Mark Davoust: 2022 candidate for Kane County Board District 14


Party: Republican

Office sought: Kane County Board District 14

City: St. Charles

Age: 63

Occupation: President of family-owned manufacturing business

Previous offices held: Kane County Board member since 2004, KC Forest Preserve Commissioner


Q: Do you support an increase in the countywide retail sales tax to help pay for expenses related to the SAFE-T legislation? Yes/No? If yes, which SAFE T-related expenses, specifically, should be covered with the additional tax? If no, how do you suggest paying for the increased expenses related to the SAFE-T legislation?

A: No, this is not the time to raise taxes. Increasing the burden on our taxpaying community is not the answer. We should budget for what we can afford within our current means. I don't believe we have seen the final version of the SAFE-T Act yet.

Q: What should be done to retain county staff? If you propose increases in salaries or benefits, how should those added costs be covered?

A: By maintaining a positive workplace environment and providing a very stable employment situation we will attract quality people to work for the county. Efficiencies within each department and careful planning will allow for cost of living and merit increases to keep these employees.

Q: Do you believe the county auditor should be an elected or appointed position? Why? Are there any other countywide offices that are currently elected positions that you believe should be appointed instead? If so, please explain.

A: Let democracy function as it should and let the voters decide. When you have a position that has this level of supervisory and investigative responsibilities. it is imperative that we do our best to avoid injecting bias.

I still believe we should look at the possibility of combining the Recorder's Office with the Office of the County Clerk to streamline government operations.

Q: The county has seen an increase in truck traffic. How do you propose to address the infrastructure needs that come with this increase in traffic? Do you support a moratorium on warehouse developments in unincorporated areas of the county? Yes/No? Please explain.

A: Our development and transportation departments have always been very proactive and forward thinking. For example, consider the 2020 and 2040 plans. These plans are models for counties throughout the country. By implementing strategies of smart growth, you collect sufficiently from development projects to provide the infrastructure that will be required.

Q: What direction do you think the county should move as it relates to its aging buildings? Build new or rehab existing buildings? Why and how would you propose the county pay for any new buildings or improvements?

A: I believe the direction is clear. We should move to consolidate most county functions at the Judicial Center campus. I advocated not only for the multi use facility building but to engage in further expansion on that campus while financial markets (historic low rates) were favorable. I believe that with a combination of relief funds, grants, and our bonding capacity we could have moved forward without any tax increase.

Q: How do you think the county should spend the remaining COVID-19 relief funds?

A: There are literally hundreds of entities that have requested use of the COVID-19 relief funds.

We must carefully prioritize and select from these diverse interests. We should be very careful about how we spend "one time money." We should look first to what capital expenses can be addressed within the framework of current and foreseeable needs. Expanding too quickly or creating new positions may leave us with unsustainable expenses which will then become a taxing issue.

Q: The COVID pandemic also put a spotlight on the need for mental health services. What role should the county play in this?

A: We will continue to be a leader in matters of mental health. The work of our judicial, public safety, and health departments continually keep a focus on the issue of mental health.

We have addressed the most visible mental health programs while also focusing on programs that benefit the community. Examples of these programs are raising awareness of employment opportunities for adults on the autism spectrum and exploring the creation of a neutral exchange site for children in divorcing or contentious family situations.

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