Candidate Full Name: Willie Wilson
Office: Chicago Mayor
Email Address: email@example.com
Web Site: www.electwilliewilson.com
Campaign Name: Friends of Willie Wilson
Survey Questions (Character limit of 2,000 per response)
It's the next Mayor of Chicago that will deal with the full consequences of the financial decisions being made today. What strategies will you use to make headway with the budget difficulties?
As a businessman, I know what it means to spend what you have-not more. We need to analyze the budget and cut unnecessary or wasteful spending. I will engage the assistance of financial experts and determine which programs are working well and which programs are not performing. We will closely look at every item included in the budget.
2. Will you raise property taxes?
3. How do you feel about privatizing city assets?
I believe in privatizing city assets. I believe government's purpose is to govern, not manage assets like the transportation system. We should be willing to look at the value of privatizing assets.
4. How will you improve the Chicago School System?
The re-opening of closed schools can only be properly accomplished by a committee of community residents, teachers and administrators. The specific decisions as to how many can be re-opened or combined, must be a communal effort by such a group. I plan, if elected, to form such working groups with representative from the communities affected to work alongside the others mentioned to form a new plan.
I will also move to an elected board for Chicago Public Schools. I believe it is important that the board be elected by the public and be a reflection of who they deem the best qualified for the job.
My education plan also includes the re-establishment of a vigorous trade school and alternative school program. Utilizing some of the 50 schools closed, again relying on a committee of community residents, teachers and administrators, we will begin opening schools that teach Para-medical, mechanical, culinary and other trades while allowing review and study for the GED for any student without a high school diploma. This will allow young people and perhaps even adults, who have not completed high, school as well as those that have and need to learn a new trade, to find what they need to succeed in their communities.
5. How would you work the Chicago Police Department and community members to make residents feel safe in their neighborhoods?
My plan is to integrate our officers into the communities. The fact is that City of Chicago has more police officers per resident, than any of the top four largest cities in the county. We need to have officers in the streets, on the trains and in our communities.
All the other candidates, including Mayor Emanuel during his first campaign, have called for more police. However to add more police we would need to raise taxes on the little guy to pay for it, I won't do that. We need to stop the "nickel and dime" tax thinking, it is destructive in the long run. We need to look at proper management of the CPD and make sure we are utilizing our existing resources in the best possible manner. As a business owner, I know that the hard part about any endeavor is managing what you've got, not just spending more money. You've got to follow up, follow through and be held accountable.
6. Do you support or oppose the vote to increase the minimum wage in several steps to $13 an hour by 2019? Why?
I definitely support the minimum wage but as a businessman, I want to get our citizens beyond minimum wage. In my own businesses and experience I have helped simple, average people bring out the best in themselves and grow into the best employee possible. It is important that we move beyond the minimum wage, create jobs that pay more than minimum wage and ensure we have trained and educated individuals available to fill these positions.
7. Are you in favor of Chicago's Red Light Camera program? Why?
The red light cameras have been wrapped in negative reports, abuse and corruption. We need to completely reevaluate the use and need for these cameras. I believe the red light camera program-in its inception-could be used a safety measure for our streets but we need to make sure that we are implementing the program efficiently and ethically.