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Local News

Green's future in doubt amid investigation into Rialto payroll taxes in Joliet

Rialto Square Theatre General Manager Randy Green addressed the Joliet City Council in December 2014 about the renovation of the theater's marquee during a pre-council meeting.
Rialto Square Theatre General Manager Randy Green addressed the Joliet City Council in December 2014 about the renovation of the theater's marquee during a pre-council meeting.

JOLIET – The Rialto Square Theatre board is slated to vote Monday on whether to part ways with General Manager Randy Green amid new financial problems over unpaid payroll taxes.

A vote on a separation agreement with the general manager has been added to the agenda for a special meeting at 4 p.m. in the theater's administrative offices.

Meanwhile, outside finance officials were looking at Rialto financial records Friday.

City Manager Jim Hock said both the financial directors from the city of Joliet and Joliet Township were examining the books at the Rialto.

Hock said they were there at the request of Dan Vera, who is chairman of the Rialto board as well as supervisor at Joliet Township. Among matters being examined were unpaid payroll taxes, he said.

"I don't know what the total amount is, but it's both state and federal," Hock said.

The city has a stake in the Rialto since it provides $600,000 a year in annual funding to the theater.

More details about the financial problems are likely to come out at both the Rialto board meeting and the Joliet City Council workshop meeting at 5:30 p.m. in City Hall.

Mayor Bob O'Dekirk said Rialto finances will be discussed at the city meeting.

"We were alerted last Friday that there is a financial issue," O'Dekirk said. "It was brought to our attention. The council is going to address this at the pre-council meeting Monday."

Vera declined to discuss Green's future or what financial problems the Rialto faces.

Vera said on Friday that he would only issue a statement, which said in part, "We respect the privacy of our employees, and I will not discuss personnel issues unless they require formal action by the Rialto authority board."

Vera would not respond when asked if the Rialto has been paying payroll taxes.

"We will discuss everything on Monday as a board," he said.

City Councilman Larry Hug, a vocal critic of Rialto management, said he agrees with the need for the city to examine Rialto financial records.

"We need to get behind that curtain. We need to find out what's going on," Hug said.

Hug faced off with Green at a city budget meeting in December, when Hug questioned the $600,000 city contribution and Rialto management practices.

"The $600,000 that everybody was talking about apparently was not the biggest issue," Hug said Friday.

The special meeting of the Rialto board was scheduled Thursday and includes just one item – a vote on contract renewal for Green. His contract expires at the end of the year.

The vote on a separation agreement for Green was added to a revised agenda on Friday afternoon.

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