suntimes
A-OK 
Weather Updates

Illinois Senate District 24, Republican Primary

.

The questions

All candidates were invited to respond to questionnaires, although not all chose to participate. Click on a candidate's name to see the unedited response to each question.

Biographical information & experience
  • [ + ]
    ALL
  • [ + ]
    Dillard
  • [ + ]
    Nybo
Dillard
Birthdate: 6/1/1955
Occupation: Attorney at Law (Partner)/Locke Lord LLP
Marital status: Married
Spouse: Stephanie

Education:

Hinsdale Central High School (Member, Hall of Fame)

Western Illinois University (B.A. with Honors) (Recipient, Distinguished Alumni Award)

De Paul University College of Law (A.B.A. Award Winner/Best Performance) (Outstanding Service to DePaul Univ. Award)

University of Virginia, Darden School of Business, Graduate Work

Civic, professional, fraternal or other affiliations:

Economic Club of Chicago, Union League Club of Chicago, Dean's Council-De Paul College of Law, Downers Grove Economic Development Commission, Robert Crown Center for Health Education (Board), Founding Member-Downers Grove Education Foundation (District 58), College of DuPage Foundation (Board), Mentor-University of Chicago Graduate School of Public Policy Studies, United Way of DuPage/West Cook (Board)

Have you held elective or appointive political office or been employed by any branch of government?

Illinois Senate Republican Staff, Chief of Staff-Governor Jim Edgar, Judge-Illinois Court of Claims, Illinois State Senator-District 24, Chair-Du Page County Republican Party

Please list jobs or contracts you, members of your immediate family or business partners have had with government.

I am a partner in the law firm of Locke Lord LLP which rarely, if ever, has contracts with the State of Illinois.

Nybo
Birthdate: 4/30/1977
Occupation: Employment Attorney/Vedder Price P.C.
Marital status: Happily married for 10 years
Spouse: Faye

Education:

University of Chicago Law School, J.D.
Dartmouth College (summa cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa)
Fenwick High School
Harry S. Truman Scholarship for Public Service

Civic, professional, fraternal or other affiliations:

Ray Graham Association for People with Disabilities (Board Member)
Immaculate Conception Parish (Capital Campaign Honorary Co-Chair)
Knights of Columbus
AYSO (Referee)
Elmhurst Youth Baseball (Manager)

Have you held elective or appointive political office or been employed by any branch of government?

State Representative, 41st District (2011-Present)
Elmhurst Alderman (Vice Chair, Public Safety & Affairs, 2007-2010)
Elmhurst Fire & Police Commission (2005-2007)
DuPage County Zoning Board of Appeals (2003-2005)

Please list jobs or contracts you, members of your immediate family or business partners have had with government.

Law Clerk to the Honorable James B. Zagel of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois (2002-2004)
Intern with the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Northern District of Illinois (2001)
My wife was an Enforcement Attorney with the U.S. Securities & Exchange Commission (2001-2004)
Various other short-term experiences over 10 years ago

Campaign information
  • [ + ]
    ALL
  • [ + ]
    Dillard
  • [ + ]
    Nybo
Dillard

Campaign headquarters: 837 S. Westmore Av, Lombard, IL 60148
Website: www.electdillard.com or www.kdillard.com
Campaign manager: Leland Lewis
Campaign budget: $250,000 (estimated)
Name your five biggest campaign contributors and the amount they contributed.
Daniel Goodwin (Inland Group)--$10,000

