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Dollars and Sense

When you ask local investors why they've stopped building in Urbana, the answer is always the same:  Urbana makes it harder compared to other cities.  For the long-term health of our community, we must repair relationships with local investors to improve Urbana's business climate and foster growth in our tax base. We have to listen to  concerns with an open mind and address  practices and procedures which have stymied growth and development in our city.  We should provide flexibility where possible without compromising safety, quality, or principles.  

 I will work hard to renew cooperative relationships with our largest employers and landowners to pursue initiatives that are mutually beneficial.  There is great potential in the new Carle/Illinois College of Medicine for public-private partnerships and we should explore every opportunity.  I support the state's bipartisan effort to reform binding arbitration and to find a sustainable method of funding the 9-1-1 emergency phone system.

Due to Urbana's important role as County Seat and home of the flagship campus of the University of Illinois, approximately 30% of our land area is exempt from property taxes. We need to diversify our revenue sources and attract new businesses and residents to grow our tax base.  It's not healthy to be overly dependent on property taxes from any single source. 

Some prime locations for development include the Windsor Road corridor, former Windsor Swim Club site, Lincoln Square and the Landmark Hotel, Boneyard Creek Crossing, University Avenue Corridor, the former Hanford Inn site, Orchard Downs and a number of downtown parcels.  

Regional collaboration for tourism and economic development is essential.  I lead the effort to restore city funding to Visit Champaign County and the IHSA Basketball Tournament.   I will seek opportunities to work with other local governments and organizations to promote regional development.    

Urbana should provide a supportive environment for business. It is affordable, accessible, and wired.  Expansion of gigabit speed internet to all neighborhoods will support home-based businesses and telecommuting.

We must increase opportunities for minority- and women-owned businesses to participate in our city's growth and development, particularly in publicly-funded projects.  This also includes seeking opportunities for job training and employment.

Paid for by Citizens for Marlin.  A copy of our report filed with the State Board of Elections is (or will be available) on the Board's official website ( or for purchase from the State Board of Elections, Springfield, IL
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