I have a vision for our Village, and I have ideas, developed from the input of residents just like you, on how we can achieve that vision. When implementing these priorities, I commit to:
- Putting the needs and ideas of the residents first.
- Serving without bias, personal agenda, and preconceived opinions.
My priorities are:
1. Help make Downers Grove a truly livable community
Instead of treating topics such as public transportation, bike lanes, walkability, affordable housing, housing options, green spaces, commercial redevelopment, tree clearing, and historic preservation as isolated, I will work to address these in an integrated manner. Simply stated – we must work towards a central goal and vision for how our Village can meet the needs of all residents.
2. Improve Village infrastructure
I will tackle the complex topics of flooding and stormwater management head on, using my 27 years of experience in this field to reexamine everything, from fees to exemptions, from site-by-site best management practices to watershed-based solutions. We need to stop talking about these topics as a property owner problem and look at the root causes for answers. We must also act now to replace our Village Hall and Police Headquarters. Every month we delay increases the cost of this vital project. Protection of Village residents and our investment we make every year in law enforcement hinge on this project.
3. Energize our citizen-led commissions and working groups
I was impressed with the work performed by the Human Service Ad Hoc Committee in 2020, and I believe every commission, committee, and workgroup can be equally effective. These task-focused groups must be tapped by the Village Council to research important topics, put forth recommendations based on research, and serve as true advisory bodies to the Village government. On Day One, I will enlist the help of these groups of talented residents to help take on these priorities.
4. Identify and implement new sources of revenue
I am ready to dive deep into Village finances and reexamine every word in the Village Code that pertains to revenue. From permit fees to economic incentives to grants, nothing must be left off the table. I commend the efforts that have been made to date on this topic, but we must dig even deeper, as we know we have challenges ahead in 2021.
5. Be an advocate for equality and inclusion for all Village residents
Whether I am on the dais or at meetings with local groups, I will listen and learn from our diverse citizens. I will work to educate others on the unique challenges faced by Village residents that feel they do not have a seat at the table. I’ve talked with groups that “just want residents to know they are also live in Downers Grove.” I want to make this community one that is open to all and embraces differences as a positive. We are a community of unique individuals, and that should never be downplayed or covered up.