Election 2013: Eric Stach
Eric Stach is one of three candidates running unopposed for the Clarendon Hills Village Board.
Name: Eric T. Stach
Position sought: Clarendon Hills Village Board
Years in Clarendon Hills: More than 10
Family: Wife Courtney; sons Henry, 7, and Charles, 5; the dog Goose, the parakeet Penny and two frogs.
Education: Bachelor's degree from University of Notre Dame; law degree from Chicago-Kent College of Law-IIT.
Previous elected offices: N/A
Applicable experience qualifying you for the position: The bulk of my legal experience involves representing local governments (both as counsel and in court), real estate transactions, zoning and land use development.
What is the primary reason you are running for this office?
I helped found the local grassroots group “Citizens for Clarendon Hills” (www.citizensforch.com), initially to defeat the village’s 2012 home rule initiative. The opportunity to serve now as a village trustee will allow for more direct participation.
What will be your single most important priority if you get elected?
Pursuit of strong fiscal management policies to secure the long-term vitality of core government services.
What sets you apart from the other candidates?
What is your favorite thing about Clarendon Hills?
Its character. Clarendon Hills evokes a small-town feel with unique, local stores and restaurants, easy access to Chicago, and excellent schools.
What is your least favorite thing about Clarendon Hills?
Do you support continued exploration of a Hinsdale-Clarendon Hills police department merger? Why or why not?
I applaud the village for exploring this, but as of Feb. 21 lots of information about long-term impacts, costs, and details remain unavailable – or don’t exist. Our still-new police station serves our village’s needs, and our police budget comprises roughly 42 percent of general fund expenditures. A merger impacting this core village service would not be a small matter; therefore, residents deserve direct input by binding referendum. Merger might lower costs and improve efficiency while maintaining public safety, but it might also create a new layer of bureaucracy while decreasing our own village board’s control over police staff, budgets, and capital facilities.
What are your thoughts on the village updating its downtown master plan and the process by which it’s being done?
A Downtown Master Plan (“DMP”) merely projects a “vision” to developers and property owners what can irreversibly impact our Village for generations. The 2006 DMP came out during a robust economic cycle non-existent today, which is why the new DMP must be drafted. First, any process must be wholly transparent and controlled by village residents, not staff or outside planners/developers. Second, it must include a well-defined scope with measurable, reasonable, achievable objectives. Third, it must ultimately answer questions: (a) What are our village’s essential downtown qualities and how will the DMP reflect them; (b) Should developers assume financial risk, or taxpayers; (c) Will our zoning code sufficiently protect the intent of the DMP.