Doug Marks, the Carpentersville trustee known for proposing quirky laws and publicly dressing down village officials over their spending habits, has decided to see -- once again -- whether his brand of politics translates to a higher office.
Marks this week announced his run for state senator in the 33rd District, a race that will be decided in the fall. Marks, a Tea Party member, is running as a Libertarian candidate and would face off against whoever wins the upcoming Republican primary -- Kane County Board Chairman Karen McConnaughay or former Gilberts Trustee Cliff Surges.
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Marks, 51, works as a senior systems analyst for a software company.
If he won the election, he'd resign from the village board. "I'm sure there are some staff members in Carpentersville who would be happy to see me leave," Marks said. "I'm sure there's some people on the board that would like to see that, too."
In 2010, Marks ran as a Libertarian in the 14th Congressional District and lost.
Marks says he got into the state race because he didn't want the Republican nominee to win the general election by default.
"I don't think any seat should be given a free run without political opposition," he said.
If he wins, Marks said, he would work to repeal the income tax hike the state imposed last year, offer a 3- to 5-percent corporate tax reduction to help keep manufacturers in the state and end "special deals" for major corporations, such as Sears and Motorola.
Meanwhile, his 11-month stint on the village board has been eventful.
Before Marks was even sworn in, he used his Facebook page to bash Village President Ed Ritter for refusing to appoint him to the audit and finance commission.
Most recently, Marks proposed a law that would allow trained and certified gun owners in Carpentersville to carry unloaded, concealed weapons in a fanny pack. The village attorney is researching the legality of this proposal, as Illinois has a ban on carrying concealed weapons.
But Marks says his greatest accomplishment is holding village leaders accountable for what he believes is excessive spending. At the start of nearly every board meeting, he spends several minutes questioning various department heads about the bills they've submitted to the board for approval.
"There's not the will to tell the staff 'no,'" Marks said.
The 33rd District includes northeastern Kane and southeastern McHenry counties, covering parts of Huntley, Carpentersville, St. Charles, West Dundee, South Elgin and several others.