| Board Makes Example of Old Lady |
April 29, 2020
Given the backdrop of a global pandemic, last Thursday the board here at 111 East Chestnut Condominiums underscored their priorities and approved the single highest fine in the Association’s history. Upon motion by board president Jane Santogrossi, $2,000 was approved to be levied against Unit 41G for “reckless dumping of water from the window of...
| 111 and “the New Asbestos” |
January 27, 2020
What’s a little dust? Depends. If it’s crystalline silica dust, now being called “the new asbestos,” it’s deadly serious. Well, so says OSHA. But maybe not so much if you’re a condo owner. Here’s the deal: our association’s contractor just got busted by the Health Department for crystalline silica pollution. Curiously, our uniquely experienced board...
| 111 East Chestnut Condos Contemplate Sell-By Date |
November 19, 2019
Should condominiums come with a sell-by date? Like milk, there’s a point where you shouldn’t be drinkin’ it. It’ll make you sick! That in mind, the same board of directors here who concocted the sham, “Vision transforms into reality when you choose the luxury, comfort, and security that beckon you at the Chicago condos at...
| 111 Deadbeat Heaven |
September 20, 2019
Here’s one for the World Marketing Hall of Fame. Well, it’s certainly unique enough. Chicago’s 111 East Chestnut Condominium may very well be the single-most attractive real-estate buy for upscale ne’er-do-wells. By the numbers, 111 appears to be Deadbeat Heaven. Well, surely it’s a haven.
| Wanna Buy a Classic Used Caddy? |
April 28, 2019
So… would you buy a classic used Caddy if you knew there was a 50/50 chance you’d be on the hook to replace the engine? Similarly, and close to home, despite our Association Treasurer now hawking “we’ve got a million in the bank and no debt,” would you buy a used condominium at risk of...
| Board Replaces Contaminated-Concrete-Sold-Here Sign |
January 16, 2019
GREAT NEWS! The 111 East Chestnut Condominium board voted last Thursday to take down the pulsating neon Contaminated-Concrete-Sold-Here sign. Board president Anthony Milazzo has decided to leverage a very impressive condo-Industry milestone for marketing. He and the board have recently managed to triple our D&O insurance premium and quadruple our deductible in less than three...
| Board Purchases Prestigious Goose Egg |
October 2, 2018
Back in July, the 111 East Chestnut Condominium board sent out a notice regarding an investment. Titled “Legal Proceedings and Associated Fees at 111 E. Chestnut,” the board gave the membership a heads-up as to spending, rationale, and expectations. Well, this last week it paid off. Each member is now a part owner of a prestigious goose egg.
| Milazzo Leaves His Mark on 111 |
June 26, 2018
After nearly seven years as Board President, Anthony G. Milazzo has finally left his mark on 111. Last week the Illinois Appellate Court published Boucher vs. 111 East Chestnut Condominium Association. It’s a landmark opinion. Under Milazzo’s direction and dogged determination, defendant 111 suffered a humiliating setback that’s significantly changed Illinois condo law, ironically benefiting...
| Concrete Contamination Leads to City Lawsuit |
May 27, 2018
You’ve been served! We’ve been sued. Apparently, the thinly-veiled coverup of the concrete contamination issue here at 111 East Chestnut Condominium Association is all but over. The City is now taking us to task. They have filed a lawsuit against us. Here we juxtapose what board president Anthony Milazzo’s been saying with the City’s position. It’s...
| Board Thumbs Nose at State Lawmakers |
January 27, 2018
As reported here last August, Illinois recently took a HUGE step forward with regard to condo governance. Fast forward a few months: our Board has managed to TOTALLY screw it up. So par for the course at 111 East Chestnut Condominium Association. Under the direction of part-time 111 resident and suburban dentist Anthony Milazzo, the...
| Dirty Laundry Bill Becomes Law |
August 27, 2017
NEWS FLASH: Late Friday, Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner signed HB0189 into law. Otherwise known in the condo industry as the “Dirty Laundry Bill,” it’s now officially Public Act 100-0292. Not only does it significantly change the Illinois Condominium Property Act, it promises to significantly change life and the prospects of our investments here at 111...
