Pride in River Forest slate has the skills to move the village forward

Opinion: Columns

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Kevin Hanley

River Forest Village President John Rigas recently gave his State of the Village report. Two of the issues raised are of extreme importance to the Pride in River Forest (PRF) team.

First, President Rigas explained how efficient and transparent the village has become over the past four years with the cooperation of the current village management team. This is an important issue we vow to continue if elected. Last week, trustee candidate Tom Cargie sent a widely distributed email alleging the village has been less than transparent and insular, citing the approval process of the village's red light cameras.

The eventual 4-1 passage, with Trustee Cathy Adduci recusing herself due to a conflict with her husband's lobbying firm representing one of the bidders, was predicated by the recommendations of current Police Chief Gregory Weiss and the previous two police chiefs, a unanimous recommendation from the police committee, and discussions at no less than six village board meetings (minutes and audio files are located on the village's website). The entire process took 44 months.

If there was ever a question about whether red light cameras were for safety, the video that President Rigas showed during his presentation of the two pedestrians getting hit at two locations where the cameras have been installed should allow our opposition to realize that they should start focusing on issues going forward instead of looking backward.

Second, President Rigas highlighted the challenges that lie ahead for the Village of River Forest, including a projected budget deficit in two short years. We are running together because we believe we are the most qualified candidates to confront these challenges. Tom Dwyer Jr. is an attorney and CPA and highly qualified to review budgets and make financial recommendations. I have worked in the financial services field for 16 years and I am currently chairman of the Old St. Patrick's Church Finance Council. I also serve on Trinity High School's Finance Council and chair the budget committee for St. Luke Parish. While the budgeting process going forward will be a challenge, I believe you could not ask for better candidates to address this concern.

Finally, to enhance the transparency and communication that the village has implemented, trustee candidate Lissa Druss Christman has been a communications professional for 24 years. She works for one of Chicago's premier communications firms and helps clients navigate through very tough challenges while always looking forward. Our village will face some of those same challenges that Lissa has managed.

While I can tell you how qualified we are, I encourage residents to use the Internet to research all the candidates.

The PRF individual skills, combined with presidential candidate Mike Gibbs' village trustee experience and business leadership, will provide our village with the team that is needed to navigate our future challenges.

I am proud to be part of this team and on behalf of this team, I ask for your vote.

Reader Comments

5 Comments - Add Your Comment

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Jim from RF  

Posted: March 21st, 2013 6:48 AM

Hanley Resigns from Trustee Race Cites Personal Conflict with Presidential Candidate as Reason - as well as concern for spending time away from his kids and wife. However, as another poster noted, this WJ piece looks like it was written for a few others 4 years ago by Rigas? What is going on - and who is telling River Forest a Lie?

Tim Hanley from Chicago  

Posted: March 21st, 2013 2:37 AM

Being a lifer has nothing to do with the issues brought forth! Having INTEGRITY is what candidates should be about! Certain candidates, within RF, as well as communities throughout, will do what it takes to win. Deception and crooked politics need to go away.Villagers deserve to have those wanting to represent them to do so with fair & equal representation. Being an elected official should always be about "for the people" and not "pocketbooks". Values, ethics and integrity should prevail!

Curious Voter from River Forest  

Posted: March 20th, 2013 10:47 PM

one more thing, this brings us back to the question of: River Forest-Who should we trust?

Curious Voter from River Forest  

Posted: March 20th, 2013 10:42 PM

so let me get this straight, on the same day this opinion letter hits the news, its author resigns from the GIBBS slate? someone needs to get control of the troops.

RF Achievement  

Posted: March 20th, 2013 9:27 PM

Sorry you got sucked in. You seem like a nice guy - but you have no idea. Really - politics and ideas are more than saying you will work hard and that you are a lifer in RF Furthermore if you really had ideas - where are they. This sounds like something that was written years ago and just placed your name in it. Not only do you not have the experience needed to deal with these issues - you have been compromised by mike Gibbs.

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