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Kostka May Demolish Home, Gets Another Extension

Kostka gets another one-month extension, frustrated neighbors say it's another 'pony trick.'

A group of frustrated neighbors filed into the courtroom, anxiously awaiting the court’s decision in the Village of Palatine’s lawsuit against Warren Kostka Thursday morning.

Past their breaking points, several neighbors audibly scoffed at some of the statements made by the attorney representing Kostka during the hearing.

Kostka’s attorney told the judge it’s “a very serious possibility” that his client will demolish his home at 108 N. Forest Ave.

“It’s all a ploy,” said neighbor, Bob Boldog, “He’s not going to demolish anything.” Boldog was one of several neighbors to attend the hearing in Rolling Meadows.

To give Kostka time to determine if demolition would be his attorney asked the judge for a two-month extension.

“It’s the same pony tricks,” said neighbor Brett Soukup, “We’ve already been through this.” Soukup said Kostka is just waiting to use the cold weather as an excuse to postpone work on his property.

Palatine attorney Patrick Brankin voiced similar concerns to Cook County Judge Margarita Kulys Hoffman at Thursday’s hearing. Brankin told the judge he did not want to have the two parties return to court in December and have Kostka say, ‘OK, judge we’re not going to demolish the house but it’s winter time so we can’t do any work.’

The judge granted a one-month extension and told Kostka he must present proposals and estimates for demolition or a timeline for the repair work at the next hearing in October.

In the meantime, Brankin said Kostka should have to get citing the driveway and the boards on the roof, into compliance.

The judge told Brankin she was not going to order Kostka to repair something if he was just going to tear it down but did order Kostka to clear his property of trash and debris.

“And he just has to clean up garbage,” Soukup said as he shook his head outside of the courtroom.

“I’m sick of this,” said Boldog, “It’s a joke.” Boldog said Kostka keeps giving the Village the run around and the court has yet to stop him.

“Obviously, I think we’re all just frustrated,” neighbor Pamela Panczyk said. “At this point, I think everyone realizes he’s taking advantage of the situation,” said Panczyk, “We need a judgment.”

Kostka is due back in court Oct. 24 for a status hearing. 

 in January, the village conducted a visual inspection of Kostka’s property at 108 N. Forest Ave. and discovered several ordinance violations consisting of:

  • Changes to the property's grading that have been done in a manner as to create a nuisance that consist of deep trenches with unstable and hazardous side slopes; sand bags; various spoil piles of dirt, asphalt and concrete remaining on property; fabric fencing; exposed dirt areas with no permanent or temporary vegetative cover.
  • Missing sections of siding, gutters and downspouts, handrails and guardrails.
  • Broken pane of glass in the south elevation window.
  • Driveway in disrepair.
  • Wood boards lying on the roof.
Louann Smith September 29, 2012 at 12:36 AM
Has anybody offered to try to help Kostka out? I agree the home and yard need to be fixed and brought up to code. I agree that he needs to be in compliance. I agree that some of the property values may suffer a little. But has any of his neighbors offered to help him instead of showing up in court and sit against him? I know Kostka is mad at the village over his whole flooding issues. I know the costs are high. Maybe he just does not have the money to complete everything. Maybe he is overwhelmed and does not know where to begin . I think instead of all the anger and frustration, maybe he needs a helping hand and not one where he may be forced to give up his home to demolition. He's got some big projects that I'm sure come with a big price tag.
Rachel Glaser September 29, 2012 at 01:25 AM
Louann - Kostka blames the problems on flooding that he said started 25 years ago with the separation of Palatine’s stormwater and sewer systems. Many of the residents near Kostka said they experienced similar issues on their properties. Years ago, neighbors said they all discussed those issues and decided to work together to address those problems. According to neighbors, Kostka decided to go in a different direction. The Village, along with neighbors believe many of the problems Kostka has had are "self-inflicted." Also, The Village has said they are willing to work with Kostka to set up a timeline for the repairs, one that makes sense for Kostka financially. I hope that answers your question, unfortunately, Mr. Kosta was not available for comment after Thursday's hearing.
Jim September 29, 2012 at 02:12 AM
Must be a heck of a flooding problem if it is leaving wooden boards on the roof, break glass panes, and taking out hand rails
Scott September 29, 2012 at 02:54 PM
And my understanding is that Kostka blames the Village of Palatine for a *federally mandated* seperation of storm and sanitary sewers, If he wants to go that route he's blaming the wrong govermental agency.
Shawn September 29, 2012 at 04:35 PM
I'll bet money that his home insurance company would drop him immediately if the current condition of his property was brought to their attention if he even has any. Might that also be a route to get him to repair his home
Forest September 30, 2012 at 09:38 PM
He is incredibly rude to all his neighbors these days. He yells at us for walking dogs, the way we park, he files complaints against us with the police, slandering us in the press and at village meetings, and taunts us with ever changing signs in his yard. I understand your point but this man has done nothing to deserve any help from his neighborhood. As for funds, consider the amount he spends on attorneys and his own "Clippings" publication. Please check your facts and history about this situation before you cast judgement on our neighborhood. It's a great place to live and we all get together and help each other all the time. That explains our presence in court to try and resolve this issue.
Louann Smith October 02, 2012 at 03:09 AM
@Forest: I live in the neighborhood. I am a nearby neighbor. I do flood terribly and was just a little thankful for the drought this year. I just thought maybe he needed help. He's probably got his hackles up with everything coming at him. And I'm sure most of it is self inflicted. You don't need to get riled up. And I'm definitely not casting judgement. Just looking for possible solutions. I hope the new sewers put in on Lincoln will help protect us from flooding.

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