Trustee On a Hot Tin Roof: FBI Launches Criminal Probe Into Roof Bids

FBI subpoenas communications and documents stemming from bid process and selection of contractor to replace Oak Lawn public works building roof. Village officials pledge to fully cooperate with criminal investigation.

Several Oak Lawn village officials were served slapped with federal subpoenas on Thursday after the FBI launched a criminal investigation into possible conract bid tampering.

Sign up for the Oak Lawn Patch newsletter and breaking news alerts.

Oak Lawn Village Manager Larry Deetjen confirmed that members of the village board and executive staff, were served at the Chicago law office of the village’s legal counsel.

“We’re cooperating fully with the investigation and turning over all the requested documents,” the village manager said.

The FBI has requested all documents, including meeting minutes, proposals, bid specifications, bids, internal and external correspondence and email communications concerning the bid process and selection of a contractor to replace the roof of the Oak Lawn Public Works facility, said sources familiar with the subpoena.

The village has until Dec. 20 to turn over materials to the FBI.

Questions arose when the $166,085 contract was awarded to Adler Roofing Co. of Joliet, where Oak Lawn Trustee Bob Streit’s brother, Mike, is employed as an estimator.

The two companies that had submitted lower bids were knocked out of the running because they did not provide a start date requested in the bid specifications.

At least one disqualified low-bidder, DCG Roofing Solutions of Des Plaines, has since threatened to sue the village, maintaining there was no such scheduling requirement in the bid specs.

During Tuesday’s village board meeting, Deetjen said that public works directors did not follow proper procedures when assembling bids, nor did they seek out a legal review by the village attorney.

A village trustee also allegedly ordered public works staff to slip a specification sheet into the bid package that Deetjen said was not prepared by the village public works department.

Streit termed the bid controversy a “false issue designed to defame the mayor, me and the roofing company,” in his remarks to fellow board members during Tuesday’s meeting.

He said he didn’t need to recuse himself from voting because neither he or his brother had a financial stake or interest in Adler. Defiant to the end, Streit then “reluctantly” motioned that the village board rescind the contract to his brother’s company.

Oak Lawn trustees also voted to reject all of the other roofing bids.

Thursday’s subpoenas mark at least the second time the village has come under the scrutiny of the feds. requesting all documents stemming from the hiring of the Queery and Harrow law firm after the former village legal counsel was fired in 2009.

Mayor Dave Heilmann has maintained that the village has been under an ongoing federal criminal investigation ever since. Heilmann, who is up for reelection next April, said he was unaware that Streit’s brother worked at Adler and assumed that village staff had vetted the bids when he cast the tie-breaking vote on Nov. 27.

Oak Lawn’s longest-serving village trustee and president pro temp, Streit is the powerful chair of the village’s public works committee and holds the tie-breaking vote backing Heilmann on the village board.

Between 2009 and 2012, Alder is shown to have contributed $2,925 to Streit's campaign coffers. The most recent donation of $500 was made on Sept. 27, according to the trustee's campaign finanace disclosures. Streit has denied that there was any "collusion" to steer the bid to Adler.

Read more Patch coverage of the investigation into roofing bids:

  • New Details Emerge in Roofing Bid Gone Wrong
  • Streit: 'There Was No Collusion' To Award Village Contract to Brother's Firm

Join the Oak Lawn Patch Facebook Nation.

anthony December 20, 2012 at 05:18 AM
10% of people who vote in Oak Lawn, 40 % watch the meetings not sure of the circulation rates of the newspapers.... good question ..But yea the demographics of Oak Lawn suggest its is a direct mail word of mouth election
Dist. 2 Curious December 20, 2012 at 03:41 PM
I hope the cheap land in Florida that Andy wants to sell isn't Deetjen's home; he's going to be back there soon enough. And, Dan and Dawn Sodaro are wonderful people and extremely solid citizens who have contributed greatly to their community by their work rather than by snarky, rude comments at board meetings. People don't give a rat's *ss if anyone has been going to board meetings for 50 years! Just shooting off your mouth doesn't make you a contributor. Deeds over words, my friend.
andy skoundrianos December 20, 2012 at 06:11 PM
The hypocrisy with you Dist is unbelievable. You were directly responsible for the whole Sodaro business . I know who you are,.the comments that are facts are directed at you and you new best buddy the Mayor. Slam me all you want but your deeds are going to get you in jail my former friend...Also worried about the sweetheart deal you got you best friend and buisiness partner?? Keep it up I love it
Dave W. January 02, 2013 at 11:53 PM
Not everyone that posts has a 'favorite' anything...some of us are only concerned with the welfare of Oak Lawn and the well being of the citizens...our elected officials as a collective group are a sorry lot. At this point, I'm not sure it matters if it is a soccer mom or lawyer that runs, I only want them to not be of a criminal mind and have our best interests at heart, not their own pocketbooks. Andy, in your defense, people can change, and your loyalty should be able to reflect that...however, whatever your actual role in things are or were, you have to own up to that. You cannot be IN the process then claim being OUT of it when you want to put the heat on others. The same goes for others, obviously, as well, but you brought up things and then tried to back away when called on the carpet.
andy skoundrianos January 03, 2013 at 12:42 AM
Dave, unlike most bloggers whoever they are ,I admit who l support and who l used to support. Politicians make deals,I don't . I have not changed positions because of backroom deals and allegiances. Mr.Streit and Mr. Heilmann have. I own everything I say or do.


More »
Got a question? Something on your mind? Talk to your community, directly.
Note Article
Just a short thought to get the word out quickly about anything in your neighborhood.
Share something with your neighbors.What's on your mind?What's on your mind?Make an announcement, speak your mind, or sell somethingPost something
See more »