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updated: 2/22/2013 6:01 PM

Robert Gilliam: Candidate Profile

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



City: Elgin


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

Age: 67

Family: Married, two children, one grandson

Occupation: Retired educator

Education: B.S. in Education M.S. in Guidance & Counseling Administrative certificate

Civic involvement: Elgin City Council Elgin Housing Authority Kane County Home Commission

Elected offices held: City Council

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

Candidate's Key Issues

Key Issue 1

Public safety. The city council made critical budgetary decisions that preserved these most important services while also ensuring the city's financial stability for years to come.

Key Issue 2

Economic development. The city council has been successful in attracting new companies to the community while encouraging existing businesses to expand. However, we must continue with these efforts to create jobs for our residents.

Key Issue 3

Neighborhoods. We are all aware of the recession's impact on the housing market. For this reason we must continue to invest in our infrastructure such as streets and sidewalks. We must continue with our efforts in code enforcement to protect our homeowners' investment.

Questions & Answers

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

No. Upon further review of this matter I believe that the city must support not only the Grand Victoria Casino but also small businesses and social clubs.

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

I am fully supportive of the current feasibility analysis being undertaken. Until this is completed it is impossible for me, or any other responsible candidate to have a position. This decision must be based upon facts not conjecture.

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?

Not only do I support the Eastside Recreation Center I have been a long time advocate for this facility. I believe In providing recreational opportunities for the entire community, especially for our neighbors who need it the most. I believe that a city of over 108,000 residents has service demands that exceed the capacity currently offered by The Centre alone. Furthermore, while I've heard this idea, I have not been presented with any facts or analysis that would suggest it is realistic.

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

The city council has lowered our property tax levy three consecutive years. This is what the public has asked for and we delivered. The refuse fee was implemented as an alternative to laying off public safety personnel. While not an easy choice it was the right one for our community.

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?

In the past I have been a strong supporter of the ESO. My continued support will depend on a plan by ESO to resolve their outstanding debt to the city and by a clear and demonstrated need for taxpayer assistance. The city staff is currently reviewing ESO's request, and I look forward to those discussioins.