Helene Connolly

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Below are candidate-submitted answers to a biographical survey Wednesday Journal sent out to all candidates running in this year's elections.

Previous political experience: none

Previous community experience:  

chair of the River Forest mental health committee for 20 years.

Township trustee July 2015-now

Occupation: Emergency Physician 

Education: medical school University of Wisconsin, Madison 

What is the value of township government in the 21st century? What can it provide that a municipal government can't?

The twenty first century has seen a tightening budget making availability of human services more fragile than ever before.  The need for the township has never been greater as we try to do more for our residents with less government support than ever.     It is imperative to have a group of people who are dedicated only to supporting human services to our residents.  And not have our activities diluted with other competing needs.  

Are there any ways to share providing services with village government? If so, what might those be? If not, why not?

I would not be against collaboration with village government.  We work together on various issues with good success.  But our focus is different and I would not like to see our budget fall under the village.  It is a safeguard to all our residents that we work independently and solely for the purpose of providing mental health , youth services, senior services and tax support to our residents.

The township presently contracts out services youth programming, senior services and mental health services to Oak Park Township. Are there other services the township can purchase? Should River Forest take more of those service in house? 

We work closely with Oak Park Township and are lucky to have such a good relationship.  Many of our issues are similar and avoiding duplication of services  when possible is important.    I think we have come to a good balance with them.

What are the other important issues facing township government in the coming years and how would you like to see the township board address them?

We have recently started a needs assessment and are hoping to get a large sampling of our population to answer this very question.  We think we know some of the issues but hope to gain knowledge of unmet needs in the community.  

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Answer Book 2017

To view the full print edition of the Wednesday Journal 2017 Answer Book, please click here.

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