A Primer on How to Defraud the Illinois Low Income Housing Tax Credit Program (LIHTC)

Site Control Requirements and Deadlines: The Illinois Housing Development Authority’s Distorted View of the Emma’s Landing Application that Genevans Never Saw

The “bait and switch” gambit is alive and well in Geneva. Provided here is the Illinois Housing Development Authority file concerning the required “Site Control” documents for the LIHTC Application #11831 (Emma’s Landing).

Please take special note of the following:

  1. The claim that the City of Geneva would donate the land and waive fees for a fraudulent Planned Unit Development Special Use that was granted via Geneva Ordinance 2021-03. Then the PUD Plan was filed with Kane County with the sworn statement by Joy Nelson certifying herself as the owner. The real owner was the City of Geneva. AFTER the Emma’s Landing LIHTC application was approved, AND after the credits were distributed and sold, Mayor Burns WITHOUT authorization from the City Council filed a “correction” that claimed both the City of Geneva AND Joy Nelson owned the PUD parcel.
  2. The improper letter of DeGroot to Manning (page 22 – the red box is on the IHDA document as it was received) relays the Council’s decision to approve the project and donation. This decision was made in a closed session in violation of the Illinois Open Meetings Act so Genevans were left in the dark.
  3. On page 20 of the document is the message from Quigley (for Burton) to Radovich (for Geneva) that says “On Monday, April 13, 2020, 09:43:35 AM CDT, Peter Quigley pquigley@pcqlaw.com wrote: I realize this is coming at you last minute but the deadline is at 12:00 Is there any way that this can be expedited? Thanks” Mayor Burns and his administrator found “a way” – The “Geneva Way.”
  4. ” All of the IAHTCs generated by the City Parcel/ permit fee waivers will be allocated back to the project to obtain equity to fund the projects costs (page 1).” The developer’s fee (and General contractor’s fee) is based on a percentage of the costs. Essentially this is a way of laundering cash equivalents donated by the City to the Burton Foundation, which has one employee, Tracy Manning Fellhauer, and to Deer Creek Construction of which Bryan Fellhauer was one of three controlling managers. The parcel was ultimately sold to Burton for $576,000 but this still put more cash in Fellhauer developer/general contractor pockets since the parcel was valued by IHDA at over $1 mil for purposes of arriving at a project cost total.

Finally, please note that AFTER the successful Emma’s preliminary application, IHDA/Gov. Pritzker announced on July 17, 2020 the LIHTC winners, stating that the City of Geneva donated the Emma’s PUD parcel. IHDA was either duped or resorted to the “wink and nod” tactic embedded in the “Geneva Way.”

“Emma’s Landing (Geneva): A new-construction project by the Burton Foundation will bring 45 units of affordable housing to the western suburbs. The apartments will be spread across 12 townhomes with attached garages built on land donated by the City of Geneva.” 21827-LIHTC_Announcement.pdf (illinois.gov)

In the FOIA’ed papers I have in my possession from IHDA I find nothing that alters the “Site Control” contained in the IHDA document attached above. In other words, the City of Geneva was played like a cheap violin by the Burton Foundation to beat an IHDA deadline. The puppet Plan Commission’s ceremonial but meaningless hearings wasted everyone’s time, and the City Council looks like the Ten Stooges groping in the dark. The villains were the Mayor and his personally appointed administrator, who orchestrated the fraud while usurping authority they did not possess.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s