| Train-Wreck Alert: Hallway Project Way Over Budget Before It Even Begins |
March 22, 2017
Have we learned nothing from our chronic track record of cost overruns? Good Lord, just weeks after our Board voted to approve its take-it-or-leave-it, no other option, strongly-opposed hallway design, we learn the cost has skyrocketed. At the Board meeting last Thursday, our Treasurer Jane Santogrossi revealed that the hallway budget is already about a quarter...
| An Unpopular Response to Institutional Ignorance: More About Degraded Cement |
September 4, 2016
As you are likely aware, the 111 East Chestnut Condominium Board sent out an email ALERT late Friday responding to our “degraded cement” issue. As is typical of our Board President, it was “truthiness” followed by a raft of scapegoating. In typical Anthony Milazzo form, he played to the least discerning among us; distorted the...
| “Plus Whatever They Find” Contract Approved to Fix Cracking Concrete |
August 28, 2016
Remember our Head Engineer’s dire warning two years ago, “Prepare for the worst”? Well, despite the Milazzo-led Board’s efforts to sweep our concrete problem under the rug, thanks to the dogged perseverance of former Board Director Asia Gajderowicz, we are finally preparing. Something’s being done. A “Plus Whatever They Find” contract has been approved to...
| $33 Million Missing! April Fools …sorta |
April 1, 2016
How’s this for an April Fools: There’s $33 million missing! Well, sorta. What follows is a detailed analysis of the value of our property(s) here at 111 East Chestnut Condominiums. Looks like we’ve been punked! Fact is, despite our Magnificent footprint, we are not what we think we are, and what’s missing is whole lots...
| Is Nation’s Largest Title Insurance Co. Set to Blackball 111? |
December 3, 2015
THIS JUST IN: Due to the board’s conflict of interest and their subsequent reluctance to do anything about the corridor build-outs, the nation’s largest title insurance company is now involved and presently “weighing its options.” We’ve learned that one of those potential options is to blackball 111, i.e. refuse to further insure here. YIKES! No...
| ‘Land Rush Over’ Board Announces; Another Lawsuit Queues Up; Foxes Mum |
August 9, 2015
If you recall, back in May of 2014 we reported that with barely a wink-wink-nod-nod certain insiders here took common element property and made it their own. However, last week the Board put an end to the practice announcing the Land Rush over. And now comes the great reckoning. Right? One would think. But so...
| Top Five Things You Need to Know |
July 7, 2015
Pressed for time? Aren’t we all. Add to that, patience and attention spans today are at a all time low; and G-d knows the 111 investment can be challenging. With that in mind, here’s a brief summary of an insider’s perspective. Think of it as a 111 Cliff Notes. The following is especially geared for...
| It’s Steady as She Goes as New Officers Take Helm at Casa Concordia |
May 31, 2015
As Captain Milazzo welcomed new officers and crew to the 111 bridge at last Thursday’s board meeting, it was steady as she goes. The following are a few highlights from the captain’s log of what a few are now calling Casa Concordia.
| Show Me the Money |
March 23, 2015
Jerry Maguire got it. At the March 19 Board Meeting, 111 Treasurer Diana Shay apparently got it, too. On February 16, 2015, she answered the demand “show me the money!“
| In Memory of Ginny Hourigan |
March 23, 2015
Last week, 111 lost its eighth board member, and by most accounts, the Association’s biggest “troublemaker” ever. Dearly loved by some, sadly misunderstood by many, here we eulogize, raise up and pay our respects to the one of a kind 111 personality, in memory of Ginny Hourigan.
| Board Goes on Offensive to Woo Investors; Slaughters Goat Before Monthly Meeting |
January 26, 2015
In a response to mounting scrutiny over a cascade of recent debacles, last Wednesday the 111 Board of Directors marshaled an offensive to woo investors. Curious to many, frightening to some, they publicly slaughtered a goat before the Monthly Meeting. In light of that, here we rise above the drama to give you the meeting...