Vincent & Patricia Foglia (Sage Manufacturing)--$10,000

Illinois Association of Realtors--$10,000

Edward Heil--$5,000

John Deere Co.--$5,000

Nybo

Campaign headquarters: 432 Eisenhower North, Ste. A., Lombard, IL 60148
Website: www.chrisnybo.com
Campaign manager: For communications, Kevin Fitzpatrick
Campaign budget: I manage campaign finances the same way I manage state finances: We are as frugal as we can be, we only spend what we have, and we do not incur debt that we cannot afford to pay back.
Name your five biggest campaign contributors and the amount they contributed.
1. Self, I have loaned myself over $30,000 in this and prior campaigns
2. My father, Larry Nybo, has contributed and loaned a total of $16,000 in this and prior campaigns
3. My mother, Barbara Nybo, has contributed and loaned a total of $14,000 in this and prior campaigns
4. My wife's parents, Pete and Sony Hizon, have contributed and loaned a total of $7,150 in this and prior campaigns
5. My grandfather, Lloyd Nybo, has contributed a total of $6,300 in this and prior campaigns

What are your top priorities for your district?
  • [ + ]
    ALL
  • [ + ]
    Dillard
  • [ + ]
    Nybo
Dillard

1. Improve electric reliability from Commonwealth Edison.

2. Continue to hold down property taxes.

3. Improve infrastructure to cut commuter travel times.

Nybo

The lack of jobs is the most important problem facing Illinois families and businesses, including those in the 24th Senate District. According to numerous studies, Illinois ranks nearly last among all states in job creation and retention over the last decade. Through its action and inaction, the General Assembly has created an environment hostile to business – exorbitant taxes and fees, unstable and unpredictable state finances, too many rules and regulations for businesses to navigate, and crumbling infrastructure and transit systems. Creating jobs and stemming the flow of jobs to other states must be our first priority. We must repeal the staggering number of fees on businesses imposed or increased since 2003, roll back new laws and regulations that make it more and more costly to do business here, increase access to capital, and give businesses greater incentive to keep and create jobs in this state. Because of my belief in the importance of job creation, one of the bill on which I spent much time as a new legislator – and that now has become law – was S.B. 107. This new law will allow the State of Illinois to place a portion of its investment portfolio into venture capital funds that will boost start-up and growing technology companies, and it is a proven fact that most job growth comes from small – not large – companies. These are the kinds of initiatives that our State needs to be pursuing.

What is your top priority for the state?
  • [ + ]
    ALL
  • [ + ]
    Dillard
  • [ + ]
    Nybo
Dillard

Job Creation & the Economy--Fiscal Stability

Provide financial stability in State Government (beginning with medicaid and pension reform) to help make Illinois become a "Destination Economy" for job creators. Stability also includes continuing to restore integrity and curtailing corruption in Illinois politics. We must reduce the mountain of debt and unfunded pension obligations which have made Illinois 48th in the nation in job creation.

Nybo

Although I believe job creation is the number one priority for both the 24th Senate District and the entire State of Illinois, a close second is restoring our State's fiscal health. Our State's finances are currently a disaster. Despite the constitutional requirement for a balanced budget, Springfield politicians for decades have spent billions more each year than revenue received and the state has accumulated long term debt up to $116 billion. To hide the extent of their mismanagement, state leaders have engaged in excessive borrowing and unconscionable delays in paying service providers. And rather than addressing the underlying problems putting us in this situation, state leaders incessantly look to new taxes (such as the recent income tax increase), more borrowing or extremely undesirable and unproductive options for new revenue, such as video poker and more casinos. Compounding the difficulty of understanding and fixing this mess is the lack of transparency in our state fiscal affairs. The budget process is opaque and confusing, and there is no state agency that provides regular, timely and comprehensive reviews and analysis of state fiscal issues.

Illinois needs to fundamentally change the way it manages its finances. We should create a strong, professionally-staffed, independent equivalent of the Congressional Budget Office, tasked with producing easily understood financial statements for the entire budget in a timely manner. We should then undergo a comprehensive review of all state spending to consolidate or eliminate duplicative, outdated, or ineffective state programs and remove ineffective or inefficient spending. And we need to curb all new state spending. New programs should only be adopted when existing programs can be eliminated to provide funding, and programs launched as part of stimulus funding must sunset when those funds are no longer available. Finally, we should make it harder for the politicians to tax their way out of their own problems by requiring a 3/5 supermajority vote on any legislation raising taxes or fees.

