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posted: 3/18/2013 5:00 AM

Endorsements: Nolan, Hughes, Reinke for Bartlett village board

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Former village president Mike Kelly resigned from office in 2011, but his presence looms large in the 2013 election. The circumstances leading up to his resignation have caused much bitterness. Candidates campaigning door to door are met by residents demanding to know which "side" they are on. Emotions are running deep, but the six candidates -- incumbent Dennis Nolan and newcomers Michael Camerer, Vincent Carbonaro, Angelina Filippo, Michelle Hughes and Aaron Reinke -- running for three seats on the Bartlett village board all say they want to return civility to local politics. Each of them has demonstrated a true commitment to Bartlett, and we take them at their word. Still, it could take several election cycles before the village's political leadership can move past the unpleasantness. A good start would be re-electing Nolan to the village board, and electing Hughes and Reinke as well. Not because they are all on the same "side" -- they aren't. Hughes has ties to Mike Kelly's political opposition. Reinke is running with a group of candidates who are angry over the attacks on Kelly. And Nolan, as a trustee for more than 18 years, has roots in the status quo. We like Nolan's longevity and his leadership. He does his homework and contributes thoughtfully at meetings. Hughes, a financial adviser, is passionate about bringing life back into Bartlett's once-thriving downtown. Reinke, a lawyer, says the village can be friendlier to business without giving away the store. Mostly, though, we believe these three will devote themselves to improving an underperforming downtown, encouraging growth at Brewster Creek, looking at the budget line by line and seeing if there isn't a way to make the utility tax history -- in other words, the business of the people.

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