Mount Prospect trustee represents client before village board
What began as a routine Mount Prospect village board meeting took an unusual turn Tuesday when Trustee Augie Filippone stepped away from his role as an elected official to represent a homebuilder with business before the panel.
The board was considering a request for zoning variations from Jack Brogan, who plans to construct single-family homes on a property at 620 E. Golf Road, when Filippone told Mayor Paul Hoefert the he had a professional conflict and left the board dais.
Moments later, he and his wife and law partner, Trisha Chokshi, were at the podium before the board serving as Brogan's attorneys.
Brogan was seeking board permission to consolidate two parcels and subdivide the land into four separate lots for single-family homes. He also sought a variation to build three of the lots 61 feet wide, narrower than the required 65 feet.
The board ultimately voted for the variances -- with Filippone abstaining -- as well as a requirement that the homes would not be built with identical front elevations.
After the meeting, Filippone said he made the village manager and village attorney aware of his conflict ahead of time.
"And it's something that I honestly probably suspected would have happened sooner in my career, because I live here, work here, I'm an elected official here. Everything's local here," he said,
He said the village attorney advised him that when a conflict arises, it would be appropriate to leave the dais.
"We disclosed to the village completely. That's why Augie abstained from that section," said Chokshi, who also chairs the village's finance commission. "He is serving Mr. Brogan in his capacity as a business owner and as an attorney. That was disclosed to the village, in preparation of both the zoning hearing and the meeting. It was all reviewed with staff."
Brogan said he sees no conflict of interest.
"I'm a Mount Prospect guy," he said. "I hire Mount Prospect attorneys."
Hoefert said there was no conflict as long as Filippone recused himself.