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The student news site of West Chicago Community High School

Wildcat Chronicle

The student news site of West Chicago Community High School

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Boveys fined $20,000 for greenhouse

After the court hearing on Nov. 15, the Bovey family was charged $20,000 dollars for their backyard structure.
The+greenhouse+structure+that+the+Bovey+family+built+in+their+backyard.+%28Photo+courtesy+of+Dan+Bovey%29
The greenhouse structure that the Bovey family built in their backyard. (Photo courtesy of Dan Bovey)

On Nov. 15, a West Chicago administrative law judge charged the Bovey family, owners of a backyard greenhouse at the center of a lawsuit, a $20,000 fine for failing to maintain an updated permit and deviating from permit plans.

The city fined Dan and Jody Bovey $10,000 for not having an updated permit for the greenhouse project, and another $10,000 for deviation from permit plans. There is currently a demolition notice for the greenhouse, and if the structure is not torn down by December 20, the Boveys could be charged for violating the demolition notice.

“They fined us 10,000 for failing to obtain a permit. Now, that permit extension, we requested three times and each time we submitted all the documents they asked for, they changed and asked for more [documents],” Dan Bovey said via text message.

The family is left with few options now, but still hopes to save their greenhouse. The Boveys can continue to submit to the City’s most recent documentation requests, but there is no guarantee that the demolition notice will be lifted even if proper documents are provided.

Another option is circuit court. The family can move toward another hearing in the hopes that the judge will rule in their favor; however, according to Dan Bovey, this endeavor could potentially cost the family $10,000-20,000 in legal fees.

“This is why people rarely challenge the city. The city has grown accustomed to operating in the dark with no accountability,” Dan Bovey said.

The Bovey family is not alone in this process. Many friends, neighbors and community members have been speaking out supporting the family.

“I would urge you [Mayor Pineda], or anyone in your city government, to sit down with him [Dan Bovey], as a friend, as a fellow West Chicago citizen, and be willing to hear his case and to look at his side of the story in a cordial and open minded manner,” community member Steve Strong said.

This story was originally posted on Nov. 16, but was updated to included additional input from community members.

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About the Contributor
Sasha Baumgartner
Sasha Baumgartner, Editor-in-Chief
Sasha is a senior, and this is her third year being a part of the Wildcat Chronicle. She found a swift passion for journalism during her sophomore year, learning how to write for fun and in many different ways. She has continued with the paper since 2021. Outside of journalism, Sasha is a member of the WEGO Dance team, a ROAR mentor and a member of National Honors Society and WEGO Global at the high school. Sasha’s main hobbies outside of school include working at a retirement community serving guests in the dining room, spending time with friends and family, and finishing up work for the Wildcat Chronicle. In the future, Sasha plans to attend college for psychology to be able to help people on a daily basis. 
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  • BarbNov 20, 2023 at 12:29 pm

    It seems like the city wants to fine anyone in the town for any silly thing.
    Just so they can make money to do the things that the city wants to do.
    I see absolutely no problem in people having greenhouses to grow food for their families.
    Five years ago I bought my children three chickens as pets Bought them as chicks and bob’s salt and feed in west chicago.
    Ask the people in the store is it okay to have chickens in west chicago ?
    The people that work in the store told me we’re in west chicago.
    Then I got a court citation in the mailbox stating. They were giving me four days to get rid of the chickens and the coop.
    Anything to make a dollar on other people. West chicago is ridiculous, And i’m sorry we moved here.

  • Linda DNov 17, 2023 at 9:18 am

    I thought these stories were well written and informative, and sought to provide non-biased information. Keep up the good work!