Candidate Questionnaire from March 16, 2017: Elgin City Council – TERRY GAVIN

Categories: Elections,Questionnaire

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Elgin City Council

1.  Why are you seeking this position?

The main reason I’m seeking another term on the Elgin City Council is to continue the success that we’ve experienced over the past four years. Having served one term in the 1990s and coming back to serve this term has given me a singularly unique perspective, showing me just how far our city has progressed. We have risen from the ashes, like the Phoenix of ancient mythology. I love being a citizen-advocate and feel that my primary role as a public servant is to solve problems, both big and small. I also enjoy working with anyone and everyone who wants to make our city a better place. Listening to the opinions of others, whether you agree with them or not, is perhaps the sincerest form of respect. I’m willing to listen to ideas.

2.  What experience and background do you have which qualifies you for this position?

Well, I have eight years of on-the-job training, a significant portion of that time working with city budgets, which I consider the most important job of an elected representative. Those eight years have been spent working closely with fellow council members and city staff. My principal objective has never changed. It is and has been building a winning organization—an organizationfocused on the needs of our citizens, providing them with high quality core services, among other things, in the most cost-effective manner possible. Balancing those needs is a function of listening to citizens and engaging with them, individually, as well as in small groups and at larger neighborhood meetings. I have done this throughout my eight years on council.

3.  What will be your greatest challenge if elected?

My biggest challenge, the city’s biggest challenge, will be trying to regulate the cost of providing quality core services. I say this based on my experience with the collective bargaining agreements that the city enters into with our employees’ unions. While maintaining first-class core services inherently involves spending tax dollars, doing so certainly is in the best interest of our city, as long as there’s due diligence and consideration given to our return on investment. My answer to that challenge over the last four years has been increased and professional economic development. This formula has worked and Elgin has become only one of four communities statewide to have grown economically over the past two years.

Release for publication? YES

I will attend the forum? YES

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