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Minutes With Mayor Hofeld: Questions From the Homewood Residents

Help us narrow down public questions for Homewood Mayor Richard Hofeld

Last week on Facebook we asked fans for questions for President Richard Hofeld. After a huge response—we were flooded with feedback—we turn again to our readers. Can you help narrow it down a tad? While we'd love to ask Hofeld every question, he's got things to do, and a village to run.

Here's what we've got so far. Please offer additional suggestions in the comment section.

  • Justin Wills why did homewood days get canceled?
  • Karan Bobele Thomas WHY ARE ALL THE BUSINESS ARE MOVING OUT OF DOWN TOWN HOMEWOOD, THIS IS REAL SAD
  • Paul Manno Why is there an ugly port-o-let in willow park?
  • Paul Manno Why are owners of abandoned homes allowed to let those buildings go to ruin? Why are abandoned buildings not subject to annual inspection to ensure they are not a fire hazard and/or other hazard to the community?
  • Dana Sbragia Will there be new business establishment going into Caribou lot?
  • Gayla Carlson Boomer What is being done to retain businesses in Homewood?
  • Dana Sbragia Tom's closed, Caribou closed, Wayne's paint shop on 183rd selling building :( what's going on?
  • Clare Freeston Homewood is proud of its rail heritage. When is something going to be done about the awful eyesore of a railway station that we have? Is this really the best we have to welcome visitors to our village? It really is dreadful!
  • Clare Freeston Perhaps they should build a sports pavilion/shelter at Willow Park that could get used by the school and baseball teams in the summer and ice rink and sled hill users in the winter.
  • Amanda AO Owen I LOVE that Chipotle is coming to town, and plan on eating there more than I should, but why are they building right across the street from an empty food building?!? Why not put them in the old Arby's building???
  • Vicky Jones Rappatta Could we do something about the entrance to Homewood off the expressway? Looks like someone is entering a dump with that abandoned hotel there followed by the closed up restaurant. And further the empty Arby's ... I understand wanting a cute downtown but we have to get people to want to get to the downtown area. And that's hard when you're greeted with those sights right off the bat.
  • Karen McHugh The Homewood Hotel is just that...an eyesore. It fell into disrepair almost 5 years ago....struggled til it became a dump and now it sits with the punched out signs, glaring open windows and fence half around the back...right across from the still empty Shooters. This area desperately needs to be addressed as it is not a very welcome site!
  • Tara Goodwin ... My question is what is up with the new slogan: it is so sterile and meaningless. I hope you didn't spend much money coming up with that.
  • Justin Jc Champlin I would love to ask him how the heck he approved the liquor license for grapes and grains. After he scammed the people out of their money at barley and hops when they bought the place, a long with a wealth of other things. How in his right mind would he want to bring that type of business owner into the community?!?!?
  • Patricia Ohanian Lundstrom Elephant in the room is buying a latte thru a drive up window...
  • Gigi Gummerson What do the residents need to do to help Homewood get a Portillo's?
  • Vicky Jones Rappatta ‎...or a Mariano's or Trader Joes?
  • Shaun Healy or a Whole Foods
  • Frank J Casella or a Steak N' Shake and Apple Store
  • Kate Duff When's he gonna let us have chickens?
  • Frank J Casella Updating and enforcing the hwd. dog ordinances. I walk my dogs on a leash though they don't need it, but several dog owners act as if the leash law in town doesn't apply to them. Also, the dangerous dog ordinance is old. Any dog breed that is in the dangerous category by insurance companies should complete the AKC Canine Good Citizen certification ( as my dogs have ) for temperament testing. One of my dogs was attacked by three 'bully' dogs, and the owner could not control them. I understand that dogs are not people, but they are family too. The present dangerous dog ordinance did not protect my dog as the victim of the attack ...

Which questions would you like Hofeld to answer?

Scotty40 May 31, 2012 at 01:15 PM
MrsC- The "Housing Choice Voucher" (Section 8) program is voluntary and demand is driven by market demands. No local government entity can "limit" the amount of landlords accepting Section 8 vouchers, nor encourage them to do so. As an owner of a Homewood rental property (also a H/F resident), I can assure you that demand for rental housing in this area is strong - and rental prices reflect that demand. I've watched single family home rental ads in Homewood for about a year before renting our property out- there are very, very few legitimate Section 8 housing options in Homewood. The section 8 programs are very popular in towns with too much inventory (and little demand). We had a hard time keeping up with the amount of interest in our rental home and had it rented in less than a week. We had around 30 showings, and were impressed with the quality of people interested in renting in Homewood.
Homewood Momma May 31, 2012 at 04:57 PM
Scotty40, that actually isn't true. In Chicago, there have been limits placed on how many vouchers can be used in the area, especially after certain areas were flooded with section 8 vouchers and it drastically impacted the community. Oak Park has a quota system as well. But it is up to landlords , such as yourself, to monitor who you rent to, section 8 or not. Do you still reside in homewood? or are you allowing your property to be rented and have left the area? I think that is also an issue, many landlords are renting properties and have left Homewood, and their tenants are running amuck. The choice to accept section 8 has changed Homewood greatly.. and before anyone calls me a racist.. i am african american. I moved from the city to get away from these issues, now there are gang fights, school climate has changed.. has to be a better way to get qualified families in homewood, and to keep home owners here.
Scotty40 May 31, 2012 at 05:44 PM
Homewood Momma- You'll need to quote your source for your Section 8 quota comment... There is a Federal mandate that prohibits quotas on Section 8 housing. I don't think I can post a link on this board- but google it- it's easy to find. We still live here, and really enjoy the area. The rest of your comments seem anecdotal at best ("many landlords are renting and have left Homewood, their tenants are running amuck", etc.). You really don't have any data to back up your claim that Homewood is being over-run with Section 8 voucher holders. The simple economics of the situation steer landlords away from renting Section 8 in Homewood. I am able to get more money by renting without the housing voucher choice program (they limit the rent to "market rate"- which is often lower than actual market rate), I don't have to have a government home inspection before I can rent my home, and I am generally dealing with high quality applicants who have high enough income to pay the rent without a subsidy.
John56 May 31, 2012 at 06:28 PM
How about addressing some of the recent pressing issues on gangs and safety in the community. It seems like these "isolated" incidents are becoming more frequent. Especially concerned since summer has not even officially begun? I'd rather feel that me and my kids are safe on the streets of my neighborhood vs. where the next Whole Foods is going in.
Phillip R Baggs June 28, 2012 at 02:59 AM
Please ask him who parks their boat in the Homewood Metra Parking Lot and can I park my broken down car next to it? Thank you.

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