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updated: 10/2/2012 7:05 PM

Buffalo Grove group wants to recall officials

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A group of Buffalo Grove residents opposed to a massive development proposal in the village said Tuesday they'll work to throw every current member of the village board out of office next April if their concerns aren't addressed.

That includes not only running against trustees whose terms will be ending in 2013, but recalling officials whose terms won't end until 2015.

The citizens group Save Buffalo Grove filed a notice of intention to recall Village President Jeffrey Braiman and trustees Jeff Berman, Steve Trilling and Mike Terson last Friday.

The notice states they and the rest of the board have failed to adequately represent the interests of Buffalo Grove residents who would be adversely affected by a proposed 65-acre retail, office and residential development at what is now the village campus and Buffalo Grove Golf Club.

Deputy Village Clerk Jane Olson said the notice was properly filed according to the village's own regulations.

Buffalo Grove is already experienced in the procedure of recalling elected officials, following the November 2010 recall of controversial trustee Lisa Stone.

Marilyn Weisberg, a member of Save Buffalo Grove, said she's lived on the edge of the golf course for 17 years and is concerned about the loss of quiet and scenic beauty.

The proposed development, unveiled in August, would include 320,000 square feet of stores, 55,000 square feet of restaurants, 66,000 square feet of office space, a 45,000-square-foot movie theater and 60,000 square feet of cultural amenities such as a community center or museum.

The project also would include two eight-story towers and one 10-story tower that would contain a total of 266 condominium units. Another 325 rental units would be on the upper floors of the office and retail buildings.

Weisberg said her group is particularly concerned about the ambitiousness of these plans given the amount of condominium and retail vacancies that already exist in the village.

She said she didn't know to what degree other members of her group have had contact with village officials about the plan so far, but felt the plan reported about in the Daily Herald in August was quite advanced considering no mention of it had ever been made in the village newsletter.

Braiman said every project begins somewhere, and that the August presentation by developer Chuck Malk was the beginning of what's likely to be a long and detailed process.

The village board hasn't yet referred the plan to the plan commission for the start of reviews and hearings, he noted.

"It will come before the board, I hope, very soon," Braiman said. "We want to make this as open, as transparent as possible. I want there to be constructive criticism."

Braiman said village board members view every project from the perspective of being residents themselves. He said the filing of an intent to recall will not affect his decision-making.

"I'm not going to be frightened by the possibility of a recall," Braiman said. "I'm going to do what's best for the village -- period."

While Weisberg cites the number of vacancies that already exist in the village, Braiman said the board has learned from the mistakes of its predecessors and will look for ways to reinvigorate the entire village in its review of the proposal.

He added that state law allows only three board members at a time to be recalled by election, forcing Save Buffalo Grove to make a choice among the four board members they've named. But Braiman admitted that being village president won't make him exempt.

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