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.
Office sought: 50th District Representative
Family: Husband Steve and I have 4 children and 6 grandchildren
Occupation: Full Time State Representative; Kane, Kendall and LaSalle County
Education: Boston College Carroll School of Management, Management Certificate Program, Corporate Communications
Civic involvement: Metro West Legislator of the Year, Crime Commission Excellence in Government, Women's Empowerment/Making a Difference, Illinois Lincoln Series Governor, Illinois Volunteer Contributor of the Year Illinois Crime Stoppers, Waubonsee College Distinguished Contributor, YWCA Woman of Distinction (twice), Outstanding United Way Board Volunteer, Outstanding Woman in Government, Business Ledger Influential Woman in Business, Business Journal LUCI Leading Us in Commerce and Industry, River Valley Workforce Investment Board, Valley Industrial Association Board, Conservation Foundation Leadership Board, Rotary President, Three Fires Boy Scout Board, DuPage Girl Scout Board, numerous Chamber leaderships, include African American, Hispanic, Aurora, Naperville, Oak Brook, etc., Senior Services Associates Board/President, Project with Industry Board/President, Aurora and St. Charles United Way Boards, Governor's Task Force on Women Entrepreneurial Committee, Aurora Area Convention and Tourism Board, Paramount Arts Council Board, numerous not-for-profit boards, Illinois Federation of Republican Women state president.
Elected offices held: 2009-Present Member of the General Assembly, 50th District 2002-2008 Kendall County Board 2002-2008 Kendall County Forest Preserve President 1996-2008 Precinct Committeeman 1991-1996 Kendall County Board, Zoning and Ec Dev Chair 1985-1991 Oswego School Board
Have you ever been arrested for or convicted of a crime? If yes, please explain: No
Key Issue 1
Issues affecting the state of our state are so intertwined that it becomes difficult to separate them. Fiscal responsibility in many areas lead; eliminate the income tax increase, address pension and medicaid funding and criteria, continue to assess state programs for their effectiveness.
Key Issue 2
Create a stable environment that encourages businesses to stay in Illinois, and invest in both people and products.
Key Issue 3
Trust. It takes a lifetime to earn and a moment to lose. My first vote affected a governor now in prison, my last vote removed a member of the General Assembly for questionable actions. I work hard to be completely transparent is every way, posting my daily activity on Facebook so everyone knows what I'm doing and who I'm talking to.
How would you fix the state's pension gap? Should pension costs be shifted to suburban school districts? Why or why not? Should this issue be voted on in a lame-duck session? Why or why not? How can partisan gridlock be eased to solve the crisis?
Promises made by well-meaning legislators for decades in good times have proven to be disastrous in today's stark reality. The ripple effect of this 5% of our state's population is staggering. This is the state's responsibility and shifting costs locally would be doubly disastrous to my tax capped counties. We must craft a stable system that rights the state's ship and treats people with dignity. I have yet to see a long-term solution that addresses this completely, and expect to see some additional legislation that responds in a balanced fashion. We should vote before November 6. We should be in Session throughout the summer, working toward sustainable solutions. We were sent to Springfield to find answers, not avoid tough decisions. I support a plan that addresses all the pension systems, and does not just cherry-pick the easy ones. While serving on the General Appropriations budget hearings I saw the beginnings of change and hope it is a glimmer of future bipartisan efforts. I was named Metro West Legislator of the Year for my collaborative and inclusive approach to legislative problem solving. Truly, no substantial change will occur in the state until leadership term limits are instituted.
How, specifically, would you cut the budget? What does Illinois need to do to fix its status as a "deadbeat state?" How will you vote on future gambling bills? What is your view of slots at racetracks? Casino expansion?
*Term limits for leaders; while long-term, this would temper the tendency to believe that any piece of legislation would be rammed through with impunity.*Requiring a 3/5 vote on any spending bill would automatically require bipartisan support, which would halt feel-good pieces of legislation * Combine the Treasurer and Comptroller offices *Cutting aircraft fleet and encouraging public transportation for department heads and legislators *My favorite is PAYGO, which has been impemented in other states with great success. Want to start a new program? Eliminate another that is tabbed at the same cost. Pay as you go. * Ensure that the needy receive help by weeding out those taking advance of the system. Medicaid is the fastest growing part of the state budget, and I'm very glad the House began addressing it this spring * A note of success - eliminating legislative scholarshps. Gaming: The 50th District is unique in Illinois in that it is the recipient of both jobs and community impact dollars from multiple gaming establishments. As a business leader I was able to watch the evolution of the industry in the Fox Valley from the very beginning. The original legislation was specifically designed to aid aging river towns regain economic vitality, and it has been successful. Expanding gaming statewide or simply adding one casino in Chicago would be disastrous to the Fox Valley economy. There is a finite number of people who enjoy gaming, and any new sites would simply dilute the existing clientele, spreading it among more venues and dropping the revenues of the old facilities.
What can you do specifically to help the economy in your district? How can you help create jobs in your district and statewide? What is your view of the tax breaks granted to companies like Motorola Mobility, Navistar and Sears?
Government should create a stable environment that encourages businesses to invest in both people and products. Stability is the key, coupled with as little paperwork as possible. Minimize bureaucratic barriers, minimize taxes and incent research and development. My many years of active service on the Valley Industrial Association Board of Directors and numerous Chambers of Commerce taught me a very basic lesson; entrepreneurship will thrive given the chance. Jobs will be created, and that benefits the owner,workers and entire community. These profits in turn create a stronger environment for education, which is the core of a healthy job climate. That, partnered with a tax system that isn't punitive and a practical workmen's compensation program will create a climate where businesses lose the jitters and will want to call Illinois home. I was one of the few in the legislature who voted against the CME/Sears legislation. Government should not be in the business of picking winners and losers.
Do you favor limiting how much money party leaders can give candidates during an election? If elected, do you plan to vote for the current leader of your caucus? Why or why not? Do you support or oppose campaign contribution limits? Please explain.
I strongly favor campaign contribution limits and party leader limits. Unlimited money equals unlimited power. That's one of the reasons the state is in the shape it is in today. Four people define the playing field, both legislatively and politically. The House of Representatives has strong and responsible Republican members, each of whom represents a unique demographic and geographic constituency. The structure includes a leader, chosen by other legislators, to drive important issues and reach consensus. That leader is aided by a team dedicated to learning what other House members favor. Each individual legislator makes an individual vote, and does not have his or her hands tied by a political mandate. Leader Cross seeks to find common ground without minimizing differences, and that's a rare quality I support.
Should gay marriage be legalized in Illinois? Should it be voted on in a lame-duck session as civil unions were? Should Illinois define life as beginning at conception? How would you vote on a concealed carry plan? Should the death penalty return?
My personal philosophy is strongly fiscally conservative and socially moderate. As their voice in Springfield, I work diligently to reflect the thoughts of those I represent. The overwhelming majority of district residents who have contacted me have been opposed to gay marriage. I will support concealed carry. Illinois is the only state in the nation where this ability is not in place, and my constituents have strongly spoken in its support. Most law enforcement entities believe that eliminating the death penalty takes away an important negotiating tool with the very worst offenders, and I agree. I would support its return.