David Brown: Candidate Profile
Name: David J. Brown
Office sought: Kane Count Board, District 10
Family: Married, five children
Occupation: Estimator-/ Project Manager, Builders Concrete Services
Education: Batavia High School graduate
Civic involvement: Volunteer Batavia Main Street, Batavia Streetscape committee, Access Toy Drive, Former volunteer for Flag Day Memorial, Committee for 60 year "Skaters on the Pond" Saturday Evening Post Cover
Previous elected offices held: 22 Years as Alderman 7th Ward, City Of Batavia
Facebook: Dave Brown For Office
Questions and Answers
1. Why are you running for this office, whether for reelection or election for the first time? Is there a particular issue that motivates you? If so, what?
Batavia is the fifth largest city in Kane County and there is no one currently on the board who lives in Batavia. I feel Batavia would benefit with a lifelong resident serving on the board.
One issue that concerns me is the dangerous intersection of Route 31 and Fabyan Parkway. I want to see the implementation of plans that are being discussed and the completion of construction for the much needed improvement. I would also like to see the continued maintenance of the county's infrastructure and forest preserves.
2. If you are an incumbent, describe your main contributions. Tell us of any important initiatives you've led. If you are a challenger, what would you bring to the board and what would your priority be?
Some of my main contributions to the city of Batavia during my tenure include implementation of a successful streetscape project which included the redesign of River Street and Houston Street, upgrading and improving the waste water treatment plant, and creating a balanced budget while providing the lowest tax rate in the area.
I would be bringing 22 years of experience as an alderman in Batavia where we always delivered a balanced budget while maintaining one of the lowest tax rates in the entire area. As an alderman I was involved in numerous zoning, annexation and land planning decisions. As a small-business owner I needed to be goal-oriented, budget-minded, proactive and resourceful. I feel that all of these skills will positively affect my decision making on the board. My priority would be to work cooperatively with other board members so we can make the best decisions for North Aurora, Batavia and the rest of Kane County.
3. Describe your position regarding the balance between county spending and revenues as it exists today, then describe the chief threats you see looming in the future and how the county should deal with them. In particular in the suburbs, President Preckwinkle has set a goal of eliminating unincorporated areas from county oversight. Do you agree with this approach? If so, how should the county go about it?
Like it or not, county spending does increase due to the cost of living and other costs beyond our control. A lot of our revenue comes from our share of taxes distributed through the state and federal government. We need to work closely with our state legislators to make sure they don't cut back on what is the county's and local municipalities' fair share.
I intend to support Sheriff Hain's public safety reforms, e.g. drug rehabilitation, responsible jail diversion programs, electronic monitoring for nonviolent offenders, and post-incarceration job opportunities.
Cooperation, rather than friction, with fellow board members facilitates finding "efficiencies" that we can implement, e.g. appropriate personnel levels, health care insurance, unnecessary negotiated legal settlements, etc.
4. How do you rate the county government on transparency and the public's access to records? If you consider it adequate, please explain why. If you think improvements are needed, please describe them and why they are important.
With the county's website and Auditor Terry Hunt's OpenGov.org (and its update), the public has access to all the public meeting agendas, minutes, audio recordings, budgets, and all public records. Kane County has led the way in total financial transparency with every cent collected and spent disclosed on the internet. Additionally, all appointments to commissions and advisory groups are open to public information and participation.
5. What, if anything, should be done to improve automation and customer service in county offices? What steps should be taken to make that happen?
I intend to continue support for I.T. Director Roger Fahnestock and his department's work to automate the court system, protection of county data from cybersecurity hacking, voting process security, etc.
In addition, if elected, I would be willing to take any suggestions from the residents and county staff and work cooperatively to make any improvement.