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Article posted: 3/29/2013 5:41 PM

Carpenterville candidates talk cost savings

By Lenore T. Adkins

When it comes to finding ways to save money in Carpentersville, the five people running for three, 4-year-terms on the village board have different ideas on what needs to be done.

Trustee Pat Schultz, an accounts receivable and billing coordinator who is running for her second term in office, suggested that the fire department look into whether it can use some of the same vendors as the Elgin Fire Department.

If it can, it should piggyback with Elgin to save money on equipment.

"Today we're down to the penny," Schultz said.

Challenger Virginia "Ginger" Stephens, an executive administrative assistant, suggested the department heads consider delaying certain purchases from year to year.

Challenger Bryan Moore, an assistant quality manager, said officials should spend more time increasing economic development in the village to raise money, instead of finding ways to cut what's in the budget.

While he's excited about Walmart coming to Carpentersville, he would like to see smaller businesses come to town, as well as a Harley-Davidson dealership

"We need to add money to the budget, not take it away," Moore said.

Trustee Kevin Rehberg, an audit manager, was appointed to the board seat left vacant by former Trustee Doug Marks in October, and is now running for a full term.

Rehberg would like to see Carpentersville consolidate services with other villages to save money for the taxpayers.

Discussions were held two years ago regarding West Dundee, East Dundee and Sleepy Hollow consolidating police services, but Carpentersville was not part of those proceedings.

"It's been a tough sell with other municipalities, but we need to look at more than just police and fire," Rehberg said, adding that code enforcement and public works should also be considered. "I think we just need to present to the residents what the costs are currently, versus what the costs would be if we consolidated."

If the board decides this is the best direction for the village, trustees should put the question to the voters as a referendum, Rehberg said.

Rehberg would also like to revisit the water rate hikes the board approved two years ago. Trustees Paul Humpfer, Schultz and then-trustee Marks tried to get the board to repeal the increases, but in the end, the board only gave businesses a reprieve from paying a $135 availability fee.

Rehberg would like to try his hand at easing the burden on residents.

"It was too high of an increase and too quickly," Rehberg said. "We can re-examine a lot of that cost and, hopefully, we can knock that down for the residents."

Candidate Kent Baldwin, who ran for office in 2011 and in 2009, says the village could save time and money if it stopped sending out past-due notices that urge people to pay their water bill before the village turns it off.

"That's a waste of money," Baldwin said.

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