Downs is now a Banana Republic

Two follow-up stories:

By:  Diane Benjamin

See this previous story:

One trustee quit last night because he moved outside of Downs.  He did the right thing.  Meanwhile Dan Lush didn’t quit and has no intention of quitting even though he has moved to Leroy.  He gets his mail in Downs and still owns property there, so he thinks he is entitled to his seat.  Evidently the village lawyer agrees.  The days are long past where public servants honored the spirit and the letter of the law.  Interpreting laws to maintain power is the new law.

Can Dan Lush be trusted to represent you?  He evidently feels entitled to his seat on the board.

That brings me to Mayor Mike James.


  • Mike James HID the required quarterly liquor reports from the public and trustees for over two years
  • Mike James proclaimed trustee Mary Goveia was not entitle to see the reports when she asked for them
  • Adkisson’s violated the law for 8 of 9 quarters – I received the reports by filing a Freedom of Information Act request
  • Mike James allowed Adkisson’s to continue violating the law
  • Mary Goveia scheduled a meeting with Mike James to discuss Adkisson, but James didn’t show up.
  • As Liquor Commissioner Mike James violated his duty to enforce the law
  • Adkisson operated as a tavern but did not pay the much higher cost of a tavern license
  • Adkisson never suffered any penalties for violating the law

Mary Goveia was elected by citizens in Downs to represent them.  James had ZERO right to hide Village information from her.  What else is he hiding?

Mike James claimed at last night’s meeting that Adkisson’s is too close to a church to qualify for a tavern license.  He therefore allowed them to operate as a tavern instead of enforcing the law.  At the next meeting he wants to present an ordinance change so Adkisson can be a tavern close to a church.

It gets better!

Last night Kenneth Adkisson attacked Mary Goveia and demanded that she be kicked off the board.  When I get a copy of the letter he submitted I will post it.

Kenneth Adkisson feels entitled to violate the law, pay far less in fees, and eliminate all opposition.

Instead of being fined for his 8 previous violations, Mike James plans to change the law for a friend!

Congrats Downs!  You are a Banana Republic where laws don’t matter and the people demanding equal justice under the law are attacked.  Mary Goveia was doing her job as a representative of the citizens.  Mike James isn’t doing his!

I strongly urge citizens of Downs who know Mary Goveia is being unjustly attacked to contact her.  Real public servants deserve better!  She needs the support of citizens who also believe laws matter.

The Downs board needs to stop reciting the Pledge of Allegiance.  Liberty and Justice for all don’t apply in Downs.




  1. Disgruntled Dave says:

    The aforementioned “tavern” owner is also a convicted felon from forty-some years ago.


  2. Banana republic citizen says:

    The convicted felon tavern owner doesn’t even know how to spell the name of the woman he openly harassed


  3. Joe Edwards says:

    We have the same probem in Ellsworth ( also a community in Tri-Valley school district ). Trustees and the mayor of our town refuse to inforce the laws and ordinances on the books. We have repeatedly tried at multiple village meetings to get them to inforce the most simple or laws and ordinances that is affecting our lives and my childs on a day to day occurrence. I have stood in front of our board and told them that they are in gross violation of their duties they swore to protect, with just a blank look in their eyes, telling me they need to consult our village attorney. Just like Downs, these rules are black and white and do not require an attorney. I urge the citizens of Downs to join Ellsworth citizens in stoping the corruption and gross incompetence of our ELECTED leaders and contact the states attorney for possible wide spread impeachments across both boards and right the wrongs that have been going on for way to long.


  4. Disgruntled Dave says:

    Not entirely sure but possibly burglary or burglarizing a Normal police car back around 1969-70. Recall that when our senior class went on a field trip to Pontiac Prison, he was working in the license plate room and waved hello to our class like he was a hero or something.


  5. Dawn Lilley says:

    If you don’t know the truth and have the actual facts, please keep your comments to yourself.


  6. Dawn Lilley says:

    If you don’t know the truth nor the facts, please keep your mouth shut.


  7. Renee Seth says:

    Thank you for uncovering what many of us already knew but did not have proof ! Keep up the good work. How do we change things ?


    • If the citizens aren’t organized and armed with facts, nothing will change. Get a crowd to the next Council meeting. Send support to Mary Goveia, she’s under attack by people who want to keep the status quo.


  8. TheYoungOne says:

    Wouldn’t the notion of “Liberty (and Justice) For All” dictate that the law/ordinance that restricts the ability of a business to provide for it’s customers should be repealed?!!!??!?


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