Trustee Susan Storcel of the La Grange Park Board of Trustees tendered a surprise resignation at Tuesday night's Board meeting, saying she could no longer serve in a hyper-partisan and ideological environment.
"There is a time for political campaigning and battling, and a time for governing," Storcel wrote in her resigntation. "I believe they should not be mixed. I am not convinced that our village leadership agrees with that premise. This is a disservice to the residents and the community as a whole."
Storcel was elected to the Board in 2011 as the first member of the Village's relatively new Rose Party, founded in 2010 in opposition to percieved stagnation in the La Grange Park caucus system.
But in her resignation, Storcel cited personal disillusion with the "lack of respect, hostility, personal attacks and biases" she found obstructing any progress in Village government.
"Respectful disagreement is to be expected on a municipal board. That is the very foundation of valuable and spirited dialogue," Storcel said. "However, that dialogue should be future-focused and the ensuing decision should be based on an honest determination of what is best for the village, never on party affiliation or an individual’s personal agenda.
"I remain committed to advocating for a change in Village leadership in order to guarantee La Grange Park a more promising future."
According to The Doings La Grange, the 2011 election in which the Rose Party participated represented the first challenge to the La Grange Park caucus since 1936. The Rose Party bills itself on a platform of an informed public and wider candidate selection, with a focus on issues like street repair and promoting business on 31st Street.
Storcel said she harbored "no personal ill will" towards anyone in her resignation.
Village President Jim Discipio may appoint a replacement trustee until the April 2013 elections.