Tuesday's election: Key races in Lake County
Anyone doubting the saying that all politics is local need only browse the Lake County ballot for Tuesday's consolidated election, where 652 candidates are running for municipal, school, park district, library and other government boards.
Several races have more than twice the number of candidates than available seats, and some in particular have generated heated campaigns and stirred voter interest.
Here's a look at some of races to watch Tuesday:
Buffalo Grove village president and board
Incumbent Village President Beverly Sussman's bid for a second term is being challenged by former village Trustee Mike Terson.
Sussman has overseen a time of balanced budgets and the addition of new business, including the much-anticipated Woodman's Market. But Terson contends the pace of growth has been too slow and he would be a better choice to deal with future financial challenges.
The voices of two former village presidents have surfaced on opposite sides. Elliott Hartstein, who held the post for 12 years until 2011, endorsed Sussman, saying the village has made significant progress in economic development during her tenure.
Jeffrey Braiman, who replaced Hartstein and lost a re-election bid to Sussman, says Terson has the smarts and vision to move the village forward and questioned Sussman's leadership. Sour grapes, she says.
Among the key differences between the candidates are their philosophies on growth and the need to raise revenues in light of pending infrastructure challenges. Whether the village golf course on Lake-Cook Road should be developed and how best to deal with other troubled properties are also issues.
Whoever prevails, attracting sales tax-producing businesses and other revenues to the village will be important going forward.
For the village board, voters will have ample choices with nine candidates running for three seats.
Lindenhurst village president and board
Economic development is a key issue in Lindenhurst, where two slates are squaring off for village president and three trustee seats.
Mayor Dominic Marturano, who served eight years as a trustee before being elected to the top spot in 2015, is running with incumbent trustees Dawn Czarny, Patrick John Dunham and Heath Rosten as the Lindenhurst Best Choice slate. They say they want to continue the progress, including bringing Lake Michigan water to town, that has been made.
Mayoral challenger Ryan Brandes is running with trustee candidates Stacey Kramer, Trak Patel and Cassandra Slade as the Lindenhurst United for Change slate. Expanding the tax base with business is needed, they say.
Brandes thinks a full-time economic development director should be hired to lure business and housing developers. Marturano said Village Administrator Clay Johnson is pursuing opportunities and doesn't see the need for a new position.
Lake Zurich village board
Where the Lake Zurich should be headed has become a spirited theme for two slates of candidates running for three seats on the village board.
How best to spark development downtown has been a question for the competing slates. Incumbent trustees John Shaw, Marc Spacone and Jonathan Sprawka are running as Lake Zurich Progress. Former trustee Jeff Halen, Michael Paulus and Janice Gannon comprise LZ Values.
The village over the years has invested $16 million buying property downtown, but has yet to hit on a successful strategy to revitalize the area. The incumbents said they hear from developers that in order to attract new downtown businesses, they need more downtown residents. But the LZ Values slate maintains the village doesn't need more residential units downtown and that if developers build commercial, existing residents will show up.
School districts 73 and 75
Both districts have an abundance of candidates willing to take on the challenges ahead.
In Mundelein District 75, seven candidates are running for three seats in the first contested election since 2003. Incumbents Alexandria Avila, Fred Goldman and Matthew Rehm, and newcomers Elisa Camp, Lisa St. Clair, Kristie Cary Fingerhut and Jessica Neyzelman are on the ballot.
District 75 will transition to a shared services system with Mundelein High School District 120 to include Kevin Myers as a dual superintendent.
Six candidates are running for four seats in Hawthorn District 73: Incumbents Sonali Patil, Robin Cleek and George Fievet are joined by Joel Finfer, Michael Murphy and Lenny Nieves on the ballot.
District 73 is proceeding with a $48.7 million building program to include a kindergarten center, while welcoming a new superintendent and dealing with a budget deficit.
To view candidate profiles visit dailyherald.com/news/politics/election.