The results of the election for chairman of the Madison County Board will have serious consequences for the future of our county. At stake is providing our citizens with responsible policies and services that they expect and deserve, and which form the basis for the economic growth the county is currently experiencing.
I am proud of the fact that every year since becoming chairman, I have submitted a balanced budget and have kept Madison County 100 percent debt free. That responsible management has enabled the county to earn an outstanding credit rating, another way we are working to save taxpayers money.
Importantly, Madison County is operated in an open and transparent manner. To ensure transparency, I directed that all county financial transactions, including the “checkbook,” the record of all spending, be put on the county’s website. As a result of those actions, the county has received an A+ rating for transparency from independent ethics watchdogs.
As chairman, I understand the burden of property taxes on our residents and have worked to lessen that obligation by lowering the county’s portion of the property tax rate, collecting fewer tax dollars this year than four years ago, without cutting services our residents expect and deserve. I have advocated at the state and local level for tax relief in Illinois and will continue to do so.
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New jobs for Madison County residents continue to be one of my top priorities. The progressive approach the county adopted has resulted in the creation of more than 6,500 jobs in recent years with hundreds of new jobs opening on a regular basis. Recently, I was proud be heavily involved in the successful effort to bring two major Amazon distribution centers and the Prairie Farms corporate headquarters to Madison County, two excellent examples of positive economic growth and jobs for our residents. It is also critical that we preserve existing jobs for the hard-working men and women of our county. As chairman, I will always fight to save these jobs.
As Madison County continues to grow in order to support the needs and demands of its residents, it is not the time for the obstructionist and financially irresponsible positions advocated by my opponent. In particular, I will continue to support strong law enforcement and public safety programs that protect our residents. It is the time to envision a future for the county of continued economic development, steady increases in job growth, doing what can be done to improve the quality of life for every resident, and plan accordingly.
At this critical time in the proud history of Madison County, it is important to elect a chairman who works for every citizen of our county. I believe it is the responsibility of elected officials to work for our citizens, not a political party. I have managed Madison County in a truly bipartisan manner and will work in a responsible, transparent and accountable manner on behalf of all county residents.