Mark Nowak: Candidate Profile
Addison Township Board (4-year Terms) (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: Addison Township Board (4-year Terms)
Family: Wife, Kathleen of 11 years. No children.
Occupation: Facility Director at Behavioral Education And Treatment. A counseling/treatment center specializing in alcohol and substance abuse.
Education: BS in Marketing and BS in Economics, Elmhurst College, 1995.
Civic involvement: Candidate did not respond.
Elected offices held: Board of Trustees, College of DuPage, 2003-2009. Committeeman, 2001-Present.
Have you ever been arrested for or convicted of a crime? If yes, please explain: No.
Key Issue 1
My number one issue is to maintain that the Township continues to live within its means and never turn to deficit spending. Our goal has always been to providing superior services while being absolutely frugal with the taxpayer's dollars. Although we continually see government spending more that it has, Addison Township has always been living proof that living within a budget is not only possible but a necessity.
Key Issue 2
Community outreach and increasing our identity. Every now and then I come across residents in the community that are not aware of our many services and may in fact need them. From the food pantry to the clothes closet to employment education, job fair programs, senior services and help with utility costs, etc. We need to make sure that all who live in this community are aware of the services we provide and that we make them easily accessible.
Key Issue 3
Expanding services. Expanding services while not increasing spending is not as impossible as it seems. By broadening our use of technology and partnering with local businesses and corporations we can find ways to grow programs like our employment education, job fairs, food pantry and financial assistance.
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.
1. Fiscal responsibility. We always have and always will believe in respecting our communities? tax dollars. First and foremost, this board should not raise taxes and also identify new ways to provide more with less. Whether it's implementing new technology, or partnering with other private or government agencies, we should always be looking for ways to make sure we are always providing the greatest value to our community. 2. To maintain the integrity of our services. We will take a long and hard look at each department and its budget and programs. We will identify programs that need to be expanded and if necessary condense programs that are not as popular. 3. To expand our awareness in the community. My ideal goal would be that every resident of Addison Township is aware of the Township's services and benefits provided to them, from the Highway department to the Assessor's office.
In the 21st Century, with municipalities gobbling up vacant land, why are townships needed? Should they be serving a new role? If so, what?
Townships continue to be vital to our local communities, especially in tough economic times like we have today. Our ability to provide quality service at a lower cost and the fact that Townships provide services that municipalities do not, ensures that Townships are still necessary to the community. Today we see State, County and local municipalities overburdened with debt forced to cut the services they once provided. Meanwhile, Addison Township is in a position to expand the services we provide.
What should be the primary responsibility of township government?
Our responsibilities should remain what they already are 1) General assistance, 2) the assessment of real property; and 3) maintenance of roads and bridges outside of federal, state and local jurisdiction. These are the basic functions assigned to Townships according to Illinois State Statute. However, with our ability to provide services at a lower cost than other government entities, I?d like to see the Township take over some duties of state and county agencies.
In these hard economic times, can you identify some township expenses/programs that could be trimmed or eliminated to reduce the tax burden?
We have a model in place that empowers our employees to provide continual input to find new way to save dollars. When they are identified, we immediately implement those changes. Unlike larger governmental agencies, we have greater flexibility to make changes throughout the year. There have also been pay freezes and pay cuts recently implemented. As trustees, we have voted to eliminate benefits and to not take any pay increases.
What specific background or experience do you bring that makes you the best qualified candidate to serve as an elected official in the township?
I have a background in finance, auditing and management. And I also have served in the past on a board with a budget much larger than that of the Township?s. I understand the legal, financial, technical and political workings of a board. As a member of this community for over 35 years, I have family and friends who live in the Township and therefore a vested interest in keeping taxes low and maintaining the integrity of our services.
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