The candidates running for the DuPage County Board in District 5 had a chance to square off in a forum at Naperville City Hall.
District 5 of DuPage County, which covers most of Naperville, has two seats up for grabs this election – one two-year term and one four-year term.
The Naperville Area Homeowners Confederation hosted a forum for candidates to introduce themselves and respond to questions from both the confederation and audience members.
Defending his four-year seat, republican incumbent Jim Healy, a local attorney, would like to reduce the number of seats on the county board. He also has a unique solution to the local hot-button issue of townships.
“I think the main thing that we look at for the townships is not to get rid of them but to consolidate the townships,” said Jim Healy, member of the DuPage County Board. “I think a perfect consolidation is Naperville Township and Lisle Township, I think the two of them do very similar things.”
Challenger to the four-year seat is democrat Regina Brent, a retiree who worked as an advocate at the Illinois Attorney General’s office. Brent wants to protect county programs that help the young, poor, and elderly. She also has concerns about changing the way townships work.
“To merge both of them could do one of two things: cut back on services or cut back on jobs, and that was not something I would call a resolution to the problem,” said Regina Brent, candidate for the DuPage County Board, District 5.
Democratic incumbent Tony Michelassi is proud of his ability to work with all of his fellow board members, regardless of party affiliation. He believes it’s important to keep the DuPage County budget in line with the residents’ wishes as reflected in the county’s annual budget survey.
“The top three priorities that they tell us, year after year, is to maintain our level of public safety, our transportation network, and to improve funding for storm water management,” said Tony Michelassi, member of the DuPage County Board. “I would definitely want to make sure those three priorities become the paramount priorities for DuPage County government.”
Challenging Michelassi for the two-year seat is republican Janice Anderson, who has been a Naperville Township trustee for three years. She believes you should operate government much as you run a business and one of her top priorities is working cooperatively to eliminate wasteful services.
“I will also find collaborative solutions to pressing problems,” said Janice Anderson, candidate for the DuPage County Board. “If I am elected I will also work with other county board members, department heads, and other governments to work to consolidate and focus on shared services.”
The forum in its entirety is available on the Naperville Area Homeowners Confederation’s Website.
For more information about the candidates running for DuPage County Board, visit the county’s website.
Naperville News 17’s Blane Erwin reports.
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