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Rachel Ventura to Challenge Bill Foster for 11th Congressional Seat



By Bolingbrook Politics Staff

Will County Board member Rachel Ventura of Joliet officially launched her campaign to unseat incumbent Bill Foster of Naperville for the 2020 primary election.

The newcomer echoed many progressive policies that were part of her agenda such as “Medicare for all” single-payer health insurance, the passage of the Green New Deal and comprehensive immigration reform.

During her annoucement, she indicated “America does not need nor want transactional politics, nor pay-to-play politicians. We want our voices to be heard and represented.”

Bill Foster has quietly responded by listing his endorsements which include eight Democrats who serve on the Will County Board with Ventura, Will County Executive Larry Walsh, and several state legislators.


City Hires Firm To Search For Joliet City Manager





The search for a new Joliet City Manager has begun and the clock is ticking. The Joliet City Council on Tuesday voted 5-3 to hire Slavin Management Consultants. They said the process should be wrapped up within three months. Joliet Mayor Bob O’Dekirk is against the idea and said there are local candidates that can do the job. The cost of the search by the consultanting firm is just under $24,000.

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Opinion: Politicians Behaving Badly: DuPage Township Trustee Dennis Raga Edition



Bolingbrook Politics will be conducting ongoing exposes of local politicians and examining the full facts unencumbered by either political party. We must seek elected officials who are the best among us to represent our values and interests instead of their own. We must examine and understand these individuals who seek to represent us in an elected capacity at all levels of government. Unfortunately many continue to fall very short of the high bar that should be expected.
As a reminder, this is an opinion piece.

The first of many exposes will be DuPage Township Trustee Dennis Raga.

Dennis Raga
Dennis Raga DuPage Township Trustee

Dennis Raga was appointed as a DuPage Township Trustee in 2016. This was under protest by Bill Mayer who had wanted a more qualified candidate to serve for the open seat. However, allegedly Village of Bolingbrook Mayor Roger Claar had pressured the then Supervisor to appoint Dennis Raga as he was part of the Mayor’s inner circle. Roger Claar had allegedly stated to Bill Mayer that if Raga was not appointed to the position then the DuPage Township slate of candidates would not be provided any support or be provided any access to the election headquarters. Given the upcoming election, Bill Mayer had yielded to the Mayor’s demand and appointed Dennis Raga to the position.

The following excerpts have been attained from police records about Dennis Raga’s alleged behavior between December 2016 and October 2018.

On December 12th, 2016 Dennis Raga allegedly stated “Get out of my way” and had allegedly pushed an unnamed woman forcefully in the chest with an open right hand with such strength that she had been knocked back a few steps. (page 17 of FOIA Part 2 – pages 31 to 60)

On February 21st, 2017 Raga had allegedly threatened to strike this unnamed woman with a beer bottle. (page 17 FOIA Part 2 – pages 31 to 60)

“earlier this morning she went to the
Will County court house to file for an
order of protection”

On June 22nd, 2017 Dennis Raga according to alleged first-hand accounts (page 12 of FOIA Part 2 – pages 31 to 60) had allegedly assaulted and threatened to kill an unnamed woman who had to seek an order of protection against him. The abused had indicated to police that Raga had a history of domestic abuse against her and she feared retaliation. Stating she had been threatened and struck multiple times in the past and has filed multiple police reports documenting the events. (She also) relayed that (he) has a gun collection and that she is scared for her well-being. It was also stated that earlier that morning she went to the Will county courthouse to file for an order of protection and would like to go back to their home but is afraid that (he) may be there or show up while she is there.

On April 19th, 2018, 45-year-old DuPage Township Dennis Raga had been arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol. Shortly after midnight, after drinking all day, he had driven his black Hummer onto Derbyshire Lane. Bolingbrook officer James Brock had stopped the politician at 12:33 a.m. and placed Dennis Raga under arrest for drunken driving. (page 6 of FOIA Part 5 – pages 121 to 130

A request for the arrest video had been made, however, it had been denied on multiple occasions by Fran Miller, FOIA Officer for Bolingbrook. The State of Illinois had intervened providing a stinging rebuke to the Village of Bolingbrook handling of the request and they were finally forced to release the arrest video of Dennis Raga.

