Justin Franzke: 2022 candidate for McHenry County Board District 5


Party: Republican

City: McHenry

Age: 47

Occupation: Realtor, Ride.House brokered by eXp Realty

Previous offices held: Nunda Township Trustee and Precinct Committeeman


Q. Why are you running for this office, whether for reelection or election for the first time? Is there a particular issue that motivates you?

A. I am running for election to McHenry County Board in District 5. I was motivated by the recent remapping of the board districts and uncertainty as to who would run. I have lived in a half a dozen homes in the new District 5, when I saw the map at a Precinct Committee meeting it was a sign to take action.

Q. If you are an incumbent, describe your main contributions. Tell us of any important initiatives you've led. If you are a challenger, what would you bring to the board and what would your priority be?

A. As a contractor and Realtor, I have always had the responsibility to earn and control my own destiny. We live in a bedroom community with some of the highest property taxes anywhere, McHenry is tied for the second highest county in the second-highest state. I want to make sure we are getting what we pay for.

Q. Describe your position regarding the balance between county spending and revenues as it exists today, then describe the chief threats you see looming and how the county should deal with them.

A. The budget is supposed to balance, $208,433,408 in and out for 2020-2021. Opportunities to improve it are then on the spending side, and yet they are twofold. You elect people to office who can budget to spend more or less, can they also get more or less for any amount spent? The biggest threat I have seen is people who push to save in one area and not look at the big picture cost. We must look at productivity to understand the value, neither cheapest nor most expensive is always best.

Q. How do you rate the county government on transparency and the public's access to records? If it's adequate, explain why. If you think improvements are needed, delineate them. A. Government transparency is a mixed bag. All the information is there and I believe most people lack the desire or know how to look for it. When we don't look directly for ourselves, everything we see is through the lens of the media or the person who told us.

Q. What, if anything, should be done to improve automation and customer service in county offices? What steps should be taken to make that happen?

A. I love automation when it works and despise it when it doesn't, there should be a blend. Simple automated systems for those who can use them and some of the best staff available when that is what is needed.

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