Full Name: Duane Wolfe
What office are you seeking? 4th Ward Alderman
What offices, if any have you previously held? 4th Ward Alderman for 20 years.
Occupation: Retired teacher and school administrator for 35 years
Education: Bachelor of Science in Education, Master in School Administration
Political Affiliation: Republican
Why do you want to be on the Morris City Council?
I want to be on the Morris City Council because I love living in the city of Morris. I am always available to address people’s concerns. Making the city a unique place to live is very important to me. I believe in keeping taxes at an affordable level for all residents. Expanding Morris is important to me, but it must be done at a controlled rate.
What experience do you offer residents that can help improve Morris?
Morris has been my home for over fifty years and I have served on the Morris City Council for almost twenty. I am presently serving on the Water and Sewer, Parks and Annexation, Finance and Administration, and the newly formed Business and Development Committee.
If you think residents don’t pay enough in taxes what should be increased and what should the city do with the extra revenue?
When conscientious spending is the top priority then taxes should not have to be raised. Council spending must stay within the budget guidelines.
The current administration has focused on growing the downtown area and improving the park districts. Is this a good use of government funds, and if elected would you continue to focus on the downtown area? How so?
I am presently serving on the Business Development Committee for the City of Morris. The purpose of the committee is to better develop and improve the downtown business and shopping district. Much of the funding for the downtown improvements come from the TIF account in the city budget. I want the downtown shopping district to be a destination for our local and out-of-town shoppers.
Morris recently has seen development companies wanting to build affordable rental communities. What impact do you think large development companies would have on the city and do you see it as a net gain or loss?
As an alderman, I am listening to all the requests concerning the development of rental communities.
Morris has seen an increase in both violent crime and drug activity within the last year, what actions can be taken to support local residents and prevent these crimes from happening?
We need to continue to support our law enforcement officers.
The city continues to develop and the Chicago metro area’s expansion continues to creep toward Morris. Do you think this will be good or bad for the city? What actions should be taken to encourage growth or slow it down?
I believe for our city to be viable it must encourage some form of expansion. The expansion must be controlled by the council.
Morris experienced an industrial fire in 2021, that prompted the evacuation of more than 3,000 residents and resulted in a multimillion-dollar cleanup. What did the administration handle correctly during that time and what do you think was mishandled? Moving forward, what steps can the city council take to prevent something like this from happening again?
For the safety of the residents, they were evacuated. The property was then turned over to the government agency for inspection and cleanup. Camera surveillance is still ongoing.
Do you support government transparency and what are your thoughts on the Freedom of Information Act?
I do believe a government should be transparent. it is the right of all citizens to know what their elected officials support. The Freedom of Information Act is very important because it provides public access to government records.