Instead of releasing the entire video of the alleged incident, the Village of Bolingbrook only released a heavily redacted video of the arrest. Out of a 20 min 53-sec video, roughly 12 mins and 47 seconds had been redacted.

The following are the time sections of video that have been redacted.

  • 00:15:56 to 00:16:03  – 7 seconds
  • 00:16:35 to 00:16:43  – 8 seconds
  • 00:17:50 to 00:18:03  – 13 seconds
  • 00:18:38 to 00:18:44  – 6 seconds
  • 00:18:49 to 00:19:01  – 12 seconds
  • 00:19:49 to 00:20:13  – 24 seconds
  • 00:20:25 to 00:21:24  – 59 seconds
  • 00:21:56 to 00:22:03  – 7 seconds
  • 00:22:33 to 00:22:44  – 11 seconds
  • 00:22:50 to 00:24:51  – 121 second
  • 00:24:58 to 00:25:06  – 8 seconds
  • 00:25:12 to 00:26:30  – 78 seconds
  • 00:26:39 to 00:26:44  – 5 seconds
  • 00:27:32 to 00:27:52  – 20 seconds
  • 00:28:05 to 00:33:43  – 338 seconds
  • 00:34:30 — the audio was redacted

Dennis Raga was sentenced to alcoholism treatment and ordered to pay a fine totaling $1,600 on 10/25/2018. You can view the redacted video above.

Since Dupage Township Trustee Dennis Raga had according to police reports allegedly threatened to kill, driven drunk and allegedly assaulted an unnamed woman. The question remains why was the Village of Bolingbrook protecting his video? As an elected official the electorate has the right to understand the character of their elected officials. Secondly, given the character that has been displayed by this public servant why haven’t the people demanded him to resign? Certainly, he is not the best we can do. And lastly, if this is the caliber of politicians put forth by the Mayor of Bolingbrook what else is hiding?

FOIA Part 1 – pages 5 to 30


FOIA Part 2 – pages 31 to 60


FOIA Part 3 – pages 61 to 90


FOIA Part 4 – pages 91 to 120


FOIA Part 5 – pages 121 to 130


This is an opinion piece

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Bolingbrook Police Salaries



Bolingbrook Police makes up 40.39% of the total payroll expenditure of Bolingbrook.

This department’s total expenditure is higher than 98.17% of other Police Departments in the Municipal category.

This department’s median salary is higher than 89.63% of other Police Departments in the Municipal category. Data source is from 2017.

