Several important issues have been left to the “new village board” in Lombard, which will include three fresh faces — two elected and one appointed.
Two newcomers won seats representing District 1 and District 3 respectively in Tuesday’s election, while the third new person will be appointed to fill District 2 Trustee Keith Giagnorio’s unexpired term once he becomes village president.
Dan Whittington will be sworn in May 2 as District 1 trustee after beating incumbent Greg Gron and challenger Deborah Messineo-Jones. Whittington received 842 votes, while Gron got 449 and Messineo-Jones got 175 in unofficial results from Tuesday’s election.
In District 3, Reid Foltyniewicz will take office May 2 after narrowly winning election over incumbent Zachary Wilson and challenger Muzammil Saeed. Foltyniewicz beat Wilson by 31 votes, 394 to 363, while Saeed got 189 in unofficial vote totals.
As the new board convenes, it will begin addressing topics trustees have chosen to delay.
Should village board committees provide additional oversight of department budgets? How should a successor be chosen in the event the village president becomes permanently unable to serve? What should happen with the former Ken-Loch Golf Links?
These are all topics Whittington and Foltyniewicz will be able to consider, along with sitting trustees Peter Breen and Laura Fitzpatrick; Trustee Bill Ware, who ran unopposed Tuesday for re-election in District 6; and the person appointed to fill Giagnorio’s District 2 seat.
Lombard Village Manager David Hulseberg said Giagnorio will have 60 days after he’s sworn in to make an appointment, and then the board will have 30 days to approve or deny his choice.
Whittington, a 58-year-old director of sales for Illinois Business Systems, and Foltyniewicz, a 29-year-old police officer for the village of Oak Brook, both said they look forward to establishing good relationships with other trustees so the board can move forward with less division than it has experienced since the death last August of longtime Village President William J. “Bill” Mueller.
“We want to get off to a good start,” Whittington said, adding residents are tired of all the fighting. “It stalls good work and good government.”
Both newly elected trustees also say they can offer compromises on some issues that have deadlocked the current board, including Breen’s proposal that each of the six village board committees provide year-round oversight of the budget of one department. Breen, Fitzpatrick and Wilson have supported the idea, while Giagnorio and Gron have opposed it, calling it “micromanaging.” Ware said the issue was best left to the new board.
“I’m probably in between the two sides,” Foltyniewicz said. “I’d like to see the middle ground there. I don’t want to micromanage, but at the same time, our job is to look at the budget.”Copyright © 2014 Paddock Publications, Inc. All rights reserved.