| “You may be fined by the City for non compliance” Say what!? |
January 7, 2015
About a week ago, many of us got a threatening letter from our property manager, Sara Rudnik. And many of us are still wondering what to make of it. “You may be fined by the City for non compliance.” Say what?! Well, here ya go. Here’s the long and short of it…
| New Year’s Predictions: What’s in store for 111 in 2015? |
December 28, 2014
Earlier this year, we turned to “the great seer, soothsayer, and sage, Carnac the Magnificent” to give us the 411 on “Debt, Taxes, Bugs and Soffits.” Tongue n’ cheek literary tool really, we took license to soften the story up some. Here again, we predict, this time with a not-so-gentle touch. Here our editorial board...
| Lifesafety Inspection: We Failed |
December 18, 2014
So, was the Holiday Party just a Milazzo smoke screen? Sorry, bad pun, but it fits. With the revelries and good cheer still lingering in the air, last week the City’s Department of Building conducted its Life Safety Inspection. It’s all being kept rather hush hush presently but the results are in. We failed! Actually,...
| Christmas Truce Holds at 111 |
December 3, 2014
Have you heard of Trêve de Noël? It’s “The Christmas Truce.” After a near 8-year hiatus, last night the newly formed Social Committee at 111 put on a glorious Holiday Party similarly filled with hope.
| What does it say when an insider can’t unload his stock? |
November 30, 2014
There are fewer things that make Wall Streeters more nervous than when an insider sells. What do they know that you don’t. Better said, if the stock were worthwhile long term, why would they dump it? That’s depressing. Okay, add insult to injury: What does it say when an insider can’t unload his stock, i.e....
| 111 and the Boiling Frog Syndrome |
November 16, 2014
Now for this month’s installment of the Monthly Board Meeting. Think perverse dance. Think highly orchestrated Electric Slide and Chopin Funeral March mashup marked by slow predictable slippery sidesteps and faux disclosures. Then again, if you’re looking for a quick image to just sum it all up, think the Boiling Frog Syndrome. Now THAT captures...
| Are 111’s Investor-Owners Vulnerable? |
November 3, 2014
Considering the Real Estate Industry by statute requires full disclosure, and considering this is the Age of Information and Authenticity, how ironic that the powers that be here maintain the posture of stealth and spin on behalf of 111’s investor-owners. But that begs the question: Are our investor-owners vulnerable? Maybe more than we’re willing to...
| FULL DISCLOSURE: The 5 Million Dollar Exposure |
October 30, 2014
Remember a few years ago when our board president told us that the Association’s lawsuits were, in a word, “frivolous”? Well, then there was two and now there’s five. Add to that a few milestone court decisions, and one is reminded of the words of Stevie Wonder: “Things are gettin’ real crucial up the ole...
| Jane, HELP!: An Overview of the 2015 Budget |
October 21, 2014
The following is an open letter of sorts to our new board member, Jane Santogrossi. Despite the improper circumstances regarding her appointment, it turns out that now ironically, she’s the Association’s only hope that ethics and fiscal responsibility become a part of this year’s distorted budget process.
| Board Meeting Recap: 4 milazzoed moments, 1 cramdown, 1 law broken and 200,000 missing |
October 11, 2014
Here are the highlights of the October 9, 2014 Meeting of the 111 East Chestnut Condominium Board of Directors. First, a few definitions: Investopedia has the term “cramdown” as derived from the idea that the loan changes during bankruptcy are “crammed down” creditors’ throats. The term is used liberally throughout business and finance to describe...
| Why Ethics is So Important |
September 27, 2014
If there’s one common thread that ties all of these articles together, one explanation one might give for the many ills that seem to plague us here at 111 East Chestnut Condominium Association, it’s our not so subtle deficit in ethics. From board crony-ism to nepotism, from self-dealing to the preferential treatment of “friends of,”...
