Metro. Water Reclamation District Capparelli: Candidate Profile
Metro. Water Reclamation District (Republican)
Note: Answers provided have not been edited for grammar, misspellings or typos. In some instances, candidate claims that could not be immediately verified have been omitted.
Age: Candidate did not respond.
Family: Cordelia J. Capparelli (mother), Ralph C. Capparelli (father), Valerie Plunkett (sister)
Education: PhD Candidate, University of London (Geography and Environmental Studies), MA, Northeastern Illinois University (Geography and Environmental Studies), MSJ, Medill School of Journalism, Northwestern University (Advertising), BAJ, School of Journalism, Drake University (Public Relations)
Civic involvement: Candidate did not respond.
Elected offices held: Two appointed offices: 1997-98, Public Member, Illinois Banking Committee and 2000-2009, Board Member, Illinois International Port (Member of Executive Committee and Chairman of the Homeland Security, Legislative and Marketing Committees)
Have you ever been arrested for or convicted of a crime? If yes, please explain: No
Why are you running for this office, whether for re-election or election for the first time? Is there a particular issue that motivates you? If so, what? What specific professional qualifications do you possess that would make you excel in this office?
The need to balance government motivates me to run for this position. The MWRDGC Board of Commissioners has been controlled by a single party for over forty years. This kind of ‘monopoly’ creates an atmosphere not conducive to good government. This comfortableness causes mismanagement of tax money expenditures; particularly budget overruns and major bidding processes favoring politically connected. My extensive education in applicable disciplines qualifies me for this position; as I highlight: Second, my ten-year experience as a Board Member at the Illinois International Port provides me with directly related professional encounters and co-operations with actual and potential MWRDGC issues.
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?
My opposing position on many issues confronting the MWRDGC Board of Directors will create a better sense of accountability and the balance required to be more effective. A reasonable objective is to create this accountability and balance by challenging the one party domination and its rubber stamp mentality that has caused obstacles to better government.
How do you view the role the district has played in controlling flooding in Cook County and what, if any, actions need to be taken to improve things?
Safe water management is the most important responsibility of the MWRDGC Commissioners. The widespread flooding that affected the north and northwest suburbs underlined the significance and immediate need to be more advanced technologically equipped, and to increase water storage to assure water safety. New innovative ideas, implementation of proven concepts, and public awareness are the ‘moving parts’ that are necessary to prevent future disasters throughout the district.
Does the board have the right number of commissioners to adequately represent all parts of the district?
An argument can be made that representation can be more effective if the MWRDGC is divided into sections (districts). Small districts, opposed to essentially countywide cumulative voting, could allow the public to be more aware with specific issues related to their area and their Commissioner, in particular, to represent them. Also, as it is difficult to raise monies for this office, candidates can be more selective in ways to reach the voters in a given smaller area. Now, voters make an ambiguous choice because candidates can’t reach all the voters covering, effectively, an entire county.
How do you rate the MWRD on transparency and the public's access to records? If you consider it adequate, please explain why. If you think improvements are needed, please describe them and why they are important
I am not in the position to give an absolute authoritative answer but, in self interest, the Commissioners portray the image that everything is 'just fine'. It's my opinion that if there are budget overruns, flooding, and other issues than things probably need to be better vetted. Information is scare and difficult to obtain. There are enough ‘holes’ to challenge that opinion that the MWRDGC is totally effective and transparent.
What other issues, if any, are important to you as a candidate for this office?
Safeguarding our entire water supply is imperative supply because water the lifeline of our society. This means both the fresh,‘new’ water, we use and the sludge, the ‘old’ water, we discard by regular citizens, industry and agriculture. And the safe water management must be compatible and work in tandem with lakefront, riverfront and canal development to achieve harmony. The Commissioners must also address other issues including habitat conservation, sale of property, permeable surfacing, and transitioning to green technology. Lastly, I believe no Commissioner should serve more than two terms and I vow not to seek more than two terms.
Please name one current leader who most inspires you.
Impossible. Different people for different things. George W. Bush for his integrity. Popes Benedict and Francis for concern. Our military for determination.
What's the biggest lesson you learned at home growing up?
Respect and discipline from my mother and father respectively.
If life gave you one do-over, what would you spend it on?
I've been fair and honest. And fortunate and satisfied. I have no need to do a one do-over.
What was your favorite subject in school and how did it help you in later life?
Geography because it is a discipline that incorporates many other subjects and travel affords a fun and effective way to learn.
If you could give your children only one piece of advice, what would it be?
Perseverance will always give you an opportunity to succeed.