Elburn Village Board trustee
Two incumbents and two newcomers will vie for three open seats on the Elburn Village Board in next month’s General Election.
Kenneth Anderson believes Elburn Village Board trustees are responsible for passing an annual budget, as well as prioritizing the needs of the community as it relates to police, public works and administration.
He should know—he’ll seek re-election for the position on April 9.
Anderson, 49, describes himself as a fiscal conservative who believes that if you do not have the money, you should not spend it. He holds a Bachelor of Science in watershed management and natural resource management (minor in soil science) from the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point, and is the manager of Kane County Subdivision and Special Projects Division.
“I believe I have demonstrated for nearly four years a common sense approach to village of Elburn issues,” he said. “I have knowledge and experiences from my 24 years of working for Kane County that I believe provide a diverse background as a trustee.”
Anderson cites a balanced budget, the retaining of existing businesses within the village, and implementation of the Elburn’s Land Use Plan, as the top three items he’d like to see addressed.
“I will work with the other trustees to prioritize what we can afford to do within the village of Elburn, with the monies generated,” Anderson said. “I would like the village to work with the existing business and the Elburn Chamber of Commerce to see what we can do to make them as profitable as possible in these economic times. (And) as development proceeds, we need to insure we implement the hopefully soon adopted Land Use Plan.”
Anderson believes that the Elburn Station project is, for the most part, a good transit orientated development, and will be a one-of-a-kind development for the village and the region.
“At this time and in these economic times, I believe the Anderson Road bridge project is the most important thing that could happen, and it will provide an immediate benefit to the residents, emergency services and others,” he said.
As for his feeling regarding the current state of village business, Anderson said he thinks local businesses are having difficulties due to the economy.
“I would like to see improvement. And if there is anything the village of Elburn can do, we should attempt to do it,” he said.
Michael Rullman is one of two newcomers who will seek an Elburn Village Board seat this spring.
Rullman, 45, defines the roles of trustee as listening to the public’s wants and needs, and representing them on the Village Board.
A contract programmer, Rullman chose to run for village trustee because he has the time to spare, and can give his community some time and effort to keep Elburn “a great place to live and work.”
“Each of the candidates for the office (of Elburn village trustee) brings something different, and there is no best,” he said. “We are all bringing our experiences and are making the commitment to spend the time and energy to serve the community to the best of our abilities.”
If elected, Rullman’s priorities would include: continuing to control costs and keep the village sound and solvent, as well as maintain the diligence and thought to keep the villages expenses low while still preserving the quality of life that makes Elburn a great place to live; maintaining the village as a great place to live and work, and listening to the needs of the village residents and balancing the cost/quality of life with the needs of the community to keep taxes low; and filling the vacancies in stores and houses, and supporting local businesses and the Elburn Chamber to fill up the storefronts with businesses that are complementary to the town and fit the character and needs of the village.
If he were given the choice to write, pass and implement any single ordinance without opposition, Rullman said he would change the pensions to 401Ks to be able to plan for the total costs of employees and services and allow city employees to control the direction of their retirement accounts.
Rullman said he both likes and dislikes elements of the Elburn Station project.
“While the Anderson Road extension would be nice to have, it probably will not happen without the project,” Rullman said. “The current ongoing back and forth to make the project fit the character, needs and style of the village should continue. In a perfect world, I would like to see the extension get done, and the discussion on the project’s phases and end footprint continue independent of each other.”
According to Rullman, the village has controlled expenses and costs while providing a consistent level of service.
“We need to continue to have the village solvent and keep the tax levies low while delivering the services people need to keep the village a great place to live,” he said.
Pat Schuberg will run for Elburn village trustee after serving 15 years on the Planning Commission—six of which were spent as committee chairperson. She believes her experiences in government, financial and business will help her be an effective member of the Village Board on day one.
Schuberg, 53, holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in psychology from Bethel University in St. Paul, Minn., and a Masters of Business Administration from Aurora University. Professionally, she has over 20 years in sales, marketing and consulting experience. During 10 of those years, she owned a retail consulting firm working with independent retail business owners, providing inventory planning and marketing expertise. She is currently an account manager for a textbook publisher with higher education institutions across the country.
“I am an active volunteer in our community,” Schuberg said. “When my two sons, Chris and Josh, were younger, I volunteered in Cub Scouts Pack 107 as a den leader. When they crossed over to Boy Scouts Troop 7, I was the advancement coordinator and enjoyed encouraging them on their path to becoming Eagle Scouts. I am also proud of the other young men who I mentored on their path to Eagle.”
Schuberg has been an active participant in Elburn Baseball and Softball, and she is the founder of Twice Blessed, a women’s resale shop benefiting Lazarus House, a homeless shelter in St. Charles.
