Kane County Board - District 11 (Republican)
Voting will take place Tuesday, March 18, 2014
Voters will be able to select 1 candidates in this race. The 1 candidates with the most votes will be elected.
Winner in this race will be elected for a term of 2 years.
Click a question below to display the candidates' answers to that question.
Why are you running to represent Kane County Board District 11?
As part of the process in concluding my successful 40 year legal career I have been looking for a new challenge and opportunity to serve my community. It is my belief that being on the County Board is a logical and exciting “next step” in my life.
I am running to see our county and forest preserve taxes frozen. I want to implement zero based budgeting (efficient allocation of resources based on needs/benefits rather than history.) It is also important to generate new business strategies and tax incentives in working with the cities of Kane County to attract new businesses which will broaden the tax base.
What experience do you have that qualifies you to be a Kane County Board member?
My professional experience includes decades of activity on behalf of commercial real estate developers and property owners (including individuals, public and private entities) with zoning and subdivision activity as well as assisting with transactional matters. I have dealt repeatedly with Kane County agencies as well as many municipalities within the County including both Geneva and Batavia. I have been deeply involved with my community having served as a member of the Geneva Jaycees, the Geneva Academic Foundation (Chairman), Waubonsee Foundation, Geneva Lions Club (Past President), the Geneva Plan Commission and Zoning Commission and committees related to real estate development and housing, both within the City of Geneva and on a regional basis within the County. My belief is that these professional credentials coupled with my continuing community involvement provide more than ample qualification for my candidacy. That belief is buttressed by endorsements from the Mayors of Geneva and Batavia, the current District 11 Board Member and former Geneva Mayor Dick Lewis.
The advantage that I bring to the citizens of Kane County is business leadership. I have a BA degree in Communications from the University of Wisconsin at Madison. I have 27 years of successful business experience in the telecommunications industry (with a Fortune 500 company for several years) as well as being an entrepreneur in telecommunications and running my own business for the last 17 years. Working with Fortune 500 to small regional companies, I determine how multiple departments' communications, within a company, can be uniquely tailored for them. Once each department is complete, my team establishes a companywide communication system so that our clients operate as one effective unit. This leadership experience has given me the capacity to work effectively with people of diverse backgrounds reaching a common goal.
If elected, what would you do to ensure the county is run in a fiscally responsible manner?
I support maintaining a frozen tax levy. It is important to bear in mind that the Board must also hold down spending if that frozen levy is to be a sound fiscal plan. Increasing expenditures and not the levy by using alternate revenue sources and contingency funds is not good long term planning.
First, review all projects and programs. Then implement any new measures that create greater efficiencies. We have all had to cut costs in this fragile economic environment. My goal is to work with board members so there are not additional layers of government.
What – specifically – could you do to improve county operations?
I support hiring a county administrator to deal with day to day issues. Virtually all municipalities in the County have administrators and I believe the County and its employees would also benefit from having professional management. An administrator would take some of the politics out of operational decisions, and I believe ultimately save the County money through increased efficiency.
It’s important to better collaborate with all board members. Excellent working relationships are vital to any enterprise including the operations of Kane County. As a successful business owner, I have a history of conflict resolution that will bring board members together towards community and county goals.
What project in your district, which includes parts of Geneva and Batavia, would you most want to accomplish, if elected/reelected?
The re-development of the Settlers Hills property and the adjoining Fabyan Parkway frontage is of prime importance to both the citizens of Batavia and Geneva and my most focused concern. Wheels have been put in motion by the Board toward that end and my goal is that the efforts continue and conclude as funding allows. Much of the property and the project are potentially sensitive in nature and require both public input and caution for the project to be successful; those considerations need to be reviewed and addressed and the project continue.
As I have met with the citizens of District #11, a primary concern is the Settler’s Hill site. The original proposal called for a cross country course that would benefit the cross country teams of our county. The original proposal also called for a sledding hill which I am in favor of. Now the first phase has been modified to make the track an NCAA certified course with lights that might be used once a year. And the sledding hill has been removed. I believe that the initial proposal benefits the members of our community to a much greater extent.
How would you help manage new developments at the Settler's Hill site? What are your views on this project?
Please see answer above.
See above. I would add that this development has merit. However, it needs to be closely examined so that vital steps are covered and it does not end up as a tax liability to the citizens of Kane County.
How are you different from your primary opponent in this race?
I believe my opponent and I are separated both by level of relevant experience and continuing local commitment. Although it is true we have both resided in Geneva for many decades, I more than my opponent, have served my community and the surrounding area during each of those decades; I believe making a place your home requires service on that community’s behalf. As importantly, my professional experience will offer significant assistance in addressing most of the issues I have observed coming before the Board.
My opponent is an attorney. There are already at least 5 attorneys on the board. The business leadership skills that I have developed will bring greater balance to the board in terms of representing the interests of our community. My interpersonal skills will also enable me to work with all Kane county board members to bring about fiscal and operational integrity in every area that is needed. I was born and raised in Geneva and lived in Batavia for several years. So I know District #11 well. I am a true fiscal conservative who believes in limited government, doing more with less and implementing greater efficiency concerning any county program or project. Please go to my web site for more information at www.tommatsonkanecounty.com