Niles Debates Sign Honoring Corrupt Ex-Mayor

Blase served the Village of Niles for 47 years

By Lacey McCraney
|  Tuesday, Oct 4, 2011  |  Updated 8:07 AM CDT
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The Village Board in Niles will once again talk about taking down a sign that bears the name of a former mayor convicted of taking kickbacks.

Ex-Mayor Nicholas Blase, who led Niles for 47 years, was sentenced to one year and one day in federal prison last year after admitting to pocketing $421,000 from an insurance company in return for getting the company more business.

The village board went back and forth on removing the "Blase Plaza" sign that sits in front of the village hall.

When it came to taking a vote a year ago, three village trustees thought it should come down and three others voted to keep it in place. Mayor Robert Callero broke the tie and voted to keep the sign as is. But the sign is back up for debate.

Trustee Rosemary Palicki told the Sun Times she thinks it should be taken down to emphasize ethics in "our own front yard."

Trustee Joseph LoVerde said he wants to see the sign remain, adding he thinks the situation is forcing the board to go backwards.

Village of Niles leaders will discuss the issue at its board meeting scheduled for Oct. 25.

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