February 18, 2005

East Moline mayoral candidates searching for an issue

Perhaps we should be grateful that the issues that have appeared in the East Moline mayoral race are so small bore. Perhaps it should be filed under 'be careful what you wish for'. But the latest "news" in the race over the expansion of the Jewel/Osco store seems a bit childish. (though the candidates are dealing with other larger issues, such as what to do with the gargantuan monument to lost jobs, the vacant IH/Case plant.)

The store has been located within spitting distance of the Moline/East Moline border for years. But last year, Jewel decided to build a new store. What was odd was that they planned to build it about 200 yds away, just across the Moline border.

John Thodos is touting the fact that he "discovered" the plan by Jewel before anyone in city government was aware of it and by sheer pluck and moxie, managed to set in motion events that led to Jewel deciding that, rather than moving 200 yds west into Moline, they'd build their new store literally on top of their old one. (They actually had to lop off a chunk of the strip mall currently occupied by Jewel in order to erect the new building) The happy result of this is that the new store will still be within the confines of East Moline.

Thodos says he heard of the plans to move the store to Moline while out on a routine visit to constituents. The other candidate and incumbent mayor, Joe Moreno seems a bit annoyed over the flap. I can't say I blame him. After all, it seems to be a case of Thodos saying "I found it first!", not exactly the most exalted banner to march under. More here.

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At 2/18/2005 11:14 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

By far, the biggest issue these two gentlemen face -- and I think they're gentlemen and good guys -- is how to replace the appr $400,000 in tax revenue the city of East Moline has enjoyed from Case-New Holland. And, more importantly, what they're going to do to replace that enormous 800-job business. I think East Moline has a choice between two decent candidates.

At 2/19/2005 11:24 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thodos is coming on strong in the race. He's hired some consultants and has big money. Plus, I hear State Rep. Mike Boland endorsed him this weekend in a letter that went around. That's a huge shot in the arm to young Thodos.

At 2/20/2005 12:22 AM, Blogger The Inside Dope said...

That's certainly an interesting development. The Dope had Moreno with the edge, but it appears the race is going to be hard fought.


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