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Article updated: 7/25/2013 5:21 AM

Lisle man resigns job after failing to inspect ski lift, bouncy house

By Mike Riopell

SPRINGFIELD -- A Lisle man resigned from his state job after lying about inspecting a ski lift and bouncy house and leaving work early to go to side gigs as a vocal impressionist throughout the suburbs, a report from the state's executive inspector general says.

The report also says former Illinois Department of Labor inspector Charles Drager inflated his personal tollway costs and received more than $1,000 in reimbursements he wasn't owed. The state sent Drager a letter in May asking for the money back.

"More disturbing than the monetary loss was the fact that Mr. Drager's misconduct potentially risked the well-being of children, adults, and others who put faith in the state to conduct competent and complete inspection(s) of carnival rides, ski lifts, and inflatable devices," the report reads.

Drager resigned in March after the inspector general completed his investigation and the state was considering disciplinary action. Drager did not return calls for comment.

The report redacts information about where the ski lift was located. But in December of 2011, Drager was supposed to inspect it and ensure the lift was safe before it started carrying passengers. He never saw it operate, the report says.

Drager was also taken to task for not inspecting a bounce house in February of 2012, and the report details a handful of times in 2010 and 2011 he left work early for vocal impressionist gigs in Geneva, Lake in the Hills and Mundelein.

The report faults Drager for not reporting income from his second job on economist interest forms.

Reports by Illinois' Executive Inspector General Ricardo Meza are only made public if an investigation into wrongdoing is founded.

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