Lawrence W. Buske: Candidate Profile
Rolling Meadows Alderman, Ward 3
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Note: Answers provided have not been edited for grammar, misspellings or typos. In some instances, candidate claims that could not be immediately verified have been omitted.
City: Rolling Meadows
Website: Candidate did not respond.
Office sought: Rolling Meadows Alderman, Ward 3
Family: Married 45 years. Three children. Four grandchildren.
Occupation: Entrepreneur - Professional landscaper for fourty six years.
Education: High School Graduate with college level continuing education courses and seminars.
Civic involvement: · 8 Years - Rolling Meadows 3rd Ward Alderman
· 8 Years - Rolling Meadows Auxiliary Police Officer
· 2 Years - Rolling Meadows Fire and Police Commissioner
· 5 Years - Rolling Meadows Economic Development Commission
· 6 Years - Rolling Meadows Vehicle Replacement Committee
· 2 Years - Church Youth Group Leader
· 2 Years - Boy Scout Leader
Elected offices held: · 8 Years Rolling Meadows 3rd Ward Alderman
Have you ever been arrested for or convicted of a crime? If yes, please explain: No
Key Issue 1
Pensions and the City's ability to fully fund the pension funds.
Key Issue 2
Salaries - Employee salaries need to be adjusted to be in line with the current econmic condition. I believe we need to lower the starting wages for all new employess and lower the maximum salary range for all positions. The previous city manager increased the salary ranges and created one of the highest pay ranges in the suburbs moving our city from being mid-range compensation to one of the highest. My goal is to bring these ranges back to reality.
Key Issue 3
Taking into consideration the slow down of the economy and technological advancements, the city now has the ability to continue to reduce staffing levels and create more part-time positions saving taxpayers money without reducing resident services.
What makes you the best candidate for the job?
29 years of experience in city related positions. My dedication to the residents by answering all their calls the same day and resolving all their issues as soon as possible.
Given the delicate balance between the need for revenue and over-taxing local businesses, what is your opinion of your community's present level of local sales taxes? Is the tax just right, too low or too high? Explain.
Although our sales tax is in line with surrounding communities, I believe taxes overall have outpaced the residents' ability to pay. The City needs to maintain a revenue stream to provide necessary services, but the revenue stream should NOT be put on the backs of the residents. The city needs to develop alternate revenues sources, for example: finding an occupant for the old Dominick's store and the former Sam's Club. These two new sources of revenue could produce $1.5 million which will reduce property taxes and other fees for the residents. During the last two budget years, the City Council has prioritized our expenditures from items the residents need and those considered wants which are not considered valuable to a majority of the residents.
Talking with your friends and neighbors, what seems to be their biggest public safety concern? Explain the concern as you see it, and discuss how you think it should be addressed.
Increased visibilty of police patrolling their neighborhoods. I have supported the enforcement of the Illinois Motor Vehicle code requiring all contractor and sub-contractors to have their vehicle lettered with their business names. This allows the residents the ability to identify the legitimate business from the scammers. The marked vehicles also allow the police the ability to know who is in an area should an issue arise.
In these tight economic times, municipal budgets have to be prioritized. Where, if anywhere, could the current budget be trimmed, and conversely, are there areas the budget does not give enough money to?
During recent years, the council has significantly reduced most expenditures in the budget. Moving forward I would like to see the temporary curtailment of bike path construction which would save hundreds of thousands of dollars which could be used to fund additional road projects throughout the city.
What's one good idea you have to better the community that no one is talking about yet?
I have suggested bringing back the ""red can"" to solicit donations from residents and businesses alike to support various community events. I have also supported a non for profit foundation to spearhead the donation process. These donations would supplement the city's community event budget items - like the Forth of July fireworks, parade and Holiday Tree lighting ceremony and allow those residents who can afford to donate the abiltity to do so. I believe community events are necessary to maintain a sense of pride and belonging to the community.
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