| A Case Study in Institutional Corruption |
September 21, 2014
This says it all. It’s the story of a cover-up. Maybe minor to some but as with all coverups, the underling issues are not. The following is a veritable case study in institutional corruption. And as this website regrettably attests, it’s just not an isolated incident.
| Sike! Shay Suckers Scott |
September 18, 2014
Chalk this one up to ya just can’t make this stuff up. In the last 48 hours, we got a 111 Breaking News tip from “Concerned Homerowners” organizer Vince Scott. According to Scott, the Board Committees had been disbanded and Board Director and Treasurer Diana Shay was resigning.
| Only Three Laws Broken at Last Night’s Board Meeting, Woo-Hoo! |
September 12, 2014
As last we spoke, we seemed to be at an inflection point. Now there appears to have been some movement. Could be a critical tell. Association President Anthony Milazzo was able to keep his contempt for the law in relative check at last night’s monthly board meeting. Only three laws broken!
| 111 at an Inflection Point? |
September 1, 2014
QUICK UPDATE: A number of inside sources are now saying 111 is at an inflection point. Could be we’re in for a dramatic upturn; but it could be another slow slide toward mediocrity. Regrettably, there’s no clear indication at this point. But here’s a clue.
| Go Fish |
August 18, 2014
Our Treasurer, who’s not attended a single Board meeting since March, has resigned! Uh Oh! And if that’s not bad enough… the Board’s responded by playing “Go Fish.” Arrgh. First, what did we lose? We had a credential-ed and significantly experienced pro. Michael Fish, C.P.A., is a principal at CF Capital Partners. His firm provides...
| Fitness Center Rehab Is Now On Life Support |
August 16, 2014
No pun: The following is but another exercise in project management failure here at 111. Not a week after our Board president proudly announced that “Our much anticipated fitness center renovation is slated to start in September,” it’s been tabled. The Fitness Center Rehab is now on life support. Sad part is, this is not...
| Previous copy in error? Huh? |
August 14, 2014
This last Monday, homeowners at 111 East Chestnut Condominiums received the 2014 Summer Newsletter from our Board president. Here find point-counterpoint. After consultation with five former Board Directors, there seems to be a number of significant discrepancies.
| Two Female Board Members Eliminated from Mosh-Pit Fight |
July 22, 2014
The good news: Through all the kicked-up dust and mayhem, no one was seriously injured last night. But a few owners sure got jacked up good. And two Board Members were eliminated from the mosh-pit fight altogether. One woman walked away physically shaken. The following is the Unofficial Minutes of the July Board Meeting for...
| Mixed Bag Comes with a Glimmer of Hope |
July 19, 2014
A legal hornet’s nest, chronic building permits issues, a few board members going rogue… good grief. And then depression set in. Well, not so fast. This mixed bag comes with a glimmer of hope for 111 East Chestnut Condominiums.
| Vogue, Vogue: 111 Condo Brand Photo Shoot Take II |
June 22, 2014
Magazine aside, made famous by Madonna, “Vogue” is the all time quintessential theme songs of professional branding photo shoots. It’s all about glamor and cachet. It’s about capturing the emotion and raw essence of luxury. It’s attitude. It’s an unflappable confidence in what you’ve got. And “Brand”? That’s defined as your audience’s relationship with it....
| Presidente de la Junta SLAPPs propietario de una casa! |
June 18, 2014
Proteja sus ojos. Tápate los oídos. Esto acaba de llegar … El presidente de la junta directiva, Antonio Milazzo, presentó una demanda en contra de otro propietario. Afirma “acoso electrónico.” Pero es un SLAPP. SANTO DIOS! Eso es un gran problema!
| The Great Carnac on Debt, Taxes, Bugs and Soffits |
June 13, 2014
Once again, here I hold in my hand an envelope. As you can plainly see, it’s been hermetically sealed and kept in a mayonnaise jar since noon today on Funk and Wagnell’s porch. No one — NO ONE! — knows the contents but the Omnipotent Master of the East and former manicurist to Howard Hughes,...
