Despite Her Arrest Last Summer on Theft and Official Misconduct Charges, the Dir

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Byline: Russell Lissau

Despite her arrest last summer on theft and official misconduct charges, the director of Island Lake's village-owned preschool has continued collecting a paycheck.

Some village board members say that needs to change.

At the end of Thursday night's meeting, Trustee John Ponio said he wants the panel to discuss placing Creative Playtime Preschool Director Sharon Hyde on administrative leave.

"We as a board have to consider ... the seriousness of the charges," Ponio said. "This is a big thing."

Hyde, the wife of former Mayor Thomas Hyde, is accused of collecting an estimated $114,000 in pay for hours she did not work as Creative Playtime's director between 1999 and 2009.

Her husband voted to approve those claims, prosecutors have said. Thomas Hyde is charged with official misconduct and having a prohibitive interest in contracts in what authorities

have termed a ghost payrolling scam.

Sharon Hyde also is charged with making false entries.

The Hydes' attorney, Charles Smith, maintains neither client did anything wrong. He said Sharon Hyde is a salaried employee whose pay is the same no matter how many hours she works.

Sharon Hyde could not be reached for comment Friday morning.

Mayor Debbie Herrmann and some trustees have defended the Hydes. They spurned calls to remove Sharon Hyde from her post and Herrmann called Sharon Hyde "a model citizen" after her arrest. …