Unlike their peers in the region, McHenry County Board members have not had to grapple with the significant budget reductions, financial turmoil and painful job cuts forced by the economic downtown.
Credit goes largely to prior boards that instituted a strict financial model that required government to live well within its means while allowing for large reserves and a sterling reputation among lenders.
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Yet the board is not without its issues. The county faces unhappiness over the conduct of its transportation department; complaints about transparency; calls for a new way to choose its chairman; and claims the county is taking more taxpayer money than necessary.
In next month's Republican primary for county board seats, we endorse:
In District 2: Chairman Ken Koehler and fellow incumbents Donna Kurtz and Jim Heisler, with newcomer Carolyn Schofeld, whose engineering background and experience with environmental issues would be valuable.
In District 3: Newcomers Joe Gottemoller and Michael Walkup impress with their focus on budget issues and support for small business. Incumbents Nick Provenzano and Mary Donner deserve another term.
In District 4: Newcomer Edward Varga brings extensive experience from his time on the county's board of health. Linda Kvidera Murphy's small business experience also should be useful. Incumbents Sandra Fay Salgado and John Hammerand should serve another term.
In District 5: Michael Skala's experience working on the school board of District 158 would benefit the county board. Incumbents John Jung, Tina Hill and Virginia Peschke should return to the board.
In District 6: Mary McCann, Ersel Schuster and Diane Evertsen advocate spending controls and protecting agriculture. We also endorse Shawn Green, who has well-founded ideas on transparency and reducing costs.