No one issue can be separated from another if we are to look at Lake County as a whole.
Just as the human body suffers an injury, mentally or physically, that pain manifests itself in the whole body.
That is why I propose to stand firmly to ensure these issues are addressed in a proactive manner through SMART & STRATEGIC DECISION MAKING.
Government & Transparency
I believe the job of a public servant is to keep the voters up to date through public forums and bi-weekly email updates. These forums and emails should include, but are not limited to: information about county budgeting, how to appeal real estate taxes, forest preserve activities in their own backyard, and my availability to the voters.
I believe it is also the job of a public servant to meet and listen to the voters and to direct voters to resources that can further assist them.
I also believe the Lake County Finance Committee should make itself accessible through televised and captioned video so all residents of Lake County are further educated on how their tax dollars are being used on the county level.
Transportation and the Environment
District 17 exists in an area realtors refer to as the “Dead Zone”. District 17, located in the furthest southwest portion of Lake County lacks access to trains, the tollways, safe walkways and bicycle trails.
Our real estate values are suffering because of this especially because several large corporations have left this district and gone to Chicago where the public transportation infrastructure is easily available.
Environmentally speaking, we need to research and collaborate with various groups to bring electric train service to our district, improve our existing roads, and connect our bicycle trails so that our communities can flourish together.
With regard to our forest preserves and open space, I believe we need to protect these precious areas because:
- many of our forest preserves serve as natural retention ponds when there are torrential rains.
- our forest preserves serve as a healthy way for our residents to get out and enjoy the nature of Lake County.
- we can still implement more low to no cost programs within our forest preserves; such as children’s vegetable gardens, after-school activities, community activities – to name a few.
Mental Health, the Opioid Epidemic and Recidivism
When an individual is rushed to the emergency department because of an overdose or a self-inflicted injury such as cutting – it is not enough for a hospital to treat the injury and then release the individual at their most vulnerable point.
Rather than limit emergency department services to medical stabilization; medical and mental therapies and other emergency health interventions, such as providing naloxone to opioid users, recovery advocacy, and treatment linkage should begin immediately.
These quick public health response strategies are logical, improve long-term treatment outcomes, and reduce the risk of death.
Furthermore, we need to bolster the Lake County court system’s specialty courts by enhancing critical care services for specialty court programs such as Mental Health Court, Drug Court, and Veterans Court. By providing evidence-based and high-quality care inside these essential programs, we can rehabilitate and educate individuals caught up in the system reducing recidivism rates and
Improving and expanding these programs will cost taxpayers less money, create safer communities and put citizens on track towards recovery.
I believe that it is the job of the public servant to ensure tax dollars are being used prudently through Smart and S
To save on energy costs, our county buildings should have an energy savings plan. Our county vehicles and trucks should operate on lower cost diesel fuel, natural gas, and/or be powered by electricity.
Car allowances for appointed county officials should be eliminated. Reimbursement should be made for documented county business only.
RFP’s for contractual services must be made public and discussed openly in each respective committee, then brought to the County Board for a full vote – so that the potential tax dollar amount is fully vetted and services
Tax levies must be controlled and apportioned to the real estate market value.
Jobs and the Environment
There is scientific evidence that global warming is happening at a faster rate than
In addition to having our own county buildings, cars and trucks on an energy plan, Lake County needs to continue to work in collaboration with the College of Lake County to prepare students for new work opportunities in the green sector.
If we want Lake County to be viable and sustainable for our children and grandchildren, we can reduce our carbon footprint and save taxes by implementing some of the following:
- Encourage farmers to produce enough food to feed Lake County and surrounding counties. This, in turn, provides jobs from land farming and hydro-farming, distribution, recycling, and composting.
- Students need to be trained in wind farm technology and solar energy, as both of these are on the rise for both residential and business use.