
#12 Apr 13, 2014
Whitaker left the state Public Health Department in 2007. He then worked at University of Chicago Medicine, overlapping a period while Michelle Obama was ratcheting down her work there. Golden left her state job in 2008 and joined Whitaker at the U. of C. Neither works there now, officials said.
#13 Apr 13, 2014
Attorneys are paid for Poorly written policies the same way they are paid for a job well done. The BIIP party in power has long term experiance in all of the deceptive arts.
#14 Apr 21, 2014
I just read the Agenda for April 22, 2014 city council meeting. And I must agree with you.
#15 Apr 23, 2014
This City Attorney is only good for one thing, making more work and billable hours for herself. Mayor Vargas hiring practice is in violation of Shakman. Blue Island must be investigated.
Shakman lawsuit seeks investigation of hiring under Gov. Quinn
A Chicago attorney asked a federal judge on Tuesday to order an investigation into hiring under Gov. Pat Quinn, saying there's an "embedded culture of patronage practices" in Illinois government and anyone who improperly got a job should be fired.
Michael Shakman — known for bringing the decades-old court case that led to bans on politically based hiring in Chicago and Cook County — filed his motion in U.S. District Court in Chicago as part of that ongoing lawsuit.
The filing accuses Quinn of improper hiring and reclassification of employees in the Illinois Department of Transportation. It cites a 2013 report by the Better Government Association, a watchdog group, that concluded hundreds of Illinois Department of Transportation jobs may have been wrongly filled based on "clout instead of competence."
A U.S. Supreme Court ruling governing state hiring says that only certain jobs may be filled based on subjective considerations, such as political loyalty or personal connections. The high court indicated politics could be considered only when it directly affects the job, such as that of a high-level policy adviser.
The BGA report and Shakman's lawsuit claim IDOT skirted those rules by reclassifying certain positions so they would be exempt from the state hiring rules and politics could be considered.
Quinn's office referred comment to IDOT spokesman Guy Tridgell. In an emailed statement, Tridgell said the office launched a comprehensive audit "immediately" after the BGA report.
He said 61 of the "Staff Assistant" positions once deemed by the administration to be exempt from state rules were submitted to the state's personnel agency for review, and the agency determined at least 50 should not be exempt. Tridgell said going forward, those positions will be hired according to state rules that say a person's qualifications take precedence.
"The hiring of Staff Assistants began in 2003 under the previous administration, and was suspended when new information came to light last year," Tridgell said.
He also said that of the roughly 5,200 IDOT employees, about 4,900 are in positions in which political connections cannot be considered.
But Shakman says the Quinn administration is claiming an "inconceivable" number of employees may be hired based on their politics. He says the number is "far greater than justifiable under applicable law."
He wants the judge to appoint a monitor to investigate hiring practices, and he says those improper political hires should lose their jobs.
Shakman's motion also says his lawyers met with attorneys for Quinn on Monday to try to resolve the issue but a resolution could not be reached.
#16 Apr 23, 2014
are you guys still pissed off about losing the election?
#17 Apr 23, 2014
only applies to the city of chicago
#18 Apr 23, 2014
If you are so confident about having a city job, then why must you come to Topix to defend yourself? You are just making Vargas, Hawley and Rita look like they hired a bunch of unprofessionals. You also sound a little worried about the future of your employment.
#19 Apr 23, 2014
A swarm of Incompetents.
#20 Apr 26, 2014
The Buck Stops on Domingo Vargas' desk.
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