Bachelor's Degree, International Business and Economics, Illinois Benedictine College, Lisle IL
Master's Degree, M.B.A. Marketing, Northern IL University, DeKalb IL
Customer service, Airline industry
On the Record
Why are you running for McHenry County Board, and what qualifications do you bring to the office?
I believe that the “business-as-usual” approach to County Government can not continue. Saying “yes” to every developer that comes along may be politically expedient in the short-term, but there can be serious long-term economic and environmental consequences. Future water needs are being ignored. Food production is being under valued. Focusing exclusively on residential expansion without first expanding local employment opportunities is misguided. I am detail oriented and my education has provided me with a solid background in financial matters. I am a fiscal conservative, but am willing to consider new approaches to finances. Not being linked to an entrenched political party allows me to be more responsive to the voters’ needs. I am not afraid to ask difficult questions before arriving at a conclusion.
The County Board has resisted calls to make its chairmanship popularly elected. Now, a referendum has been placed on the November ballot that seeks to change the county to an executive form of government. What do you think about the referendum and the board’s resistance to allow voters decide whether they want to elect the board chairman at the ballot box?
The State of Illinois has too many levels of Government. Illinois has more levels of Government than any other state. Our State needs to eliminate levels not add them. There is no need for a referendum on this issue. I have not heard of any desire on the part of voters to add another elected official and layer of Government.
Do you support county government using taxpayer money to lobby against state legislation that would have protected property taxpayers from tax increases in years when property values declined? Explain your answer.
I am against using taxpayer money for ANY type of lobbying. We should not have to buy our elected officials’ votes via lobbying. Our votes alone are enough of a lobby to protect our interests. Hiring lobbyists with taxpayer money is perpetuating a system that is already broken. It would be putting good money after bad money.
The County Board is working this year to not collect the inflationary tax levy increase allowed under state law. Will you agree to support a freeze to the county’s levy again next year? Explain.
Yes, I do support an inflationary tax levy freeze, not only for next year but in perpetuity. In the private sector very little is automatic. If cost increases can not be passed on to the customer, either prices stay the same or the product has to change. In the public sector many things seem automatic such as; an inflationary tax adjustment, cost of living adjustment and consumer price index adjustment just to name a few. Few employees in the private sector automatically benefit from such increases. These public sector adjustments should only have the option to go up when the underlying basis for revenue, namely wages also increase. Personal income, however, has been going down for over a decade. Any increase in government taxes should be debated and then voted upon. Elected officials need to defend their votes to the public.
Given the obstacles a local couple have had with turning their vineyard into a winery, how business friendly would you say the County Board and county ordinances are? What changes would you seek if elected?
Agriculture is a sustainable economic activity in this county. We have an advantage with good soil and proximity to a large metropolitan area. I will be a friend to agriculture and work to change ordinances accordingly. I will listen to farmers.
Outside of jobs and the economy, what is the biggest challenge facing voters in your district and how would you address it?
Paying more taxes with diminishing person income is a major concern for people. I will work to lower the county budget and tax burden on residents. The County Board needs to lead by example. An opportunity to right size county government was missed with the last census update. Not only do we need to have single member districts, we also need to have fewer board members. When cuts start at the top, they become more palatable in other departments.
Wedig's Current Race
John Jung Jr.