Cicero president admits he put nearly two dozen family members on town payroll
BY STEVE WARMBIR Staff Reporterfirstname.lastname@example.org July 7, 2011 7:24PM
Cicero Mayor Larry Dominick and his wife Elizabeth as they arrive at the Federal Building 219 s Dearborn | Brian Jackson~Sun-Times
Updated: October 25, 2011 12:29AM
Cicero Town President Larry Dominick testified in federal court Thursday that he had put “a couple” family members on the town payroll after he took office.
Give or take 20 people or so.
Under extensive questioning, Dominick acknowledged putting more than 20 current and former family members on the payroll of the Town of Cicero, despite a campaign pledge to end nepotism in town hiring.
There’s his mother, his sister, his brother-in-law, his wife, the mother of his son’s child, that woman’s parents, his daughter-in-law, the daughter-in-law’s sister, Dominick’s ex-wife and her brother.
The testimony came in a federal civil trial in which a former employee, Merced Rojas, is alleging he was fired as a town handyman because he is Hispanic and decided to no longer support Dominick politically after he became disillusioned with him.
The town contends it fired Rojas because he did a private job on town time for money.
In his testimony, Dominick pointed out that one son, Derek, had been working for the Town of Cicero before Dominick was elected in 2005.
After he became town president, Dominick promoted his son from being a clerk to running the town’s human resources department — despite Derek Dominick having virtually no experience for the job.
Also, his son does not have a college degree, Larry Dominick acknowledged.
“I think he’s close to graduating,” Dominick said Thursday.
After going through the extensive list of hires, Dominick was asked if he remembered any others.
“Not at this time,” he replied.
“So there might be others, but that’s a pretty good start?” asked Rojas’ attorney, Dana Kurtz.
“Correct,” Dominick said.