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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: Kaneville Township Supervisor (4-year Term)
Family: Married, three children, five grand children.
Occupation: Electrical Contractor and Township Supervisor
Education: High School
Civic involvement: Volunteer Firefighter/ EMT. Member Country Evangelical Covenant Church in Campton Hills.
Elected offices held: Kaneville Township Board as Trustee and later appointed to Township Supervisor, Kaneville Fire Protection District Board serving as Trustee, Secretary/Treasurer and President. Chairman of the Country Evangelical Covenant Church.
Have you ever been arrested for or convicted of a crime? If yes, please explain: Arrested. Dismissed at arraignment.
Key Issue 1
Since my appointment as Township Supervisor the Board and I have gone to great strides to "tighten our belt" finacially. We (Township Board) have saved several thousand dollars a year by changing insurance carriers and after five years the Township will begin receiving a dividend from that insurance carrier. We have categorized financial record keeping to help us keep our costs under control! Most importantly Kaneville Township has zero debt and my goal is to keep it that way and to serve the residents of Kaneville Township to the best of my ability. Example: If there is no one at the Township Office to answer the phone someone calls they are directed to leave a message or they are given my personal cell phone number to call if they need immediate assistance. That is the level of service I believe local government should provide!
Key Issue 2
When I was appointed to the office of Supervisor I found that the Township had been levying Tax monies for a cemetery in Kaneville Township that was not under Township Control. After researching the issue I discovered that this practice had been going on since 1959. Whether this practice was legal at the time is debatable but laws have changed and it is not legal now. As soon as someone mentioned that the practice may be a misappropreation of funds (Township Supervisors are responsible for all monies that come into the township)I endeavored to resolve the situation and thanks to the current Kaneville Cemetery Board President, Steve Gramley that transition is 99% complete.
Key Issue 3
Candidate did not respond.
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) Keep Kaneville Township fiscally sound. The out going Board chose not to raise any compensation levels for Supervisor, Clerk or Trustees for the next term. 2) Complete the transition of Cemeteries to Kaneville Township. 3) Kaneville Township has a Community Center of which the original building is 86 years old and it is operated without using tax money. The Community Center houses several entities; They are: Kaneville Township Offices, Village of Kaneville Offices, US Post Office, Kaneville Public Library, Kaneville Child Care Center, Kaneville Historical Society, Old Second Bank, Food for Thought Catering, and Record Information Services. Plus there is a gymnasium, available for rent. It is the rent revenues that support the Community Center. To keep operating costs down at the Community Center is always a high priority. The only way to control them is with good management.
In the 21st Century, with municipalities gobbling up vacant land, why are townships needed? Should they be serving a new role? If so, what?
As far as a need for Township Government; It is the only form of government that is in folks backyards. It is truely of the people, by the people, for the people. Townships are also very cost effective. I would venture to say that the vast majority of townships in Illinois are debt free. If township government was abolished in Kane County alone it would double the number of "highway miles" maintained by the County. This coupled with the fact that all of the Kane County Dept of Transporatiion workers are members of the Teamsters Union would probably double or triple the cost of maintaining what are now township roads. The Kane County Supervisor of assessments has said he would have to hire all of the existing township assessors because there is not enough staff at the county level to handle the increased work load if township govrnment went away. Hense, no savings to the taxpayers. The state and federal governments should model their spending habits after township government. Don't spend it if you don't have it! Could townships take on additional tasks. I think so. For example, library districts, especially the more rural distrcts, could come under the mantle of township government. Concerning encroachment issues. The village of Kaneville was founded to keep Elburn and/or Sugar Grove from incorporationg Kaneville into one of their villages.
What should be the primary responsibility of township government?
Township government is mandated by statute to provide maintenance of township roads, assess property in the township and provide general assisstance to it's residents. Larger towships have the ability to provide other services to it's residents from youth programs to senior programs and everything in between. Kaneville is an very small township but we do provide two very nice baseball fields to support "Kaneville Baseball" for youth leagues in the summer. The leagues are organized by voluteers who also maintain them. Another savings to taxpayers.
In these hard economic times, can you identify some township expenses/programs that could be trimmed or eliminated to reduce the tax burden?
Kanevlle Township runs a pretty tight ship and to my knowledge the only referendum we have ever run was several years ago for roads and bridges and with the skyrocketing cost of asphalt that revenue doesn't go as far as it used to.
What specific background or experience do you bring that makes you the best qualified candidate to serve as an elected official in the township?
My managerial experience started as a Petty Officer in the United States Navy. Many years later I worked my way up the ranks to the position of Vice President of Operations of a trucking company. My responsblities were for day to day operations, Safety Dept, Dispatch and Maintenance Dept. with 50-60 employees under my supervision. I have been self-employed for the last ten years.