Algonquin Village Board Favors

Our blog friend from Algonquin offers his view of the Algonquin Village elections:

In the village of Algonquin, the quiet campaign and conventional wisdom of the 2 incumbents winning re-election, and newcomer Debby Sosine winning the 3rd trustee’s spot, came true, as voters rewarded the officials already serving the village the longest, either as a trustee or as a member of advisory boards.

Trustees Jim Steigert, John Spella, and Planning and Zonning Commission Member Debby Sosine far outdistanced Steve Kaniewski and Steve Serafin. The unofficial returns from both McHenry and Kane Counties with all precincts counted read:

Jim Steigert (i) -1,374
Debby Sosine – 1,366
John Spella (i) – 1,340
Steve Kaniewski – 859
Steve Serafin – 798

The only minor surprise in Algonquin was the order of finish, with newcomer Sosine edging-out incumbent Spella by 26 votes.

The 3rd time was the charm for Sosine, as her impressive finish in the village of Algonquin’s race makes up for any disappointment her 2 losses for D300 school board in 2001 and 2003, as she will backfill Trustee Barb Read, who did not seek re-election. Given the demand for change D300 voters made this year, Sosine not being a member of the school board was a blessing in disguise.

Conventional wisdom of the 2 incumbents and Sosine winning in Algonquin held true because voters in Algonquin are very excited about how their village is being led, given the Randall Road corridor’s commercial growth in recent years. Steigert and Spella have been part of the village board, and Sosine’s longtime service on both the Planning and Zoning Commission as well as the Economic Development Commission was rewarded in this election, too.

For Steve Kaniewski, who lost his bid for a trustee seat in 2005 by 177 votes, this year’s 481 vote margin of defeat was especially crushing, given he came up short again in a 5-way race. Granted, there were 2 openings on the village board in 2005, but when a candidate’s vote total goes down from 1,172 to 859 instead of increasing 2 years later, the voters have clearly said “thank you for placing your name up for election, but no thank you”.

As for Steve Serafin’s campaign emphasizing the need for Kane County representation on the village board, his message did not resonate with voters, despite his direct mail, door-to-door and robocalls push. Serafin could not win in Kane County, as the unofficial returns from the 5 precincts in Kane County bear out:

John Spella – 275
Debby Sosine – 269
Jim Steigert – 267
Steve Serafin – 223
Steve Kaniewski – 147

The clearer message to Serafin is while there is some merit for the need for balanced representation on the village board, direct experience serving village residents, as in Sosine’s case, through the Economic Development Commission and Planning and Zoning Commission over a period of years, resonates much much more with voters.

Trustee Steigert, Trustee-elect Sosine and Trustee Spella will be sworn-in to office at either the May 1st or May 8th meeting of the village board, once the official canvass takes place and the McHenry and Kane County clerks certify the election results. Because of provisional balloting, the elections certifications could take up to 3 weeks, depending on the number of provisional ballots cast in each county.

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