REALTORS® back three additional state rep candidates

The Illinois REALTORS® Political Action Committee (RPAC) has provided direct contributions to three additional pro-REALTOR® candidates and encourages you to vote for the pro-REALTOR® candidate in your district on Nov. 4.

These Illinois House of Representatives candidates are pro-business, pro-private property rights, low tax and pro-growth on issues that affect the business of real estate.  RPAC Trustees consider them “Opportunity Races:”

  • 91st House District near Peoria – Rep. Mike Unes (R)
  • 103rd House District in Champaign and Urbana – Kristin Williamson (R)
  • 112th House District in Metro East near St. Louis – Rep. Dwight Kay (R)

For each candidate, we provide several reasons for your support:

Unes/91st

  • A longtime friend and champion of IAR and his local REALTOR® associations, Unes was first elected in 2010. He has welcomed IAR members and opened sessions at IAR Public Policy meetings in East Peoria, which is his home.
  • The 91st District includes all or parts of the communities of East Peoria, Pekin, Canton, Lewistown, Farmington, Cuba, Bartonville, Marquette Heights, Mapleton, Kingston Mines and Creve Coeur. 
  • Unes serves on the committees of: Cities and Villages (where IAR often testifies on behalf of private property owners); Human Services Appropriations; Economic Development; Insurance; Small Business Empowerment & Workforce; Transportation; and Elementary and Secondary Education.

Williamson/103rd

  • A director of public relations for a private company, Williamson has been a precinct committeeman and former vice chairman of the Champaign County Republican Party. She is running for an open seat of the 103rd District (no incumbent), representing Champaign and Urbana.
  • She is an advocate for tax and regulatory measures that reduce the cost of doing business in Illinois and help create new jobs.
  • She says a very critical issue in her district is the uncertainty of the pension reform package pending judicial review. 
  • Rather than raising the taxes on existing property owners, Williamson believes in making home ownership a more affordable reality so that the property tax base can be expanded. 
  • She is a strong proponent of private property rights
  • If the state’s economic condition is improved and more people return to work, Williamson believes the tax base will be expanded and other revenue sources will increase

Kay/112th

  • First elected in 2010, Kay stresses the importance of economic development in the 112th District and in the state.  This district, known as the metro-East area near St. Louis, includes all or part of: Caseyville, Collinsville, Edwardsville, Fairview Heights, Glen Carbon, Granite City, Maryville and O’Fallon.
  • He also has co-sponsored key property tax relief measures.
  • He serves on the House Judiciary Committee as well as committees for: Public Safety Appropriations, Insurance, Environment and Labor & Commerce.

Read the previous Opportunity Race stories about:

(Contributions are not deductible as charitable contributions for federal income tax purposes. The Illinois REALTORS® Political Action Committee (RPAC) collects contributions from members of the National Association of REALTORS (NAR) for political activities. A portion of each contribution will be used for state political activities; at least 30 percent will be used for federal campaign purposes. The federal portion will be charged against an individual’s federal contribution limits under 2 USC 441a. Contributions are VOLUNTARY and refusal to contribute does not affect membership rights. A member may contribute more or less than the suggested amount. A copy of our report filed with the State Board of Elections is (or will be) available on the Board’s official website www.elections.il.gov or for purchase from the State Board of Elections, Springfield, Illinois.)

Advocacy helps Deerfield avoid fire sprinkler mandate

More than a month after the Deerfield Village Board considered a change to its building code, the board voted 4-2 against a requirement for fire sprinklers in all new construction for single-family homes.

Trustees Alan Farkas, Barbara Struthers, Tom Jester and Bob Benton voted against the sprinkler mandate, while Bill Seiden and Robert Nadler voted for the mandate.

The Oct. 6 vote came as a relief to Howard Handler, IAR Government Affairs Director for the North Shore-Barrington Association of REALTORS®, who had addressed the board about the topic at its September meeting, advocating for homeowner choice.  At the first meeting, Handler explained sprinklers would increase construction costs and put a strain on an industry still working to recover.

“I think the pendulum is shifting on this issue,” says Handler.  “More and more, municipal officials are rejecting sprinkler mandates because the debate is now moving from emotion to facts, and the facts are prevailing.”

The turning point of the conversation about sprinklers at the October meeting came when a Deerfield trustee asked several advocates if they had sprinklers in their homes. All four members of the Deerfield-Bannockburn Fire Protection District, including the chief, admitted they did not have sprinklers.

Handler gave credit to the members of the Deerfield Village Board for listening to the concerns of homeowners, REALTORS® and advocates of sprinklers.  He said a Canadian government study showed that even if cut in half, the estimated costs of a sprinkler system in a new home would outweigh the benefits.

“It is for these reasons, and more,” says Handler, “that most Illinois municipalities have not adopted a fire sprinkler mandate, and that even some municipalities, like Huntley, have rescinded their ordinances mandating sprinklers.”

