Candidate profile: Matthew Chapman

Name: Matthew Chapman

Age: 43

Immediate family members: Laine (12) and Sophia (9).

Town: Glen Carbon

Office seeking: Edwardsville Township Trustee

Occupation: Attorney

Previous and current elected offices and terms served: No prior elected government office.

Why are you running? I have lived in Glen Carbon for 17 years and my family has enjoyed what the community has to offer - its parks, the schools, local businesses, and community events. I feel like it is time for me to give back and pitch in to continue to provide top notch government service as a trustee for Edwardsville Township.

What is your view on township government and its role? Township government is the oldest form of government still being used in our country, existing since the 1600's. It can be an efficient example of small, responsive government with a limited role, limited staff, and limited budget. In Edwardsville, our township has successfully avoided duplication of services and kept taxes low, while fulfilling its responsibility to maintain roadways and the Township park, assessing property, and handling general assistance to the disadvantaged.

If you were writing a job description for the position you’re seeking, what would it say? A member of the Township Board of Trustees will have the responsibility to establish policies for the township to follow regarding the provision of general services such as road maintenance, environmental protection, recreation, land use planning, and general assistance. In addition, the Trustees are responsible for certifying tax levies and approving all legally incurred bills. Persons interested in this position should be energetic, fiscally responsible, enjoy working with others, and, above all else, hold the best interests of Edwardsville Township dear to their heart.

What is the most important issue facing Edwardsville Township? How would you approach it? The most important issue facing Edwardsville Township is the task of continuing the good stewardship of our wonderful park, highways and roads, and social services while keeping taxes low. As a trustee, I would work to keep the tax levy reasonable, identify services that can be performed at a lower cost, and look for new programs that can further enrich our Township.

Why should people vote for you? I think the people that know me best would say that I have a proven record in my career of always being prepared, being very detail oriented, and having compassion for others. I attended public elementary and high schools, a junior college, a four year university, and a private law school. I financed my education on my own with the help of the Illinois Air National Guard, where I served for six years as a munitions systems specialist in charge of building, transporting, and loading bombs, missiles, and ammunition for F-16 fighter aircraft. In my legal career, I gained knowledge of municipal government. Finally, and most importantly, I, like the voters, love our community and will try to what's best for the Township.