Policing & Crime
The Village Board needs to support our Police in working to reduce the trend of rising crime. Our Police are an invaluable asset to Oak Park and should be viewed as partners in ensuring that our policing is proper and respects the dignity of all people.
Efforts by many to Defund/Abolish the Police, while misrepresenting and vilifying police work are misguided and are detrimental to the health of Oak Park.
Levies & Budgets
Elected officials must understand the enormous and unsustainable tax burden in Oak park. Furthermore, taxpayers deserve the certainty that their tax bills will not rise unpredictably and disproportionately on an annual basis.
Early in my term, I helped lead in the passage in a policy that capped levy increases to 3%. Fiscal restraint will never happen unless it is prioritized with a policy like this one.
Oak Park Voter Turnout
While Oak Park voters have high participation in National elections (80%+), turnout in April Municipal elections is typically less than 1/3 of National elections.
The consequence is that voters who vote in municipal races have an outsized influence on who represents Oak Park at the local level.
April 2019 Municipal Election
In the 2019 Oak Park Municipal election, less than 9,000 ballots were cast. This resulted in the third-place candidate getting support from fewer than 8% of registered voters.
Absent greater turnout, the majority of Oak Parkers will be represented by elected officials who receive support from under 10% of registered voters. This is not representative democracy.
Levy, Inflation and Home Values
Oak Park’s six taxing bodies levy approximately $200 million annually from Oak Park taxpayers. This is an amount that has increased by over 125% in 20 years. Compared to inflation and Oak Park home value appreciation, this increase is egregious.
It is imperative that elected officials acknowledge this unsustainable situation and understand the inverse relationship between home values and tax burden.