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updated: 2/22/2013 6:20 PM

Kenneth Echtenacher: Candidate Profile

Warren Township Board (4-year Terms) (Independent)

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  • Kenneth Echtenacher, running for Warren Township Board (4-year Terms)

      Kenneth Echtenacher, running for Warren Township Board (4-year Terms)

 

 

 

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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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BioKey IssuesQ&A

 

Bio

City: Gurnee

Website: Candidate did not respond.

Office sought: Warren Township Board (4-year Terms)

Age: 59

Family: Moved to Wildwood in 1955, grew up on Greentree Road, married in 1974 and moved to Gurnee where we raised five children, we have 2 grandchildren

Occupation: Screenprinter

Education: Graduate of Warren Township High School

Civic involvement: Gurnee Exchange Club - not an active member, however I do participate in their Annual Ribfest with time and donations, Warren Township Girl's Softball - Past Board Member, Warren Township Boys Football - Past Board Member, Warren Township High School Athletic Booster - Past Member, Bertrand Lanes - past bowling instructor for youth leagues

Elected offices held: Warren Township Trustee, 1999-present

Have you ever been arrested for or convicted of a crime? If yes, please explain: No

Candidate's Key Issues

Key Issue 1

Continuing to provide quality services to the residents of Warren Township without raising tax rates or unnecessary duplication of services.

Key Issue 2

Due to the elimination of funding at the county/state level for mental health services we have been inundated with requests for counseling. In response to community needs we have expanded our Youth and Family Services Department programming to include drug and alcohol assessment as well as bi-lingual counseling. I anticipate that need to become greater still as the economy continues to stagnate.

Key Issue 3

The Warren Town Board continues to partner with other units of government to share equipment and expertise to keep costs down. We partner with 3 park districts to provide recreational services to our disabled populace aged 3 to 65 with a specialty in autism. Without Warren Townships direct participation these services would not be an option for the community.

Questions & Answers

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.

Be fiscally responsible with our constituents tax dollars by maintaining a balanced budget and not overspending. Continue to provide quality programs and beneficial services for our seniors, youth and families by addressing the needs of our community that are not being met by their local governments and the unincorporated areas of the township. Maintain an amazing facility for all our constituents to enjoy.

In the 21st Century, with municipalities gobbling up vacant land, why are townships needed? Should they be serving a new role? If so, what?

Warren Township has 35% or more of unincorporated land. Much of this area is subdivisions that will remain unincorporated. Without township government over 65,000 residents will not receive services that we and we alone offer. It is incumbent for townships to provide the biggest value to its taxpayer and I believe we do that in Warren Township.

What should be the primary responsibility of township government?

The statutes provide for townships to offer any array of services. The board should provides services that are salient to todays needs. That is why Warren Township operates a senior center, teen centers, special recreation, and active recreation for it's residents.

In these hard economic times, can you identify some township expenses/programs that could be trimmed or eliminated to reduce the tax burden?

I believe we provide numerous, necessary services for our constituents. We do this while maintaining a balanced budget and not overspending. This helps to keep our tax levy low. Warren Township froze salaries in 2009 and again for 2013. We have reduced staffing in some departments and shifted it to our counseling department. Warren township shifted to a health re-imbursement acct. as well as raised deductables to reduce health care costs. We have switched to part-time staff where ever possible to eliminate benefits.

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 lived within the Warren Township area my entire life. I truly care about the people and want to continue to make this area a great place to live and raise a family. I also own a small business and understand the importance of stretching every dollar and maintaining a budget.

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