Undeterred by a 4-2 vote Wednesday by the Board of Trustees against his choice for Caseyville Treasurer, Mayor Leonard Black appointed a resident to the post who has twice filed for bankruptcy.
Black appointed Lola Cline as interim treasurer, which he can do without Board approval. Reached for comment Thursday, Black called the votes against Cline a political move.
“She is a lifelong citizen. It is good to have someone qualified,” Black said. “She worked for Scott Credit Union for all those years and she is knowledgeable, in my opinion.”
Court records show that Cline and her husband Alfred have twice filed for Chapter 13 bankruptcy. The couple filed in June 1988 and March 2010. Black said he was unaware of the financial history of the person he twice brought to the Board to be appointed treasurer – he first made a motion to appoint Cline in a February committee meeting.
“I didn’t look too deep into it. I didn’t know about that,” Black said when informed Cline had twice filed for bankruptcy.
Attempts to reach Cline were unsuccessful.
According to court records, Cline and her husband had $98,937.53 in debt, including $49,118.39 in credit card debt and $1765.54 classified as medical bills in March 2010. The couple claimed assets of $39,915.24 and a monthly income of $3,333.96.
Trustees Rick Casey Jr. and Ron Tamburello voted in favor of hiring Cline, who Black said will be sent to training with the accounting firm Scheffel Boyle. In March, Black mentioned a preference for Scheffel Boyle to be named treasurer, although they were never appointed.
Cline, who Black said will make about $400 per month, will not have much investing work as part of her responsibilities.
“We don’t have any money to invest,” Black said. “What we have, we just invest in CDs (certificates of deposit).”
The Board of Trustees recently voted unanimously to raise property taxes by 17.5 percent for the Police Pension Fund, Social Security and the Illinois Municipal Retirement Fund – the retirement account for Illinois municipal employees.
Black said he was confident the Board would be happy with Cline’s performance and may bring her back to them for approval again. If the former secretary and bank employee does not perform well, Black said that is not a problem.
“If she doesn’t do a good job, we’ll just get rid of her,” Black said.
The opening Cline filled was created by the resignation of Diel and Forguson LLC on Dec. 5. Black said two treasurers have quit since he took office. He is unsure why, but is certain that it is not his fault.
Black removed Diel and Forguson LLC as treasurers soon after taking office in May 2013 and did not appoint a replacement. The company was brought back on March 26, 2014.