A political action committee, funded by Mayor Sandra Bury, which recently came under criticism for outlandish statements in political flyers mailed to homes has filed official state documents with disconnected phone numbers given as contact numbers.
The Political Action Committee, People who Love Oak Lawn, is theoretically run by two Oak Lawn residents, Thomas DeMatteo, who is the Treasurer, and Mark Gill, who is listed as its Chairman. The committee mailed flyers to voters throughout the village featuring Mayor Sandra Bury and some of the Village Trustees depending on the district the voter lives in.
We called DeMatteo, who signed the following verification on the D-1 Statement of Organization for the PAC:
I DECLARE THAT THIS STATEMENT OF ORGANIZATION (INCLUDING ANY ACCOMPANYING SCHEDULES AND STATEMENTS) HAS BEEN EXAMINED BY ME AND, TO THE BEST OF MY KNOWLEDGE AND BELIEF, IS A TRUE, CORRECT, AND COMPLETE STATEMENT OF ORGANIZATION AS REQUIRED BY ARTICLE 9 OF THE ELECTION CODE. I UNDERSTAND THAT WILLFULLY FILING A FALSE OR INCOMPLETE STATEMENT IS SUBJECT TO A CIVIL PENALTY OF AT LEAST $1001 AND UP TO $5000
We then called Gill, who serves as the Chairman, hoping it was a mistake, and again, the recording told us that the phone number was not a working number.
While each of the political flyers contains obvious falsehoods, none of the flyers was more egregious than the one mailed to District One residents prominently featuring Bury and Trustee Tim Desmond. The mailer falsely claims that crime is down 25% and property values are up 60% since their election in 2013. In fact, the most recent FBI statistics show violent crime has unfortunately increased and property values have increased only 11.3%, which is lower than the state average and Oak Lawn’s neighbor to the east, Evergreen Park.
Bury and Desmond are photographed in front of a home under construction with the words above claiming that sales prices were at their lowest in 2013 in 15 years and that $500,000 homes are popping up all over the village. In fact, only one home was for sale over $500,000 at the time the claim was made according to the Multiple Listing System.
DeMatteo is subject to the penalties up to an including a fine of $5,000 from the impotent State Board of Elections, which has turned a blind eye to Oak Lawn officials filing false and misleading reports in the past.
Mayor Sandra Bury and Trustee Desmond have refused to answer any questions from this reporter or others at the Oak Lawn Leaf. DeMatteo and Gill could not be reached due to their false filing with the State of Illinois.