Serwatka Talks of Run for State Rep.

A message from Lakewood Trustee Paul Serwatka to his constituents:

Serwatka heading EmailAs many of you know, in recent years, I have become rather actively involved in both county and statewide government.

Not as an elected official, of course, but as a concerned taxpayer and, even more so, as a concerned resident of this county, this state and this country.

I guess I just reached a point – probably inspired by my (now 4) young children – that I just could not sit idly by and watch bad politicians and rogue government plunder away their future.

I won’t bore you citing all the things I’ve been involved with over the years, but, suffice it to say that between

  • the Illinois Term Limits Initiative and Independent Redistricting (Fair Maps) Amendment – to
  • fighting the $120 Million Continuous Flow Intersection/Randall Road Expansion Project – to
  • the successful elections of some truly fiscally conservative County Board members as well as an honorable new Sheriff and more –
Republican candidate for McHenry County Sheriff followed Steve Reick.  Prim can be seen at the front of the float.

Republican candidate for McHenry County Sheriff  Prim can be seen at the front of the float with Paul Serwatka in 2014.

I have spent thousands of hours and thousands of my own dollars in an effort to effect better government here in McHenry County as well as in Illinois.

Serwatka email palm cardIt was this drive to effect better government that compelled me to launch my write-in candidacy for Lakewood Trustee.

The reason that I am writing to you today, is because I have been presented with both an incredible opportunity and an incredible challenge and I really want to hear your thoughts.

A few weeks ago, our State Representative, Mike Tryon, announced that he will not be seeking reelection in 2016. Representative Tryon has held this seat (66th District) for 12-years now, so, as you can see, this kind of opportunity doesn’t come along very often.

Being that I live in this district, and having sort of a reputation for being the guy who “leads the charge” to “take-on bad government”, I received several calls urging me to consider running for this seat.

I have discussed this with my family, at length… I have prayed incessantly… and I am feeling more and more that I am really meant to enter this arena… I really believe I am meant to fight this fight.

Among my primary concerns was how this would affect my role as Lakewood Village Trustee.

I didn’t want to disappoint the residents who entrusted me with the task of effecting better government here in our village. I really wanted to fulfill my promise to you and to see our fight, here in Lakewood, through to the end.

So, I made some inquiries…

As a result of these inquiries, the Illinois Attorney General’s Office has informed me that the office of Village Trustee and the office of State Representative are “Compatible Offices”.

This means that, should I be elected to the State House of Representatives, there is no conflict that would prohibit me from staying on and continuing to serve as your Lakewood Trustee.

In fact, there are others in the IL General Assembly who have concurrently served in municipal offices such as City Council/Village Board. State Senator Ron Sandack even served as Mayor of Downers Grove while also serving as State Senator for his district.

Needless to say, I was VERY excited to get this news!

In light of this news I have become even more compelled to step up to this challenge and run to be our next State Representative in 2016.

If I am elected to be our new State Representative, I will pledge to you the following:

  • I will serve no more than 5-terms (just as we attempted in our Term Limits Initiative)
  • I will waive all pension benefits
  • I will Fight (not just vote right) but really FIGHT to restore Legitimate, Responsible, Accountable government in Springfield
  • I will NOT be Bought by lobbyists or Special Interest Groups
  • I will NOT be Bossed, Bullied or Intimidated
  • I will NOT forget my place or why it is that I stepped up to this challenge to begin with

I would really like to hear your thoughts on this.Will you support my effort in stepping up to this challenge?

Your thoughts mean more to me than you know.


Serwatka Talks of Run for State Rep. — 17 Comments

  1. Serwatka is a statesman, through and through.

    The last thing Illinois needs is another sell-out politician.

    We NEED principled men of true character, like Paul Serwatka!

    Lakewood residents have nothing but wonderful things to say of this man!

    In the short time since he was elected, he has brought an entirely new level of transparency and accountability to Lakewood, exactly as he promised.

    Lakewood residents love and support him, their is no better testament as to his character than that!

  2. Paul Serwatka has already demonstrated his public spirit by jumping into the Lakewood trustee race when we needed him and effectively putting the kibosh on the whole stupid SportsPlex/TIF project.

    I am thrilled to hear that Paul is now seeking to do even more for our community by offering to serve in two capacities.

    This is rare but laudable because of the effort required, but there are others.

    Ron Parrish comes to mind.

    Ron was Village President in Bull Valley while also serving on the McHenry County College Board, and he did excellent work in both positions.

    Actually, Paul reminds me of Ron in that both are not professional politicians, just public-minded people willing to serve, both possess unquestionable integrity, and both believe there is a role for government to play, but that government’s role should be limited, and government should operate with reasonable efficiency.

