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East Chicago Library Still Bears Name Of Ex-Mayor Who Owes City Millions

miller250 Steve Miller
Steve Miller is an investigative reporter and has been with Newsradio...
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EAST CHICAGO, Ind. (CBS) – An East Chicago, Indiana, branch library bears the name of a former mayor who owes the city at least $24 million.

The branch library in East Chicago is the Robert A. Pastrick Library, named after the former longtime mayor.

Pastrick was the first mayor in the country sued under the RICO statute for racketeering and corruption and officials say he and his associates still owe East Chicago at least $24 million.

“When I found out they still have a library named after him I was really shocked and appalled and I thought, if Bernie Madoff had a building named after him in New York, I’m sure people would be very upset about that,” said Ron Blake, a former Hobart City Councilman.

Blake now lives in Arizona but he says he keeps close tabs on Northwest Indiana and wants the library re-named.

“Let’s name it after, maybe a first responder that passed away. Maybe a teacher that meant something to the community. Maybe a social worker that did something really heroic and great for a lot of residents,”said Blake.

Blake says he can’t understand why his requests to change the library’s name are falling on deaf ears in East Chicago.

WBBM has asked the mayor and the president of the East Chicago library board to respond.