The one silver lining on this bleak outlook is that for the first time in over a decade, the General Assembly passed a balanced budget this year that actually spends less this fiscal year than last year. It was the Illinois House – not the Senate – that took the lead in this effort, and I believe the impetus for this movement in large part came from the large class of new Representatives who were elected in 2010, including myself. The new State Representatives understand that we can no longer tolerate “business as usual” in Springfield, and they are quite willing to challenge the status quo, ask the hard questions, buck their leadership if necessary and make the tough decisions that need to be made. We now need more of this in the Illinois Senate.

For incumbents, please list your accomplishments. For challengers, what unique strengths would you bring to the job of state lawmaker?
  • [ + ]
    ALL
  • [ + ]
    Dillard
  • [ + ]
    Nybo
Dillard

1. When the Sun Times endorsed me for Governor in the 2010 GOP primary, it said, "no other candidate comes close to matching his experience in the executive and legislative branches of State Government... and his proven ability to build across party coalitions without abandoning core Republican values."

2. I have been the legislature's leader in pursuing ethics reform as proposed by former Prosecutor, Patrick Collins, eliminating GA scholarships, blocking Governor Quinn's plans to borrow more money and was the author of the Senate Republican Job Creation Plan listing 30 tips for a thriving economy. I was also recently the sponsor in the legislature for creating the Illinois Internet Portal to disclose on line every salary, contract, tax break and tax deadbeat plus the performance of a forensic audit of medicaid.

3. A Dillard bill implemented the labor changes at McCormick Place to keep us a premiere convention destination and I was also the author of the incentives which lured the Boeing Corporation headquarters to Chicago.

Nybo

In less than one year, I have already demonstrated that I am can get things done and am willing to “take the heat” to make tough decisions. As a freshman, I realized that my duty to my constituents demanded that I undertake and pursue significant legislative challenges.

The first bill I authored – HB 3294 – was a proposal to expand the availability of life-saving allergy medicine for school children who suffer from severe allergies. This bill was in response to a tragic allergy-related death in a Chicago school, it became one of the top legislative priorities for Attorney General Lisa Madigan, and as a result of our successful effort together I was honored by the Illinois School Nurses Association.

On the jobs front, I worked with Treasurer Dan Rutherford and several Democratic colleagues to pass SB 107 – a new law allowing the State of Illinois to place a portion of its investment portfolio into venture capital funds that will boost start-up and growing technology companies. This bill had stalled on several occasions in the past, but working together we finally passed it into law this year.

Recognizing that our State continues to be plagued by a continuing culture of corruption, I was also the chief House sponsor for the measure finally prohibiting state officials from putting their names and image on State billboards, in response to Governor Blagojevich's blatant abuse of power and waste of tax dollars putting his name on Open Road Tolling signs in 2006. This bill had also failed on prior occasions, but my efforts in the House finally got it passed.

Finally, on the final day of the Spring session I was the only House Republican to stand up to leadership and support last year's workers' compensation proposal saving businesses over $600 million on their rates. Needless to say, it is extremely unusual for any legislator – Republican or Democrat – to stand up in such a manner, let alone a freshman. But when it comes down to it, voters in the 41st District sent me to Springfield to help our State grow jobs and get our economy back on track. This bill will improve our job climate, and my constituents overwhelmingly support it.

Quite frankly, Springfield needs more legislators who will not cower to leaders and lobbyists, and who will instead fight for what they believe in and be willing to take a tough stand if it is needed. What's wrong with our state is that we have too many legislators who just want to “go along to get along,” and we will not have more productive and principled policy in this State, until we have more productive and principled policymakers.

