Ruth Kuzmanic: Candidate profile, Kane County Board District 12
Democrat Ruth Kuzmanic of St. Charles and Republican Kenneth C. Shepro of Wayne are newcomers vying for a seat on Kane County Board District 12 in the Nov. 3 general election. Longtime incumbent Republican John Hoscheit isn't seeking another term after 24 years on the board.
Kuzmanic recently retired as a health education teacher at Naperville Central High School and has served as a middle school coach and high school basketball and soccer coach.
To explore her campaign website, visit voteruth4kane.com.
District 12 covers parts of Wayne, St. Charles and Geneva.
For a map of the district, visit countyofkane.org.
The Daily Herald recently asked the candidates to answer a series of questions. Here are Kuzmanic's replies.
For complete election coverage, visit dailyherald.com.
Q: Why are you running for this office, whether for reelection or election for the first time? Is there a particular issue that motivates you? If so, what?
A: I am a first time candidate. I am a recently retired teacher with time and energy now to serve my community.
Q: 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?
A: Same answer as above.
Q: Describe your position regarding the balance between county spending and revenues as it exists today, then describe the chief threats you see looming in the future and how the county should deal with them. In particular in the suburbs, Cook County President Toni Preckwinkle has set a goal of eliminating unincorporated areas from county oversight. Do you agree with this approach? If so, how should the county go about it?
A: Of course I don't believe in spending more than current revenue brings in. Current threat-reduced revenue coming in due to COVID-19, yet increased needs related to keeping our community safe.
Q: How do you rate the county government 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.
A: I have seen improvement in terms of transparency as of late. For example, the Kane County Board meetings are available to listen to via call in, and some are posted on YouTube. There is still room to improve.
Q: What, if anything, should be done to improve automation and customer service in county offices? What steps should be taken to make that happen?
A: If elected, I will address this issue as it arises.
Q: The county board will undergo redistricting following the 2020 Census. What is the most fair process? Do you support the current number of seats on the board?
A: Equitable representation is important to our community. Accuracy of the 2020 Census will permit the county to draw fair boundaries. Once the numbers have been tabulated, then I can form an opinion on number of seats.
Q: Do you support the current salary and benefits structure for the county board?
Q: What actions must the county take to continue to address COVID-19?
A: Continue to follow the guidelines laid out by the health professionals, particularly from our county health department.
Q: The new board will take over during a time of unprecedented budget challenges. What is your plan to balance the budget? What will your spending priorities be?
A: This indeed is unprecedented. The priority will be to continue to provide services to keep our residents safe, while staying within our means. If elected, I will listen, learn, and make my decisions based on keeping Kane County the great place it is.