Dhitu Bhagwakar: Candidate profile

 
Posted3/16/2019 1:00 AM

Bio

Name: Dhitendra (Dhitu) Bhagwakar

 

City: Schaumburg

Office sought: Trustee for Village of Schaumburg

Age (on election day): 58

Family: Married to Harsha Bhagwakar with Two Childrens. Son (Amol) and Daughter (Sweta)

Occupation: Self Employed

Education: Electronic Technician from DeVry University 1983

Civic involvement: Current President of Gujarati Samaj Chicago (Indian Org.), Former Board Member of Metropolitan Asian Family Services (MAFS)

Previous elected offices held: No

Incumbent? If yes, when were you first elected?

Website: www.friendsofdhitu.com

Facebook: Friends of Dhitu

Twitter:

Issue questions

What are the most important issues facing your community and how do you intend to address them?

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The biggest issues that I see facing Schaumburg are our debt, our roads need repair and we don't do enough to help small businesses. I own several businesses and I know what it takes to run one. I think Schaumburg needs to do more to help businesses come to our village, expand their businesses and keep taxes affordable so they don't close down. I talk to other business owners who complain the process to open a business in Schaumburg takes too long and there are too many fees. If elected, I would like to be the voice for business owners on the board. I would like to work with others on reviewing the process to open businesses and see what we can do to help them stay in business.

What makes you the best candidate for the job?

I am a business owner and have a great understanding of how to provide great service to the public. I think we need someone who is a point person on the board to interact with our business community. I have experience in dealing with a multicultural community in having owned many businesses in my life such as retail, hotel & motel, strip mall, theater, restaurant and a bowling center. I want to bring that experience to the board so we can make Schaumburg a more business-friendly village.

Describe the leadership style and explain how you think that will be effective in producing actions and decisions with your village board.

I am a very passionate individual and a very hands-on businessman. When I was 23 years old, I owned and operated my very first business. Since then, I have owned and operated many businesses and have worked with lots of people. I always invest in my employees and make them feel part of the process. I would take this approach to the village board in treating our employees fairly and with respect. I know how to make tough decisions and I will always put the best interest of the residents first. That is who we are responsible to on the board.

How would you describe the condition of your community's budget, and what are the most important specific actions the town should take to assure providing the level of services people want?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

The town of Schaumburg is in over $500 million dollars in debt. We have to reduce the expenses without sacrificing public safety and look at all the unnecessary expenses. When I run my own business, I think twice before spending money. I don't think you should spend money without knowing how you will pay it back. I have not heard from anyone running how we are going to pay off this $500 million-dollar debt. What our team has proposed is to make a 5% cut in spending across the board. This is a good first start to reduce the debt. I would also like to look at what we are spending money on. For example, do we need to spend $30 million dollars to upgrade the parking garage? Why are we spending $87 million on a performing arts center? Why not look at way to increase revenues and stop spending money we don't have. If we can't reduce the debt, we will have to raise taxes or cut services. That is not what residents want.

What's one good idea you have to better the community that no one is talking about yet?

I would like to work on reducing the business taxes to make our town more attractive for people wanting to open a business. We need to find a way to make our community more attractive so businesses want to come and operate in our town. If we get more businesses, we will have more income and that will help reduce our debt.

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