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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.
Office sought: Lombard Village President (4-year Term)
Family: Keith was raised by loving parents in Villa Park. He has been married to his beautiful wife Angela for 25 years. Together they have two children, Ashley and Joseph and a son-in-law Dan.
Occupation: Keith has been the proud owner/operator of Gianorio's Pizza since 1985. Originally located in Glendale Heights, Keith moved his business to the Lilac Village 19 years ago and has been serving pizza and pasta to friends and neighbors ever since.
Education: Willowbrook High School: graduate 1980 Elmhurst College: Bachelor of Arts in both Sociology and Psychology, graduate 1984
Civic involvement: Both personally and through his business, Keith has been an active member of the Lombard community for many years. Keith and his family are parishioners at Sacred Heart Church. Currently, he is a member of The Lombard Chamber of Commerce, The Lombard Historical Society and School District 87's Superintendent's Advisory Council. In the past, Keith has also served as a member of the Lombard Lions Club and the Committee to Restore the Lombard Cemetery. As a local business owner, Keith is a recognized supporter of the Lombard Baseball League, the Tri-Town YMCA and the Glenbard East Booster Club.
Elected offices held: ?Lombard Park District Board of Commissioners 2003-2010 (Board Vice President 2007-2009, Board President 2009-2010)Village of Lombard Board of Trustees (District 2) 2010-PresentCurrent Village of Lombard Community Relations Committee ChairCurrent Village of Lombard Economic and Community Development Committee Co-ChairFormer Village of Lombard Transportation & Safety Committee Chair
Have you ever been arrested for or convicted of a crime? If yes, please explain: No
Key Issue 1
Residents want the Board's stability restored and every member of the Board needs to work hard to rebuild Lombardians' trust and confidence. My top priority as Village President is to do everything possible to make that happen. I intend to instill a "Lombard First" philosophy and I believe we can accomplish that through improved, open dialogue between all trustees.
Key Issue 2
Village finances will continue to command much of our attention in the near future. Upholding a balanced budget and retaining current fund balances are the main challenges that we will address by continuing 100% transparency of all facets of the budget process.
Key Issue 3
Full utilization of our great resources to bring more business to Lombard. We can further the successes of Lombard Town Centre by helping to promote a strong downtown. In addition, we can feature many of our Village's attributes in an innovative marketing plan to attract new business. Our strong relationship with The Lombard Chamber of Commerce will be a key in working closely and cooperatively with new businesses to ensure a smooth development process. Part of the plan will be an aggressive pursuit of large retailers to fill current vacancies within the village (e.g. Kmart).
Should the Ken-Loch golf links remain open space or be developed? Why?
Ken-Loch should absolutely remain open space. I spent seven years on the Lombard Park District Board and I know firsthand the importance of open space to our community. Ken-Loch is one of the largest privately owned non developed parcels left in DuPage County. Development of this space will permanently alter what could potentially be a special part of our village. Development would drastically change the surrounding established neighborhoods. Home owners and residents in the area will be forced to adjust to a completely different setting for themselves and their families. Further, with flooding already being an issue in that area, full development would cause even more flood related problems for the village. Lombardians are proud of their parks and we cherish our open space. Rarely if ever, do you see developed land turned back into open space and it would be a shame to lose this beautiful piece of land with so much potential.
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?
Without a doubt, our current village board has seen some disagreements in the past few months; although I would think that all boards will experience a difference of opinions from time to time. The death of President Mueller left the Board and Village faced with a very difficult and unique situation. As a board, we were tasked with moving forward and making decisions in an emotionally charged environment. Being a board member at this time was a trying yet valuable experience as it has given me a better understanding of the importance of a board that works cooperatively. We did struggle through this time, however with the best interest of the village in mind; I knew a compromise was imperative. I know there is still work to be done in bringing this board back together, and it would be the first thing I address as Village President. I would strongly promote more open dialogue between trustees not only during meetings, but before and after as well. Further, I would implement one on one meetings between myself and each trustee to facilitate more trust and open communication. Most importantly, I would remind all board members that we are here to serve our residents with pride and make decisions with one goal in mind: to do what is best for Lombard.
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.
As a small business owner for the past 28 years I am fully aware of the impact local sales taxes can make. Local sales taxes can mean the difference between purchasing a product from one county to another (Cook vs. DuPage) or one village to another. I believe that local sales taxes should be fair across the board and should never become a burden to our residents. That being said, I feel that presently our local sales taxes are at a manageable level.
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.
The biggest public safety concern being brought to my attention is the potential privatization of our vital public services (Police, Fire, Public Works). Lombardians have always counted on professional, highly trained and dedicated village employees. The sense of comfort and security provided by our outstanding public service departments is, in my opinion, invaluable. As I?ve discussed this issue with residents the response has been overwhelmingly that we keep our fire, police and public works highly trained, properly equipped and fully staffed. I am strongly committed to supporting the Police, Fire and Public Works departments in their continued efforts to keep Lombard a safe and happy place to live and work.
What's one good idea you have to better the community that no one is talking about yet?
While examining the overall operations of the village, it is apparent to me that some of our facilities are growing older and are not able to handle the volume of activity at their present site. For example, our police department has outgrown its current space. My idea would be to move the department to the 101 S. Main St. site (previously the DuPage Theater). The proposal would also include a community conference room for civic meetings and other community functions. While providing a more visible police presence and modern facility, it would also increase foot traffic in the downtown area. In doing this, the current village campus could be modified to allow for the expansion of public works and/or the village hall.