St. Charles project finally done; city seeks $215,000 in fines, attorney costs

  • Cliff McIlvaine has finished work at his St. Charles home on the 600 block of Prairie Street. Now the city seeks $215,000 from McIlvaine for the new roof, attorney fees and fines imposed by a judge.

    Cliff McIlvaine has finished work at his St. Charles home on the 600 block of Prairie Street. Now the city seeks $215,000 from McIlvaine for the new roof, attorney fees and fines imposed by a judge. Brian Hill | Staff Photographer

  • Cliff McIlvaine has finished work at his St. Charles home on the 600 block of Prairie Street. The city now seeks $215,000 from McIlvaine for the new roof, attorney fees and fines imposed by a judge.

    Cliff McIlvaine has finished work at his St. Charles home on the 600 block of Prairie Street. The city now seeks $215,000 from McIlvaine for the new roof, attorney fees and fines imposed by a judge. Brian Hill | Staff Photographer

 
 
Updated 4/2/2015 9:50 PM

After years of litigation, Cliff McIlvaine has completed an addition to his St. Charles home for which he was first issued a permit to begin in the mid-1970s.

"The end of the tunnel has been reached," said McIlvaine's attorney, Philip Piscopo. "Mr. McIlvaine got done the things he needed to do. The original case has been resolved as far as the work is concerned."

 

But now the other shoe is dropping as the city filed court papers this week seeking more than $215,000 in fines, attorney fees and reimbursement costs for a new roof and other work authorized by a judge in May 2013.

The city first sued McIlvaine in late 2000, arguing he had not let inspectors into his home since a building permit was first issued in 1975.

The two sides eventually inked an agreement to have McIlvaine wrap up his project by September 2012. But in spring 2012, McIlvaine missed numerous deadlines and was jailed for contempt of court for two weeks for refusing to connect to the city water supply.

In May 2013, the city asked for and was granted permission by Judge David Akemann to take over certain parts of the project, such as installing a conventional, asphalt shingle roof, and to bill McIlvaine for the work.

The two sides wrangled back and forth in 2014 to get remaining items completed, and in late January 2015, the city dismissed its complaint.

The city seeks $31,322 for the roof and other repairs, along with $119,621 in attorney fees. During the litigation, Judge Thomas Mueller also ordered fines of $100 per day that McIlvaine was behind in the project.

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The city wants $64,200 for the 642 days from July 12, 2012, to April 16, 2014 that McIlvaine was in violation, according to court records.

Phil Luetkehans, an attorney for the city of St. Charles, said McIlvaine has completed the project and now the court case has moved into the financial phase.

Piscopo said he could not comment on the litigation seeking fines and costs because he had not been served with the court papers yet.

The matter is next due in court April 20.

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