Michael Musson: Candidate Profile
Wayne Township Assessor (4-year Term) (R)
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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.
Website: Candidate did not respond.
Office sought: Wayne Township Assessor (4-year Term)
Occupation: Wayne Township Assessor
Education: Bachelor of Science in Management and Quantitative Methods, Illinois State University, 1992. Masters in Public Administration, Northern Illinois University, 2010. Certified Illinois Assessing Officer, 1991.
Civic involvement: Bartlett Rotary Club, Past President. Wayne Township Republican Organization, 2nd Vice Chairman. Assessors Assocation of DuPage County, Vice President, Past President.
Elected offices held: Wayne Township Assessor
Have you ever been arrested for or convicted of a crime? If yes, please explain: No.
Key Issue 1
I am very fortunate to be running for reelection unopposed. I was fully prepared to run on my record of providing the most accurate assessments in DuPage County, communication with Wayne Township property-owners, and overseeing a friendly, accessible staff.
Key Issue 2
Candidate did not respond.
Key Issue 3
Candidate did not respond.
Name the three most important goals or objectives this board should tackle in the coming term. Prioritize them, and briefly discuss why you believe each to be critical, and how the board should go about addressing them.
As Township Assessor, I am not a board member of the Township. I am an administrator of mass appraisal for the Wayne Township. My objectives are to continue to provide fair assessments during this market downturn, and to remain accessible to senior citizens and other property owners.
In the 21st Century, with municipalities gobbling up vacant land, why are townships needed? Should they be serving a new role? If so, what?
The three functions of township government, mandated by state law, are property assessments, township roads and general assistance. Wayne Township also features an active Senior Citizens program. It is a misconception that township government duplicates services. All township property owners are served by the Assessor. The senior program and general assistance program serve residents within the municipalities, and these services are not available at the villages. The maintenance of township roads would need to be transferred to DuPage County or to the municipalities if townships were eliminated. In this economic climate, Wayne Township's General Assistance/Food Pantry department is depended on by many Wayne Township residents who are unemployed or under-employed. The assessment function is essential to the fair distribution of property tax dollars. If townships were eliminated, the assessment function would transfer to the counties. DuPage County is not equipped to take over this function without the hiring of additional staff. Residents would lose accessibility to their local township offices for exemption applications and review of assessments. The loss of a local official who lives in and is familiar with the assessment jurisdiction could result in a deterioration of the quality of the assessments.
What should be the primary responsibility of township government?
At the risk of seeming biased, I believe that the assessment function is the most important responsibility of township government.
In these hard economic times, can you identify some township expenses/programs that could be trimmed or eliminated to reduce the tax burden?
Wayne Township represents approximately two cents of every tax dollar. The current township board has diligently reviewed all expenditures to search for ways to reduce costs, particularly in the areas of employee insurance benefits. The new board should continue to monitor health insurance costs and be prepared to make changes to employee health plans as needed.
What specific background or experience do you bring that makes you the best qualified candidate to serve as an elected official in the township?
My twenty-plus years of experience in property assessments, my deep familiarity with the neighborhoods in Wayne Township, and my record of providing the most accurate assessments in DuPage County.
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