John Strauss: Candidate Profile
Campton Hills Village 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.
City: Campton Hills
Website: Candidate did not respond.
Office sought: Campton Hills Village Board (4-year Terms)
Family: Married, Two sons, Two daughters-in-law, Five grandchildren
Occupation: Retired electronics engineer and private sector business leader
Education: Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering from the University of Wisconsin (Madison) and an Executive MBA from Northwestern University
Civic involvement: A member of the pre-incorporation effort in Campton Hills. Former member of the Finance Committee in Campton Hills. Member of the board of our HOA for many years.
Elected offices held: Twice Elected Trustee - Village of Campton Hills, IL
Have you ever been arrested for or convicted of a crime? If yes, please explain: NO
Key Issue 1
Keep KIVA out of the Glenwood property.
Key Issue 2
The village needs to hire a professional village administrator.
Key Issue 3
Continue to operate the village in a financially responsible manner.
What is your position on the Kiva Recovery Center? If you oppose it, what alternatives do you have for the former Glenwood site? Do you believe trustees should have put a referendum question about the center on the April ballot? Why or why not?
KIVA: The Campton Hills Village Board voted no on the question of annexation. Many citizens viewed this as a win for the village but for those, who don't want KIVA in the facility, the jury is still out. If the county approves KIVA, citizens will have to face this reality without any ability of the village to help them in any serious way. I think this would be a tragic outcome. I have met with the leader of the opposition and will do what I can to keep KIVA out of the Glenwood facility. If KIVA is kept out of this facility, the door will be open for another enterprise, which may be interested in an annexation agreement, which would benefit village residences and be willing to share financial rewards with the village similar to those negotiated during the KIVA hearings. Referendum: Governments should present a cooperative face to any enterprise, which wishes to become annexed. Indeed timely decisions on such matters are important. In the USA our representative form of government provides a platform for discussion and negotiation on complicated matters by a few elected representatives. It is the responsibility of the board of trustees to debate, negotiate and act quickly and responsibly. In point of fact, this is exactly what happened.
How should the village implement its master plan going forward? Do you see it as a rigid guideline for future growth or a document that can change over time? Please explain.
I spent my career in the private sector. All "Master Plans" are really "Serious Guidelines." By this I mean that they should not to be changed willy nilly. Environmental issues such as water recharge areas, parks, preserves, lighting, etc. should be especially difficult to change. I think we all have to realize that no one alive today knows what the future needs of residents will be, so flexibility is appropriate.
What do you believe are the village's three most pressing issues?
1.) In spite of the fact that the KIVA hearing process worked, some damage to the reputation of the village government has occurred. I think that had the trustees been allowed to engage the public during the "Public Testimony" process much of this could have been mitigated. Improved communication with the public is an on-going process. 2.) The village needs to hire a professional administrator 3.) The village has acted with a great deal of financial responsibility and must continue to do so. Given the possibility that the State of Illinois may change its revenue sharing equation, the village should look for another revenue source to avoid the possibility of having to make the choice between decreased services or taxing residences.
Last year, the village celebrated its 5th birthday. Please share your vision for the village on its 10th anniversary of incorporation.
Citizens in this area do not want to be taxed. With this constraint, I do not see any major changes in the size of the police or administration staffs. The population may increase slightly but not enough to affect the "Country Feel" of the area.
Talking with your friends and neighbors, what seems to be their biggest public safety concern? Explain the concern as you see it, and discuss how you think it should be addressed.
Most citizens are happy and satisfied with the police presence in the village. The village is, in fact, pretty much a crime free zone relative to other areas. The root causes of crime, which are social and economic in nature, are not something, which a small village can do much about but the police department will continue to maintain a presence at our local grade schools. Respect for others, respect for property, respect for law and respect for authority are the responsibility of our culture. Indeed, we all know that the ambiance of family life, schools and other institutions, public and private, affect public safety the most. Sadly, our most violent crime, domestic abuse, is often precipitated by drugs or alcohol consumption. Generally speaking, police departments show up after the fact, not before.
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