2017 Oswego Candidate Questionnaire: Leah Philpot, Oswego Township Trustee
Mar 22, 2017 03:44PM ● Published by Steven Jack
Name: Leah Philpot
Employment: Home school teacher and at-home parent
Family: 2 daughters
Education: B.A. from Bradley University
Previously elected office: N/A
Relevant community service: Crystal Lake Food Pantry, Big Brothers/Big Sisters of IL, Musician and Guest Artist at Willow Creek Community Church, Barrington, Lord of Glory, Grayslake, Minister of Music at Joyful Harvest, Johnsburg
What makes you qualified to serve as an elected Oswego Township official?
I have researched Oswego Township’s finances, business practices and billing statements for the last two years and found numerous opportunities for improvement that will cost no additional tax dollars in order to yield significant improvements. I am excellent at analysis and fine details. I have worked as a Business Analyst for Abbott Labs and also as a field representative with great success. As an at home parent, I retain my ability to analyze and improve business operations without the burden of a 9-5 job.
What are your specific plans to restore transparency and public trust in the township?
If elected, I guarantee that all public information be made available on the Township’s website. Transparency is the key to accountability and efficiency. I would ensure all meeting minutes and agendas be posted for the community to see. Under my leadership, all money spent will be uploaded to the Township’s website in real time in order to hold elected officials accountable. I will make sure that costly road work goes to public bid to get the tax payers the best work for the best price.
If any, what are your specific ideas for expanded Township services?
If elected, I commit to installing solar powered street lights in Boulder Hill that will also cost no additional tax dollars. The money for this project will be financed by the reduction of the Road Commissioner’s salary. I will also guarantee that job positions at the Township are posted publicly and no longer handed out to friends or family of current employees. Recording fuel usage at the Road District will also be a business practice I implement as well.
Would you support an effort to consolidate township services with other local taxing bodies to eventually remove this layer of government?
If the taxpayers request that township services be consolidated, I would support this. I believe Trustees are custodians of taxpayer dollars. Elected officials serve at the will of their constituents. I promise to follow what my constituents want. If stepping down in order to best serve Oswego Township through service consolidation is something the taxpayers want, I will do so.
If you are elected, what do you believe should be the Township’s top 3 immediate priorities?
Installing a biometric time clock at the Road District is a must. If private businesses conducted themselves without one, they would go out of business, so I will not allow public tax dollars to be taken further advantage. I would make hiring a web developer a priority to make the Township in compliance with Illinois by posting compensation packages of current employees that are not posted on their website currently. This should cost no additional money from the current budget. I also want to review all expenditures from the general fund and road district. This is not currently being done and there is no way to lower taxes unless the budget is better managed. I have seen many opportunities to reduce spending and plan to limit spending and make tax dollars the most efficient they have ever been.