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Election

Election 2019: Brian Thomas, Oswego Village Board

Brian Thomas
Brian Thomas

Brian Thomas

Age: 47

Current occupation/employer: Small business owner

Educational background: A.S. Business / Certified Lead Auditor

Prior governmental experience and/or civic involvement: None; Committee volunteer, over seven years of social counseling for a local youth commission.

Why are you seeking election to a seat on the Oswego Village Board?

To bring fiscal responsibility back to the Village. I want to reduce taxes and stop the Boards view of spend now/tax now. These decisions by the Board are really going to have a negative impact on our Schools and Community.

What sets you apart from the other board candidates?

As a small business owner for over 17 years, I believe I will bring a unique perspective to the board. I have extensive experience dealing with local municipalities with regards to their local rules and regulations. I also have extensive experience in managing a staff, budgets, forecasting and projections. I believe this experience is essential when it comes to the Village Board.

If elected, what would be your top priority as a board member?

To stop the reckless spending. The $23 million for the downtown TIF District, along with the $1.5 million for the purchase of the old Alexander Lumber property are going to have a big impact on future taxes. The money approved by the Board for these projects will have a dramatic effect with regards to District 308 budget. The District is having issues with the State as far as them meeting their obligation for State funding, and now with the approval of the TIF, this will only make things worse for the District.

Do you support the current board’s handling of economic development, including the establishment of the downtown TIF (Tax Increment Financing) district?

Absolutely not! This could not have been handled worse. Over 70 percent of the ($23 Million) TIF budget has already been allocated for just two developers, this leaves very little money for future growth.

Do you support the village’s efforts to secure a Metra commuter rail station?

Of course-but not if it comes with yet another tax increase on fellow Oswego friends and neighbors. The Village Board is considering this, and if approved will come with a $0.20 to $0.30 cents per gallon gas tax increase.

Is there fat in the village’s budget? If so, what programs or positions would you work to eliminate?

It is too early for me to say what from the village budget should be trimmed. When services are approved and ultimately implemented, in a lot of cases it causes more harm than good (to take those services away) because now the residents expect a level of service that they ultimately deserve but didn’t previously have.

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