News Flash Home
The original item was published from 9/15/2023 1:20:00 PM to 9/15/2023 1:36:34 PM.

News Flash

1. Latest News

Posted on: September 15, 2023

[ARCHIVED] Skokie Snapshot: Stepping towards a healthier community

Lillian LaSanta environmental health officer

Photo: Skokie Environmental Health Officer Lillian LaSanta conducts a site inspection as part of the Village’s efforts to reduce the rat population. (Photo by Rich Cahan.)

Meet Lillian LaSanta, Village of Skokie environmental health officer. Lillian works throughout the Village to mitigate environmental issues impacting public health, with her efforts focused on rodent control. 

How long have you worked for the Village of Skokie?
Since 2012. Prior to that I worked in environmental consulting, assessing commercial properties and helping remedy environmental issues.

What does an environmental health officer do?
Many certified public health department have an environmental health officer position. My job is to ensure properties are following the Village code. I also work with residents and property owners to identify and address any environmental health issues.

Why is it important?
Having clean, safe and well-maintained properties supports a healthier community for everyone. 

What happens when residents report a rodent issue to the Village?
Village staff are the first to visit the property. Staff conduct an initial site visit to identify rat burrows as well as any property maintenance issues that might be encouraging rodents. If rat burrows are found, Village staff mark the entrances with spray paint and apply bait. We then provide the location to our contractor (Platinum Pest Solutions), which visits the location regularly to track rat activity and treat the active rat burrows until rat activity is no longer observed. 

We also notify property owners of any environmental health code issues, notify our neighborhood services division of any observed property standards violations and conduct follow-up visits to ensure that the environmental health issues are addressed.

How is the Village expanding its rodent control efforts?
Suburbs throughout Chicago have reported an increase in rat activity after our recent mild winters. Right now in Skokie, we’re piloting a new rodent control device that uses carbon dioxide (CO2) to deprive rat burrows of oxygen. We’re testing it at several locations to see if it’s effective. The Village is also hiring two additional part-time environmental health workers to enhance our response to rodent reports.

What can residents do to help?
Controlling the rat population is a partnership. First, we ask that residents report any issues as soon as they come to your attention. The best and quickest way to report issues is to visit’s Rat Control Program page and complete the online form

Baiting is only 20 percent of the solution. The other 80 percent is the responsibility of each property owner by addressing property issues, like removing overgrown vegetation, and eliminating sources of food, water and shelter.

What do you most like about your job?
Public service is all about customer service. Meeting with residents and explaining our inspection and treatment process is very helpful. And when we work together to solve a problem, getting a “thank you” email or call makes my day.

About ‘Skokie Snapshot:’ Local photographer Richard Cahan, a Skokie native who served as the photo editor for the Chicago Sun-Times for 16 years, will periodically be capturing Village operations through his lens.

Facebook Twitter Email

Other News in 1. Latest News

lit candle with blurry lights in background

Skokie Fire Shares Holiday Safety Tips

Posted on: December 5, 2023
Skokie Village Hall

Apply to Be Skokie Village Clerk

Posted on: November 7, 2023
Holiday string lighting

Recycle Your Holiday Lighting

Posted on: November 28, 2023
Flu shot being administered at Skokie Flu Shot Clinic

Respiratory Viruses Are On the Rise

Posted on: November 28, 2023
Gift cards on display

Support Skokie Families in Need

Posted on: November 20, 2023
Ambulance 17

Updating Skokie's Emergency Vehicle Fleet

Posted on: November 14, 2023
Snow shoveling

Sign Up for the TeenLink Program

Posted on: November 14, 2023
STAT Commission logo

Submit Tech Excellence Award Nominations

Posted on: October 31, 2023
counseling session

Village Offers Support Resources

Posted on: October 27, 2023
fall leaf collection operations

Leaf Collection and Yard Waste Pickup

Posted on: October 2, 2023
Solar-powered street light

Village Pilots Solar-Powered Street Light

Posted on: September 27, 2023
Skokie Village Hall

Village Recognized for Innovative Services

Posted on: September 25, 2023
COVID vaccine administration

Updated COVID-19 Vaccine Recommended

Posted on: September 19, 2023
Traffic Cones

It's Road Construction Season

Posted on: April 11, 2023
Heating Cooling Center Graphic (PNG)

Warming and Cooling Centers in Skokie

Posted on: November 16, 2022