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updated: 2/10/2012 4:45 PM

Ersel Schuster: Candidate Profile

McHenry County board District 6 (Republican)

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  • Ersel Schuster, running for McHenry County board District 6

    Ersel Schuster, running for McHenry County board District 6




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.

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BioKey IssuesQ&A



City: Woodstock


Office sought: McHenry County board District 6

Age: 72

Family: Married

Occupation: Owner/operated - printing & graphics business

Education: Master of Science National Louis Univ; Counselor Bachelor of Arts National College of Ed.; Bus psychology Associate of Science McHenry County College; Illinois Lincoln Excellence in Public Service Fellowship Alumni

Civic involvement: Candidate did not respond.

Elected offices held: McHenry County Board Member: total of 12 years (3 non consecutive terms) Seneca Township Supervisor: 16 years Republican Precinct Committeeman: 8 years Accounting experience in many positions.

Have you ever been arrested for or convicted of a crime? If yes, please explain: No

Candidate's Key Issues

Key Issue 1

The size of county government needs to be addressed.

To that point, I have proposed a plan whereby we will be identifying those services necessary to run a lean and efficient government that the public can afford.

Key Issue 2

State and federal unfunded mandates have always been difficult for local public officials to deal with.

Today, with the financial condition of state & federal governments, local officials will be faced with a mountain of new mandates as funding resources continue to run dry.

Key Issue 3

Protection of our groundwater resources, water recharge areas and food producing farmland are more vital today than most people care to admit.

Combined, they are my number one concerns for the future of McHenry County and future generations.

Questions & Answers

McHenry County has managed the recession without a budgetary crisis like those in other counties. How do you ensure the county continues on that path and that reserves aren't depleted? Are there specific budget areas that need more attention?

In 1996 I began a term on the county board and was immediately confronted with a financial disaster perpetrated by county officials who were caught up in a spending frenzy.

The outcome of that experience was a written plan that turned the financial situation of the county around and has been the blueprint for the solid financial condition we have today.

Currently, the makeup of the board is teetering on the verge of slipping back into the mode of a spending spree with more liberal thinking members.

More than ever, anyone elected to this, or any other such board, must adhere to a strong Financial Plan such as the one we developed in the late 90's.

Does the McHenry County Board have a good transportation improvement plan? Please be specific and suggest whether you think anything is missing or should be scrapped.

In general, the county's Highway Improvement Plan is a well- structured plan.

I do however take issue with a lack of attention to the overwhelming number of road miles that are somewhat neglected in lieu of repeatedly funneling large sums of transportation dollars into areas where major improvements have been done? only to have to continue upgrading, and/or re-doing, those same areas.

Does the county need to address its ethics policies' Why or why not? If so, how?

The County's Ethics Ordinance was revised in 2011.

From that process it was discovered that the Ordinance requirements had never been applied as required by statute.

Therefore, beginning this year, all elected officials and county employees will be required to review and be tested on this ordinance.

A certificate of completion will be issued once compliance has been met.

Assess McHenry County's efforts thus far in terms of groundwater preservation and protection. What needs to be done now and in the future?

In McHenry County's 2030 Land Use Plan, great emphasis has been placed on the issue of groundwater and water recharge areas.

This emphasis, coupled with the Plan's goal of protecting agricultural land, should provide the groundwater protection we need.

Of great concern is that public officials must grasp of magnitude of the part they play in protecting these resources.

Bottom line, all public officials must re-think their push for more development at the cost of depleting the supply of potable water to serve their communities.

Water in our county is a finite resource since we are limited to that which is beneath our feet.

Without a clean and abundant supply of water, there is no community.

Assess how the county health department approached the whooping cough outbreak. What should have been done differently?

From my perspective, I believe the health department has handled the issue quite well.