A new year is a wonderful thing. Like a new car, it can provide an opportunity to visit new places, seeing what our top speed is (while perhaps testing out the new brakes as well). Like a new set of clothes, it allows us to put on a new self and gives us a chance to make another first impression. Like a clean pad of paper, a new year offers people a blank slate on which to write a new story – or at least a new chapter in one that’s been ongoing.
The thing about a new year though is that the old year really isn’t completely gone.
We must be careful to learn from past mistakes, throwing out those experiments that have failed, looking for new solutions to age-old problems while being careful to preserve our legacies and those constants that remain important in our lives and our communities.
So another use for that blank sheet of paper is to write a list: of resolutions, or to do’s, or priorities. Here I’d like to offer up my list of the things that I’ll be focusing on in the coming year as your Will County Board 4th District representative. They’re not the only things I’ll work on; we all know that the county will face issues that may surprise and challenge us, but these are the ongoing concerns that I am passionate about and that will continue to be my guide for maintaining and improving Will County:
- Infrastructure: as a hub of our area’s – and our nation’s – transportation network, Will County must provide overland, air, and waterways access for the safe, efficient movement of goods and the people who live and work in our area
- Taxes: no one wants to overpay for government, and I will do my best to advocate for policies that allow residents to keep their hard-earned money. At the same time, we must also make certain to provide for necessary services and a social safety net to avoid later larger costs.
- Workers’ Pay and Benefits: our workers are the lifeblood of our economy, providing the real “raw materials” for our manufacturing and service industries that take advantage of our prime location, so their success and health are tied directly to one another, and I will fight to make sure everyone benefits.
- Modernization: this is the real crux, and therefore the driver, of many other issues. Unless we look ahead and plan for the future, watching for trends and driving – rather than reacting to – change, decisions we make today can run the risk of being short-sighted and harmful in the long run.
- Transparency: in all of my endeavors, I will make sure to be clear in my communication with you, especially in seeking out feedback to make sure that I am representing you to the best of my ability.
By focusing on a clear set of priorities (while remaining flexible enough to address new situations as they arise), we can continue to move forward together in this new year and beyond to ensure that Will County remains a premiere destination for raising our families and making a living in safety and comfort.