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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.
Office sought: Batavia City Council Ward 6 (4-year Term)
Family: Married to Julie Cerone. 3 children, 14, 12, 11
Occupation: 1. Trader, Chicago Mercantile Exchange 2. Marketing Consultant
Education: MBA, DePaul University, 1996 BS in Marketing, Northern Illinois University, 1988
Civic involvement: Coaching: Batavia Youth Football, Batavia Youth Baseball, Batavia Park District, BANA Football
Elected offices held: Candidate did not respond.
Have you ever been arrested for or convicted of a crime? If yes, please explain: No
Key Issue 1
Key Issue 2
Fiscal responsibility and transparency
Key Issue 3
Real estate taxes and property values
Does the city council spend the right amount ot time and attention on downtown issues? Explain.
The council has invested a sufficient amount of time and money into downtown Batavia. However, it has ignored a couple of key components of growth: Return on investment and risk management. Given the focus and resources directed towards our downtown, we should have seen a greater impact and less down-side risk.
How should money collected in the city's tax increment financing districts be spent? Is it time to end the TIFs?
TIFs should be spent very carefully. They do not come for free, and are very dangerous, especially in an environment of lower property values. They are basically loans, and should be invested wisely (good risk/reward with high return potential and limited downside risk).
What is your view of the city's business incentive programs?
We badly need to attract new businesses to Batavia, and incentives are one way to do it. However, like TIF money (and spending of any public money), incentive programs need careful scrutiny to make sure the money is being used wisely. We should not forget that making Batavia an easier, less expensive place to do business not only attracts business but also does not require spending tax dollars. If tax money is spent, it must provide a return. And protecting our taxpayers form risk is also very important.
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.
In light of recent national events, our children's safety is a major concern. In talking with people, there are very high confidence and satisfaction levels with our Police and Fire Departments. But how can you completely protect them? That is very discerning.
What's one good idea you have to better the community that no one is talking about yet?
Everyone seems to be talking about the lack of businesses downtown, real estate taxes, the crippling coal energy investment, and expensive projects. Yet, a concern that is not getting much attention is the lack of two-way communication in our community. Our community is filled with extremely bright, intelligent, and creative people with great ideas. I plan on opening the communication more and getting more input from the actual taxpayers.