mont blanc sa area candidates share views at forum
President Santiago “Jim” Ramos mediated the event, which allowed residents to ask candidates questions about their political platforms, plans to improve their neighborhoods and priorities if elected.
Below is an overview of the event, highlighting select candidate responses. Responses have been edited for length and clarity.
[David Toney For Shaw Media]24th Illinois House District DemocratOn the principles of their campaign:
Reyes: I got in this race because I want to be a voice for our working families. I want to make sure we stand up for our seniors and protect our dreamers. I got in this race because I will propose a law that would outlaw public utility companies from donating to politicians that then see the votes in front of them to increase our rates. That is a conflict of interest. You cannot give money to politicians and then expect them to vote on an issue before them. . I got in this race to make sure the minimum wage was not only raised every once in a while, but that the minimum wage is connected to cost of living. And I got into this race to make sure our American workers are protected and that they have the right to organize. . Millions of dollars in the state of Illinois were lost instead of being funded here in our local school districts. We have to make sure that we have elected officials that put our communities first.
Hernandez: I can tell you, from the get go, it was always education as a priority. That was my priority. The first bill that I passed was actually the expansion of childcare to working families. The necessity of childcare gives them the opportunity to continue working and become self sufficient. So, I can tell you that it’s always, always been working on behalf of the working class. I can tell you this past session, that to such a volatile degree, I have to say backlashing between our leadership that was getting us nowhere and took us almost three years to pass a budget. We finally did it, but I can tell you that it was not at the level of the leadership. It was at the level of legislators. I am very happy to tell you that my colleagues on the other side took the courage, and we all came together to pass that budget because it wasn’t the leadership. That’s the kind of commitment; that’s the kind of experience.
[David Toney For Shaw Media]On the priorities:
Hernandez: The childcare bill was a bill that expanded childcare and gave the opportunity for working families to stay in their job and come into the threshold of self sufficiency. There are educational bills that I’ve passed, including dollars that I’ve brought into the community, leading up to a early childhood building that was opened, $4.7 million to Morton High School to repair the roofs One of the other bills I have submitted early on was a TIF bill. The TIF bill,
as you know, affects our school system, so very early on, I submitted a bill that would opt out of schools from being in the TIF effects that it gives.
Reyes: I would propose that law based on the clear conflict of interest. There’s a clear conflict of interest when it comes to these public utilities companies are yearly putting dollars in the coffers of the legislature and they’re voting to increase our utility rates. So, I don’t think it takes too much math or too much logic to see there’s a conflict of interest. I will be a champion of finance reform. We need to get this money out of politics, especially when it hurts our working families the most.
[David Toney For Shaw Media]Berwyn Township Democratic CommitteemanOn whom they are and what they stand for:
Lovero: Underneath my leadership in this city, we’ve seen how Berwyn has changed. We did adopt a sanctuary city. We did not opt out of Cook County [minimum wage and sick leave ordinances]. We’re here to speak for the Democratic voices of our working families and to espouse our Democratic principles. So, I’ve learned to change. I’ve gone with change. That’s why I encourage young, energetic people to come forward and get involved in politics because we need young leaders in this city, in this state and in this country. So, that’s my goal as a Democratic Committee member, and I’ll continue with that goal because I believe that we need to invite everybody to the table.
[David Toney For Shaw Media]Polashek: As you may know, I was born, raised and educated in this town, in this great city. I am very proud of the two terms that I served as an alderman in the 6th Ward and the services that I offered my residents. I also have been serving as a full time fireman for the city of Cicero. . I stand by my record. I stand by the residents. I stand here for your voices and a working class family. I might not come from a well scholared educational background; I might not come from a university, but that’s OK. I went to public schools here. I graduated from Morton West [and] Morton College I’m a local fireman. I am proud of my working roots.