REALTORS® back five more state rep candidates in NE Illinois

The Illinois REALTORS® Political Action Committee (RPAC) has provided direct contributions to five pro-REALTOR® candidates in the northeastern quadrant of the state and encourages you to vote for the pro-REALTOR® candidate in your district on Nov. 4.

These Illinois House of Representatives candidates are pro-business, pro-private property rights, low tax and pro-growth on issues that affect the business of real estate.  RPAC Trustees consider them “Opportunity Races:”

  • 20th House District — Rep. Michael McAuliffe (R)
  • 37th House District – Margo McDermed (R)
  • 43rd House District – Rep. Anna Moeller (D)
  • 61st House District – Rep. Sheri Jesiel (R)
  • 75th House District – Rep. John Anthony (R)

For each candidate, we provide several reasons for your support:

McAuliffe/20th

  • A lifelong resident of the 20th, McAuliffe has been a member of the Illinois House since 1996.
  • He represents the city of Chicago and all or parts of Schiller Park, Niles, Rosemont, Park Ridge, Des Plaines, Norridge, Harwood Heights and Franklin Park.
  • He is the Republican Spokesperson for two committees (Health Care Licenses and Veterans’ Affairs), and serves on five others (Public Safety Appropriations; Health Care Availability and Access; Public Utilities; Tourism & Conventions; and Museums, Arts & Cultural Enhancements). 
  • McAuliffe has been a longtime REALTOR® champion on IAR initiatives and on issues our association advocates on behalf of private property owners.

McDermed/37th

  • This Will County Board member is vying for an open seat with no incumbent in District 37, which includes parts of Cook and Will counties as well as all or parts of Orland Hills, Orland Park, Tinley Park and Oak Forest.
  • McDermed was a strong opponent to any fire sprinkler mandate for new construction in unincorporated Will County.
  • She has been open to concerns expressed by REALTORS®.
  • She supports reducing income tax and property tax burdens so more Illinois residents can buy homes and remain in them.
  • She is a strong proponent of private property rights.

Moeller/43rd

  • Moeller was sworn in on March 2014.  The 43rd District includes all or part of Elgin, Barrington Hills, Carpentersville, East Dundee and South Elgin. 
  • A former Elgin City Councilwoman, Moeller serves on committees for: Transportation (Vehicles & Safety); Public Safety (Police & Fire); State Government Administration; and Economic Development.
  • She supported IAR’s initiative to create a clear and fair formula for calculating the amount to be paid by purchasers of foreclosed condominiums.
  • She supported changes to the Real Estate License law regarding regulation of brokers who do a Broker Price Opinion (BPO) and/or a Comparative Market Analysis (CMA)

Jesiel/61st

  • A former Benton Township Chairman, Jesiel was sworn in July 2014 following the resignation of Rep. JoAnn Osmond. The 61st District is in Lake County and includes all or part of Antioch, Lindenhurst, Beach Park and Zion.
  • She is a lifelong resident of the Zion-Winthrop Harbor Area.
  • Residing near the state line, Jesiel feels very strongly about the need to address Illinois’ tax policy to encourage people to stay in Illinois.  She is also very concerned about high property taxes and feels that the expansion of our tax base is important.
  • Jesiel touts her business and educational background and states that her experience in corporate headquarters, not-for-profits and business start-ups are needed in state government.

Anthony/75th

  • Anthony was appointed as state representative in August 2013 following the resignation of Rep. Pam Roth. The 75th District includes portions of Kendall, Grundy, Will and LaSalle counties and all or part of the municipalities of Minooka, Channahon, Morris, Seneca, Marseilles, Sheridan and Plano.
  • Prior to his appointment, Anthony served as a police officer and deputy sheriff. 
  • He is on the powerful House Judiciary Committee where many transactional and legal issues affecting real estate and private property rights are heard.  He also serves on the Human Services Appropriations, Business Growth and Incentives, Energy and Insurance committees. 
  • He supported IAR’s initiative to create a clear and fair formula for calculating the amount to be paid by purchasers of foreclosed condominiums.
  • He backed changes to the Real Estate License law regarding regulation of brokers who do a Broker Price Opinion (BPO) and/or a Comparative Market Analysis (CMA).
Read the previous Opportunity Race stories about:

(Contributions are not deductible as charitable contributions for federal income tax purposes. The Illinois REALTORS® Political Action Committee (RPAC) collects contributions from members of the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR) for political activities. A portion of each contribution will be used for state political activities; at least 30 percent will be used for federal campaign purposes. The federal portion will be charged against an individual’s federal contribution limits under 2 USC 441a. Contributions are VOLUNTARY and refusal to contribute does not affect membership rights. A member may contribute more or less than the suggested amount. A copy of our report filed with the State Board of Elections is (or will be) available on the Board’s official website www.elections.il.gov or for purchase from the State Board of Elections, Springfield, Illinois.)

