Bob Sample: 2021 candidate for West Dundee trustee
Five candidates for four, 4-year terms
Village: West Dundee
Occupation: President of the Sample Companies Inc., consultant for AV/Integrated Low Voltage Systems Installation and Design; U.S. representative for Gala Boats
Employer: The Sample Companies
Civic involvement: President of Racine Yacht Club Youth Foundation, which supports youth sailing and water safety programs in the Racine, Wisconsin, area; past assistant to the director of Dundee Scots, Crown Imperials & Imperial Scots Marching Bands
Q. How do you view your role in confronting the pandemic: provide leadership even if unpopular, give a voice to constituents -- even ones with whom you disagree, or defer to state and federal authorities?
A. As a Past Commodore and Race Officer for Racine Yacht Club I had to make determinations with others on how we handled the pandemic restrictions, kept our club open (safely) and conducted our racing, instructional and boating season. Our diverse membership with many different view points regarding the pandemic restrictions required an open mind and accommodation. My wife was also involved with assisting our great grandchildren with their in home virtual learning that was a poor substitute for in class learning. We also have a group of elderly friends that try to have dinner together every Friday night, which we managed to accomplish most of the time even with the various lock downs.
Q. Did your town continue to adequately serve its constituents during the disruptions caused by the pandemic?
A. I believe our community did the best it could under the circumstances. Strategic businesses were open, there were places to get food service and medical assistance. However, I believe the state of Illinois and the city of Chicago did a mediocre job of handling the pandemic, the schools and related issues.
Q. In light of our experiences with COVID-19, what safeguards/guidelines should you put in place to address any future public health crises?
A. It depends on the circumstances involved. Procedures should immediately be put in place to protect our citizens dependent on the situation. Decisions should be based on people issues, not political dictates. We need to be sure we have Medical services available for our community, especially seniors. That is why I am dedicated to the development of senior citizen continuing care retirement communities offering independent living, assisted living, memory care and medical care services on existing Mall properties that are no longer viable as strictly retail sources. West Dundee has an initial project currently approved.
Q. What cuts can local government make to reduce the burden of the pandemic on taxpayers?
A. When you have a world or national pandemic with edicts being issued by the US government, the State and even counties, the individual community is very limited in its actions. The best the community can do is to postpone or cancel nonessential projects and employee hiring.
Q. What do you see as the most important infrastructure project you must address?
A. Why and how should it be paid for? Conversely, during these uncertain economic times, what infrastructure project can be put on the back burner?
A. Currently one of our villages problems is traffic control through the city which needs to be rectified possibly adding additional cost to the Police Department. Our downtown businesses need additional parking which needs to be addressed when funds are available. The Village needs to access eliminating driveways to businesses on Main St. direct from the highway to rear access from the side streets where possible.
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. Our Village doesn't allow sales, which I support.
Q. What's one good idea you have to better the community that no one is talking about yet?
A. I have been involved with the construction of some of the best senior living projects in the Chicago metro area such as Park Place in Elmhurst, Admiral @ the Lake, Chicago and Autumn Green, Chicago. The experience provided an incentive to explore the possibility of establishing these projects on existing mall properties. De Hogeweyk (translation: dementia village) in Weesp, Holland, was one of the first highly successful developments. Other projects are Seattle's Northgate Mall's Senior Urban Village, Oklahoma Cities proposed 800,000 sq. ft. mall Senior continuing care center offering independent living, assisted living, memory care, medical care. The mall can provide all types of retail, medical and recreational services to the seniors with an interconnection directly to the mall vis walking, or golf carts. It is important that our Community understands that the state of Illinois is losing 1,000s of residents each year. Most are moving out of State, but some are moving form Chicago to the suburbs and our community has to offer the living environment that will attract them.