The state public employee pension system is severely underfunded and paying down the debt threatens to crowd out spending on core state services. Do you support reducing pension benefits not yet earned through a bill like SB512, which offers state workers three options for earning future pension benefits. Should police officers and firefighters be included in a reduced pension system?
  • [ + ]
    ALL
  • [ + ]
    Dillard
  • [ + ]
    Nybo
Dillard

Yes, I support the ideas in SB 512 and we must reduce pension costs for local municipalities. If we don't do this, there will be no money for schools, the developmentally disabled, law enforcement, etc.

Nybo

The pension system in place for current employees is simply unsustainable. It has resulted in over $80 billion in long-term debt for taxpayers, and – left to its own – would undoubtedly run out of money within a generation or two. To ensure the solvency of the funds, protect the retirement of those whose livelihoods depend on it and protect taxpayers, we must restructure pension as follows: (1) current employees must contribute more, and (2) benefits need to be paid out at more reasonable levels. A pension reform bill addressing this issue – HB 149 – was one of the first bills I co-sponsored as a new legislator, and I would support SB 512 even though I think the bill could be improved to better accomplish our priority objectives.

Not only do I support pension reform, one of the first actions I took as a new legislator was to create a Legislative Advisory Committee consisting of over 60 residents from my district, including smaller group of current and retired teachers and other interested citizens to specifically look at the issue of pension reform. As a result of our work together, I presented Speaker Madigan and Leader Cross with a set of reasonable suggestions for reforming our pension systems, including both increased contribution rates and reduced benefit levels.

Police officers and firefighters put their lives on the line on a daily basis to keep us safe, and the physical and emotional demands of their job (on both them and their families) are more onerous than in other professions participating in public pensions. For these reasons, benefits have always – and should be – structured differently, and quite frankly more generously, than for other professions. That being said, firefighters and police should also accept greater partnership in pension restoration. While I am not convinced that reduced benefits are the solution for them, I would like to explore outside income offsets that would take into account income from full-time jobs or other work that retired public safety employees (and all retired public employees for that matter) do while they are collecting a pension.

In closing, the system as it currently trends is unsustainable and bound for inevitable insolvency if not addressed. Legislators have shirked their responsibility on this issue for far too long. This conversation should have occurred long before the dire situation we find ourselves in now. It's not a situation where “something's got to give” It's a situation where “everything and everyone is going to have to give” in order to restore viability and avoid chaos.

If you don't support a bill like SB512, how would you deal with the state's unfunded pension liability?
  • [ + ]
    ALL
  • [ + ]
    Dillard
  • [ + ]
    Nybo
Dillard

N/A

Nybo

Even though it can be a better bill, I would support SB 512 if it was called for a vote so this question is inapplicable.

Do you want the 2 percent point income tax increase to expire in 2014, as planned, or would you like to see the tax increase extended beyond 2014?
  • [ + ]
    ALL
  • [ + ]
    Dillard
  • [ + ]
    Nybo
Dillard

The Senate Republicans provided an alternative plan of budget reforms to replace deficits and to phase-out the 67% income tax increase. Illinois Government needs to live within its means! No state has ever borrowed or taxed its way into prosperity!!

Nybo

Again reflecting how broken our State is, the income tax was increased in a lame duck session taking place just a few hours before me and dozens of other new legislators were sworn into office last January. Another blatant attempt by legislators to avoid being held accountable for their actions. I would have opposed the tax increase then, and I oppose it now. It must expire in 2014 if not sooner, as House Republicans have recently proposed. The people of Illinois have lost faith that any action termed “temporary” by a legislator really means that. The shell games by legislators must end.

Do you support any changes to the corporate income tax rate? Do you support any other changes to the state's business tax structure?
  • [ + ]
    ALL
  • [ + ]
    Dillard
  • [ + ]
    Nybo
Dillard

As we learned from the Sears and CME debates, we need a comprehensive review/overhaul of our business tax-fee structure. We must reduce the cost of doing business in Illinois and not have a system where the well-heeled get tax breaks and the small family owned businesses (which create 85% of Illinois jobs) are ignored. The fact that CME was 6% or 7% of the State's corporate tax revenues and that Caterpillar pays no corporate income tax proves that the system is broken!

