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August 10, 2022

Former County Auditor Seeks Special Prosecutor In Allegations Against Tazewell County Board Chairman –

By John Kraft & Kirk Allen

On June 13, 2022

Tazewell County, IL. (ECWd) –

The former county auditor, through her attorney, has petitioned the Tazewell County Circuit Court asking to have the court order a special prosecutor to look at allegations against the Tazewell County Board Chairman J. David Zimmerman.

The petition alleges a conflict of interest in the State’s Attorney’s office as one of the reasons to appoint a special prosecutor.

Tazewell County State’s Attorney Stewart Umholtz is the named respondent.

A 75-page petition filed with the Tazewell Circuit Court, lays out the petitioner’s reasons for asking for appointment of special prosecutor, and the alleged conflicts of interest of the State’s Attorney in this matter.

There is too much information in the petition to include in this article, we ask you to read the petition as filed (below).

This petition is Tazewell County Case Number 2022MX000118 and can be followed in their online case search tool. The most recent action was an entry of appearance and a motion for time to file a response.

From among the allegations in the Petition, and stated as the “colorable claims” justifying an appointment of a Special Prosecutor:

  • Zimmerman, who is an Executive Board Member for the Illinois Counties Risk Management Trust (“ICRMT”) as well as the Chairman of the Tazewell County Board, has a conflict of interest on issues pertaining to insurance obtained by the County Board
  • Zimmerman participated in unethical conduct in violation of Illinois statutes, which strongly invites a Federal Investigation
  • Failure of Zimmerman to disclose his employment with the ICRMT to the county board
  • Misinformation in reference to insurance bidding requirements of the Illinois Counties Code
  • Breaching fiduciary duty by automatically renewing the insurance contract while holding office with the insurer
  • Dramatically rising premiums – lack of competitive bidding
  • Excessive claims administration fees per month, which were already paid for by the annual insurance premiums
  • Payment of brokerage fees
  • An emergency order of the county chairman, benefiting the insurer, with no records to indicate the need for the emergency order
  • Defective and incomplete claim vouchers
  • Misleading claims docket expenditure account
  • Entering into contract with a law firm without board approval
  • False or incomplete Statements of Economic Interest for almost two decades

Petition:

Petition 05-08-22 (1)

Appendix:

Appendix 05-05-22 Compress

 

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