9N535 Tipi Lane, Elgin, IL 60124
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On The Record
Why are you running to represent the 65th Representative District?
Like most people in Illinois I am tired of the corruption in Illinois government and the condition of Illinois’s economy. We need more public servants in the Illinois State Government who have no ties to special interests.
Illinois faces a $100 billion unfunded pension liability, and in December the state legislature passed a bill to address the issue. What are your views on the passed pension reform measures? And what else – if anything – needs to be done to address this issue?
From the Supreme Court decisions I have read, this new legislation may possibly be unconstitutional. We will have to wait to see what the court decides when it hears the arguments from both sides of this issue. I believe Illinois may need to move to a defined contribution plan for all new employees and newly elected officials like most businesses have done. I feel this may be necessary because the pension problem not only involves those who were promised a pension but it also involves the people of Illinois who have to pay the bill. It is very important to take all stakeholders needs into consideration before any changes are made. And since pensions are protected by the State Constitution, the requirements as decided by the Supreme Court must also be taken into consideration before creating and passing any legislation.
Would you allow the "temporary" state income tax increase to drop down to 3.75 percent in 2015? Explain your answer.
We may need to extend the temporary income tax increase in 2015. But only until the General Assembly puts more business friendly policies in place to attract enough jobs for all the people who need those jobs in Illinois. These policies must include lower regulations and license fees, incentives to provide jobs, more support for Illinois schools to create the most talented workforce in the nation and competitive state corporate and personal income taxes. This will help keep businesses in our state and attract new businesses, including manufacturers, to Illinois. When most of the people in Illinois are employed, the social service portion of the budget, which is now the largest portion, will become much lower. Lower unemployment rates will end the need to borrow money from the Federal Government for unemployment benefits. This will allow Illinois to pay off these Federal Government loans and their included interest. And with more people working more taxpayers will be sharing the tax burden. All of these benefits combined will allow the percent of tax taken from each person’s income to drop back down to 3.75 percent or possibly even lower.
Where do you stand on proposed plans for a progressive income tax in Illinois?
There is no need to change to a progressive income tax. Presently Illinois income tax is computed as a fixed percentage of a taxpayer’s income so people or businesses who make more money already pay much more than people or businesses who make less money. I believe it is fair the way it is. One of my goals in the General Assembly is to work toward no income tax in Illinois. This will bring more people and businesses to Illinois and allow everyone to thrive.
If elected, what transportation projects in the 65th Representative District would be a priority for you?
Transportation is very important to make sure Illinois can fairly compete in the Global economy and to allow the people of Illinois and others to safely travel throughout the state. Making sure the bridges and roadways in the 65th District and throughout Illinois are the safest to travel over would be a high priority for me. Also, making sure public transportation serves the needs of the people in an efficient and safe manner is very important. I will carefully evaluate and support important proposed transportation projects which meet the most pressing needs of the people and use the most cost effective and safe methods for completion.
Besides pension reform and taxes, what one or two other issues or projects would be most important for you, if elected?
The two solutions that are most critical at this time are: 1) Putting policies in place to make sure Illinois supports businesses so they can provide plenty of jobs for the people, 2) Making sure Illinois has the best schools, community colleges and universities and also trade and technical schools in order to have the most talented workforce in the nation. These two solutions combined will help retain businesses already located in the state and attract more businesses, including manufacturers, to Illinois. More businesses in Illinois means more job competition. And job competition will naturally raise wages so people can support themselves and their families. These solutions will also improve the economy because the state will receive more tax money, people will be spending more disposable income, less unemployment benefits will paid out and less social services will be needed. In addition to these very important solutions, and what most people consider to be the most crucial step to stop government corruption in Illinois. Introduce and/or support legislation to begin the process of adding an amendment to the Illinois Constitution instituting term limits for the Governor and both chambers of the General Assembly.
How are you different from your primary opponents in this race?
I am a small business owner who has previously been an employee or associate in several areas of the business sector, real estate, health care, school district, architecture, phone service provider, etc. I have also been a member of two different Illinois unions. This has given me a unique history in different aspects of the business sector as compared to my opponents. Both of my opponents are Geneva attorneys, whose campaigns at present are almost entirely funded by other local attorneys. Presently, Illinois already has 25 attorneys in the General Assembly and our present Governor is also an attorney. I personally have nothing against attorneys but they are already very well represented in the Illinois legislature and I feel we do not need to add one more to their numbers. The more attorneys we have in the General Assembly the more attorney’s special interests are served. I have no ties to any special interest groups unlike my opponents. A little known fact is two of the four previous Illinois governors who have been sent to prison were attorneys.