Four candidates running for three seats on village board

  • South Elgin village board candidates are, clockwise from upper left, Bill DiFulvio, Lisa Guess, Scott Richmond and Mike Kolodziej.

    South Elgin village board candidates are, clockwise from upper left, Bill DiFulvio, Lisa Guess, Scott Richmond and Mike Kolodziej.

 
 
Posted2/21/2015 7:31 AM

The four candidates running for trustee in South Elgin agreed the village isn't facing major issues while touting their own different backgrounds and somewhat different priorities.

Trustees Mike Kolodziej, Lisa Guess and Scott Richmond, and former trustee Bill DiFulvio -- who are running for three open seats in the April 7 election -- have nearly five decades of combined experience serving on the board.

 

Richmond, 46, an attorney who served from 2005 to 2013 before losing re-election, was appointed to the board last year. He pointed to his law experience, particularly in the areas of zoning and economic development.

The candidates agreed the village has managed residential growth well, but Richmond pointed out it's important to watch for long-term expenses deriving from serving more residents, such as in the The Trails of Silver Glen subdivision..

DiFulvio, 54, touted his active involvement with the nonprofit FUNdation, which is building a playground accessible to disabled children at SEBA Park. He served on the board for 12 years and lost re-election in 2013 after he was tossed off the ballot and ran as a write-in candidate. He has a background in sales but is currently not working, he said.

DiFulvio questioned whether it makes sense to do without a parks and recreation superintendent after Kim Wascher was promoted to parks director, and parks supervisor Shane Hamilton's position was expanded to take over some of Wascher's previous duties. "I worry about having less bodies," he said.

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The sitting trustees, however, pointed to the purchase of online parks programs registration software, which is expected to free up staff time.

Kolodziej, 54, a teacher at Glenbard West High School in Glen Ellyn who's been on the board for 16 years, said he initially got involved because of education issues but has gained a well-rounded perspective on all village matters.

Kolodziej, who serves on the village's liquor commission, says he spearhead an initiative to conduct more stings to prevent establishments from selling liquor to minors. "Last year there was a tremendous spike in minors being served," he said.

Guess, 55, who logged 12 years on the board, said she, too, has a comprehensive perspective on what it takes to make sure "South Elgin stays a great community."She works as an administrative assistant for an auto parts company.

Guess said she's supportive of an idea floated by Kane County Forest Preserve District officials to connect South Elgin's downtown to the bike path that runs through the far northeast end of the village.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

The candidates all agreed South Elgin's taxation rate is "just right."

The village recently approved zoning for medical marijuana dispensaries in business and office districts at least 250 feet from residential areas.

Kolodziej voted in favor while Richmond voted against, saying the distance should be greater. Guess, who was absent for the vote, and DiFulvio both said they would have voted in favor.

Kolodziej also advocated a clear plan to prioritize which roads need repairs first -- and publicize that plan to residents. Guess pointed out the village is getting caught up with road improvements by using motor fuel tax and some sales tax proceeds.

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