Oswego Election 2015: Rasma Motykowski, Candidate for Village Trustee
Mar 17, 2015 09:47AM ● Published by Steven Jack
Name: Rasma Z Motykowski
Employment: President/ Owner of The Man Store
Family: Married to Larry T. Motykowski for 18 years and 3 sons, Aleks, Lukas & Erik
Education: Graduate of Michigan State University B.S Psychology & B.A in Parks & Recreation with an emphasis in Recreational Therapy
Previously elected office: none
Relevant community service: Youth Programs at St. Luke’s Lutheran Church & over 8 years with the Boy Scouting program in various roles.
What makes you qualified to be a Village trustee?
As a productive and concerned resident of the Village for 17 years, I feel that it’s my obligation as a citizen to be involved with my village government. As far as WHY I am running, it is because my opponents, Ryan Kaufman, Karin McCarthy-Lange & Joe West, who would be rubber stamps for Gail Johnson, are all on record to increase our taxes. I feel that I would be a strong voice for those in Oswego who feel they are taxed enough already.
What do you believe is the role of a Village trustee?
The role of a Village Trustee is to be the voice of the residents and steward of the Tax Payers’ dollars. The village Trustees are to help facilitate the best use of revenue while preparing for future needs of the Village and its residents.
What should be the No. 1 priority for the next Village Board?
The next Village board must prioritize current and future needs. Under the leadership of President Brian LeClerq a plan has been put in place that is working. The board needs to continue the progress made, because this plan does not require increasing our taxes. The math works.
What is your vision for the old Alexander Lumber Co. lot and the parcel of land that includes the old Village Hall and the former Oswego Chamber office?
The old Alexander Lumber lot would be a great place for small unique businesses that would cater to those at the park, bikers and walkers, along with evening entertainment. Other options that residents have expressed include the need for some additional parking for downtown businesses, apartments and indoor entertainment such as bowling &/or laser tag. The other locations should be sold. I would prefer to see businesses that would attract visitors from near and far as repeat customers. It would be nice to see alternative options for evening dining or entertainment, rather than all 9-5 businesses.
What is your long-term vision for Main Street?
With the Oswego Cyclery purchasing the old Fire Station and having plans of bringing other fitness oriented businesses will bring enthusiasm to the downtown area. They will help encourage other entrepreneurs to feed off them with a possible clothing store for fitness & related activities, a yoga center, restaurant that caters to healthy or clean eating, knitting/crochet/yarn shop with a coffee/tea bar are just a handful of options.
A goal would be to get businesses that cross over generations and interests so when someone comes downtown they walk into every store for merchandise and have a place to grab a snack.
How can Oswego maintain the hometown feel while at same time encouraging development?
Hometown feel comes from a community that is involved with the local schools, churches, scout groups, homeowners associations and other local organizations. When people are involved in more than one organization they feel part of the larger group. Development can only help with the hometown feel as the new businesses participate in local events and charities and become part of the fabric of Oswego.
How do you propose the village fund its long-term needs for infrastructure improvement?
The village has a plan for future improvements which include bonds that are maturing, sales tax rebates expiring, thus freeing up the money to be allocated to fund these long term projects. Future development fees will help support future growth, all without raising our taxes. My opponents are either ignorant to these facts or intentionally not informing the public so they can justify raising taxes.
How can the village better use natural resources like the Fox River for its economic and cultural benefit?
The Fox River is a great resource. I am not aware of the legislation or laws that might affect development on the river but ideally I think if a private entity were to build a small marina they would do well. If the marina had docks for those coming down the river to stop and tie up and visit our downtown it would be exciting. The location would benefit fishermen, fishing guides, boaters, boat/canoe rental, bird/wildlife observers and become a destination point for many local enthusiasts.
I am glad to hear that Wine on the Fox is returning to the Fox River and that the Beer under the Bridge continues to bring in tourists. I agree that these events and others are a good way to promote our Village and hope to see more use in the years to come. It was great to have the Junior High summer band programs there this past summer as well. We really need to have more involvement with the schools fine arts programs (bands, choirs and theater), they could even put on concerts and summer plays in the park.
What role should economic incentives play in attracting new desirable businesses to Oswego?
As I have stated before incentives are subsidies, aka crony capitalism. These “incentives” are not from the government but rather from our own tax payer pockets. I think it’s about time the village equals the playing field allowing all businesses to merchandise equally and increase their sales which in turn increases the village’s revenue.
Offering subsidies is picking winners and losers and I do not want my government gambling with my tax dollars. Businesses have chosen to come to Oswego because we have a dynamic & growing demographic that appeal to a variety of interests.
If you want an incentive I suggest that we celebrate our Nations Birthday the whole month of July by reducing our sales tax for that month by 2%. Then everyone can participate, save money, increase sales, increase tax revenue and we market to the local communities to shop Oswego in July. That’s an incentive and that’s business friendly. And once elected that’s the first item I will bring up for a vote.
How do you plan to work with fellow trustees to build consensus and arrive at decisions that benefit our entire community? If possible, please provide an example in your personal or professional life of building consensus in a group setting.
We have two distinct visions of how Oswego should move forward, the voters will determine consensus on April 7th. If the voters want higher taxes then I recommend they vote for those on record who will do that for them; Johnson, Kaufman, McCarthy-Lange & West. If the voters want fiscally responsible trustees working for them who will NOT raise their taxes then I recommend they VOTE FOR Tony Giles as president, James Marter (write-in) , Diane Selmer and myself, Rasma Motykowski as their trustees.