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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.
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Office sought: Lombard Village Board District 1 (4-year Term)
Family: I've been married 40 yrs to my wife Donna. All five of our children, Richard, Donald, James, Susan, and Kathleen have gone through Lombard's grade school and high school systems. As well as some of our 10 grandchildren.
Occupation: Recently retired from the construction trades for 38 years, and currently a small business owner of a fast/casual pizza and sandwich shop.
Education: Triton College, Assoc. Degree Washburn Trade School, Journeyman Carpenter College of DuPage, Construction Management Program
Civic involvement: Lombard YMCA and Two Rivers Federation As a member of the YMCA, I was directly involved with the formation of the expansion of the parent/child program to get single parents involved in the programs offerings. Also involved in the Two Rivers Federation, which the Y has now adaped as their logo. I was elected State President of the Parent/Child program of the YMCA in 1995, then elected National President in 1996 through the YMCA of the USA. I've also served on the Board of Directors of Lombard YMCA for three years, the last held office was Vice President. I now belong to Kiwains of Lombard for two years. Through its various programs we provide educational help to the children of the world. Also part of the original group that formed the Main Street Program for Lombard through the guidance of then Lt. Governor Quinn's office, which is now our Lombard Town Center.
Elected offices held: Vice President of Lombard YMCA, 1 year term Lombard Village Trustee of District One, 8 years
Have you ever been arrested for or convicted of a crime? If yes, please explain: No
Key Issue 1
A safe and secure environment. Our world is changing and becoming smaller and smaller. We need to realize that although the vast majority of people are law abiding citizens, there are some that wish to take a different path in their lives. Our residents of all ages need to know that they can feel safe in their homes and on the streets. I want to continue to address street lighting and sidewalks where appropriate. Budgets are short, but one needs to think 20 or 30 years forward, if we do nothing now it will still look the same and our security issues could be compromised. If we budget a little bit every year for the program, we would meet our goal (of lighting and sidewalks) in a short amount of time. Lighting can be a deturent to undesirable behavior.
Key Issue 2
As a freshman trustee I asked to serve on the environmental concerns comittee of which I have a strong regard. One of the first questions I asked was why we don't have any energy efficient or alternative fuel vehicles in our fleet. With that was our first purchase of such vehicles. I continued to work with staff to divise ways to lessen our fuel consumption, and to this day we are continuing to use less fuel every month. We are now collaborating with DuPage County Forest Preserve to use natural gas in some of our vehicles. I also initiated the rain barrel program, home composting and hope that we can continue these grass roots programs. With the help of many enviormental groups and volunteers, green initiatives have become a common practice in Lombard. Last year as a village we have converted to using clean energy to power our homes. I will support process that may bring a transfer station to the Lombard area which will continue to bring down fuel costs by having less trucks on the road. This station could also save the Lombard residents of our refuse cost.
Key Issue 3
Continue to find ways to improve our downtown area. In the last two years there have been a lot of new business that have opened in our downtown area. That is a very positive sign that entreprenurswant to invest in downtown Lombard. The new Great Western Trail bridge provides safer access to that area and could be a positive contibution to the reconstruction of the east end of downtown. As well as having a busy Post Office and a great Veteranary Hospital. East St. Charles Rd. is a major entrance into downtown, I will continue to support positive construction to that end of town.
Should the Ken-Loch golf links remain open space or be developed? Why?
If we were to add the developement that is being discussed today we would add a bigger burden onto this village. Our services would need to be increased which we can not afford. Our school population would eventually increase, which would mean an increase in local real estate taxes. Manor Hill is already at capacity and we would have to adjust boundaries again, which was a large point of contention. Being that this is the last large track of beautiful land available to Lombard, I would like to see something developed that would keep it as open space which every resident of Lombard can enjoy.
Village government in Lombard has been sharply divided and the board has been deadlocked on several key issues since Bill Mueller's death. How will you help unify the board so it can better address Lombard's needs?
First and foremost, everyone on the board serves the residents of this village. Our sole purpose is to see that our residents share good and safe streets, our garbage is removed, clean water is delivered, we are free from flooding and can enjoy a good working sewer system. This is what people want. Village trustees need to agree that the people of Lombard come first. Anything else is secondary. State statues provide for the proper direction of operation for any municipality. I feel we need to adhere to those rules of operation.
Given the delicate balance between the need for revenue and over-taxing local businesses, what is your opinion of your community's present level of local sales taxes? Is the tax just right, too low or too high? Explain.
I do not believe that there is a drop in purchasing by shoppers because of retail sales tax. My belief is the general overall economy is so bad, people are being very selective in their purchases, buying what is needed versus what they want. our local sales tax is comparable to other surrouding communities so I think we are pretty much on par.
Talking with your friends and neighbors, what seems to be their biggest public safety concern? Explain the concern as you see it, and discuss how you think it should be addressed.
Continue to fight to correct the issues associated with local flooding in District 1. We have serious issues in this district mainly because excluding the river, we are the lowest area in town. Things are being done at present to alleviate the flooding issue. More needs to be done to rid the trama of our residents that have to suffer when we get huge storms that drop water by the buckets and run right into their basements. Residents take great pride in their homes and this community. I believe the village needs to do all they can to insure our residents live in a clean environment and safe from the problems that flood waters present. We owe the residents that much and I am, and will continue to work to that end.
What's one good idea you have to better the community that no one is talking about yet?
Since the economy is still slow in recovering and very little developement moving forward I would like to see the village of Lombard promote itself more by utilizing some downtown property. Mainly the property at 101 S. Main St. I would like to discuss the possibility of creating an ice rink for skating by flooding an area which is a lot faster than waiting for the lagoon to freeze over. The train station coffee house could set up a refreshment stand at peak times. Our football youth group could also participate in this event and use it as a fund raiser. In the summer we could move the farmers market there as well. Introduce a community garage sale event where Lombard residents can utilize a space to sell unwanted items rather than using their home. We could also use that space to promote a lot of community events and show a lot of visitors and travelers that residents are involved in their community. Funding could come from community and tourism fund which is geared toward this type of event.