Campaign Website: www.votebeckyanderson.com
Slogan: A New voice that’s Responsible, Inclusive, Fair and Experienced
Circle one: Employed
If employed, where? Anderson’s Books, Inc.- Co-Owner
How long have you lived in Naperville? 54 years
1. What motivated you to run for Naperville City Council?
I have always believed in service- whether it was my industry regionally/nationally or my local community-both in business and non-profit involvement. I truly care about this city and want to see this place that has been home to 6 generations of my family continue to thrive and be home to people from all backgrounds and economic situations. A place where everyone can find a place to call home in all of its best meaning.
2. If elected to serve your community, will you accept health care benefits from the City of Naperville? NO
3. If elected, how much time per week are you willing to give to prepare for City Council meetings, budget workshops and liaison appointments on boards/commissions?
Average 25-30 hours per week.
4. What quality and/or skill set will you bring to a nonpartisan City Council?
Leadership, extensive board and governance experience. I believe in compromise and creative ways of accomplishing goals. Transparency, fairness and fiduciary responsibility are paramount to my way of serving. I have been a successful business owner in this city for years. That experience will serve me well as a city council member.
5. What do you consider to be the three biggest issues facing the City today?
- A. Budget shortfall and saving for the next economic hard time.
- B. Making this city more affordable for the young and retired.
- C. Making Naperville a better environment for Independent entrepreneurial businesses.
6. Do you favor term limits for City Council and other local/state governing bodies? YES
7. Name one contribution you have made to our city that you think was most significant of your community service to date.
Serving on the SECA Commission as Commissioner and as Chair for 6+ years-helping to refine the process to ensure fairness, process, and transparency. The commission’s recommendations are, on the most part, are now accepted in full by Council. This Commission and the City’s Special Events Coordinator and City Clerk have worked hard to make these important changes.
Founding Naperville Reads-a citywide annual reading initiative for all ages.
8. What boards or commissions have you served previously?
President American Booksellers Association, President of the Great Lakes Booksellers Association, President of the Association of Booksellers for Children, Chairman Naperville SECA Commission, board member DuPage Symphony Orchestra, board member of KidsMatter.
9. Realistically and fiscally speaking, if you could change/improve one thing in the city, what would it be?
Creating funds and or tax incentives for first time homeowners and retirees on fixed incomes who find it impossible to live and/or remain in Naperville. I’ve heard too many stories from people who cannot afford to live in our City; many who grew up here or those who raised a family, sold their homes and are downsizing.
10. How do hope to be perceived by city staff, city manager, other council members and constituents?
Hardworking, informed, team builder, curious, not afraid to challenge the status quo, consensus builder, proud to be a Napervillian.
11. What business development needs can you identify?
More businesses/ retail/service in south Naperville, careful development north of the downtown-but respectful of residential areas, insuring that open space remains open space. Empty business real estate scattered over town needs to find viable tenants.
12. What can the City of Naperville do better to retain and attract businesses?
Instead of giving sales tax rebates to huge corporations that make billions. The city should attract more diverse and unique businesses that will attract business. In some ways we are becoming a carbon copy of many other communities all over the country-same retail, restaurants, and service businesses. We are losing our uniqueness. We are also losing out on many dollars that would be recirculated with locally owned and operated independent businesses. More dollars stay in our community.
13. What can the City Council do to help keep real estate and property values in check?
Work with the county to control expenditures-also control city unnecessary capital expenditures so property taxes do not become a barrier to home ownership. Pension issues at both the county and city levels continue to rise. They are not realistic or reflective compared to private sector retirement and savings.
14. What do you think the City Council could do to help keep Naperville affordable for homeowners of all ages?
Creating funds and or tax incentives for first time homeowners and retirees on fixed incomes who find it impossible to live and/or remain in Naperville. Also finding a way to encourage property owners to renovate or remodel existing homes-to prevent tear-downs and the resulting huge homes and enormous property taxes.
15. What service provided by the City of Naperville do you deem most important?
Police and Fire protection. Streets and Sanitation. Least important? Sister City programs-not sure who really participates or takes notice?
16. Are you a member of a service club or nonprofit board of directors that receives SECA funds or other grants from the City of Naperville?
YES / Member of Rotary Club of Naperville/Sunrise
17. What city amenity is most important and how do you think it should be funded/raise revenue?
The Naperville Riverwalk—it is the gem of the City-on a beautiful day you can see such diversity of people-so many different languages being spoken. It draws people to our city from all over Chicagoland and beyond. Funding for maintenance through SECA and the Park District. Possible future expansion.
18. How would you qualify Special Events and Cultural Amenities (SECA) applicants for funding?
- Naperville based
- funding requested will really benefit as many people as possible per capita
- will enrich the cultural life of our city-through diversity, heritage, and culture.
- organizations and events that will enrich the life of our city
- require as much support of each applicant to use Naperville based services and purchases from Naperville Businesses
- making sure all dollars awarded will not be used as sustaining dollars for any organizations or group—that means no rents, salaries, travel, etc.
19. What is your opinion of the bidding and letting process at the City of Naperville?
This process can always be improved-to insure that bids/RFP are requested regularly and requested of multiple sources. As in business we do this every year for insurance, garbage collection, health insurance, office supplies, and much more. Transparency is so important that government is doing its due diligence.
20. In addition to employee salaries and public safety, place in order of importance to you 12 assets and public/private partnerships that currently receive funding from the City of Naperville.
- Naperville Riverwalk
- Naperville Public Libraries
- Downtown Naperville
- Naper Settlement—Naperville Heritage Society
- Naperville Community Television-NCTV
- DuPage Children’s Museum
- Naperville Development Partnership
- Naperville Municipal Band
- Ribfest-Exchange Club
- Last Fling-Jaycees of Naperville
- Fourth of July Fireworks
- Rotary Clubs, Lyons, VFW, and all 501-C-3 organizations that are awarded SECA grants to enhance the cultural life of Naperville, etc.—support of yearly parades and events