COD, Glen Ellyn battling again
By Hank Beckman For The Sun May 17, 2012 4:50PM
Updated: July 1, 2012 11:44AM
It couldn’t last.
It looked like peace had broken out in the ongoing jurisdictional battle between Glen Ellyn and the College of DuPage, but with the college filing a motion in court against village officials Wednesday, a new skirmish has flared up.
“They need to stop trying to indirectly regulate us,” COD Attorney Ken Florey told the Sun in a telephone interview Thursday.
The two sides have long been at odds over whether or not the college is obligated to adhere to village codes and building ordinances, with the village maintaining that the college was under its jurisdiction and COD insisting otherwise.
An agreement reached last month would allow the college to remain incorporated in Glen Ellyn, but operate under DuPage County codes and ordinances.
But in the college’s application for conditional use permits to the county, Glen Ellyn officials have expressed their concerns over what are essentially the same issues as before, among them issues with lighting, building permits, drainage, water detention and parking.
Village Planning Director Staci Hulseberg said that village officials were surprised at the extent of the new construction shown on the college’s permit application.
“Based on our experience at the Village of Glen Ellyn, planned development plans usually contain a greater amount of detail than we are seeing in these proposals,” she said.
Hulseberg stressed that several of the buildings proposed were very close to residential property lines and would have an effect on property owners.
Village officials seem particularly concerned that possible new buildings won’t come with adequate parking.
College spokesman Joe Moore responded by phone that several of the buildings listed on the petition don’t exist and are merely placeholders for possible new construction, representing decisions that would have to be made by future COD boards.
Florey stressed that many of the issues raised by Hulseberg were related to old disputes over permits and other issues that predated the new agreement, and should not be the subject of new discussions in a conditional use process with an entirely different governing body.
“It’s inappropriate,” he said.
Or, as the motion filed by the college reads: “The village now wants to regulate by co-opting the county’s administrative process.”
Hulseberg was not available for comment, but Village President Mark Pfefferman responded by email.
“I am shocked and disappointed with the college’s filing of yet another motion before the court at taxpayers’ expense,” he said in the email. “The message the college is sending, however unintentional, is that it does not value the professional and reasoned input of its constituents, students, employees and neighbors.”
Another point of contention is the feeling among some Glen Ellyn residents that the college is planning to install dormitory residences, but although Florey did say that it was an idea that has been considered, it was rejected and not in the college’s plans.
“Absolutely not,” he said.
The village also maintains that its input was sought from the college and that it only restated long-held concerns.
Village Attorney Stewart Diamond said that the college was being thin-skinned, that the motion amounted to a gag order and stressed that the village recognized the county’s zoning authority over the college.
“It’s up to the county to make those decisions,” he said.
The motion to enforce the Mediation Agreement and Intergovernmental Agreement agreed on by the two parties only last month goes before the DuPage 18th Circuit Court May 21.