| Who’s Zoomin’ Who in the 111 East Chestnut Condo Zoo? |
June 3, 2014
…Or more plainly, “What’s the gossip?!” Fair warning: Unlike most other stories here, this one won’t come with a whole lotta depth. This is just a quick collection of television-telephone-tell-the-doorstaff snippets of who’s zoomin’ who in the zoo. A must read, none the less.
| Quis custodiet ipsos custodes? 111 Nabbed for Building Code Violations |
May 29, 2014
Attributed to the Roman poet Juvenal, “Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?” translates loosely, “Who will guard the guards?” So, 111 nabbed for Building Code Violations… who’s to blame? More importantly, who was/is supposed to be watching out for our interest?
| Pool’s open, but for how long? |
May 19, 2014
The 111 East Chestnut Condo Board tonight announced that the pool’s open! YEAH! No mention however of last year’s debacle. Remember? The Illinois Department of Health shut us down. Well, regrettably, without the slightest modification in behavior, we’re dead set to do it again. Begs the question: How long before it closes?
| 111 E. Chestnut Condo to Host Land Rush: Free Real Estate! |
May 11, 2014
Sudler Property Management Company, the management company for the 111 E. Chestnut Condominium Association in Chicago, today announced a real estate giveaway. First come first serve, you squat on a common element at 111, it’s yours.
| 2013 Financial Statement: The Juicy Parts |
May 4, 2014
In today’s 24-hour ADHD-driven news cycle, who’s got time to read? In the spirit of “just give me the juicy parts,” here are the highlights of this year’s Financial Statement. Be forewarned, it’s a bit of a spill.
| Condo Board Fails the Duck Test |
April 30, 2014
What’s the duck test? Of course, that’s the form of inductive reasoning where, “If it looks like a duck, swims like a duck, and quacks like a duck, then it probably is a duck.”
| 111 East Chestnut Getting International Attention |
April 24, 2014
How ’bout it?! Here’s a shocker even to us. Let alone the tremendous support we are getting from a broad spectrum of 111 homeowners, we are pleased to report a huge spike in readers from outside our community. Let alone from across the U.S., we’re now getting a lot of attention internationally.
| Behind Closed Doors: Will the Law Change Our Clandestine Board? |
April 23, 2014
As any concerned owner not in Milazzo’s inner circle knows definitively, we presently have the most clandestine Board we’ve ever had here at 111. Secret meetings, vigorously blocking legal information requests… stealth is the Board’s M.O. But is that about to change?
| More On Rigging the Election |
April 23, 2014
Here’s more on the landslide results from our 17th Annual Election: We just got a letter forwarded to us from a homeowner. It’s a candidate endorsement letter from our board president. Kosher? Well, maybe for the Supreme People’s Assembly, but in Illinois, nope.
| Homeowners Cry Foul as Condo Conducts Board Election |
April 18, 2014
The votes have been tabulated and the results are in: “Who-the-Hell-is-Diana-Shay” comes in 1st. With 38 percent?! Diana Shay? The person who listed one of her relevant skills for being a Board member here as she’s “on the deck a lot”? Really? Almost three times the percent of long-time resident and respected community personality and...
| Meet Condo Board Candidate, Diana Shay |
April 11, 2014
Here’s a quick update to our article Handicapping the Board Elections. Meet Condo Board Candidate, Diana Shay. At the time of the original story’s publication, Diana was really an unknown entity. As such, in all fairness, we were very reluctant to give her a rating.
| Permit Application DENIED, DENIED, DENIED, DENIED |
April 11, 2014
This just in from the City of Chicago Department of Buildings… For building permit application #100530078 in the image featured here: Ventilation Review DENIED, Fire Prevention Review DENIED, Plumbing Review DENIED, and ARCHITECTURAL & FIRE REVIEW DENIED. Yikes!
| Foreclosures: What’s It Costing Us? |
April 1, 2014
So what about this urgent note from Sudler tonight regarding the Foreclosures Bill in Springfield? Was Sara’s note sensational? It was surely unbalanced. Here, let’s step back for a little perspective.