Nybo

Yes, I want the recently enacted increase repealed. Businesses in Illinois, like residents need tax relief. The best way to collect more tax revenue is to increase the amount of tax payers, not taxes. Corporations and businesses need to see an economically stable environment with revenue neutral incentives that increase their desire to do business in Illinois.

As for our state's business tax structure, the recent veto session focused on special tax breaks for Sears and CME revealed that there is no reality no such thing as “business tax structure” in Illinois. Instead of a coherent policy applicable to the entire business community, we have literally thousands of special exemptions, breaks, discounts, credits and the like for numerous businesses and industries that have accumulated over decades. Our state desperately needs a more cogent, coherent and consistent policy in this area, and we should make it a priority to establish ourselves as an overall “low tax” state for ALL businesses – small and large. That is the only way that we can achieve a regional advantage in business growth and job creation compared to our neighbors, who already seem to be far ahead of us in this effort.

What should the state government do to create a more favorable business climate and to promote job growth?
  • [ + ]
    ALL
  • [ + ]
    Dillard
  • [ + ]
    Nybo
Dillard

My goal is to encourage job growth by developing an efficient, transparent and ethical State Government with less regulation (I proposed the" Office of the Repealer") and lower taxes. I was the author of the Senate Republican "Jobs Recovery Plan to Transform Illinois into a Destination Economy," available on my website (www.kdillard.com) which can be obtained by clicking the green and yellow icon showing "30 Tips..."

Nybo

The lack of jobs is the most important problem facing Illinois families and residents. Our state's anti-business climate is exacerbating the high unemployment already caused by the poor economy. There are three specific steps that Illinois lawmakers should take to enhance job creation, expand the economic base here and stem the flow of jobs to other states. First, we must repeal the staggering number of new and increased fees on Illinois businesses imposed since 2003, such as the recent income tax increases. Second, we must roll back new laws and regulations that make it more and more costly to do business here in Illinois. For example, last year I co-sponsored the Illinois Enterprise Commission Act, which would require our State to review and repeal any fees, laws or regulations that were proven to have driven jobs away. Finally, we need to continue workers' compensation reform that only began (not ended) with HB 1698. Notwithstanding the criticism and pressure from those within my own caucus, I am proud to have been the only House Republican to support this measure that will help businesses save over $600 million on workers' compensation rates. But we must continue the effort toward comprehensive reform, including establishing “primary” cause as the standard for determining compensability, requiring objective findings of disability based on AMA guidelines, and more appropriately taking into account employee intoxication in awarding benefits.

Lay out your plan for paying the billions the state owes schools, universities, human service providers and others. Would you support borrowing to pay down those bills?
  • [ + ]
    ALL
  • [ + ]
    Dillard
  • [ + ]
    Nybo
Dillard

I do not support more borrowing. My plan is to reduce medicaid fraud by 10% which is estimated to be $1.5 billion. Illinois needs to have a medicaid plan similar to other midwestern states ($1.2 billion in savings). The Senate GOP has recommended a menu of $4-7 billion in cost reductions, which is available on Senate Leader Christine Radogno's website or mine www.kdillard.com. And, we need to grow the economy since that is the best way to put money into the State Treasury.

Nybo

It is unconscionable how long our service providers, especially the non-profits, have had to wait for state reimbursement. The first important step I would take to expedite reimbursements would be to curb all new spending so that we do not incur any additional obligations competing for scarce state revenue. The second step I would take would be to expand eligibility and participation in the state's new Vendor Assistance Program. For example, medical services providers are currently ineligible to participate, even though Medicaid reimbursement delays are among our state's longest. A third step would be to dedicate all new revenue generated beyond our official estimates for reimbursements. Finally, although it is important to pay those who are owed money, I do not support additional borrowing to accomplish this objective. We simply cannot afford it. Illinois ended fiscal 2010 as the most broke state in the nation, and owed $37.9 billion more than all of its assets combined, according to a recent statewide financial audit by the Illinois Auditor General. Moreover, our high debt load and unpredictable political structure means that our credit rating is lower than other governmental entities, resulting in us paying among the highest interest rates in the nation.

