Petrina Burman: 2021 candidate for Antioch trustee
Five candidates are running for the three Antioch trustee seats in the April 6, 2021 election.
Occupation: Small business owner R.L. Burman Plumbing
Civic involvement: Election poll watcher volunteer, local political candidate campaign volunteer, parent volunteer at Hillcrest Elementary School (classroom, field trip, material pickup), donating toys to Hillcrest Elementary School's Holiday Helpers program, youth football team mom, donating to the Traveling Closet, donating to the Open Arms Mission, monarch butterfly conservation/creating waystations, Mason bee conservation, member/advocate for the National Audubon Society, crochet donated to the OKOA Playground Improvement Project, participated in the Antioch Chamber of Commerce-Snowmen on the Chain, Charity Public Art Program for the Live Auction Block at the Charity Dinner Auction.
Q: How do you view your role in confronting the pandemic: provide leadership even if unpopular, give a voice to constituents-even ones whom you disagree, or defer to state and federal authorities?
A: One of the greatest responsibilities of local government is to protect the lives, liberty, and property of citizens. Protecting citizens constitutional rights is extremely important to me, even if it involves muddying waters with our governor.
Q: Did your town continue to adequately serve its constituents during the disruptions caused by the pandemic? If so, please cite an example of how it successfully adjusted to providing services. If not, please cite an example of what could have been done better.
A: The online small-business directory the Village of Antioch provided citizens is a nice way to support our local small-businesses. Unfortunately, Gov. Pritzker's extreme measures tied the hands of all local governments across Illinois, while leaving small-businesses extremely vulnerable. I really would have liked to have seen the Village of Antioch take a stronger stand against Gov. Pritzker's unconstitutional extreme measures, as other local governments in Illinois did.
Q: In light of our experiences with COVID-19, what safeguards/guidelines should you put in place to address any future public health crisis?
A: In such cases as influenza and COVID-19, I would strongly advise all constituents to practice simple hygiene measures, such as hand washing (which is considered the most important aseptic practice for preventing the spread of infection), cover their mouth when sneezing/coughing, and stay home when sick. I would advise those at risk to do the same if they choose, therefore allowing our society as a whole to still enjoy the protection bestowed upon the vulnerable by people who have built up herd immunity.
We need to make sure that we take what we've learned from this experience and use it as a guide to help us formulate effective safeguards for possible future public health crisis.
Q: What cuts can local government make to reduce the burden of the pandemic on taxpayers?
A: The Village of Antioch has already cut out a great deal of programs and adjusted their budget in anticipation of decreased revenue. Fortunately, revenue is actually better than what was anticipated.
Careful management of discretionary spending along with freezing water and sewer fees are also ways that can help reduce the burden of the pandemic on tax payers.
Q: What do you see as the most important infrastructure project you must address? Why and how should it be paid for? Conversely, during these uncertain times, what infrastructure project can be put on the back burner?
A: Our Public Works department in particular, needs careful budgeting in order to update technology, equipment, and manpower to effectively and efficiently serve our increased population. Implementing changes such as these will help in providing, maintaining, & fixing village assets before they arise or fall into disrepair. In the long run, these improvements will save the village money, proving to be effective investments.
Reopening Grimm Road is important; however, it requires a great deal of planning and consideration in order to figure out how to pay for it. This is an infrastructure project that may be needed to be put on the back burner.
Q: Do you agree or disagree with the stance your board/council has taken on permitting recreational marijuana sales in the community? What would you change about that stance, if you could?
A: I'm really hoping the benefits outweigh the risks and it's not the other way around. I'm happy to see that recreational cannabis facilities will not be allowed in Downtown Antioch. Conflict of interest and appearance of conflict of interest by village officials and associates MUST be avoided at all cost.
Q: What is one good idea you have to better the community that is not yet being talked about?
A: Many residents are excited about the transformation of the Pittman property, including myself. I would like to see that a large portion of the property is reserved to create a certified Monarch Butterfly Waystation. As a community, we can contribute to Monarch conservation. Waystations provide the necessary food and shelter for Monarch butterflies and other beneficial pollinators. It has the potential to become a popular destination spot in Downtown Antioch which also encourages an increase of customers to local small businesses.
I would also like to work with the Antioch Garden Club to create smaller waystations in each of our parks as well.
The Monarch butterfly aligns with Antioch's Authentic by Nature message and is a great fit for the Pittman property. Both require hard-work and major transformation to become something beautiful and beneficial.