| PICK-4 LOTTERY: Handicapping the 2014 Board Elections |
March 26, 2014
Here we go. Now for the Pick-Four Lottery. The official list of approved candidates for this year’s Board elections is: Michael Boucher, Diane Brazil, Serap Brush, Ann Marie DelMonico, Mike Fish, Ophir Frieder, Diana Shay and Vikki Valentine.
| Financial Priorities vs. Bread and Circuses |
March 16, 2014
Management, it’s all about priorities. Conversely, poor management is about getting those priorities wrong. And dishonest management is about being misled. Here’s a perfect example: while our Board is about to spend $40,000 to renovate and buy new toys for a workout area (that was updated only a few years ago), would ya take a...
| Sweeping Changes to 111 Rules & Regs Announced |
March 13, 2014
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE CHICAGO, Ill. — Kent Dorfman, chairman and sole acting member of the 111 Rules Committee, today announced sweeping changes to the 111 East Chestnut Condominium Rules & Regulations.
| So What About These Rumors of Cost Overruns? |
March 12, 2014
“Poor planning,” “poor project management,” “gross cost overruns”! Good Lord. Accusations abound that we’ve been misled. And the Vince-Scott crowd says we’ve got our heads in the sand. Fitting image? Let’s see. For the benefit of our readers, here we’re going to set the record straight. Time to give credit where credit is due. Or,...
| Homeowner Poll: Pick Your Favorite Lawsuit? |
March 10, 2014
As was noted in an earlier post, the Association has an expanding collection of lawsuits. Seems to be the Board’s hobby. And like collecting baseball cards, surely they have their favorites. What’s yours?
| A Buyer’s Best Friend |
March 8, 2014
Another one from a-picture’s-worth-a-thousand-words category… “REDUCED!” We spoke with the sellers. “Disappointed in the investment at 111,” were their words. But it sure looks like that buyer, Board President Anthony Milazzo, got a sweet deal.
| 3-7-2014 Board Meeting Minutes |
March 8, 2014
There was a Board Meeting Friday. For those who’d like to be in the know, here’s a recap: Underscore Chronic – “Unfavorable budget variance” aside, our Treasurer reported that the balance on the Barrington Bank loan is now about $923K. And the balance owed on the second line of credit is $318K.
| Lulled by “Sorta” Accountability |
March 6, 2014
This article was originally titled “Promises Promises.” But it’s far more than that. The following chronicles a waffling and “sorta accountable” approach that’s easily missed unless you’re tracking it. Bottom line: “Truthiness” is dangerous. There’s no “Great Train Robbery” here at 111. It’s about a culmination of white lies and fibs that silently drain the...
| The Stuff that Makes Madoff Snicker |
March 6, 2014
Bernie Madoff surely got a kick outta this one. As we’ve all heard, in December we had a laughable $38,461 in reserves. Imagine! And less than month later the Board did that little sleight-of-hand thing. While paying off one loan (whose present balance is approximately $1M), the Board infused the reserves with $262,505.51 from another...
| Liable By Plea |
March 3, 2014
From a-picture’s-worth-a-thousand-words category… On December 17, 2013, in a City of Chicago Administrative Hearing, the Association through its attorney Nicholas Mitchell of Kovitz Shifrin Nesbit, as directed by the Board pled “Liable by Plea” to violating the City of Chicago Condo Ordinance and agreed to pay a $4,500 fine. The Disposition “Liable-By plea” is defined...
| Resident Poll: Rate Sudler’s Performance |
March 3, 2014
We invite you to weigh in…
| Announcing the New 111 Website |
March 3, 2014
Dear Residents, We’ve joined the 21st century! We’ve set up a blog! Have a look around. It’s modern, minimal, clean clean clean, and professional. The paint isn’t yet dry but it already eclipses the Association’s old site. In short order, by design this new site should eclipse the old site on Google, as well. It’s...