Two seek GOP nod for District 14 seat on the Kane County Board

Incumbent Mark Davoust is facing a challenge from Jonathan Gripe in the race to decide the Republican nominee for the District 14 seat on the Kane County Board.

Davoust, a Republican from St. Charles, is seeking his sixth term on the county board. He has served as chairman and vice chairman of several committees. He is the president of a manufacturing company in Batavia.

“As a small-business owner, I bring those things with me to the board to have a perspective of watching every penny, making sensible choices,” Davoust said.

Gripe is newly retired as a financial adviser who says he can devote a lot of time to the county board. The St. Charles resident serves on several nonprofit boards, including Fox Valley Hands of Hope, Anderson Humane, St. Charles Kiwanis and Lazarus House.

Gripe said one thing he can do is encourage better behavior on the county board.

“I know how passionate people can be. The boards I sit on are not always peaches and cream,” Gripe said. “I can be the person to promote conversation, even with people you disagree with. ... Could the Republican Party do better? And I think the answer is yes.”

Gripe’s issues include reducing taxes and cutting spending.

Davoust said he’s been part of holding the line on taxes for years, including most recently.

“I did not believe we should be taking any increase in the property tax levy other than new growth,” Davoust said. “Ultimately, eight Republicans convinced enough Democrats to say no to the chairman, and we prevailed. ... I helped lead the effort to say no. ... I helped vote that down. It was a group effort.”

Still, Gripe said excessive spending on the board is a problem for both Democrats and Republicans.

“A lot of federal money was poured into the county, and if we are acting like this spigot turns on and will never run out — that’s not true,” Gripe said.

Gripe also cited Davout’s meeting attendance, saying he missed county board meetings in 2023 until he had a primary opponent.

Records show Davoust missed two meetings in June and a meeting in August.

“If I can’t get myself to meetings without somebody breathing down my neck as a competitor, what does that say about me?” Gripe asked.

Davoust said his meeting attendance has nothing to do with the election.

“I don’t do the job based on having an opponent,” Davoust said.

Article Comments
Guidelines: Keep it civil and on topic; no profanity, vulgarity, slurs or personal attacks. People who harass others or joke about tragedies will be blocked. If a comment violates these standards or our terms of service, click the "flag" link in the lower-right corner of the comment box. To find our more, read our FAQ.