Pecatonica sworn in as trustee to fill vacancy of village chairman
ROCKFORD, Ill. (WIFR) – It’s no secret that the village of Pecatonica has had its fair share of hurdles over the past eight months. It started in May, when an officer was arrested on multiple criminal charges, including intimidation and a lewd proposition. Then in October, newly sworn in police chief Michael Mund was charged with a DUI.
“We handled everything in the best possible way,” said New Pecatonica Village President Tom Heister. “There are going to be a lot more checks and balances, I know that for a fact.”
Accusations of questionable actions by public officials did not stop there. Tom Heister hopes that as the new village president, he can lead Pecatonica down a new path. Heister was named Tuesday to replace Bill Smull, who resigned amid accusations of wrongdoing on his part.
Smull cited personal health as the reason for his resignation, but as 23 News was the first to tell you, an investigation is underway to determine if Smull played a role in thousands of dollars allegedly missing from the Pecatonica American. Legion. The city council could not comment.
“It’s a sad thing that we had to have a new president, but Tom is a good man,” resident Gary Buettner said. “I have full confidence in him and the rest of the crew.”
As a former trustee, Heister says he will have no problem in his new role as village chairman working alongside current trustees, on an equal footing.
“With these administrators, nobody has a personal agenda. Everyone is open-minded,” Heister said. “With that, it’s a huge key to success.”
Heister will serve for the remainder of Smull’s term, which ends in 2025.
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