ALGONQUIN – Three current trustees and one newcomer shared their views on the village as they compete for the three board seats up for grabs.
Trustees Robert Smith, Jerry Glogowski and Brian Dianis and challenger Richard Flynn spoke at an Algonquin-Lake in the Hills Chamber of Commerce candidate forum.
The four men are running for the three seats on the village board in the April 9 election.
Flynn helped work with the village when it was planning road reconstruction work in the Indian Grove subdivision. He said he wants to make the board meetings more of an open forum for residents.
Flynn said he felt Glogowski is the “lone wolf” when it comes to relaying resident concerns.
“It seems like an open board, but when you go in there and try to talk about things, you get shut down pretty quick,” Flynn said.
He said he would want to eliminate the utility tax in the village.
Flynn added he wants to make incentives available for businesses to entice them to come to town.
“We have a big opportunity with the downtown area,” Flynn said. “We need to really work with developers to drive business in.”
He added that the red-light cameras in town should be removed and only serve as revenue generators for the village.
The three trustees said the red-light cameras are important for safety reasons and have helped reduce accidents at the intersections where they are located. However, Smith and Dianis said the board wants to work with the police department to reduce fines for right-turn-on-red violations, if they’re not a safety issue.
Glogowski, who has been on the village board for eight years, said he wants to see more work with arts and entertainment in the village.
He added that downtown revitalization needs to move forward, and ensure Riverside Plaza gets moving and the planned apartment complex’s interior is completed.
“If we don’t have that going, it’s going to be very difficult to [attract] developers in,” Glogowski said. “We want to make downtown a destination place, like many other cities along the Fox Valley region.”
Smith said the village has worked on traffic congestion for many years, and the Western Bypass is being built to help relieve traffic congestion in the downtown area, and help Algonquin Road run more efficiently. He also said the village is pushing for Longmeadow Parkway to help with traffic capacity.
Smith pointed out that the village has been able to lower its tax levy in recent years.
“We run very efficient, we find ways to get by with what we have,” Smith said. “We never cut back in the quality of service to the residents.”
When asked about senior activities in the village, Dianis said the parks and recreation department should identify the needs of seniors to see if programs can be started that would be self-sufficient.
“We need to make sure there’s enough interest in programs,” Dianis said. “We might subsidize those programs as well, but it has to be cost effective.”
Dianis said the village needs to keep a close watch on state funding, in case it gets cut.
“Should we not get those monies, we will have to look at ways of reducing those expenses that we have to maintain a balanced budget,” Dianis said. “We typically do things like [pushing back] capital purchases to later in the budget year, so if we have to make adjustments, we can always delay.”