2 Investigators: Aviation Boss In Hot Seat Over Toxic-Smelling Windows

(CBS) – City Council members on Tuesday heard from Aviation Commissioner Ginger Evans about the toxic-smelling windows that have been plaguing some residents who live near Chicago’s airports.

Evans showed up for the second session of a joint Finance and Aviation committee hearing after missing the first one – to the consternation of some aldermen – because she reportedly was on vacation.

Ward 14 Ald. Ed Burke asked about Evans’ Facebook posting reporting on her luxurious vacation digs.

“While these folks were here expressing their concern about these toxic fumes you chose to be in the shadow of the Grand Teton Mountains,” Burke said.

“It’s very important to my family. It’s a long-scheduled trip,” Evans replied.

2 Investigator Pam Zekman has previously reported how homeowners began complaining years ago about the smell from the sound-insulation windows made of polyvinyl chloride. The city installed the windows to reduce the noise of aircraft flying over their homes around Midway and O’Hare.

“These folks think it’s very important that they get to the bottom of the noxious fumes that are in their homes,” Burke said.

“We agree, and nothing has slowed down because of my family vacation,” Evans replied.

Aldermen want to know why it’s taken so long for the city to find out what is causing the odors. They’d also like to know whether the city will replace all of the windows with an odor — not just those under a 10-year warranty from the now-closed company that installed them.

Under a $50,000 contract with the city, a private consulting firm is now testing some windows in a lab and will begin testing the air quality in some homes this month.

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