Election

Reid Foltyniewicz, DuPage County Board 2022 Primary Election Questionnaire

DuPage County Board, District 4 candidate Reid Foltyniewicz

DuPage County Board District 4 candidate Reid Foltyniewicz answered Shaw Local’s election questionnaire for the DuPage County Board primary election.

Voting ends for the primary election on the evening of June 28.

Full Name: Reid Foltyniewicz

What office are you seeking? DuPage County Board District #4

What offices, if any, have you previously held? Village of Lombard Trustee

City: Lombard

Occupation: Administrative Sergeant

Education: Bachelor of Arts in Criminal Justice - Benedictine University

School of Staff & Command - Northwestern University

Command Leadership Institute - FBI-LEEDA

Supervisor Leadership Institute - FBI-LEEDA

Police Academy - Suburban Law Enforcement Academy

Campaign Website: https://reidfolty.com/

What steps should DuPage County health and sheriff’s departments take to prevent opioid addiction and overdose?

The opioid epidemic is one of the focuses of my campaign because it’s something I see all the time working in law enforcement. Drug addiction is a public health issue, but it’s also a mental health issue. We need to provide proper resources to those most vulnerable to the threat of addiction. Additionally, we must ensure our sheriff’s and local police departments have the training and resources to confront this crisis to keep our communities and families safe.

What is your opinion of the county board’s actions and initiatives since Democrats assumed control of the board two years ago?

The last two years have brought childish, Chicago-style politics to our county board. As a resident, we’ve had enough of the grandstanding and division, which is one reason I stepped up to run. I will work with anyone willing to put politics aside and do what’s best for the families of DuPage County, and we haven’t seen that on the board. I will actively serve our community by working on the essential issues that need to be addressed. I will keep our communities and families safe, lower taxes, and bring jobs to DuPage County.

Do you support the merger of additional county offices/departments?

We must work to reduce spending to keep taxes low and even lower taxes wherever possible. I support any way to reduce costs for our taxpayers while not diminishing the quality of service for residents. As Chairman of the Finance & Administration Committee for the Village of Lombard, I was known for my efforts to streamline government services and eliminate luxuries our taxpayers couldn’t afford. I’ll bring this same approach to the county board.

What are your overall thoughts of the sheriff’s department’s job performance?

Our biggest challenge is the crime coming out of Chicago and Cook County. I’m done with this violent crime invading DuPage County. Our top priority must be keeping people safe. We need to prevent crime, and when crime does occur, criminals must be charged and locked up. Thankfully, we have an excellent sheriff, state’s attorney, and judges in our county who are doing just that. As a 16-year veteran in law enforcement, I know how important having a strong sheriff is to the community.

To help strengthen our efforts to keep families safe, I will ensure our sheriff’s department and local police departments have the training and personnel to continue evolving and improving. I will also work to prioritize victim services and mental health. I will fight to make combatting the heroin and the opioid epidemic in our community a priority. And I will work to institute a countywide “Citizen’s Police Academy” to help educate residents on ways to keep themselves and their families safe.

The county sheriff has taken several initiatives to help reform inmates (tattoo removal services, gardening classes, job placement). What other initiatives would you like to see in an effort to reform inmates?

We need to prioritize providing inmates with mental health resources, so they don’t continue committing crimes. The sheriff’s initiatives are steps in the right direction to keep DuPage County safe long-term. When we provide the inmates with the resources they need, we can better safely support our communities and families.

DuPage County recently provided the DuPage Foundation $10.6 million for a grant program designed to support nonprofit organizations that address food and housing insecurity, mental health and substance use issues. Discuss the county’s role to further tackle these issues.

As a 16-year law enforcement veteran, I see people struggling with mental health and substance abuse issues every day.

I will work to prioritize victim services and mental health. Keeping the public safe isn’t just about law and order; we must also support victims and assist those with mental health issues who shouldn’t be forced into the criminal justice system. I will fight to make combatting the heroin and the opioid epidemic in our community a priority. And I will work to institute a countywide “Citizen’s Police Academy” to help educate residents on how they can help keep themselves and their families safe.

Assess the DuPage County Health Department’s actions to combat COVID-19.

I applaud the DuPage County Health Department’s handling of COVID. The county promptly set up testing sites, particularly at the county building, and had vaccines ready to distribute to residents. The Health Department also provided more vaccine opportunities to our community because of our leaders’ relationships with providers. The county was also very transparent and communicative with residents, ensuring the community had all the information and resources to make the best decisions for them and their families. I will collaborate with our Health Department to ensure our residents are receiving the quality service they deserve.

What changes, if any, need to be made related to the pandemic?

Not everything went smoothly or correctly. We need to learn from this experience. Plans need to be in place for the worst-case scenarios. Plan for the worst, so when adversity strikes, we are prepared.

What actions can the DuPage County Board take to minimize the tax burden on residents while not sacrificing services?

I want to do my part to help make DuPage County a destination so people move here and stay here.

We must reduce spending to keep taxes low and lower taxes wherever possible. I pay the same taxes as our residents—I get it. Property taxes have been out of control for too long, increasing while homes lose value and services are cut. This is driven by overspending politicians and governments that don’t have balanced budgets.

