- Position sought: State Representative, 81st District
- Website: www.Ron4Illinois.com
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/RonSandack
- Twitter: @RonSandack
- Address: 12022 N75th St #113, Downers Grove, IL 60516
- Birthday: Feb. 15, 1964
- Family: Wife, Kevan, and two children
- Education: B.A. from University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, J.D. from DePaul University College of Law
- Occupation: Attorney at Gaido & Fintzen (Chicago and St. Charles)
- Political Party: Republican Party
- Official name of campaign committee: Citizens to Elect Ron Sandack
- Previous Elected or Appointed Offices: Downers Grove Village Council 2003-2007; Mayor, Village of Downers Grove 2007-2011; State Senate 21st Dist., Nov. 2010 - present
Is there any additional experience you believe qualifies you for the position?
I am involved in the following civic organizations: Downers Grove Area Chamber of Commerce & Industry, Dist. 58 Foundation, Pierce Downer Elementary PTA, Downers Grove Moose.
What would your priorities be if elected to this office?
My Five to Revive Illinois, a prescription to restore our State by creating:
- A job-friendly environment where both employers and talented people thrive.
- A lean State government focused on the basics.
- Ethics reforms to clean up Illinois' tainted culture.
- Fiscally prudent management to stop Illinois' descent and finally live within our means.
- Open government which provides real access to the public and holds officials accountable.
What sets you apart from the other candidates?
My record of achievement and leadership skills set me apart from my opponent. I have led on fiscally conservative and government reform issues both in Downers Grove, where I served as Mayor, and in Springfield. When I got to Springfield I declined to accept the legislative pension and health care benefits and been active in attempting to reasonably reform public pensions at the State level—so that they are financially sustainable. My record has led to my receiving endorsements from House Minority Leader Tom Cross, Senate Minority Leader Christine Radogno, DuPage County Chairman Dan Cronin, Illinois Treasurer Dan Rutherford, grassroots child advocacy organization Stand For Children, The Daily Herald, For the Good of Illinois PAC, Naperville Area Chamber PAC, government reformer Adam Andrzejewski, Sen. Kirk Dillard, Sen. John Millner, Sen. Tom Johnson, Rep. Michael Connelly, Rep. Jim Durkin, Rep. Franco Coladipietro, Mayor Bill Murphy (Woodridge), Mayor Joe Broda (Lisle), Mayor Bill Rahn (Westmont), Mayor Roger Claar (Bolingbrook), and many other respected organizations and individuals.
What should first be done by the state to keep businesses that have strongly voiced the possibility of leaving, such as CME and Sears?
I voted against the Sears/CME bill which I believe to be an example of short-sighted corporate favoritism rather than sound fiscal policy. It is the small businesses that will lead the way out of this recession, and by reducing the tax and regulatory burden on these entrepreneurial individuals we can ensure a level playing field for businesses and allow them to do what they do best.
What can be done to help College Illinois?
I support Jim Durkin’s efforts to ensure there are long-term solutions to the problem before we ever discuss a state guarantee of future contracts. While progress has been made recently, we still need to further limit the amount going towards administration while increasing funding levels from their current level at 70%.
What should the government do to create more jobs?
I have no higher priority than getting people back to work and creating an inviting business environment. With an unemployment rate that continues to hover near double-digits, job creation is critical. Unfortunately, Illinois has become a toxic environment for business. Our State has high taxes, excessive regulation, and cumbersome legal requirements that chase businesses to more welcoming states. After the recent irresponsible 47% income tax increase on businesses, that toxic environment got even worse.
Legislators in Springfield need to work across the aisle to bring jobs back to Illinois. We need to cut taxes on businesses, reduce artificial impediments and unnecessary regulations, and view the private sector as a partner, not a revenue source. Growing our economy and expanding opportunities for new jobs is the best and most dependable way to raise revenues—growing our tax base rather than taxing, borrowing and spending and then taxing yet again to provide needed revenue for State services. If we grow good-paying jobs at home we will increase tax revenue while putting our friends and neighbors back to work.
What are your philosophies on social issues such as same-sex marriage and abortion, and what should government’s role in those issues?
I do not favor moving beyond civil unions and know the majority of the people in my district agree. I am pro-life and favor promoting adoption as a viable alternative. As with all areas of our lives, government’s involvement should be as limited as possible.
Do you support a gaming bill that would increase the number of casinos or other gambling venues in Illinois? Should a casino be built in Chicago?
I voted against the recent gaming bills as they were too expansive, but I would be open to considering a Chicago casino and slots at racetracks, provided both were in strict compliance with existing rules by the Illinois gaming authority.
What do you suggest for property tax relief?
A huge portion of our property tax bills go to our local school districts, and there are improvements we can make to how the State handles funding this all-important item. To continue to provide our children with the quality of education they deserve, we need local control of our schools. Legislators should not be dictating how our local schools are run. Springfield should not take our hard earned tax dollars - designated for our local schools - and divert that money to other schools outside our district. We need to free up local education dollars by minimizing the state mandates on local schools, allowing school officials and parents to determine where that money is best spent in their children’s education. It may be time to look at consolidating school districts to increase administrative efficiency and reduce redundancies in bureaucracy as those dollars need to go to teaching rather than unnecessary administration.
Should the state consider consolidating school districts? What would be the best way to accomplish this in your legislative district?
I believe strongly in consolidation of government to streamline the sometimes oppressive number of bureaucracies through which our residents must navigate…and even worse fund with their hard-earned tax dollars. As such I support the consolidation of school districts, and I remain unconvinced that there are too many impediments to accomplishing this goal other than those artificially imposed by individuals who are simply trying to protect their turf. Such a move would streamline administration and free up additional funds to be used on educating our children and preparing them for the future.
Should the state legalize marijuana?
Are there ways to reform the legislative scholarship program, or would you support calls to eliminate the program?
I have never participated in this program as I immediately declined when I took office, and I have introduced legislation (SB2570) to abolish the program entirely.
Who are your political heroes and why?
George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, Theodore Roosevelt and Ronald Reagan. All were clear, committed and selfless leaders who undertook difficult tasks, in the face of challenging obstacles, and achieved significant successes for our nation.
Have you ever been convicted of a felony, sued successfully or had a restraining order placed against you?