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Country Club Hills Aldermen Take Mayor’s Credit Card Away

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Dwight Welch

Country Club Hills Mayor Dwight Welch. (Credit: City of Country Club Hills)

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COUNTRY CLUB HILLS, Ill. (CBS) — The Country Club Hills City Council voted unanimously Monday evening to pull the mayor’s village-issued credit card because of questionable spending.

As WBBM Newsradio 780’s David Roe reports, the move comes after a newspaper report that Mayor Dwight Welch and former City Manager Henrietta Turner charged more than $75,000 at restaurants, and at least $2,000 on movie tickets, this year alone.

Among other expenses, the mayor spent thousands on evening wear, tickets to musicals and a trip to a water park in Gurnee, according to a SouthtownStar analysis of Welch’s and Turner’s credit card statements.

LISTEN: Newsradio 780’s David Roe reports

Ald. Vince Lockett (2nd), a Welch opponent, said before the vote that the law was to be changed so the city credit card would belong to finance department senior accountant Nina Guzzo. She would have one in case of emergencies.

Lockett added that he expects Welch, who makes $145,000 as mayor and liquor commissioner, to pay back all charges that exceeded his $36,000 expense account.

If Welch does not repay the money, Lockett said he will urge Cook County State’s Attorney Anita Alvarez and Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan to investigate Welch’s spending habits. Representatives of Madigan and Alvarez declined comment Friday.

The City Council voted earlier this month to cancel city-issued credit cards belonging to Turner and all department heads. Turner and 12 other city employees were also laid off during that meeting.

The SouthtownStar contributed to this report, via the Sun-Times Media Wire

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