Endorsement: Yes to Villa Park roads
Villa Park's best argument for its street improvement plan is the roads themselves: Many like Park Boulevard are literal patchworks of filled potholes and cracks. The village seeks voter permission to borrow $23 million to rebuild some of the worst stretches while repairing and maintaining others. Since 2006, the village has been relying on $1.4 million annually in sales tax and motor fuel taxes to tend to its 74 miles of streets. While village officials would like to aim for a 14-year maintenance cycle, the meager funding has stretched that to about 40 years. Other financing options -- increasing the sales tax or instituting vehicle stickers, for example -- wouldn't generate enough money to catch up with deteriorated roads or keep up with those needing repairs. The $23 million would allow the village to take a blended approach, rebuilding some of the worst streets while keeping up with others before they deteriorate. The construction comes at a price to residents, of course. The owner of a $200,000 house would pay an extra $146.40 in property taxes annually for 20 years. Voting no, however, would only exacerbate the problem. It's a matter of safety, of civic pride and of continued business growth. We recommend voting yes.