County Board Candidate - District 10
What is the importance the County Board to your constituents?
The county board is important to my constituents as they rely on the board to make decisions related to issues that are vital to the livelihood of employees and vulnerable groups. Constituents elect members based on their ability to speak on their behalf, giving voice and shedding light on issues of the most vulnerable groups.
What is a key policy difference between you and your Opponent?
I opposed the sale of the County Nursing home while I believe that my opponent supported the sale. I believe that we need to expand our mental-health services so that people with mental illnesses are given appropriate care and treatment as opposed to being jailed. I oppose expansion of the county jail as closing one jail does not necessarily mean needing to replace the jail beds lost. We have seen decreases in the jail population, so I think it’s important that the county board avoid funding jail expansion and should instead invest in vital programs that reduce recidivism and improve the lives of some of our most vulnerable residents.
The County Board is responsible for a yearly budget of nearly $130 million. How would prioritize this money, and are there any parts of the current budget you would change?
I would advocate for using the developmental care and mental health fund to increase support of mental health programs in our criminal justice system. With the nursing home now being sold to a private company, I would also advocate for general funds be used for maintenance of facilities.
Is there anything else you would like to say to an undecided voter in Champaign County?
I have a great deal of knowledge and experiences regarding the needs of the community, especially the most vulnerable groups due to my years volunteerism and my professional work with agencies in the community that serve adults with disabilities and children with mental health needs as well as families that were supported by social services as a result of domestic violence. I would bring a unique set of qualifications as a board member along with a much needed and refreshing perspective that would be the voice for the people bringing about positive changes. With 62% of the vote in the primary, I know that the residents are in favor of my views and stances to bring about progressive positive and necessary change to our county.