North Aurora man, Aurora woman seek Kane Dist. 2 seat
Theresa Barreiro and Sal Abbate are running for the Kane County Board District 2 race.
Sal Abbate of North Aurora cites his temperament as a plus for why he should be the next Kane County Board District 2 representative.
Theresa Barreiro of Aurora cites her longtime ties to the community and experience having worked for the county as advantages.
Voters will choose Republican Abbate or Democrat Barreiro Nov. 6 for a four-year term.
"I kind of never lived anywhere else," Barreiro said.
She said she became familiar with county government while working in the county clerk's office from 1981 to 1989.
She described herself as "all about customer service."
"I could be a great asset for the county," she said, with her Rolodex of connections. "I just kind of know."
"I don't have a big Rolodex," Abbate said.
But he thinks he is proactive in leadership, and that his work background provides unique skills that would be beneficial.
Abbate, 50, sells computer software and technology. Barreiro, 50, is a client services and marketing assistant.
• Should the county spend $12 million to buy a new court records computer system?
"It is a mess," Barreiro said, who has firsthand knowledge as a consumer, having used the current public access part when she was paying child support.
However, she does not support using RTA tax money to pay for any replacement or upgrade.
"This is right up my alley," said Abbate. But the county should do more prep work before buying something new, including writing a "scope of work" to describe what it wants out of the system.
"The devil is in the details," he said.
He is not averse to using the RTA sales tax to pay for it, since that money was supposed to be used for public safety.
"Maybe this (records system) means it," he said.
• Judicial center expansion: Both say "no."
"I think they should try and do with what they have," because of the state of the economy and its effect on county revenue, Barreiro said.
• Developing the former county jail site and landfills along Fabyan Parkway in Geneva.
Abbate said turning the area "back into a nature site might be the best thing to do."
He leans away from including a Ravinia-style amphitheater because it would compete with the nearby Fifth Third Bank Stadium.
Used primarily for minor-league baseball, the stadium has also hosted concerts.
Barreiro said she likes the First Tee youth golf program proposed for part of the site, but also thinks the proposed amphitheater could be a problem, competing with the one being built at the new RiverPark in downtown Aurora.
• Raises for employees: "I look at the raises in two separate ways," Abbate said; those for public defenders and assistant state's attorneys vs. other employees, he said, because the county is "competing for that talent with other counties."
The revolving door needs to stop, he said, adding the money for raises has to be found in the budget, without raising fees or taxes.
Barreiro also said any raises have to come from within current means. She suggested setting up some incentives, such as step increases.
• Pet issues: Abbate cited accountability, efficiency and innovation. He questions the use of payroll clerks in all county departments, and providing paper meeting packets to board members.
Barreiro is concerned about lack of maintenance of foreclosed properties and its deleterious effect on neighboring properties' values. "Nobody wants to take ownership of it. It's not a county issue, but (the county) could try. It has to start somewhere," she said.
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