Nicolosi & Associates withdraw from Caledonia

StoryImage( ‘/Images/Story//Auto-img-118055090913836.jpg’, ‘Photo by Stuart R. Wahlin’, ‘Nicolosi & Associates will continue representing Loves Park and Rockton. Paul S. Nicolosi pictured.‘);
StoryImage( ‘/Images/Story//Auto-img-118055099314793.jpg’, ‘Photo by Stuart R. Wahlin’, ‘Although Nicolosi & Associates serve as city attorneys for Loves Park, the Buckley Companies own property within a proposed TIF District.‘);

The Caledonia Village President Susan Siek and trustees were handed a letter of resignation by Village Attorney Aaron Szeto on behalf of his employer, Nicolosi & Associates, LLC, May 15.

Szeto’s letter, addressed to Village President Susan Siek and trustees, states, “Our office has determined it cannot continue to adequately represent the Village and provide it with full and complete legal services given the Village’s decision to restrict the ability of our office to perform necessary legal work relating to matters which come before the Village Board.”

The Village has been making efforts recently to trim its legal costs.

For fiscal year 2007, Caledonia has appropriated only $8,000 for legal services—a stark contrast from what the Village has been paying for legal expenses.

The Village of Caledonia’s Annual Treasurer’s Report for fiscal year 2005 indicates Nicolosi & Associates was paid $101,614 for legal services since becoming village attorneys that spring. According to the same report, the village’s total revenue for the year was $220,582.

Caledonia’s 2005 levy ordinance anticipated 10,000 being spent for legal expenses.

The Village of Caledonia’s Annual Appropriation Ordinance (AAO) for fiscal year 2006 allotted $45,000 for legal services.

Nicolosi & Associates received $270,684.99 from developers between July 1, 2005, and Nov. 27, 2006, for work related to the Caledonia Crossings annexation agreement, according to documents obtained by The Rock River Times.

In December 2006, Roscoe Village President Ward Sterett announced Roscoe would no longer be retaining the company’s legal services.

Nicolosi & Associates’ resignation as Caledonia village attorneys is effective upon adjournment of the board’s June meeting. meantime, the firm is taking steps to withdraw its representation of Caledonia in litigation concerning Boone County Windfarms.

Paul S. Nicolosi and Village Clerk Sue Yakey were carbon-copied on the letter. Nicolosi did not respond to requests for comment.

Nicolosi & Associates, LLC, is one of eight companies comprising the Buckley Companies, for which Paul Nicolosi serves as president. Other companies in the Buckley family include Buckley Architects, Buckley Capital, Buckley Homes, Buckley Land Planners, Buckley Real Estate Brokerage, and Buckley Title Services.

Along with Chicago-based planners Camiros, LTD, Nicolosi & Associates was awarded a $355,000 contract in 2006 for re-writes of the Winnebago County Comprehensive Land Use Plan, which was unveiled to the public May 29.

Nicolosi & Associates also represents the City of Loves Park and the Village of Rockton.

The Buckley Companies have partnered with Joseph James Partners, owned by Matthew and Peter Provenzano, to renovate the former Gas and Electric/CAMCO Building at 303 N. Main St. with the aid of $750,000 in Tax Increment Financing (TIF) funds.

Another development at Church and Chestnut streets, adjacent to the site of what will be the new Federal Courthouse, is in the works for the the Buckley Companies. According to the company’s web site, the new structure is to include 17,500 square feet of retail space and 35,000 square feet of residential.

In December 2005, an article in the local daily stated: “Nicolosi said the Buckley companies is discussing a potential tax increment finance district with the city to help fund the project. ‘We believe that financing will not be an issue,’ he said.”

For now, the area has not been designated a TIF District, and no construction has begun.

The Buckley Companies also own undeveloped property on North Second Street in Loves Park—within the bounds of a proposed TIF District. Nicolosi & Associates are attorneys for the City of Loves Park.

A public hearing will be held on the proposed Loves Park TIF June 11, and the City Council is expected to make its final decision June 25.

from the May 30-June 5, 2007, issue

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