The Chicago Tribune released its annual FOIA of Aldermanic expenses last week. While 33rd Ward Alderman Dick Mell cut his expenses 15.6 percent, Patrick O’Connor increased his expenses 12.7 percent in 2009 over the previous year.
Ald. Eugene Schulter reported his expenses were relatively unchanged, being up only 0.8 percent year to year.
Two employees were paid through Mell’s account this year, Aurea Hernandez and Alice Richter. Hernandez was reported as receiving $29,652 in 2008. But with two employees on the payroll in 2009 Mell’s payroll only increased 3.5 percent, according to the filings.
Mell’s payroll accounted for more than half of his aldermanic expenses in 2009. He also leased a car in both 2008 and 2009, charging it to the city.
Eugene Schulter’s daughter Monica was not reported on the 2009 expenses. She had earned $31,615 through that account in 2008, according to the Chicago Tribune.
Schulter began the practice of paying for vendors out of his pocket, he said to a reporter, accounting for a large increase in reimbursed expenses to Schulter. Schulter explained to a reporter that the city was slow to pay. So, he reimbursed them himself and waited for the city to then settle with him.
Schulter also leases a car at the city expense according to the report.
His second largest cost was newsprint. The combined communications effort of the office, including envelopes, Newsweb Corp, Vo’s Graphics, Cardinal Colorprint came to $16,248, the report says.
Patrick O’Connor’s year over year expenses increased 12.7 percent to $60,270. It appears as though a substantial raise to Denise M O’Neill, of 35.9 percent, accounts for all of the increase.