Trustee Bob Sodikoff to Run Against Gary Grasso for Burr Ridge Mayor
Sodikoff was one of three trustees who said Monday night that they did not support Grasso's intention to serve as the mayor of Burrr Ridge and a DuPage County Board member simultaneously.
Burr Ridge trustee Bob Sodikoff announced Monday night that he intends to run for mayor next spring against Gary Grasso, who won a seat on the DuPage County Board Nov. 6 and wants to hold both the mayor and county board offices simultaneously.
"If you didn’t run for county board, I would be running for trustee," Sodikoff said to Grasso at Monday night's Village Board meeting. "But I’m committing now to run for [mayor]."
Sodikoff said after the meeting that had Grasso lost his county board race, the trustee would not run for mayor.
"It's one man, one job," Sodikoff said after the meeting before noting his experience serving the village. "I've been doing this long enough that I think I can [be mayor]."
Sodikoff has served on the Village Board for 14 years and, before that, was chairman of the Plan Commission for 10 years.
Grasso said Monday that he does, at this point, intend to run for re-election in the spring. Election day is April 9, 2013, but those interested in running must file their paperwork between Dec. 17 and Dec. 24.
A vast majority of DuPage County voters said via an advisory referendum on the Nov. 6 ballot that they did not support politicians holding more than one elected office at a time. Of the 369,228 voters who voted on the referendum, 90.1 percent said they believe a person should not be able to hold multiple offices simultaneously, and 9.9 percent said one should be able to.
Trustees Bob Grela and John Manieri both said Monday they do not support Grasso holding both offices.
"I stand behind public opinion in terms of one person, one elected office," Manieri said.
Grela, who said Grasso has done a "tremendous job" as mayor, said he's concerned that a lawsuit might be filed against Grasso or the village by DuPage County State's Attorney Robert Berlin, who said in January that a county board member should not serve another government entity that has a contractual relationship with the county, according to this Daily Herald story.
"I will do whatever I can to lobby against not spending a penny to represent a single person," Grela said.
Grasso said in response, "If there is a suit, it would not cost the Village of Burr Ridge one cent."
While other unofficial county board winners have said they'll resign their current positions to serve the county, Grasso has said he intends to hold both offices and he maintained that stance Monday.
The mayor said he thought the referendum was "politically motivated" and he does not foresee any conflicts of interest if he does hold both jobs.
"People, knowing that [the referendum] was there on the ballot, still elected me," Grasso said. "I think I got elected because they perceived I would do the job at the county level at least as efficiently as I’ve done the job here as mayor."
According to official results listed on the DuPage County website, Grasso won the third of three available District 3 seats by getting 21 more votes than Sharon Bryant (33,600 to 33,579).