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updated: 2/22/2013 6:01 PM

Grace Richard: Candidate Profile

Elgin City Council (4-year Terms)

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  • Grace Richard, running for Elgin City Council (4-year Terms)

      Grace Richard, running for Elgin City Council (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: Elgin

Website: Candidate did not respond.

Office sought: Elgin City Council (4-year Terms)

Age: 62

Family: One grown son Age 27 living in San Diego, and two adorable rescue cats running the household.

Occupation: Business Development Director at HFN in Oak Brook IL

Education: Bachelor of Science Arizona State University

Civic involvement: Downtown Neighborhood Association Board Member Izaak Walton League Volunteer July 4th Parade

Elected offices held: Candidate did not respond.

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

Candidate's Key Issues

Key Issue 1

Codes

Key Issue 2

Core Services

Key Issue 3

Taxes

Questions & Answers

Should the city continue its opposition to allowing video gambling outside the grand Victoria?

Apparently this question was formulated prior to the current city reversal on this issue.

What is your position on the city's plans to to implement a stormwater utility fee in 2014?

The stormwater infrastructure improvement is necessary to comply with the federal Clean Water Act. How to pay for it is open for debate. I have read the study entitled 'the Value of Stormwater Utilities for Local Governments in the Chicago Region?, and their approach, I believe, makes sense. It does appear from the comments published in the budget for 2013 that this approach is similar to the one being considered by the council.

Do you support the city funding the $900,000 overhaul of the Eastside Recreation Center? What do you think of closing Eastside and consolidating operations with The Centre of Elgin?

I believe that needs to be considered, if it has not already been done. However, Elgin is a large city and from what I have read, this facility fills a need. I do think that we need to look at the possibility and also of utilizing The Center to a greater degree. The Center constitutes 44% of the Recreation budget and, some believe it is underutilized. (I could find no statistics for utilization vs. capacity, although they probably exist) Additionally, I believe Elgin should seek any available state and federal grant money that may be available for the project, prior to allocation of funds.

What is your view on the city's recent property tax levying history and imposition of other charges, such as the refuse fee?

I am supportive of the City's efforts to reduce its dependence on property taxes. I believe moving the refuse fee to a different billing source was poorly communicated to the public. Trash needs to be picked up and paid for. I would have liked have seen it taken a step further and had Elgin consider the system used in other communities where users pay (by sticker) by the container. This would allow those who produce less trash (seniors and fewer member households) to be more equitably charged for the waste they produce. Also under this system, re-cycle collection is free thus further encouraging re-cycling.

The Elgin Symphony Orchestra wants the city to resume its yearly disbursement of Riverboat funds to the ESO. Do you support this? Why or why not?

I believe the arts are important to the quality of life in any city. Elgin has a considerable asset in the Symphony. It is unfortunate that there appears to have been some miss-management and complacency in their operations. Their request for $150,000 annually for 3 years seems like a reasonable sum, given they have reduced their overhead considerably and appear to be making strides to rectify the problems.

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