Flowers gets eviction notice
Thursday, October 08, 2009
by Duaa Eldeib
For rent: A spacious office with a brick exterior located along the
quiet residential streets of Westchester. Only tenants who will
actually pay rent need apply.
The landlord for Supt. Charles Flowers' regional schools office served him with an eviction notice last week.
June, the SouthtownStar reported that Flowers owed nearly $20,000 in
back rent for the Suburban Cook County Regional Office of Education's
office space. At that time the agency had only made one payment since
A month later, the Westchester School District 92 1 / 2 Board
formally notified the office of the "outstanding" rent due, according
to a statement issued by the district.
Flowers' office, which has amassed about $1 million of debt, then
proposed a rent payment plan that would allow it to repay in
installments the entire amount owed to the district by Aug. 21.
Not only did Flowers' office fail to meet that deadline, but the
statement confirms the regional office fell nearly three months behind
"We did try to work with him. We were initially understanding. We
agreed to a payment plan," board president Barbara Stanger said. "I
guess we had hoped it would work out, and it didn't."
Monthly rent for 2008 was $3,300 and $3,429 in 2009, according to
documents obtained through a Freedom of Information Act request.
In the meantime, the Cook County state's attorney's office is suing
Flowers to recoup $190,000, plus interest and punitive damages, for a
loan Flowers took out in June of last year.
The lawsuit alleges Flowers engaged in a scheme to defraud Cook County and avoided officials.
It is unclear what an eviction would mean to the countless teachers
from 143 suburban districts who frequent the office for teacher
certifications, registrations and fingerprinting.
"We do not know right now what the eviction notice means for the
services the ROE provides other than that, legally, the ROE would still
be required to provide those services," Illinois State Board of
Education spokeswoman Mary Fergus said.
"No, we do not know of any other ROE that has ever been evicted," she added.
Flowers is the target of a state's attorney's criminal probe for
alleged ethical and financial misconduct, first reported in the
When contacted by a reporter Wednesday, Flowers' assistant - who is also his sister - said he was in a meeting.