Full Name: Glen Hughes
What office are you seeking? Mayor, City of Dixon
What is your political party? this election is non-partisan
What is your current age? 70
Occupation and Employer: Retired, though working part-time for Zigler’s Machine & Metal Works
What offices, if any, have you previously held? none
Education: B.S. Secondary Education, Major in Biology, Minor in Physical Education
Graduate School of Commercial Lending
Graduate School of Bank Management
Community involvement: currently including CASA (Board & volunteer Advocate), Lee County Zoning Board of Appeals, Dixon Evening Lions Club, St. Paul Lutheran Church (former Council member & currently volunteer for various functions), and previously United Way of Lee County (Board & volunteer), Dixon Family YMCA (Board & volunteer), Alzheimer’s Association (State & local Board member),Dixon Public Library (Trustee), Dixon Police Pension Fund (Trustee), Dixon Main Street (Economic Restructuring Committee & volunteer), Habitat for Humanity (volunteer), Petunia Fest volunteer).
Marital status/Immediate family: Unmarried, 2 children, 1 step-child, and 8 grandchildren
Why are you running for office?
Dixon’s future is a key reason. Dixon needs to continue to move forward with the current and very real opportunities for economic development. However, it is also time to turn the page to a new chapter, where we continue to plan for the long term, while putting new focus on the neighborhoods in Dixon that sometimes seem neglected. As mayor I hope to help set a course that will ensure that every resident benefits from our city’s improvement and growth.
What makes you qualified for the office you’re seeking?
My strong understanding of business & finance. This banking & business knowledge is key in not only understanding the City’s budget & finances, but also in understanding & working with the issues of businesses in Dixon, and those looking to establish in Dixon. As well as my active involvement in at least 12 community, not for profit, or service organizations as a volunteer &/or Board member, with commitments of 8 or more years with each.
What is your position on the Illinois weapons ban that took effect in January 2023?
I don’t have an easy answer to what is a complex issue. I do support the 2nd Amendment, and I question the constitutionality of the State law. However, I understand, and concur with, the concerns over the tragedy of innocent lives being take in the senseless attacks. Right now, the Courts need to address the issue, and then hard work needs to be done to find a realistic solution.
Is crime a problem in your community and, if so, what would you do to curb it?
Crime should never be taken lightly, but I don’t believe Dixon has a serious crime problem. While not all crime can be prevented, Dixon has a well-trained and responsive police force that keeps issues under control.
What is your assessment of how the COVID-19 pandemic was handled locally?
The City of Dixon appears to have tried to find some balance between the mandates, and the concerns of the businesses and citizens. I believe there was some success in that respect, because I heard complaints that more citizen & business choice needed to be allowed, and other complaints that the mandates needed to be more strictly adhered to & enforced.
What did you learn from the pandemic?
I am not sure of the intent of this question. What became obvious to me is that it can be very difficult to address public health concerns while considering individual’s freedoms & livelihoods. Peoples risk tolerance varies widely.
How would you spur economic development in your community?
Dixon is in a good position for economic development right now. That doesn’t mean we can rest on our laurels until the current projects are completed. I will advocate for long term planning, and pre-engineering, to address future opportunities that will enhance all of the community.
Would/can/should local governments do anything to help reduce the tax burden on residents?
Of course local government has a responsibility to help reduce the tax burden on its citizens, or at the very least, hold the line. It is a matter of fiscal responsibility, and optimizing the dollars that are spent on services, infrastructure, and capital expenditures.
Do you support recreational marijuana being sold in your community to help lower residents’ tax burden?
I am not sure. I see a great benefit to medical marijuana. As for recreational marijuana, my personal bias says yes, subject to adequate controls. In the position of mayor, I have to take the community’s assessment into account.
What projects or infrastructure would you look to address in your community and how would you do it?
Dixon needs to continue to improve or replace its streets, water & sewer systems and even many of its sidewalks. Beside the age of some this infrastructure, there are currently requirements for the replacement of water lines due to lead or galvanized steel. Some of this work can be done with reserve funds, but whenever possible look for state or federal grant funds to maximize the impact of the city’s dollars and minimize the tax-payer burden. Additionally, the Gateway Project, which already has grant & TIF sources, needs to remain a high priority.
Will you accept the voters’ decision in your race on Election Day?
What is your position on open, transparent government?
Open and transparent is the correct way to operate a city government.
Do you support the Freedom of Information Act and citizens’ ability to freely access government records?
Would you sign a nondisclosure agreement with a prospective company that would limit your ability to communicate with your community?
That would depend on the scope of the non-disclosure. As long as it doesn’t not inhibit the city council’s ability to discuss in open meeting any ordinances, resolutions, or financial commitments, then I can understand the confidentiality that a prospective company may need.