October 14, 2014

District 5 Candidates

DuPage County’s District five covers areas of Aurora and Naperville and has two candidates running for a county board seat.

Democrat Regina Brent worked for the office of the 17 ward in Chicago as well as the Attorney General’s office in Springfield before retiring.

When no democratic candidate stepped forward in the district five race, Brent was appointed by the democrats of the DuPage County Board.

Coming from humble beginnings, she believes she has a unique understanding of the struggles some residents may face.

“I do see that there are the disadvantaged and the under-advantaged who would like to feel that same experience,” said Brent. “I don’t think we should lower our standards but what I do think is we should reach down and pick those up who are low income or are disadvantaged, properly skill them for a trade, or help enhance their education through partnering with colleges and universities and highschools out here to get them ready for the workforce.”

Brent wants to be more transparent with governmental issues and keep the people connected to the county.

“My idea of connecting with the people when it comes to DuPage County is to bridge the county board with the DuPage County community, simply because the citizens and voters of this county, many of them have no idea what the board actually does,” said Brent.

Republican candidate Tonia Khouri , doesn’t necessarily see that as a problem.

“Things that people don’t know that county government does, that means were doing it well. We’re talking your roads, we’re talking your court system.
If you don’t know what your county government is doing, that means they’re taking care of you,” said Khouri.

Khouri currently sits on the District Five Board with two other members.

Like her opponent, she wants to work toward finding more jobs for those in the county and thinks her experience owning a business can help others break into the work force.

“Through my committee, the economic development committee, we passed an initiative called the metro west manufacturing collaborative, and what this does is we partner with three other organizations and we recruit unemployed and underemployed individuals and then we train them in two tracks of the manufacturing field, either CNC operating or welding, and then we place them in jobs in the manufacturing industry,” said Khouri.

I spoke with political commentator Kenn Miller who says that neither candidate seems to have the upper hand in this election.

“In general the party doesn’t want someone to have a cake walk and get elected without any opposition,” said Miller. “If you have a candidate who’s a good campaigner and they give appropriate support there may be a chance to win.”


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