As Chairman of the Finance & Administration Committee for the Village of Lombard, I was known for my efforts to streamline government services and eliminate luxuries our taxpayers couldn’t afford. Politicians told me to take the easy decisions, so we keep getting re-elected, but I’m not a politician. I was elected to do what’s right for our constituents and make the tough decisions, so that’s what I did.

On the DuPage County Board, I will demand a balanced budget that plans for the future and doesn’t kick cans down the road. I will ensure we are all-stars at handling the core services our residents rely on while only supporting enhanced services when they are affordable and benefit all of DuPage County. I will find creative ways to save tax dollars, especially coordinating with local governments to find innovative efficiencies in purchasing and services.

How would you encourage economic and employment growth within DuPage County?

I will support our county businesses and bring new job creators to DuPage County. I will look for ways to improve our permitting process as I did in Lombard, where I helped bring a popular brewery into the downtown area. I will collaborate with our business community to find innovative ways to attract businesses from Chicago since many companies and working families are looking to move to the suburbs. I will continue to work to keep our county safe, as businesses are looking for safe communities to create jobs.

Do you think there is a local crime problem? If so, what needs to be done about it?

As someone who has spent their career in law enforcement, I know we have a local crime problem. Our biggest challenge is the crime coming out of Chicago and Cook County. Cook County State’s Attorney Kim Foxx enables criminals by not filing charges even when there is clear evidence of wrongdoing. Police officers’ hands are tied. And even Cook County judges are actively putting criminals back on the streets. This “anything goes” society leads to young people who have no regard for life, even their own, and that crime is spreading out into the suburbs.

I’m done with this violent crime invading DuPage County. Enough is enough. Our top priority must be keeping people safe. We need to prevent crimes, and when crimes do occur, criminals must be charged and locked up. Thankfully, we have an excellent sheriff, state’s attorney, and judges in our county who are doing just that. As more criminals become aware they can’t get away with their crimes here, we should consider signs welcoming people to DuPage County along our county border. Letting criminals know they’re now in a county that will hold them responsible for their actions.

To help strengthen our efforts to keep families safe, I will ensure our sheriff’s department and local police departments have the training and personnel they need to continue evolving and improving. The solution isn’t simply providing more money to police—often, our officers have new equipment and tools but cannot utilize them. I will also encourage data and analytics to optimize our police presence and shift assignments from sworn personnel.

What local road and bridge projects should be a priority to get done in the county?

Improving our infrastructure and roads improves our quality of life and economic development. The county has been proactive in laying out long-term transportation plans. I want to focus on executing the approved plans without increasing taxes or costs on residents.

Do you support decreasing local property taxes? If so, how would the county make up the difference?

Absolutely. Property taxes have been out of control for too long, increasing while homes lose value and services are cut. This is driven by overspending politicians and governments that don’t have balanced budgets.

On the DuPage County Board, I will demand a balanced budget that plans for the future and doesn’t kick cans down the road. I will find creative ways to save tax dollars, especially coordinating with local governments to find innovative efficiencies in purchasing and services. As Chairman of the Finance & Administration Committee for the Village of Lombard, I streamlined government services and eliminated luxuries, so we didn’t have to add taxes to our residents. If we had commonsense leadership, we could address these issues and lower taxes on families.

Do you support stronger county government ethics laws? What measures do you support?

In a state like Illinois, it’s hard for our residents to trust their elected officials because of the state’s history of corruption. I support finding ways to increase transparency and government oversight so the residents and taxpayers know what their government is doing for them.

What are your thoughts on the Illinois Freedom of Information Act?

I support the government being as transparent as possible. Elected officials and government entities are there to serve the taxpayers of the community, and they deserve to know how their elected officials and government bodies are helping them. I believe in actively serving the community, and that includes being transparent. As an Administrative Sergeant, I supervise and complete FOIAs weekly.

Please state your plan to maintain government transparency.

DuPage County has won numerous awards for the transparency it provides to residents in terms of information on how tax dollars are spent. Still, there are always more ways to increase transparency. Sharing more on social media, networking with residents, or sending out consistent information to households and businesses are ways we can ensure our residents are more informed.

Immediately after being elected, I will go to the families, small businesses, and local organizations throughout the community to find out what DuPage County and I can do to help create that transparent channel of communication.

What would you push for as a member of county government to boost local businesses?

We have to lower taxes and bring jobs to DuPage County. I want to do my part to help make DuPage County a destination so people, and businesses, move here—and stay here.

I will support our county businesses and bring new job creators to DuPage County. I will look for ways to improve our permitting process as I did in Lombard, where I helped bring a popular brewery into the downtown area. I will collaborate with our business community to find innovative ways to attract businesses from Chicago since many companies and working families are looking to move to the suburbs. And I will continue to work to keep our county safe, as businesses are looking for safe communities to create jobs.

Should government employees and officials be allowed to sign nondisclosure agreements with private businesses?

I will focus on local community services just like all board members should. We should be actively serving the community and our constituents. If the non-disclosure pertains to issues related to their role as county board members, they should be transparent.

Would you push for or against government officials and employees being allowed to sign non-disclosure agreements with private businesses?

If the non-disclosure pertains to issues related to their role as county board members, they should be transparent.