Following are the answers to the questionnaire provided to general election candidates for Mayor of Waukegan. 

Ann Taylor

Waukegan is a city with unlimited potential. We have the lakefront, we have highway access, we have rail access, and we have such wonderful and diverse people. What are we missing? We are missing professionalism, and thus I strongly support bringing in a city administrator. Not only do I support adding this position, but I also support reducing the mayor’s staff and budget to minimize the impact that this new position would have on Waukegan taxpayers. Under the current administration, we are making decisions that waste millions upon millions of taxpayer dollars because the city’s day to day business is run by political appointees, many of whom are either friends or family with Mayor Cunningham. We owe it to our wonderful residents to deliver services in the most professional manner possible, and so this change must happen now, and I’ll deliver it as your mayor.

We must do a better job in taking input from our residents. In addition to audience time and participating in committee meetings, we need to hold regular public forums for residents’ voices to be heard and to address important issues that affect the community, like the use of force, marijuana, gaming, and environmental concerns.

As mayor, I would ensure elections are publicized and encourage candidates to run. Not only on our website but by other means, including water bills, community groups and newspapers. I would ensure the forms and rules are easily assessable and that the process is transparent, including publicizing petitions submitted, challenges, results of the challenges and the final slate of candidates.

We need staff that is professionally qualified to lead our city, including the city administrator. I would reinstate the Economic Development Committee and include residents on it. As mayor, I will end patronage hiring and instead hire for talent and experience, opening up and publicizing job opportunities for the most qualified people to help our city thrive. We must tackle the actual and perceived corruption in our city to attract top-level retail and for our small businesses to thrive. I will take action against any corrupt local officials who are putting their own ambitions and desires ahead of the needs of our residents. We’ll need a full scale, top to bottom economic development commission with stakeholders from all communities and our businesses. We’ll need an independent analysis of how to best leverage our amazing lakefront and transportation infrastructure to turn Waukegan into a destination for those who want to do business. We need a vibrant downtown. It just takes the leadership to make it happen. When I am mayor, the status quo ends.

I’ve been heavily involved with pushing back and stopping EtO emissions. As mayor, I would make sure EtO test results are reduced to the background level and confirmed through testing and that testing is performed at distribution centers where off-gassing occurs as the product is stored. Vantage is outside Waukegan but affects Waukegan residents. I would work with the mayor of Gurnee to facilitate a similar resolution. I would ensure the coal-burning power plant submit a firm plan for the elimination of coal-burning and a transition to cleaner energy sources. As mayor, I would do everything possible to protect our resident’s health, especially those in our minority communities who often don’t have the same access to high-quality and preventative healthcare. The job of public officials, and especially the mayor is leadership, and to me, nothing is more important than protecting the health of our residents.

Decisions about the lakefront must be in accordance with an overall development plan. I lean towards the Park District managing certain parts of the beachfront.

The original intent of these gaming machines was to help struggling local restaurants to survive. Instead, it has led to many mini casinos that largely derive their income from gaming and dilute the benefits to our local restaurants. The city ordinances need to be changed to favor local restaurants. This might be accomplished by restructuring of the fees, considering the amount of revenue from food and beverage sales, but all options will be considered. We must do everything possible to protect our small business owners, especially now during the pandemic.

I have a wonderful relationship with all three of these organizations within Waukegan. My campaign is about giving everyone in Waukegan a voice and moving our community forward during this challenging time for our city and our nation. Waukegan has many challenges, but the challenges we face aren’t made harder because of our diversity. Rather we will be able to get through anything if we have unifying leadership that leverages our diversity and turns it into strength. Mayor Motley had established a diversity office and the Citizens for Progress Committee and Latino Coalition. Mayor Cunningham abolished these groups. I would reestablish a diversity officer and these action groups and create similar action groups to engage our citizens in addressing specific social issues.

Contact Us

Have any questions you need answered about the Waukegan casino project? Drop us a line. We'll do our best to get you answers.

Not readable? Change text. captcha txt

Start typing and press Enter to search