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Alderman's Lack of Residency in Ward Causes Rumblings Among Residents

Ald. Dan Ensing currently doesn't live in his ward—and some residents aren't happy. Fellow aldermen and Mayor Hank Kuspa addressed the issue at a Nov. 13 meeting.

An alderman's change of address has some residents in a tizzy, prompting Oak Forest City Council members to take a closer look. 

Ald. Dan Ensing (5th Ward) was forced to relocate to a different home outside of the ward and Oak Forest, after the termination of his apartment lease. The move caused several unnamed residents to question whether Ensing currently meets the city's residency requirement to serve as an alderman.

“I've been hearing rumblings about this information for over a year,” said Ald. Chuck Toland (4th Ward).

Toland added that he had previously spoken to Mayor Hank Kuspa twice about the issue and that both times the mayor told him that Ensing did still meet the city's requirements.

During the city council's Tuesday, Nov. 13 meeting the council addressed the issue and determined, with the help of the city's legal council, that though Ensing does currently live outside of the city, he still meets the residency requirement.

“My understanding is, that after reading the packet that this is perfectly legal, for an alderman to move out of town, out of his ward or even out of the town,” said Ald. Rich Simon.

The council agreed that the lease termination was unexpected—according to documents, the lease was terminated due to the sale of his building to a new owner, who chose not to extend the lease—and that since it is Ensing's intent to find new housing in the ward, that he still met the requirement.

“As long as his intent is to come back,” Simon said. “What I'm saying is, that should put any grumblings to rest.”

Ensing said the matter is moot because he and his wife are currently looking for a new home in the ward, and already have a timetable for their return.

“My wife and I are looking at selling her townhome after the first of the year,” Ensing said. “After the holidays, we're looking for a house to rent temporarily in my ward, or buy a permanent house. … We're hoping to do it by the beginning of the summer.

"We've set a one-year timeline.”

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Michael M. November 22, 2012 at 06:43 AM
Christina- The city is not managing THEIR MONEY, THEY ARE MANAGING & SPENDING OUR MONEY, you have the right to complain and you should complain. if you do not watch what your government is doing, then you are complicate in their failure.
NANCY GRACE November 25, 2012 at 12:57 PM
Glad to see sidewalks are finally coming along, now for some evergreen trees and light posts on the north end of Central...
Tony Fiorenzo January 24, 2013 at 04:04 PM
How about that $400,000 stone sign they agreed to have built by the train station and then tore down not long after. RIDICULOUS!!!
OF Resident January 24, 2013 at 04:20 PM
You can blame that on good old Joanne Kelly! She only tore that down because it was put up by the Gordon administration. And just think, now she is going to be handling all the cities money come April. This town is screwed!!!
Tony Fiorenzo January 24, 2013 at 04:31 PM
As far back as I remember this town has been run by unscrupulous morons. The park district embezzled all that money many moons ago. The former fire chief was stealing equipment and had to resign. On top of it, these politicians disgust me, acting as if they are above the fray. Give me a break. Karma's a bitch. They are what's wrong. They are the problem.

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