Pledging to push for a property tax levy freeze in Kane County, state Sen. Chris Lauzen announced his candidacy on Saturday to be elected Kane County Board chairman.
The Aurora Republican, who has held the 25th District State Senate seat since 1992, told about 600 supporters gathered at his annual picnic at the Vaughan Athletic Center in Aurora that "this is no time to quit politics."
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The picnic was relocated from Blackberry Farm because of Saturday's poor weather.
"It is more important than ever that all of us are involved to select and elect the right leaders who share our values," Lauzen said, flanked by Sarah Lauzen, his wife of 30 years, three of their four sons and a daughter-in-law.
In June, Kane County Board Chairman Karen McConnaughay announced her candidacy for the new 33rd District State Senate seat.
Geneva Mayor Kevin Burns was the first candidate to enter the race for Kane County Board chairman on Tuesday.
Lauzen and Burns briefly battled in the Republican primary for the 14th Congressional District seat when longtime congressman Dennis Hastert retired in 2007.
Burns eventually withdrew his candidacy, and Lauzen lost to Jim Oberweis, who in turn ended up losing to Democrat Bill Foster.
Oberweis, an Illinois Republican Party State Central Committee member, said earlier this month that he was considering a run for the 25th District State Senate seat.
Lauzen pledged to "work hard, stay honest and use common sense." His guiding principles, he said, are family, faith intended as service to others and the belief in America's freedom to prosper.
Property taxes are his first priority, Lauzen said.
"How many of you have wondered ... 'Why is it that my property values are going down, and my property taxes are going up?' That has got to stop," he said.
He also underlined the importance of treating people with respect, a call he extended to county board members, and of establishing an "honest and competent" administration based on innovation.
"We don't take more taxes from you," he said.
Lauzen proposed looking into building zero emission municipal solid waste power plants in Kane County. The plants can cost $30 million to $500 million, but no taxpayer monies would be used, only private funds, Lauzen said.
"Think about that type of business and the millions of dollars that could come into the coffers without asking you for more," he said, pointing to Settler's Hill landfill in Geneva.
Lauzen grew up in Aurora and has a bachelor's degree from Duke University and an MBA from Harvard University. He is also a CPA, according to information from his campaign office.
Helm: Lowering property taxes Lauzen's first priority