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Felony Franks Closer to Buying Sign

By Chuck Sudo in News on Jun 6, 2011 6:40PM

2011_5_9_felony_franks.jpg Owners for Felony Franks owner Jim Andrews and the city reached an agreement in federal court that would allow the West side hot dog stand that traffics in prison entendres to get the sign 2nd Ward Ald. Bob Fioretti has fought tooth and nail against.

Andrews attorney Christopher Cooper subpoenaed Fioretti, 3rd Ward Ald.Pat Dowell, 20th Ward Ald. Willie Cochran and Ald. Ray Suarez of the 31st Ward to testify in Andrews's lawsuit against the city. City attorney Michael Forti came armed with a compromise instead.

Several aldermen would not vote against the sign when it came before the committee on Transportation and Public Way at their meeting on June 6. It would be voted on by the full city council on June 8.

On top of that, city attorney Michael Forti told Andrews that while they aren’t allowed to put up a sign until the city council approves it, as a gesture of good faith, they should go ahead and order their sign so it could be ready to go.

Cooper said Forti also told him that if the council somehow didn’t approve the sign, the city would reimburse Felony Franks for it.

“We’re hopeful that the committee will pass the right-of-way permit,” Forti said, regarding the permit Andrews needs to hang a sign over the sidewalk. “I would be surprised if the full city council voted it down if it was passed by the committee.”

The memo between the city and Felony Franks says that Dowell and Suarez “will not vote in opposition to the ordinance,” but it’s unclear what Fioretti will do.

The memo also says that Fioretti “will remain silent” during the hearing, and that “Fioretti will not make any efforts whatsoever to defer the ordinance without passage.”

Fioretti remained obstinate, however, and said he would not agree to that last bullet point. It's uncertain what Fioretti is doing right now or will do at Wednesday's City Council meeting. Judge Sharon Coleman isn't sure about the memorandum, stating it isn't legally binding. It's still possible that Fioretti will oppose the sign and lobby for votes against it.