Other, Communications/ Public Relations, University of Tennessee Chattanooga
On the Record
What experiences do you have that make you a good candidate for office?
I have held the position secretary for Pack 455 for the past three years, and have the experience of seeing how important having agendas and minutes posted in an expedient time frame. I was also a past member of the Fox Lake Planning Commission which opened up to me the importance of being involved in local government. I have held jobs in businesses as a bookkeeper, and secretarial positions that afforded me experience in computers as well as in bookkeeping/accounting, records management and basic office management. I have dealt with phones and clients for these corporations with professionalism and a positive attitude. This gives me confidence that I can handle the statutory side of the clerk position.
What are your top two or three priorities if elected?
If I was to be elected as Fox Lake’s Village Clerk, my main priority is to make the village government more accessible to the townspeople and encourage attendance of village meetings while educating residents about voter’s registration and the importance of making their voices heard. Secondly, to circumvent future FOIA (Freedom of Information Act) request, I would like to make more information available on the Village’s Web site so the residents can research the information they are requesting themselves and possibly eliminating the need for an official Village request. I would also like to see the Village implement an online FOIA request form. Both of these ideas could in turn save time and money for the village.
Would you support freezing your taxing district’s levy until housing prices rebound? Why or why not?
Although it a temporary solution, I would be in favor of freezing the tax levy until property values begin to rebound. While I understand that this could reduce revenues for the Village, families and businesses alike have taken the burden of upside down mortgages as well as increased state and federal taxes. However, I believe raising taxes is not the best way to assure people that Fox Lake is a great place to live or work.
What one decision by the village board do you most disagree with and why?
I think the one bad decisions Village board did was offering a tax incentive to the Thornton’s gas station that is being built. The developers offered to pay the streetscape construction cost when they first appeared before the board regarding the project in February. Thornton’s then come back AFTER the project was approved and asked for economic incentives. This is the 13th gas station in Fox Lake, and the sixth on Route 12. None of the others received economic incentives when they were built, so it’s subjective for Thornton’s to get incentives.
What was the biggest accomplishment of the board in the past year?
The Village board has been there to back many socials events in Fox Lake, such as the Illinois Special Olympics’ Polar Plunge, the Mayor’s 5K Challenge and many other great events. These events give the people of Fox Lake a sense of community and additionally give back to the local business by increased revenue.
Why should voters elect you to office?
Fox Lake is a community where the majority of our residents value a small-town atmosphere. Our success as a village depends on our elected officials who always have the best interest of the community at the heart of their decisions, and employees and volunteers from the community working together so that Fox Lake operates efficiently. This is especially important in these economically challenging times. The position of a village clerk is a vital position as he or she has to be responsible, accurate, a good communicator and must adhere to strict deadlines. I believe my employment during the past decade as an office manager and my time volunteering for many local organizations has given me the experience that would allow me to excel as a public servant.
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Jerald Darlington Jr.