We’re going to be sad to see Bob Tucker step down from Oak Park’s village board when his second term expires in the spring. He’s been a strong and effective public servant these almost eight years. But we’re supportive of the part of his reasoning which ties to the public benefit of elected officials stepping away after two terms in office.
Being elected to the school board, park board or village board is not intended to be a life’s work. You come forward, do your best, and then step away so others might serve. In Oak Park, the unwritten tradition is a self-imposed limit of two terms and it works. Tucker, we suspect, wrestled with the issue and we wrestled, too, as we have a worry that in our divided moment, in a time when there is inevitably fair concern over property tax levels, that Oak Park will have a preponderance of candidates next spring focused solely on taxes.
While every elected official needs to get religion on tax saturation, it isn’t so simple as just opposing every spending initiative. The issues of local government are complex and we need elected officials who see the nuance.
Tucker has also been a trustee who advocated for our village’s long-held progressive values of equity and inclusion, ideals that might get lost if the bottom line is the only line.