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Chris Lauzen: No Misinformation in Geneva's 7.4% 2011-12 Budget Increase

Letter to the Editor: Kane County Board chairman candidate Chris Lauzen says "actions speak louder than words" in comparison of his GOP opponent, Geneva Mayor Kevin Burns.

ln response to Kevin Burns’ "condemnation" of my analysis of the contradiction between his hypothetical pledge to submit a zero-growth budget at the county and his actual recent approval of a 7.4 percent increase in his city’s 2011-2012 budget, l believe that most people believe the adage that “actions speak louder than words.” 

The single most important number out of volumes of budget proposals is the 7.4 percent increase (at least twice the cost of living), found on Page 13 of the Geneva City Budget, “Budget Totals: The proposed Budget for FY 2011-12, including all expenditures and transfers, totals $71,760,310. This represents a  increase from the FY 2010-11 Budget.”

Frankly, this could not be more clear—his budget, his number, no need to condemn me. 

There is no misinformation nor manipulation of information regarding tax levies. These accurate and official historical statistics come directly from the Kane County Treasurer’s Office ... open for anyone’s inspection and verification. Even if a “24 percent inflation increase” was a larger number than the 46 percent historical budget increase, many of my senior constituents would remind my opponent that seniors have received 0 percent increase (they’d say "zero, zilch, nada, nothing ... you know) for the past two years in their Social Security. They do not take inflation for granted. 

Even if a “15 percent growth in population” (i.e. 22,000 divided by 19,000 people from my opponent’s press release) was a larger number than historical budget increase, property taxpayers would raise their voices legitimately complaining, “My property value is going down, why do my property taxes continue to go up?" They feel that they deserve better. 

I can understand my opponent’s distress when he is confronted with facts from third-party sources (Kane County Treasurer Office and 2011-12 Geneva Budget) that the actual record of levy taxation and budget totals don’t support his press release pledge. 

Contrary to what my opponent said in another press release just last week about Jim Mitchell and this year’s county budget, this week the current County Board chairman announced that she anticipates a zero-grovvth budget for this year which hopefully will be reflected in a county property tax levy freeze ... which is the first priority of my campaign and offer to serve. 

Consistent with my “code of conduct” (to which my opponent has not yet subscribed), I have demonstrated my commitment to fiscal responsibility by successfully sponsoring the “pay cut for po|iticians” in Springfield. l passed a 5 percent decrease in pay for the members of the General Assembly; it was supported in the House. Gov. Quinn vetoed the legislation, and we overrode his veto in the Senate and House. The pay cut has been in effect for two years.

Chris Lauzen
state senator,
Republican candidate for Kane County Board chairman 

 

Editor's note: Geneva Mayor Kevin Burns is facing state Sen. Chris Lauzen in the race for the Republican nomination for Kane County Board chairman. Former Carpentersville Village President Bill Sarto announced Wednesday that he would be seeking the Democratic nomination. All comments regarding election articles are required to contain a full, varifiable user name and must comply with Patch's Terms of Use.

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