Today is first day for early voting in Illinois

Photo courtesy of Bigstock

If you travel for business or if long work hours make voting in the Nov. 4 Illinois general election impossible or inconvenient, today is the first day you can utilize early voting, according to the Illinois State Board of Elections (ISBE).

Early voting was approved by the Illinois General Assembly in 2005.

“Registered voters may cast a ballot prior to Election Day without having to provide a reason for wanting to vote early,” says an online ISBE document. “This ballot is cast by personal appearance at the office of the election authority or at a location established by the election authority. An election authority is either a county clerk or a Board of Election Commissioner.”

Locations for early voting are usually in one of the following offices, though temporary polling places may be set up in other locations:

  • a municipal clerk’s office,
  • a township clerk’s office,
  • a road district clerk’s office,
  • a county agency office or
  • a local public agency office.

The local election authority will publish the locations for early voting and the hours for each.  Residents voting early must present a current driver’s license or a government issued photo ID card, according to the ISBE.

Typically, voters must register 28 days in advance of an election. Check to see if you’re registered. However, Grace Period Registration extends the registration deadline.

Grace Period Registration
Those who use Grace Period Registration cannot participate in early voting or to vote at their usual polling place on Election Day, says the ISBE. However, depending on the local election authority, those voters will be allowed to cast their ballot after Grace Period Registration in the same location or by mail. Grace Period Registration begins 27 days before the election and ends on the day of the election.

Manar, Jacobs get REALTOR® support in upcoming election

IAR members – When you head to the polls to vote in the Nov. 4 general election, the Illinois REALTORS® Political Action Committee (RPAC) encourages you to vote for incumbents Sen. Andy Manar (D) and Sen. Mike Jacobs (D).  Deemed “Opportunity Races,” by the RPAC Trustees, these candidates are pro-business, pro-private property rights, low tax and pro-growth on issues that affect the business of real estate.

Sen. Andy Manar

48th District
The 48th Senate District is from Sangamon and Macon counties in the north, to Madison County in the south. It includes all or part of the cities of Blue Mound, Carlinville, Decatur, Hillsboro, Litchfield, Rochester, Springfield, Staunton and Taylorville.

First elected to the state senate in 2012, Manar has tackled the tough issue of education funding. As the co-chairman of the Senate Advisory Committee on Education Funding, he sought additional funding for schools and a fairer system. Starting as a Macoupin County elected official and continuing today, he has worked to improve economic development in his district. He has been heavily involved in the Macoupin Economic Development Partnership, a public-private partnership in which local businesses share expertise to make government more efficient.

He serves on the Senate Agriculture and Conservation, Appropriations I, Appropriations II, Higher Education, State Government & Veterans Affairs, and Executive Appointments committees.

Manar began his political career as a city councilman in Bunker Hill in 1997, and later became Bunker Hill’s mayor in 2001. He next served as a Macoupin County Board member in 2003, and became chairman in 2004.  He is the former chief of staff for Illinois Senate President John Cullerton of Chicago (Sixth District).

Sen. Mike Jacobs

36th District
The 36th Senate District is in western Illinois and includes all or parts of the cities of East Moline, Moline, Rock Island, Rock Falls and Sterling.

Jacobs began as a state senator in 2005.

He co-sponsored an IAR-supported bill, Senate Bill 336, to provide tools to local governments statewide to get vacant homes back on the tax rolls. This property tax assessment freeze will give incentives to home buyers or investors to undertake rehabilitation efforts in targeted areas.

Jacobs has worked with the IAR and other business groups in efforts to streamline asbestos regulation in Illinois.

Jacobs represents the fourth generation of his family to serve in the Illinois General Assembly.  He is the chairman of the Senate Energy Committee, and he’s on the Agriculture and Conservation, Appropriations II, Insurance and Executive Appointment committees.

The East Moline resident is a former liaison to Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White, managing facilities and functions in 14 northwest Illinois counties from 1999 to 2005.  Jacobs also owned a public affairs firm specializing in political campaigns, elections and research from 1989 to 1997.

Read the previous Opportunity Race story about REALTORS® Sam Yingling and Mark Batinick.

(Contributions are not deductible as charitable contributions for federal income tax purposes. The Illinois REALTORS® Political Action Committee (RPAC) collects contributions from members of the National Association of REALTORS (NAR) for political activities. A portion of each contribution will be used for state political activities; at least 30 percent will be used for federal campaign purposes. The federal portion will be charged against an individual’s federal contribution limits under 2 USC 441a. Contributions are VOLUNTARY and refusal to contribute does not affect membership rights. A member may contribute more or less than the suggested amount. A copy of our report filed with the State Board of Elections is (or will be) available on the Board’s official website www.elections.il.gov or for purchase from the State Board of Elections, Springfield, Illinois.)