Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Ken McBee’s views on the Belvidere Township Highway Department



It’s more than snowplowing and filling potholes…

By Ken McBee

As I campaign, one of the remarks that I often get is “can you plow snow and fill potholes?”    This is a benchmark question of most residents. The answer is Yes I want to point out how this job is much more than plowing snow, mowing grass or filling potholes. Though these are very important aspects of the department, the Township Highway department has a very qualified staff of employees that I will work with and beside to get the job done.  It is very important to lead by example.   I will foster an atmosphere of pride and productivity among the employees in the work we do for our township. I will bring needed skills to this office and be ready to serve you on day one. I also will have the benefit of a well-trained and able road crew.

My first employment was operating heavy earth moving equipment in Byron.  I have learned how to properly supervise employees with respect, contract for services from vendors, and prepare and manage large budgets. I have successfully managed my own company for 27 years and will bring this experience and drive to the Belvidere Township Highway Department as well.  I do want to point out that the current office holder did not enter this office with “Commissioner experience” on day one. He learned it and made it work. While I disagree on several things he has done, he gets my respect for holding the office so long and leaving on his terms.

I look forward to an open communication of the township’s business with its residents to an extent that exceeds what has not been seen in the past. The Fix My Road App , email, an interactive website and text message alerts are some of the technological tools I will use to bring the department into the 21st century in its service to you.  I will be available to you, in person, by phone, email or text.  I will include extended office hours and be more visible in the community. 

I will not need to rely on other elected officials to do what this office requires of me.  The township highway commissioner must be mentally and physically involved in all aspects of the department.  This includes an accurate budget assembled by the road commissioner. History indicates you the taxpayer have been overtaxed for the services needed. Reserves and fund balances exceed those required and recommended by accounting professionals. To have adequate fund balances is good planning. To have substantially large fund balances is not explainable. A popular statement by a candidate is to say "I will reduce taxes". Never has such an opportunity existed to deliver on such a promise.

I will eagerly approach each day to improve your impression of the highway department, its employees and the value you receive for the taxes you pay.   

Your consideration of me for your vote on April 4th, is the first step in moving our highway department forward.

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