“Staffed by volunteers, we offered gently used clothing while spreading the vision and mission of Lazarus House during it’s early existence,” she said. “I am an active member and volunteer at Hosanna Lutheran Church in St. Charles, and have also served at Lazarus House, Hesed House and Feed My Starving Children. I am also a member of the Friends of the Town and Country Library.”
Schuberg believes the role of trustee is to work for the community, as the community should be able to expect an elected official to be fair minded, a strategic thinker and work to give the village a strong future.
“The trustee must be an advocate for what is best for the whole of Elburn; not one’s individual preference,” she said.
Schuberg said it has been an honor to serve Elburn for the past 15 years as a planning commissioner, noting that the village is in a significant time of change. She cites her experience with the Plan Commission as a chief reason why she’s an outstanding candidate for the Village Board.
“The economy is beginning to recover. Elburn Station is at our doorstep. The Anderson Road overpass will impact traffic patterns and enhance emergency response times,” she said. “While growth is inevitable and necessary, it needs to be intelligently managed. Elburn is a special place with a rich heritage of farming and strong community values; we have a wealth of attractive features such as our forest preserves, bike and pedestrian walkways, access to high-quality hospitals and world-class universities nearby.
Schuberg said she’s excited to take part of the next chapter in Elburn and pledges that she will continue to work toward ensuring a manageable pace of change for both the business community and residents.
Her top priorities, if she’s elected, will be to address the village’s economy and housing, and make sure today’s decisions “place Elburn on solid footing for the future.” She said residents are feeling the economic pinch as overall property taxes are increasing while foreclosures are decreasing home values. As a result, she believes the village must attract new businesses.
Schuberg said the implementation of both the updated Comprehensive Land Use Plan and Economic Development Commission will provide the Village Board with important tools to achieve its goals.
“Our updated Comprehensive Land Use plan was funded with a $100,000 grant from CMAP (Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning),” she said. “This document can be our compass to guide us toward accomplishing our community’s vision for future residential and business development but it is only as effective as its use.”
If given the option to write, pass and implement any single ordinance with no opposition, Schuberg said she’d like to create an Active Recreation Ordinance.
“To the extent an ordinance can be created to protect active recreation without implementing a park district—Elburn is not ready for nor can afford an additional taxing body—it is important to ensure places for recreation,” she said, suggesting an ordinance to provide high-quality land for active recreation to be used by youth sports, community gatherings, gardens, public walking, running tracks and outdoor exercise circuits—even dog parks.
“Amenities can be acquired through grants, joint projects with service organization or utilizing our immense resource of Eagle Scout projects,” she said.
Elburn Village Board trustee Jeffrey Walter will seek re-election on April 9.
Walter, 52, has served as a trustee the past four years. He holds a Bachelor of Science in finance from the University of South Florida, a Master of Science in manufacturing management from the University of Toledo, and an MBA from the New York Institute of Technology. He’s the senior manager of I.T. Portfolio Solutions for Health Care Service Corporation (Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Illinois).
Walter has coached soccer for Kaneland Youth Soccer Organization, T-ball and baseball for Elburn Baseball and Softball, and he was a member and chair of St. Gall Catholic Church’s Pastoral Council. He recently received the Health Care Service Corporation President’s Award for Diversity and Inclusion for his work on the Veterans Hiring Task Force.
Walter defines the role of trustee as providing sound and fiscally responsible leadership to the village.
“I am seeking re-election, (and) there are still some things I want to finish in the financial policy area of the village and continue to work on making sure Elburn Station is developed in such a way as to benefit, not burden, the village,” he said.
If re-elected, Walter’s top priorities on the board would include remaining vigilant to ensure the Elburn Station development proceeds in such a way as to not put a burden on the taxpayers. He would also focus on financial policies and economic development.
“I have been asking for defined investment policies based on sound capital planning for each department for several years,” he said. “This is in process now, and I want to use my business background to ensure the best possible policies are put in place.”
In regard to economic development, Walter said the village needs a planned effort in the development space, as clear goals and activities must be planned and completion must be monitored.
He plans to achieve such goals by continuing to use his experience and knowledge to guide the appropriate planning and policies.
Walter’s said his ultimate goal would be to establish a director of economic development.
“This would allow for the hiring of an experienced, knowledgeable economic development director to establish village policies around attracting a viable tax base—light industrial and commercial—establish plans for attracting larger companies to Elburn, come up with a plan for the current downtown area to put businesses in the vacant buildings, and develop the area properly,” Walter said.
According to Walter, the position would also oversee the connection of the current downtown to the mixed-use area in Elburn Station.
“We need firm plans with defined tasks, not just shot-in-the-dark planning,” he said.