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Dear Friends and Neighbors,
On behalf of the Village Board, I would like to wish everyone a happy, healthy, and hopeful New Year!
The Village began the New Year by welcoming a new Village Manager. Greg Summers brings a wealth of knowledge in development services and engineering. He served as Director of Development Services from 2013 to 2019 and Director of Engineering from 2008 to 2013 for the Village of Barrington and more recently as the Assistant Village Manager for the Village of Orland Park. His understanding of Village government and his energy are an asset to our community. The Board, staff and I look forward to working with him.
We have been through as much as a community dealing with the ever-changing COVID-19 virus and with the violence and crime, which has recently afflicted Oakbrook Center.
We are all aware of the increasing criminal activities in the Village and surrounding areas. The frightening events of December 23rd at our very own Oakbrook Center will be in our minds for a long time. Our thoughts and prayers go out to the innocent bystanders who were injured. The recent high profile retail thefts at the Mall have also caused concern. The Oak Brook Police Department is working in partnership with Oakbrook Center management and their retail merchants to address and reduce these incidents. They are exploring the use of new technology and the Oak Brook Police have increased patrols in and around the Mall. Be assured that the Village Board is committed to doing whatever it takes to ensure the safety and security of our residents and our visitors
In addition, an ongoing concern is CoVID-19. However, there is a glimmer of hope moving forward. Today, I am happy to report to you that the Omicron variant is finally in retreat. The recent decline in new cases and the decline in hospitalizations as well as the decline in Covid positivity rates in our state have been a big relief to our virus-weary residents. We need to change our mindset, think differently about the virus, and begin to concentrate to live our lives without disruption. I believe this begins with Vaccinations. There is convincing data to show that most vaccinated people do reasonably well after being infected and there are now new oral drugs on the horizon to treat CoVID-19 infections. However, we do need to continue the safety protocols including masking, distancing, and washing hands frequently. Together we will learn to adjust our daily lives to the new normal.
I realize that Oak Brook mail service has become an issue for some residents. The unfortunate reality is that the Village has no authority over the USPS. Staff has been diligent in contacting the local post office, the regional office and our business representative to log complaints and voice concerns. We share your frustration and are doing what we can to get this problem rectified.
Looking forward to summer, we have begun planning for the return of the Taste of Oak Brook. Our annual July 3rd fireworks event has been on hiatus since 2018 and we are all very excited to see its return. Our team is working hard to make this year’s event something special while still addressing COVID-19 and other safety concerns. Staff has also been busy putting plans in place to open the Bath & Tennis Club. With all the improvements in the works and staffing changes, we are looking forward to providing an exceptional Club experience. The Oak Brook Golf Club had a stellar year and anticipate the same in 2022. If you have not had, the opportunity to enjoy one of the Village’s recreational facilities this should be the year you do!
As always, the Trustees, staff and I are here to serve you. Please contact us with your thoughts, ideas, and concerns.
With kind regards,
Gopal G Lalmalani. MD, MBA.