Individual: Position: Salary: 
1. Thomas Ross Director Of Public Safety at Bolingbrook Police$186,693
2. Dennis Hess Police Commander at Bolingbrook Police$153,958
3. Michael Rompa Police Commander at Bolingbrook Police$149,839
4. James Coughlin Police Lieutenant at Bolingbrook Police$144,220
5. Kenneth Teppel Deputy Chief Of Police at Bolingbrook Police$143,807
6. Christopher Witt Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$135,220
7. Steven Furtek Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$133,016
8. Jeffrey Lockard Police Lieutenant at Bolingbrook Police$131,186
9. David Schurr Police Lieutenant at Bolingbrook Police$131,098
10. Richard Hilliard Police Lieutenant at Bolingbrook Police$130,378
11. Brian Hafner Police Lieutenant at Bolingbrook Police$129,575
12. Nicholas Schmidt Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$128,968
13. Dale Szymanski Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$125,982
14. John Hild Police Lieutenant at Bolingbrook Police$125,653
15. William Smith Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$125,609
16. Anthony Columbus Police Sergeant at Bolingbrook Police$125,427
17. Steve Jahnke Police Sergeant at Bolingbrook Police$125,245
18. Joseph Brick Police Sergeant at Bolingbrook Police$122,553
19. Jeffrey Drabek Police Sergeant at Bolingbrook Police$122,006
20. Brant Duval Police Sergeant at Bolingbrook Police$121,818
21. Salvatore Davi Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$121,475
22. Champ Evans Police Sergeant at Bolingbrook Police$121,442
23. Thomas Kiska Police Sergeant at Bolingbrook Police$121,405
24. Mark Mcqueary Police Lieutenant at Bolingbrook Police$120,569
25. Kristen Swienton Police Sergeant at Bolingbrook Police$120,272
26. Robert Liazuk Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$119,519
27. Sean Talbot Police Sergeant at Bolingbrook Police$118,786
28. John Morrow Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$118,741
29. Jon Costion Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$118,523
30. James Daunis Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$117,748
31. Kristofer Schrubbe Police Sergeant at Bolingbrook Police$117,639
32. Stephen Sinnott Police Sergeant at Bolingbrook Police$117,224
33. Scott Lustik Police Sergeant at Bolingbrook Police$117,122
34. Sean Koren Police Sergeant at Bolingbrook Police$117,098
35. Richard Treece Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$117,003
36. Peter Moranda Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$116,876
37. Matthew Gorman Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$116,370
38. Brennan Woods Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$115,488
39. Joseph Hilbruner Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$115,456
40. Michael Harvey Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$114,713
41. Thomas Gallas Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$114,484
42. Robert Boehnke Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$114,269
43. Thomas Stepanek Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$114,127
44. Vincent Radaker Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$113,622
45. Donald Draksler Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$112,884
46. Brigitte Buittron Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$112,584
47. Antonio Tucker Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$112,500
48. Jaime Marquez Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$112,330
49. James Block Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$112,035
50. Dane Stepien Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$111,173
51. Andrew Sraga Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$110,966
52. Robert Armstrong Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$109,339
53. Henry Cunningham Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$108,892
54. Jason Mitchem Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$108,879
55. Christopher Georgeff Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$108,293
56. Christopher Salerno Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$107,931
57. Jonathan Moritz Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$107,910
58. Brian Martin Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$107,906
59. Nicholas Keedy Police Sergeant at Bolingbrook Police$107,838
60. Jason Leake Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$105,253
61. Brandon Gentry Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$105,220
62. Jeffrey Weber Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$105,217
63. Kenneth Kikilas Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$104,568
64. Michael Kraus Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$104,432
65. Christopher Crofford Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$104,342
66. Robert Sudd Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$104,200
67. Chris Kushenbach Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$103,055
68. Thomas Mcauliffe Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$102,689
69. John Alvarado Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$101,615
70. Kevin Hopkins Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$101,247
71. Michelle Geier Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$101,215
72. Mark Dicken Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$100,754
73. Nicholas Higens Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$100,349
74. David Henzler Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$99,574
75. Douglas Landando Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$99,135
76. Patrick Kinsella Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$98,795
77. James Burke Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$98,654
78. Daniel Smetters Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$98,642
79. Eli Limacher Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$98,018
80. Stephen Alexander Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$97,781
81. Marjorie Higens Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$97,486
82. Joseph Cassidy Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$96,887
83. Ramon Orejel Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$96,760
84. Nicholas Azzo Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$96,728
85. James Albright Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$94,898
86. Luis Escobar Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$94,741
87. John Ivlow Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$94,486
88. Matthew Kovacik Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$94,154
89. Traneil Thomas Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$93,935
90. John Tuttle Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$93,680
91. Lindsay Kinsella Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$93,620
92. Steven Ficek Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$93,478
93. Anthony Luna Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$93,320
94. Bradley Kurtzweil Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$91,973
95. Alan Hampton Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$91,609
96. Joseph Gruben Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$90,001
97. Aaron Gieser Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$89,446
98. Luke Anderson Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$89,196
99. Maryrose Kendall Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$89,012
100. Kendall Schumann Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$85,916
101. Daniel Thiel Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$85,697
102. Brandon Cusack Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$83,842
103. Joseph Poradyla Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$82,283
104. Ladislao Vargas Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$80,888
105. Linda Simpson Police Administrative Aide at Bolingbrook Police$80,603
106. Anthony Gomez De La Casa, Jr. Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$74,436
107. Jenna Swendsen Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$67,842
108. Titonia Scudder Crime Prevention Specialist at Bolingbrook Police$60,682
109. Patricia Foster Police Secretary at Bolingbrook Police$59,669
110. Christine Buerger Police Secretary at Bolingbrook Police$58,966
111. Kathryn Mottl Police Sercretary at Bolingbrook Police$57,775
112. Cody Cammack Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$43,264
113. Nora Sobotka Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$31,518
114. Phillip White Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$25,461
115. Zachary Mcqueen Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$24,842
116. Nicholas Christopher Police Officer at Bolingbrook Police$5,170
117. Willie Mcray Police Sergeant at Bolingbrook Police$2,878

Source of information from:

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