Kevin Gallaher

GallaherCandidate for City Council

Campaign Website: GallaherforNaperville.com (coming soon)

Slogan: Common Sense Leadership Naperville Trusts

Employed: Attorney

25 year Naperville Resident

20 Questions

1. What motivated you to run for Naperville City Council?

A desire to use my experience to help Naperville transition from a City fueled by growth to a fully-developed community.

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?

As a former City Council member, I understand the time commitment involved in serving. Each Council member should put as much time as necessary to serve effectively. At times, during the budget season for example, City Council work requires more time. At others, less time is necessary.

4. What quality and/or skill set will you bring to a nonpartisan City Council?

I served on the City Council for seven years from 1995 to 2002. Since then I have represented many clients before not only the City of Naperville, but other area governments. As a result, I believe that I have developed an idea of the strengths and weaknesses of processes within the City of Naperville.

5. What do you consider to be the three biggest issues facing the City today?

  • A. Understanding the impact of the internet on traditional retail practices to support strong sales tax revenues for the City.
  • B. Implementing a zoning code for commercial and retail properties that reflects the realities of the 21st Century consumers.
  • C. Maintaining strong property values in the office, commercial and retail areas so as to support the school and park districts and reduce the property tax burden on individual property owners.

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. 

I am very proud of all of my community service. However, I am most proud of my work in raising awareness of the capabilities of individuals on the autism spectrum and other development disabilities. The organizations I have worked with are now training these extremely talented individuals for employment.

8. What boards or commissions have you served previously?

Naperville City Council, Naperville Development Partnership, Transportation Advisory Board, E911 Board, NCTV Board, Naperville Responds, Naperville United Way, West Suburban Mass Transit District

9. Realistically and fiscally speaking, if you could change/improve one thing in the city, what would it be?

Collaborate with the staff, commercial and retail property owners and realtors to develop a zoning and development process that:

  • a. better involves the public;
  • b. seeks guidance from the City Council earlier;
  • c. sheds light on the entire process; and
  • d. minimizes the risk to the developer.

The number of vacant and underutilized retail and commercial properties in Naperville is alarming. The properties are not contributing reliable property taxes to the City, School Districts and Park Districts. These properties need to be evaluated to determine how to improve these property values.

10. How to you hope to be perceived by city staff, city manager, other council members and constituents?

A collaborator. Someone with common-sense ideas. Someone who sees the merits of other peoples’ opinions.

11. What business development needs can you identify?

Chapters 7 and 8 of the Naperville Municipal Code which address zoning for business and industrial districts in Naperville have not been comprehensively updated since 1980 – nearly 35 years ago. Although individual sections have been changed during that time, the Code in its entirety reflects a community that is in the midst of a growth period. Naperville has now nearly built out and the rise in technology has changed the way people shop and work. Our community should revise the zoning code to address these changes.

12. What can the City of Naperville do to better retain and attract businesses?

Understand the needs of businesses and their employees, particularly given the tremendous global changes that impact how people transact business. There so many more factors that influence decisions to locate a business now. Naperville needs to be a leader in understanding the impact of these factors and adapt its rules and procedures to address them.

13. What can the City of Naperville do to help keep real estate and property values in check?

I do not believe that the City should take any direct action to attempt to influence property values. However, financially sound community, with a diverse tax base, strong schools and vibrant amenities will be attractive to residents and business alike and should result in strong property values.

14. What do you think the City Council could do to help keep Naperville affordable for homeowners of all ages?

Maintain a diverse housing stock including well-maintained apartments and senior housing with services that support an aging population.

15. What service provided by the City of Naperville do you deem most important? Least important?

All of the City services are important. However, I believe that public safety services – police and fire protection – are the most important; the first among equals. The last among equals would be bill collections.

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? No.

17. What City amenity is most important and how do you think it should be funded/raise revenues?

The Naperville Riverwalk. Currently the City and Park District share the expenses of maintaining the Riverwalk. This should continue. The community has also raised significant private funds to pay for the expansion and enhancement of the Riverwalk. The Riverwalk is the result of a true public/private partnership and represents what Naperville can accomplish through cooperation and collaboration.

18. How would you qualify Special Events and Cultural Amenities (SECA) applicants for funding?

The events and amenities that impact the most Naperville residents and businesses ought to receive priority in receiving SECA funds.

19. What is your opinion of the biding and letting process at the City of Naperville?

In general, the bidding and letting process serves Naperville residents and businesses well. However, I support efforts to revise the process to give consideration to local businesses and businesses that employ veterans and individuals with disabilities.

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.

  1. DuPage Water Commission
  2. Electric Power Contract
  3. Federal and State Bridge and Road Contracts
  4. Allied Waste garbage and recycling contracts
  5. Naperville Public Library
  6. Downtown Naperville Alliance Parking Deck and maintenance programs
  7. Naperville Fire Protection District
  8. Naperville Development Partnership
  9. Naperville Riverwalk
  10. Community Development Block Grant fund allocations
  11. Naperville Century Walk
  12. Naperville Test Track

Vote April 7, 2015

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