John Jung Jr.
Bachelors Degree, St. Mary's University, San Antonio, Texas, Political science
Small Business Owner, Shur Pak, Inc.
Married, Josie Jung
On The Record
Why are you running for County Board?
I’m running for office because I believe that I can continue to be the voice of my constituents, an instrument of positive change, and to ensure that the County Board stays on its path of fiscal strength and responsibility. My experience as a business owner provides me with a strong understanding of the importance of sound fiscal policies and responsibility. It has also taught me to make tough decisions – decisions that are based on the long-term result not the immediacy of short term success. As Chairman of the County’s Human Resource Committee, it was my ability to make these types of decisions that resulted in the institution of policies and procedures that strengthened the county’s fiscal position and improved employee morale and productivity. My ability to make these hard decisions brought me the support and respect of my constituents and elected officials even when they have not always agreed with the decision. My reputation for honesty and integrity is evidenced through my efforts on the County Board. I firmly believe in service and doing what is right even when it is not politically popular or expedient.
What is your top priority if you are elected?
There are two issues that I think are of particular importance. The first is the protection of our groundwater and the second is initiatives that create and foster sustainable economic growth. McHenry County must continue to communicate and foster a spirit of cooperation between itself, business, and the municipalities within its borders. My experience as a business owner provides me with a strong understanding of the importance of sound fiscal policies and responsibility. It has also taught me to make tough decisions – decisions that are based on the long-term result not the immediacy of short term success. A third issue that deserves attention is assisting veterans. According to the Veterans Assistance Commission, there has been a substantial increase in requests for assistance. I believe that he County needs to work with organizations like Transitional Living Services and New Horizons to support the re-entry of these heroes to civilian life. We need to realize that those who served in combat may have wounds deeper than their physical injuries. The County needs to expand the space it allocates to the Veterans Affairs Commission to better serve the needs of all those who have served in the military.
What is your position on shrinking the County Board's size?
I would favor reducing the size of the County Board provided every area of the County is equitably and fairly represented.
Do you favor reducing the levy of Valley Hi Nursing Home and spending down its cash reserve? Why or why not?
Valley Hi is in a strong financial position; it is no longer a drain on the County’s budget. It has, in fact, built a cash reserve. Knowing this, the County has reduced the levy for Valley Hi for the last few years. It plans to continue to reduce the levy and to reduce, but not eliminate, the cash reserves. Cash reserves are a necessary safeguard for any organization, association, or business. They ensure the continued effective, efficient, and successful operation of Valley Hi. Past financial troubles have provided the County Board with the insight to guard against such failings by building a cash reserve that is economically feasible without causing an unnecessary tax burden.
Do you believe county government should continue to keep its tax levy frozen? Why or why not? And if not, what expenses would you cut to ease the burden on taxpayers?
Yes, the County should continue to keep its tax levy frozen. Given the current economic times, the County should take the lead in stabilizing the tax burden of its citizens. Through good stewardship, the county has been able to keep the levy flat while still providing services to its residents.
What does county government do that it should not be in the business of doing?
I don’t think that the County is in any business that it should not be in. However, I think that the County needs to assess its grant and funding programs so duplication of services is reduced and eliminated. Many social service agencies and school districts appear to offer services that are the same or very similar which may not be the best use of these taxpayer funded grants. The County should evaluate all grant requests on a cost-benefit analysis and eliminate funding to duplicate services.
What can the County Board do to make the county more attractive to employers?
Smart economic growth is not only planning for the future but assessing today’s reality with a keen insight into tomorrow’s needs. To be attractive to employers, the County needs to have less stringent regulations so it is easier for businesses to expand or locate within the County. The County needs to foster and develop a solutions-based approach when businesses inquire about relocation and expansion within the county. The county needs to continually improve its infrastructure both physically and technologically. The County’s current focus on technological advancement is to provide broad band services throughout the county particularly in rural areas. It is working with NIU and MCC to achieve this objective. Through its partnership with the EDC and the Workforce Investment Board, the county is anticipating the employment needs of companies within the county by providing the unemployed and underemployed with the skills needed for not only today’s jobs but the skills required for tomorrow’s positions.