By DIANA SROKA
June 30, 2009
LAKEMOOR – A Lakemoor woman who planted her summer flowers in two toilets and a bathroom sink plans to ignore the ticket she was issued Monday.
About a month ago, Lakemoor police told Tina Asmus the containers in which she planted her daisies, petunias and other flowers violated a village ordinance. She was given 30 days to remove the old bathroom fixtures or face fines.
But Asmus has insisted that the planters are artistic expressions and left them in front of her home at 134 S. Highland Drive. Her 30 days were up Monday, and police left a citation at her home in the afternoon.
Asmus has pledged to take the dispute over her potty planters to a judge.
“We’re fighting my case in court. I’ll pay no fines until a judge says I have to,” Asmus said.
The fine is for $25, and Asmus has 10 days to pay and remove the planters, Lakemoor police Chief Rick Iverson said. If she doesn’t comply within 10 days, she’ll be issued a fine reminder and the village will take her to court.
Asmus’ attorney, George Kililis, said he planned to beat the village to court by filing a petition for declaratory judgment.
“That’s a … step on our part to have a judge in McHenry County spell out whether the village ordinance is valid or not,” Kililis said.
The ordinance police have accused Asmus of violating states that items that are “no longer safely usable for the purpose for which it was manufactured” are prohibited. However, Kililis said that meant wagon wheels that gardeners frequently used would be outlawed, as well, and that officials are “singling out” Asmus.
Lakemoor President Todd Weihofen said that since he took office in the spring, he had instructed police to enforce ordinances across town.
Weihofen said so far more than 100 ordinance violations were issued and most residents have complied and avoided fines.
“There’s been two complaints and 100 thank yous,” Weihofen said. “It means the village is cleaning up. That’s good.”