  3. I believe this man to be speaking the truth when he pledges idealistic motivation to seek a position of power to exert leveraged effect.

    I also believe many have entered political arena with idealistic intent,only to later rationalize their own moralistic compromises.

    My instinct says that this particular man is truthful in intent, and has the moral integrity to value team wellbeing over personal benefit.

    But because instinct can be faulty, and because term limits ensure that other humans will inherit his position of power and influence, I hope this man remembers that systemic changes are the only factors upon which citizens may rely for the foreseeable future: we are all vulnerable to any given officeholder’s human frailty and vulnerability to temptation.

  4. I join Steve in welcoming Paul to the fray. It’s not surprising to find out that Paul was a firefighter when you consider his approach to local policy. He saw the burning building and couldn’t help himself, he just had to go in. Maybe its a learned reflex to jump in and try to solve the problems when you see them. We need more public servants in political office and fewer career politicians. Fewer empty promises and more problems solved. We need more people like Paul (and Ron) with the courage, integrity and vision to lead us through the certainly troubling times ahead.

    Good Luck, Paul!

  5. Also worthy of note: Serwatka is the only elected official in the village of Lakewood who has elected to waive a salary!

    When I first learned he had waived salary, I said to him: “So, you get nothing for your time serving?”

    I’ll never forget his response, he said: “On the contrary, I get better government. and that is invaluable.”

  6. Paul, you are on the very steepest of learning curves.

    You did something difficult in winning a write in campaign.

    The local scene, however, is a vastly different landscape than State or Federal government.

    You will need to be extremely conversant in Robert’s Rules of Order.

    Take classes.


    Talk to Dan, Mike, Pam and anyone else you can find in State government to allow yourself the best possible understanding of the landscape.

    Check in with Steve Reick and John O’Neill to get a feeling for how difficult the road is ahead of you.

    As in business, anytime you can get the help of best practices and previous stakeholders you are ahead.

    This does not mean you will lead the same way others have but it offers you a realistic opportunity to hit the ground running.

    The campaign will be grueling, expensive and victory is in no way assured to you.

    You will have all the knocks against you any inexperienced person gets but this may be an advantage in today’s world. Work the tangible and stick to message.

    You know the rest.

    Get up more times than your opponents, right?

  7. Priest, don’t poison him.

    Ship him and the whole Springfield bunch, down to Austin, Texas to intern and learn how it’s done.

    Only 4 more total legislators, in a State 5 X larger, 4 X more populous, with 3 X the GDP.

    A $3 B Rainy Day fund, balanced budget and a just passed average property tax cut of $200 per household.

    All for $7200 plus per diem a year (written in the State Constitution), instead of that $ 80 K plus, plus the Illinois Pol. pays himself for a bankrupt State.

    Save the campaign bluster, learn what real Public Service is from the best.

  8. Stand4truth are you drunk or just ‘special’?


    Paul isn’t going to ask Pam Althoff.

    He’s running against her.

    He’s the one that will replace her, if enough good people get out and vote!

    I would seek advice from David McSweeney.

    You already have the fight, the integrity, the humility and transparency.

    The only ones who don’t like what Paul stands for, are the ones that are threatened by him.

    You can put a sign in my yard!

  9. These Politicians should watch who they are back slapping with during there wanna be elected days. The old saying of you are who you hang around with can rub people the wrong way ! Big Turn off to vote for them.

  10. Pam Altoff was highly connected to Nygren, and may still be.

    Back in the day, Pammy appeared at my home for Republican get togethers.

    Let’s see, there was Pack, Nygren, Altoff, Lantz, Tryon and more.

    Out with the old Regime.

    Besides, Serwatka, is on board with Rauenr for the Illinois turnaround.

  11. @Stand4Truth:

    Learn to read, spell, punctuate and then get back to me on what I know.

  12. To be fair, Republicans for the most part were blindly supportive of Nygren until the Shepherd, Lou Bianchi, had beef with him.

    Then it was a big bandwagon.

    Nygren and Zinke had a lot of critics in 2014, but things were pretty good for them in 2010 and in the elections before that.

    In the 2010 primary, Seipler won two precincts out of about two hundred.

    Nygren won 68 percent of the vote.

    Then Nygren went on to win the general election, which was a three way race, with over 58 percent of the vote.

    Before that, the only challengers Nygren would get were write in candidates who managed to wrangle up about one percent of the vote.

    It wasn’t out of the ordinary to find Republicans who supported Nygren; it was actually the rule, not the exception.

    I am very grateful that changed.

    Better late than never.

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