Ed Burke's Special Fence

You paid for it

By Steve Rhodes
|  Wednesday, Sep 9, 2009  |  Updated 10:55 AM CDT
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Chicago's Political Players

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Alderman Burke got his fence up.

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Being Ed Burke means never having to answer for yourself.

The latest case comes in the form of a fence that the clouty alderman had the city put up near his palatial home to keep the riff-raff away - the riff-raff being teenagers who attend Curie Metro High School.

Burke asked the city to spend TIF funds to put up the fence along a railroad track that runs alongside Burke's home and was often used as a shortcut to the Orange Line's Pulaski station, the Sun-Times reports.

The bill came to $45,499. The fence connects to the fence Burke had already put up around his property.

Get it?

The Sun-Times has already reported that Burke built his home with the help of a city council that overrode objections from the city's zoning office.

There is no indication that the fence was put alongside the railroad track for safety reasons. Nine trains come through on an average day, the Sun-Times reports, but at under 10 m.p.h.

"If it was for the trains, they would have put it up a long time ago," a neighbor told the paper.

And if it was for safety, you'd think Burke would just come out and say so.

Instead, he's refusing to comment.

Because being Ed Burke means never having to answer for yourself.

Steve Rhodes is the proprietor of The Beachwood Reporter, a Chicago-centric news and culture review.

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