I urge all citizens of Oak Park to vote "Yes" on April 5 for the referendum to renew our parks. Past park district boards have not asked for a tax rate increase in more than 35 years. We are now in a crisis mode with years of infrastructure work to address. Imagine what your home would look like if you kept patching the roof for 35 years instead of replacing it when needed.
I am writing to ask your support for the Renew Our Parks referendum that will appear on the ballot this April 5. Your support of this referendum would allow the Park District of Oak Park to raise an additional $2.9 million annually to support the maintenance of the park facilities that are so much a part of our lives and the lives of our children.
The park district needs us to support the referendum in the April election. There is a compelling need to improve our park facilities, but the park district does not have the financial resources to do so. They do, however, have a solid five-year Capital Improvement Plan to make the needed improvements.
Thanks to Ms. Mary Shiffer for her One View ("Before voting on park referendum, consider how OP could think outside the box," March 9). I contacted Park District Director Mr. Gary Balling in January because I wanted to find out what my estimated increase to my taxes would be if the 25 cent referendum passed.
I support the candidacy of Dee Millard for school board in District 200. In a time of uneasiness between faculty, administration, parents and the board, Dee is a voice of reason and balance. She can be relied upon to balance the important economic concerns of the taxpayers with the interests of a rich program at the high school that will serve all of our students.
The District 200 Board of Education needs proven leaders who believe in solid education and fiscal responsibility. The board currently has such a leader, Paul Wolfman, and I enthusiastically endorse him for reelection. We need to retain Paul, his commitment to our community, and his Board of Education experience.
John Rigas, Paul Wolfman, Valerie Fisher and Jacques Conway are the best candidates to serve Oak Park and River Forest on the District 200 School Board. Their experience, individually and collectively, is too valuable for our communities to lose.
Oak Park voters need to elect David Pope because he will make an excellent village president, and because his independent campaign victory will send a very important and strong message that Oak Park wants good governance from all of our elected boards and not us-them partisanship.
Geoff Baker brings strength to the New Leadership Party slate. I have known him as a thoughtful parent, a hard-working community member and a creative problem solver. Geoff thoughtfully engages in generating solutions to difficult issues. His experiences as an intellectual property trial attorney help him to suggest options that embrace multiple perspectives.