New ideas, trusted experience, eye on taxes: Hoffman Estates mayor hopefuls tout priorities
Citing experience, passion for the community and an eagerness to cut spending, the three candidates for Hoffman Estates mayor explained this week why they should have the support of voters in the April 6 election.
Incumbent Bill McLeod and recently retired Hoffman Estates police lieutenant Mark Mueller shared their positions Monday during a joint Zoom interview with the Daily Herald. Both are running in slates that include three trustee candidates each. Nicholas Waryas, who is running independently, spoke to the Daily Herald by phone afterward.
Mueller said his passion for Hoffman Estates comes from growing up and attending school in the village, followed by a nearly 28-year career in the police department.
"I could have stayed at work longer," he said. "I was given the option in November to retire or drop out of the race. I chose to retire, of course, so this is a passion of mine."
He said his supporters include the sons of former Mayor Michael O'Malley, whose death in September 2000 led to McLeod becoming mayor.
"They are excited," Mueller said. "They're like, hey, you know, my dad liked you. You're the same kind of guy as he was."
Mueller said his platform is based on fresh perspectives on issues like tax reform, business development and community building.
"My concern for the village is genuine and true," he said. "I've always been a people person. I've been in positions of leadership my entire life and this is one of those. That's my plan, to be the correct leader for everyone and work with who we have. And you know, I think I have an opportunity to do a great job."
McLeod said he's demonstrated passion for the village since moving there as a young man and many of Mueller's stated goals are already being accomplished.
"And I believe that my experience and ability to roll with the punches when unexpected things happen, I have a proven record of doing that," McLeod said. "I think history has shown that you're better off having someone who has experience, that's gone through all those, rather than taking a flier at someone with absolutely no executive government experience.
"There's talk and there's actually a proven record of accomplishing things, and that I have," he said.
Waryas said he's not taking part in any Zoom events during the campaign because he doesn't have the camera capability. Instead, he said he's mailed a letter to voters of the village explaining his positions.
"The reason why I'm running is the wasted spending going on in Hoffman Estates and unneeded taxes," Waryas said. "It's time for a change. By eliminating the real estate transfer tax, it would put more money in our residents' pockets when they sell their homes. I'd try to come to a consensus with everyone on what's needed and unneeded in Hoffman Estates."
The trustee candidates on McLeod's slate are fellow incumbents Karen Arnet, Michael Gaeta and Karen Mills, while Mueller's slate includes challengers James Murre, Gaurav Patel and Renee Robinson.