"All politics is local" and "The closer to home, the greater the impact on your pocketbook" are two truisms in politics.
The candidates in local elections affect how much you pay in taxes, and what you get for your money, more than candidates in Springfield and Washington, D.C.
So who are these folks who will impact your life and money? Find out here.
Dick Sayad, candidate for Des Plaines 4th Ward Alderman.
1) ) How would you assess the state of the city’s budget?
I believe that there is still room to improve the city’s budget. We must control spending, streamline government and live within our means. We must “prioritize” spending and end the “no bid” contracts.
2) If expenses need to be reduced, exactly what would you cut? Be specific.
I would review all city-funded programs and determine their needs and costs. We cannot continue spending without having them accountable and have positive results. While I am business friendly, we must made sure we are getting the best bang for our buck. This can stop wasting taxpayer’s money.
3) If more revenue needs to be raised, exactly what would you propose? Be specific.
For the first time in history, Des Plaines will have access to casino revenues. With that in mind, I would find it very hard to raise any resident’s fees or taxes without looking first to utilizing that casino revenue. In fact in the future, I hope we can use casino revenues to give the tax payer a break.
4) What, if anything, does the city need to do to adequately fund police and fire pensions?
Obviously we are going to have to better fund our police and fire pension obligations, but we should also push for some “oversight” representation as to how the funds actually invest the monies contributed.
5) Does the city need to start or intensify economic development efforts? What specific ideas do you have to foster economic development?
Absolutely, the city needs to intensify its economic development efforts. We are the only city in our area that I know that no longer has a dedicated economic development director. Other communities that do will pass us by. Now is the time to get ahead of the curve and be proactive in recruiting development to Des Plaines.
6) If the state of Illinois succeeds in re-establishing the capital bill, would you support video gaming in this city?
I would not support it. Video gaming would only cut into Des Plaines casino revenue.
7) Briefly tell us what, in your background or education, has prepared you to make a contribution on this board. Can you offer an expertise that would be a resource to other board members?
My experience as a successful business man and former council member give me a strong background to contribute to Des Plaines future. My past budget experience, both on the council and as Chair of the Budget Committee, and in the private sector, can help streamline government and control costs and be a resource for reaching common ground with fellow council members for the good of the city.
8) How would you assess the public services the city offers residents, including police, fire, trash pickup, snow removal, responsiveness of village hall, etc.? What needs to be improved? Are residents getting adequate value for their tax dollar?
Overall the city does a good job of providing public services to its residents. There is always room for improvement. I would continue to monitor police and fire overtime. I would look into some aspects of the leaf-pick up program. I would especially look at the building department. I believe there is room for improvement there in communication and service. WE MUST make the process user and builder friendly which it is not. Ands lastly make city employees realize that we are a service business and the tax payers are our clients. And that great service for tax payers is a must across the board!
9) What else would you like voters to know about your positions on issues or point of view?
I want the voters of the 4th Ward to knows that I pledge to be their voice in city hall. I will hold the line on spending, streamline government and stop “no bid” contracts. I will work to keep Des Plaines a great place to live, work, and raise a family, now and in to the future.