A Cahokia school board member is jumping into the race for state Senate.
Christopher Belt, a Democrat, announced Thursday he is running for the seat held by James Clayborne, D-Belleville.
Clayborne announced earlier this year he is not seeking re-election.
Belt worked for 16 years for St. Clair County Probation and Detention Department and two years as the state’s regional deputy administrator of aftercare (formerly known as juvenile parole) for the central and southern regions of Illinois.
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He is currently the Cahokia District 187 school board president.
Belt said the issues he wants to work on are fair funding for quality education, safe neighborhoods and communities, dependable jobs, and access to affordable and exceptional health care.
“I want to go to Springfield to represent these issues for my community and I am prepared to work hard and work with integrity to build relationships across the aisle in the hopes of creating a more vigorous local economy that will create a stronger and vibrant Illinois,” Belt said.
Belt also has served as a precinct committeeman, and has written a children’s book, The Adventures of Nate the Gnat.
No other Democrat has announced a run for the seat.
The only Republican so far to announce a candidacy for the seat is Belleville resident Tanya Hildenbrand.