Jim McCarthy: Candidate Profile
Bartlett Fire Board (6-year Term)
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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: Bartlett Fire Board (6-year Term)
Family: Married, 3 children, one grandchild
Occupation: Institutional Investment Advisor
Education: Masters of Business Administration, NIU, 1981
Civic involvement: Neighbors for Neighbors, (a Bartlett based service club.) Stewardship Committee and Mission Core Team at Resurrection Catholic Church.
Elected offices held: Bartlett Fire Protection District Trustee (2007 - 2013)
Have you ever been arrested for or convicted of a crime? If yes, please explain: No
Key Issue 1
Keep taxes low. The District's tax rate is the 3rd lowest of the 16 surrounding fire protection districts. My goal is to further expand the cost containment efforts we have employed to date. It is my responsibility as a trustee to keep the District's expenses in check while still providing the necessary funding for our personnel to provide the most professional emergency medical service and fire suppression.
Key Issue 2
Expand the long-term financial stability of the District. The board has established a viable capital replacement fund that looks forward 10 years. This is to insure the District can replace equipment as planned and/or as necessary. While the District is fiscally sound today, simply maintaining the status quo is not a good business model.
Key Issue 3
Preserve the financial transparency that this Board of Trustees has established. Being accountable to the residents of the District is our fiduciary responsibility. The Bartlett Fire Protection District is 1 of only 3 Fire Districts in the state, (837 Districts in total), that has earned the GFOA award for transparency in financial reporting.
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) Scrutinize all expenditures. On-going cost control is one of the primary methods to long-term financial stability. This is achieved by regular reviews of expenses and looking at alternate resources for products and services. 2) Pursue a broader range of grant applications. Over the past 6 years we have received approximately $1.5 million in grant money from corporations and from government. These are dollars that we, as taxpayers, did not have to expend. 3) Continue to expand Public Education within the Fire District. We have begun with programs such as meetings with Homeowners Assn.'s, social media, and an expanded website. Growth in this area will make for a safer community.
How should the fire protection district improve its services?
Like any professional service provider, we recognize that we can always be better. We look to improve our services through regular training, continuing education, and benchmarking our performance against industry standards. Improving the District is something that is on-going every day.
Are you satisfied with the district's response times? If yes, please explain; if no, please offer your suggestions on how to improve.
Yes, because we have improved our emergency response times to the District as a whole in the past 6 years. However, while our times meet the national standards for response times, we cannot be satisfied. Our personnel are always looking for operational changes that will improve our ability to best serve our residents.
What specific background or experience do you bring that makes you the best qualified candidate to serve on the fire district board?
My professional business experience coupled with my six years as a Trustee, provide me with the tools to continue to move this District forward. Employing best business practices has proven to be equally effective in a taxing body as in any business. The District is more fiscally sound, financially viable, better trained and more professional than it was six years ago. The decisions I have made have certainly helped, but I am only one member of the Board of Trustees and as such cannot take any individual credit. From a personal perspective, being able to serve the residents has been an honor and a privilege. It is a duty and responsibility that I take very seriously, but never for granted.
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Candidate did not respond.
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