COD, Glen Ellyn begin 'new era of cooperation'
After years of feuding between the College of DuPage and Glen Ellyn, the two sides have made up and say they want to work together.
In response, the DuPage County Board on Tuesday approved an intergovernmental agreement that returns regulatory control over the college's 273-acre campus back to Glen Ellyn.
Starting June 30, COD will once again need the village's approval on issues related to building codes, zoning, sign codes and liquor licensing.
The move follows a five-year period in which the county handled such issues as a way to avoid litigation between COD and Glen Ellyn -- and to prevent the school from de-annexing from the village.
"I think today's action is more than just an operational transfer of duties," county board Chairman Dan Cronin said. "What we're also doing is ushering in a new era of cooperation between the county, the College of DuPage and the village of Glen Ellyn."
The relationship between COD and Glen Ellyn was far from cooperative in 2012.
Both sides had bickered for years over the village's inspections and permit fees. COD officials argued the campus wasn't under the village's jurisdiction and didn't have to submit to its review process.
The dispute reached a point where COD officials were threatening to de-annex.
A deal finally was struck in March 2012 to transfer regulatory control to the county while keeping COD within the corporate limits of Glen Ellyn.
Cronin said the 2012 agreement was devised as a short-term solution by the late Jerry "JR" McBride, a county board member from Glen Ellyn who died in 2014.
The deal, Cronin said, "paved the way for better, stronger relationships."
"We can now look forward to a collaborative, successful relationship between the college and its host village," Cronin said.
COD board Chairwoman Deanne Mazzochi said the process of returning the school to the jurisdiction of Glen Ellyn started several months ago with some conversations between COD and village officials.
"We're very pleased that we've been able to work out our differences and find ways in which Glen Ellyn can maintain its proper oversight role," Mazzochi said.
She said the college will benefit from being under the village's regulatory control.
"I trust they are going to do a good job making sure we're doing the right thing," she said.
The agreement was ratified last month by the Glen Ellyn village board and the COD board of trustees.
"This goes to show good people with good intentions can accomplish anything," Glen Ellyn Village President Alex Demos said. "From a Glen Ellyn point of view, we're excited to further take advantage of having such an incredible asset within our county and within the border of our town. We all need to support College of DuPage."
Cooperate: Cronin says deal will make for stronger relationships