Terry Wilke: 2022 candidate for Illinois House 62nd District
Office sought: Illinois House 62nd District
City: Round Lake Beach
Occupation: County Board Member
Previous offices held: Lake County Board, Township Supervisor
Q: How well did the Illinois government respond to the COVID-19 crisis? What do you think should be done differently?
Yes, I think that given the much worse outcomes of nearby states that did not enact the same timely protective measures as did Illinois we can say those measures were lifesaving to many people. Of course hindsight is 20/20 however we could have taken the reports coming out of china more seriously sooner.
Q: What are the most important components that should be included in legislative ethics reform? What will you do to help them come to pass?
Lobbying reforms, a truly independent Legislative Inspector General, campaign finance reform. These are part of my platform so I will be working on these issues from day one.
Q: What should the state do to address the still-growing problems with its key pension programs?
The main problem with Illinois pensions is that the bills haven't been paid for years. So the very first thing that should happen is that the pension bills should be paid in full every year from now on. This will keep the problem from getting worse while that debt is paid down but it will also keep us from ever falling in to this hole again.
Q: Describe at least two circumstances in which you have shown or would show a willingness to act independently of the direction or demands of party leadership.
On the Lake County Board I pushed hard for a new Energy and Environmental committee, which was thankfully granted. While chairing that committee I pushed through a resolution for a new position at the County known as the Sustainability Coordinator.
Q: What should lawmakers be doing to stem out-migration from Illinois?
To the extent that out-migration is a problem that public policy can or should address. I believe that the easiest fix is to make the standard of living higher in Illinois than in other areas of the county. We can do this with things like universal health care, free college tuition for in-state residents and correcting our regressive taxation.
Q: Do you believe climate change is caused by human activity? What steps should government be taking to address the issue?
Yes, Absolutely. We need to move away from fossil fuels as quickly as possible. That means many more electric vehicles and homes and building that don't burn gas for heat but it also means that we need much more investment in clean renewable energy sources.
Q: The graduated income tax is designed with the intent to reduce taxes for 97 percent of Illinoisans. Do you believe that will happen? Why or why not? What assurances can you offer voters?
My sincere hope is that it will happen. It is the most important way that we can make taxation in Illinois more equitable. None can realistically guarantee where any single person would fall once a new income tax schedule is released but we can be assured that a graduated tax will be more fair overall from the start and if it isn't perfect it can always be adjusted from year to year.