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Local News

Joliet adopts ‘Cupcake Law’

Ordinance allows for home-baked goods to be sold for profit

JOLIET – Poticas and other treats were offered up to Joliet City Council members Tuesday night – but not as a bribe, home bakers joked – when the city adopted the so-called “Cupcake Law.”

“No, this is not a bribe,” Georgene Williams, a Joliet nurse and home baker, said at Tuesday’s city council meeting. After all, the treats were passed out only after the city adopted the ordinance, allowing home-based bakery operations to sell goods for profit.

“For someone who does a real good job of eating Poticas over the holidays, I’ll vote aye,” City Councilman John Gerl said.

“I grew up with a grandmother. Every event that would come up, she would make Kolaczkis and sold them in church, in school, when I was in the Cub Scouts and I don’t want to make her roll over in her grave, so I vote aye,” joked Councilman Larry Hug.

Gov. Pat Quinn signed the state legislation earlier this year amid health and safety concerns. It defined a home baking operation and prohibited people from baking and selling home-based goods unless the municipality the baker resides in adopts the “Cupcake Law.” The bill had been introduced after a young girl’s baking operation in Troy was shut down by health officials.

John Sheridan, a member of the Cunningham Neighborhood Council, thanked Joliet City Council members for moving the ordinance forward in time for the busy holiday season. Sheridan then donned Councilman Jim McFarland with a baker’s hat and apron for leading the efforts.

28 years on the job

The City Council also approved a resolution commending City Attorney Jeff Plyman for his 28 years of work with the city.

Plyman, who announced plans to retire in August, has been the city’s top attorney for nearly 15 years. He succeeded his boss, Tom Thanas, for the position in 1999.

Michael Hansen, a local attorney, and several council members, teared up as they each took a moment to congratulate Plyman on his retirement.

Gerl said he remembers when Plyman was first hired into the job.

“[Back in 1999], I remember thinking to myself, ‘Wow, who is going to replace Tom Thanas?’ I mean, he was an icon down here and really did a fantastic job. He’s a great legal mind,” Gerl said. “And I remember, over the next couple of years, observing Jeff and working with Jeff, and thinking to myself, ‘Man, did they find the right guy.’ ”

Councilwoman Jan Quillman said through tears that Plyman has a “big heart” and has been a “good friend.”

“He was always there to answer my phone calls, answer my questions and guide me along,” Quillman said.

Standing ovation

In other news: Four recently named Joliet Deputy Police Chiefs got a standing ovation Tuesday after being recognized at the City Council meeting.

• Alan Roechner, a 23-year member of the Joliet Police Department, will step into the role of deputy police chief of investigations;

• Edward Gregory, a 24-year member, will serve as deputy police chief of operations;

• Tab Jenson, a 23-year member, will take over as deputy police chief of administration;

• Brian Dupuis, a 24-year member, will head up technical services.

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