State legislative leaders are trying to give the General Assembly a role in negotiating contracts with state labor unions. What is your opinion of that?
  • [ + ]
    ALL
  • [ + ]
    Dillard
  • [ + ]
    Nybo
Dillard

If Illinois had a competent Governor who is willing to stand up to the unions, this question would be moot. However, the GA does appropriate the funds and when it says "no," Governors like Blagojevich and Quinn MUST not "give away the store."

Nybo

Given how Governor Quinn negotiated sweet heart deals for state labor unions shortly before his re-election, I strongly support more legislative involvement and oversight for our state's labor relations. The negotiated union pay increases and guaranteed job retention provisions are simply unconscionable given what has been happening in the private sector with wage freezes and reductions in force. Just like a business or a household, Illinois needs to tighten its belt, and this includes what we pay our employees and whether we can afford to employ them.

The legislature has tried repeatedly to expand gambling in Illinois. Do you support expanded gambling in Illinois? In what form? Do you support a Chicago casino?
  • [ + ]
    ALL
  • [ + ]
    Dillard
  • [ + ]
    Nybo
Dillard

I do not support the expansion of gambling in Illinois. However, as a matter of fairness, if the rest of Illinois has the ability to have casinos or riverboats, Mayor Emanuel, if he thinks it is proper, should have that ability too. I do agree with Governor Quinn, Gaming Chairman Jaffe, and the BGA or Chicago Crime Commission that the regulatory scheme must be thorough and tough! I do support measures which will continue to assist the agricultural farm family side of horse racing.

Nybo

No. Not any new form. Chicago-based or any other casinos will only displace the revenues of existing Illinois casinos, leading to a spiraling decline of all of them in a “race toward the bottom.” The only thing worse than having casinos in your state is having casinos becoming run-down. The problem with the foolhardy plan of gambling expansion is that you're pegging new revenue expenditures to a declining revenue source of diminishing returns. This has not worked anywhere in a sustainable way. It's a band aid approach where a few people make a lot of money and society loses in more ways than just lost wagers. More is not the answer. Accordingly, I have always opposing gaming expansion, including voting against this year's “Casino Christmas Tree” bill and leading the effort to prohibit video poker in our community when I served on the Elmhurst City Council.

Would you seek any changes to the state ethics and campaign finance laws? Would you support capping what state party leaders can donate during a general election?
  • [ + ]
    ALL
  • [ + ]
    Dillard
  • [ + ]
    Nybo
Dillard

Every day, I have a motion on file to have the full Senate consider former U.S. Attorney Patrick Collins' ethics recommendations. I passed the first major ethics changes in more than 25 years (internet disclosure, lobbyist gift ban, etc.) and created the Illinois Internet Portal. When I ran for Governor in 2010, I also explained that I would shut down my campaign fund raising if elected, since a Governor should govern and not fund raise.

Yes, I support capping what state party leaders can donate during a general election.

Yes, we need futher ethics changes (like the Collins Commission). I also will sponsor the Inspector General's (Thomas Homer) suggestions to bolster or force legislators to declare their conflicts of interest on the floor.

Nybo

Campaign contribution limits are critically needed to clean up Illinois government, and the limits should apply to political parties and caucus leaders in general elections. Moreover, I believe it is extremely important in today's political atmosphere to lead by example on this issue. When I first ran for State Representative two years ago, I voluntarily agreed to abide by contribution limits before they became law. In contrast, my opponent has been singled out by your publication as the legislator receiving the largest combined amount of donations from utility companies seeking passage of the ComEd bill. He also took a quarter million dollars ($250,000) from teacher's unions in his race for Governor two years ago. We need to end this kind of “business as usual” in Springfield, where some legislators receive ridiculous amounts of campaign money from interest groups and are then asked to “objectively” decide important issues like pension reform and utility regulation.

