James Kearns





Bachelor's Degree, Agri Business, Illinois State University

Owner of Nutri Life Pet Products, Self Employed

Married, Dacia L Kearns

Erika Kearns, 53

Jennifer M. Kearns, 23

Ryan Kearns, 22

On the Record

What experiences do you have that make you a good candidate for office?

I have been a lifelong resident of Huntley. In 1984 I graduated from Illinois State University with Bachelor of Science in Agri Business. 26 years ago I married my high school sweetheart Dacia, and we moved to our current home and raised our three children, Erika, Jennifer, and, Ryan. I worked 5 years for Dean Foods Transportation as the Driver Relations Manager overseeing 300 drivers. In 1986 I also started my own pet supply distribution company in my garage and it grew to service a 3 state area with 30 employees. After starting my current pet food manufacturing company called Nutri Life Pet Products; I sold the original Pet Supply distribution company in 2006. I continue today as the owner of Nutri Life Pet Products; a holistic pet food distributed to the independent pet retail through a multi state distribution network. I know how to manage a business and stay within a budget. I know how to negotiate in good faith to get the job done. My friends and competitors consider me to be a practical hardworking person of high moral integrity and a person who honors and keeps all agreements. I am a leader who can work with anyone and can restore Grafton Township’s financial and moral integrity.

What are your top two or three priorities if elected?

My top priority is to complete the forensic audit for all past and incomplete audits. It is important that Grafton Township have an accurate accounting for the new upcoming budget year. Grafton Township cannot continue to function or even exist under the current administration’s inability or desire to account for accurate financial information needed to run the day to day operations of the township. We must have a supervisor and board that will work together with total transparency. Another top priority will be to end all of the senseless spending on lawsuits between the Supervisor, Trustees, Road district, and Assessor. These current lawsuits have cost Grafton Township taxpayers somewhere between $500,000 and $800,000; (depending which official you listen to) and could have been avoided if they would just work together to solve their differences. The meetings have been anything but civil. It has been wrong from all sides and the current Supervisor has provided no leadership to end or prevent these legal fees. Grafton Township now finds itself unable to pay the remaining current year bills until the new fiscal year tax revenues arrive in June unless they borrow from the road district or bank. The Grafton Road district has agreed to lend the Township $110,000 which will pay bills until mid March (according to the supervisor). No one really knows how much is needed because they have no cost projections! Most banks won’t lend money unless an updated audit is on file. Grafton doesn’t have any audits done in recent years. Grafton Township officers have spent the township into near bankruptcy on legal fees. My third priority will be not to cut any existing programs and expand on them after we correct the budget problems.

Would you support freezing your taxing district\\\'s levy until housing prices rebound? Why or why not?

I would support freezing the tax levy only when Grafton Township has completed all audits and knows where it stands financially. I am a fiscally responsible conservative and want to lower taxes and cost if possible. I won’t make a promise before the true financial health of Grafton Township is known. Today they are unable to pay the bills. Is that fiscally responsible?

What one decision by the township board do you most disagree with and why?

I would most disagree with the township board’s decision to keep suing each other instead of providing the leadership to work out their problems without lawyers. The Supervisor and Trustees have only accomplished financial devastation of the taxpayer’s money in the Town fund. Due to such waste the Township can no longer pay the bills.

What was the biggest accomplishment of the board in the past year?

The board has accomplished little other than spend the taxpayers money on legal fees. Supervisor included. I call it as I see it.

Why should voters elect you to office?

I would like to be elected to the Grafton Township Supervisor office because I want to fix the problems and I will provide the leadership to end the lawsuits; balance the budget without having to make unnecessary cuts in services. In fact, I feel Grafton Township can expand some services such as busing and senior programs after the legal fees stop and the audits are complete. There will be a financial catch up period for 2013 since the township will begin the new fiscal year $300,000 in the hole due to the mismanagement and lawsuits. I will install a purchase order procedure for all town purchases to control cost. I call it as I see it and will run the office with common sense and transparency. I am running as the independent candidate for Grafton Township supervisor along with my fellow Independent candidates ; Tim Hoeft-Road Commissioner; Terra Jensen- Assessor; Joe Holtorf, Tammy Lueth, and Dan Ziller Jr. as Trustees. Please vote for us on April 9, 2013