Michael Standard is another candidate running for the McHenry County Board in District 6. Below are his answers to the Alliance for Land, Agriculture and Water Questionnaire:
ALAW County Board Candidates Survey: 2012 Primary Election
A. Land Use
1. Do you agree that new development should be located where infrastructure exists, to minimize the extension of new roads, utilities and services, and protect farmland and water recharge areas? yes
2. If elected, will you support permanent protection of agricultural land and the agricultural industry in the County? yes
3. Do you agree or disagree that new rural development costs more for the extension of infrastructure (roads, water, sewer and services) than it brings to the County in taxes and that those extra costs are passed on to the existing taxpayers? agree
B. Water Resources
1. Would you oppose any land use change that would exceed a locally recharged aquifer’s capacity? yes
2. If elected will you enforce use of the SARA – Sensitive Aquifer Recharge Areas map developed by the County Water Resources Department, as a determining factor in every land use change decision? yes
3. Do you support redistributing groundwater from water-rich areas to areas that have over drawn their groundwater? no
4. In your opinion, will McHenry County be able to get Lake Michigan water? no
C. The Role of County Government
1. Should the county provide support services to municipal governments, for example issuing and enforcing municipal building permits, administering and enforcing the Storm Water ordinance? no
2. Do you support a county housing program where the county purchases, constructs, remodels, rents, sells homes throughout the county and in municipalities? no
3. Do you support a county bus program, where the county takes over responsibility for established service between select cities and townships? no
4. Should the county health department report to the county board as opposed to an independent board of directors? yes
5. Do you think county government should increase expenditures and the scope of its activities, which will increase taxes to its residents? no
D. Transparency and Commitment
1. County board records indicate that the average number of meetings necessary for attendance by a County Board Member is 8. This includes two full board meetings a month and two meetings a month for each committee (generally three) the member is assigned. Are you able and willing to make the commitment to represent your constituents to this extent? yes
2. During the last primary election 32 candidates for county offices voluntarily filled out the ALAW initiated Statement of Economic Interests BEFORE the election. This form is now required once you are elected, but we need to know before we elect you. Will you follow suit and file yours with us now? (Form attached with mailing instructions.) yes
3. Do you agree that all scheduled county meeting agendas and minutes, including committee and sub-committees, should be posted on the County web site? yes
4. Would you have voted to raise the county board members salaries? no
5. Would you have voted to increase the real estate tax levy by 1.5% thus increasing the amount of real estate tax collected by the county by $1.1 ml.? no
E. Short Answer. Only the number of words indicated will be published in the response report. (please add a page if you need more room, but remember that we can only print the number of words indicated and reserve the right to edit your response for that reason. Thank you.)
1. If you are elected to serve the residents of McHenry County, what external state and local agencies do you think are important for the county to liaison with and how would you make sure that information is flowing both ways with that agency? If you are currently serving and are an appointed liaison, please tell us what agency you are assigned and how you accomplish effective two-way communication. (50 words)
I will champion the common sense causes of soil conservation, protection of ground water, preservation of farm lands as well as related environmental issues, including hydraulic fracking if that technology threatens McHenry County, I will cooperate with and / or engage every local, state and or federal agency that is in a position to influence the questionable proposals or actions of private enterprise or governmental bodies.
2. By protecting agricultural lands and soil resources, groundwater and its natural recharge can also be protected. What will you do to provide that protection? (50 words)
I will resist efforts that threaten these important matters and champion the cause for their protection through my understanding of the issue, language skills and ultimately the power of my vote.
3. Most municipalities in the county have their own economic development commissions or committees. Economic development has to occur where there is existing infrastructure. The county funds the private McHenry County Economic Development Corporation ($635,985. for the 2009-2012 term) to create development in the county outside of municipalities. Is this a good investment of taxpayer money? (50 words)
The MCEDC, as well intended as its board members and staff may be, has produced few, if any, specific measurable results. Therefore, the expenditure of $635,985, as well as the substantial amount of time invested, seems not to be a sensible use of taxpayers dollars or a worthwhile endeavor.
4. Do you think Fleming Road, Alden Road and other county roads that do not serve highly developed commercial areas, need to be widened and “improved” at this time? (50 words)
5. What weight should you as a county board member give the opinions of citizens affected by zoning decisions, special use permits and road projects? (50 words)
Ronald Regan said, “Government is not the solution to our problems, government is the problem.” Of course, the County Board should listen to, respect and serve the citizens. Isn’t that the point of representative government?
6. What in your background qualifies you to serve the public as a county board representative and what do you intend to accomplish if elected to the County Board. You may also use this space to provide additional information regarding any of the “yes / no” answers given above. (100 words)
Background:My community involvement includes being
- elected president of the Village of Greenwood, serving as
- president of the Friends of the Opera House and as
- a member of Chester Gould / Dick Tracy Museum board. In addition, I’ve served as
- a member of the advisory board for Northern Illinois University’s College of Visual & Performing Arts. Served as
- an adjunct professor, School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Currently
- adjunct faculty member, Elgin Community College.
Accomplishments while serving as president of the Village of Greenwood include
- the cost-effective restoration of the Village Hall with the support of volunteer trustees.
- With the considerable support of trustee John Ferris, won $250,000 in grants allowing the badly needed repair of Wondermere Road.
- Created ” Life in the Slow Lane” village banners.
- Designed and launched the Village web site: www.villageofgreenwood.org.
- Maintained and plowed village roads with an annual budget of under $40,000.
- With the support of Joeleen Stanard, who served the Village as volunteer Treasurer, established a context of alignment and cooperation where animosity and friction had existed for years.
Self-made entrepreneur. Established marketing, advertising & design firm One Zero Charlie, in July of 1978. (In business 34 years.) The firm’s ward-winning work continues to be published in professional journals worldwide. One Zero Charlie serves local, regional, national and multinational accounts. I am an instrument rated, multi-engine pilot. We have traveled extensively throughout Europe, South America and Japan.
Goals: My goal is
- to align with like-minded County Board members on several fronts including the reduction of real estate taxes.
- I intend to create a demand for a reformed Sheriff’s Department,
- an end to the Health Department’s over-zealous nit-picking and
- to insist that the McHenry County Department of Transportation respect the wishes the citizens in matters such as those raised the by Alden and Fleming Road Alliances.
In brief, my goal is to remind those in government that their role is to serve the public, not the other way around.