Stronger campaign finance laws are part of the solution, and legislative term limits are another. Serving in the General Assembly was never meant to be a “lifetime career” but far too many of our legislators have made it exactly that. Indeed, by the time a new four year term ends, my opponent in this race will have served a quarter century (nearly 25 years) in the State Senate should he win. That is just wrong, and that is why the first bill that I am filing this year is to adopt meaningful, but reasonable term limits in Illinois – 12 years (6 terms) for State Representatives, and 12 years (3 terms) for State Senators.

Would you back a constitutional amendment to shift from a flat income tax to a progressive income tax system?
  • [ + ]
    ALL
  • [ + ]
    Dillard
  • [ + ]
    Nybo
Dillard

No. Our simple flat tax is one of the few business development tools that we have left in Illinois. To improve fairness, I support increasing the personal exemption or the Earned Income Tax Credit to help the working poor.

Nybo

No.

Do you have a plan to adequately fund schools and reform the property tax system that results in inequities?
  • [ + ]
    ALL
  • [ + ]
    Dillard
  • [ + ]
    Nybo
Dillard

Education funding is my highest priority (along with the developmentally disabled). For years, Illinois has appropriated hundreds of millions of new dollars into education but school test scores and graduation rates have for the most part remained flat or have decreased. As just one measure, the average ACT score in Illinois has mostly gone down over the past 10 years. We lack appropriate math and literacy remediation programs. I believe that every child in this State, from Chicago to Cairo, has the right to a quality education, but I do not believe that taxpayers support adding new money without significant progress and reform. Illinois spends billions of dollars in general funds every year. We must look at how the money is used and distributed before a commitment to additional funding is made. I have supported capital for school construction from Springfield which helps hold down property taxes. And, with referendum, I have supported allowing school districts a local income tax option. Finally, if we grow the economy in Illinois $$$ flows into the treasury!!!

I am against property tax swaps, however, I do support local districts opting to raise taxes with an associated decrease in property taxes if approved by referendum. I am willing to listen to education experts to find ways to make funding, teaching and performance as equal as possible throughout the state.

My "Best in Class" education program, as proposed during the 2010 GOP Gubernatorial primary, offers ways to close the achievement gap through a review of unnecessary mandates to ensure there is time for reading, writing, math and science. Maintaining funding for preschool as a readiness tool is essential, and we must have a seamless system to transition from school to the workforce of today and tomorrow.

Nybo

We must improve the academic performance of all our schools – public and private – and reduce the achievement gap between white and minority students. Money is not only the only answer. As a first step, I would fight for removing the cap on charter schools. Charter schools have shown the most success in improving student achievement and educating children, and we must not allow union protectionism to impede educational improvement. Second, I would push for a standard teacher evaluation system across the state that includes student performance as an important component. We must ensure that we have capable and competent teachers in the classroom, and work with those who need to improve their performance. Finally, I would support an expansion of the tuition tax credit for private schools to make it easier for all students, including minority students from poorly performing districts, to go to the school of their choice and to get the quality education they deserve.

What is your view on gay marriage?
  • [ + ]
    ALL
  • [ + ]
    Dillard
  • [ + ]
    Nybo
Dillard

I believe that marriage is between a man and a woman.

Nybo

I believe that marriage is a sacred covenant between a man and a woman, and I do not support gay marriage.

The race
The candidates
Kirk W. Dillard
Chris Nybo
The district
Loading...
Loading...
Latest News Videos
© 2014 Sun-Times Media, LLC. All rights reserved. This material may not be copied or distributed without permission. For more information about reprints and permissions, visit www.suntimesreprints.com. To order a reprint of this article, click here.

Comments  Click here to view or make a comment