RON ALMIRON FOR WHEATON
In this remarkable journey known as my run for Park Commissioner, I’ve been fortunate to connect with so many new fellow residents who have voiced their concerns to me. More than ever these concerns have driven me in this campaign. I respectfully ask that you cast your vote for me on April 6th as Park Commissioner for the Wheaton Park District. If elected, I will bring inspiration, innovation, new ideas, and a fresh perspective to the Park Board. In addition, will serve as the taxpayers’ advocate and watchdog. Thank you for your consideration.
~ Ron Almiron
BREAKING: Last Fall The Park Board Raised
Wheaton Residents’ Property Taxes in 2020 Tax Levy
On November 22, 2019, the Wheaton Park District Board of Commissioners set the 2019 tax levy for the 2020 tax bill at $18,507,515.00. Just over a year later, in the midst of the pandemic, the Park Board raised the property taxes of Wheaton residents by INCREASING the 2020 tax levy (for the 2021 tax bill) by $348,138.00 compared with 2019. As you can see in line 1 of the first photo below, you can see the sloppiness as the words suggest $18,555,935.00. Raising the tax levy in these challenging pandemic times when one considers facilities were shut down, programming could not continue, and in 2020 the Park District lost $7 million. On or before April 6th, elect me Park Commissioner, and I will not vote to raise the property tax levy. #RonForWheatonParks#ParksMakeLivesBetter#WheatonParks#OpenThePools#SayNoToHighPropertyTaxes
Celebrating The Wheaton Park District’s Centennial …
And Planning For Its Next One
On May 28, 1921, the Wheaton Park District was founded. It will soon celebrate its first 100 years in existence. As part of this historic celebration, let us begin by bringing back Cream of Wheaton this fall. If elected Park Commissioner, Ron Almiron will ensure the appropriate centennial celebration the Park District deserves. In the meantime, he understands the Park District is in Phase 4 of the Restore Illinois Plan, and it should continue in its recovery mode.
As such, Ron is aware of the community concerns that the parks and facilities in the Part District need to re-open as soon as possible. If elected, Ron would do what he can to comply with the governor’s orders. He would push for both pools to open by Memorial Day this year. In summary, he believes that opening parks and facilities to maximum capacity, with users to move as freely as possible, should be a top priority right after the Centennial.
This year, what better way to continue the Park District’s efforts toward pandemic recovery than for the Park Board to begin laying the groundwork that goes beyond the current three-year Strategic Plan. Armed with vision, Ron as Park Commissioner will propose ideas for the Park Board to emerge as an Empire Builder, and consider extending the current Plan as part of a ten-year Strategic Plan for the future. Still, re-opening parks and facilities as soon as possible is the top priority,
In the long-term, once Park District finances have stabilized, such a plan could include the following improvements, some of which could be possibly financed through corporate sponsorships and/or intergovernmental agreements:
• Small boutique hotel to accommodate business travelers, and wedding parties, including their out-of-town guests.
• Indoor swimming pool for all-year-round use, not only for competitive dual and conference meets, but also local high school use.
• Small indoor water park, with a Carousel for kids’ birthday parties.
• The District’s very own indoor community ice center for programming that includes kids of all ages to learn how to ice skate, and for youth and adult hockey leagues, including traveling teams.
Ron knows that in order to chart the Wheaton Park District’s future, a long-term plan to implement these ideas involves much preparation, including input from the community.
Ron is seeking the Park Commissioner office because he understands that Wheaton parents’ children are growing quickly, and need well-maintained parks, up-to-date facilities, and innovative programming in order to keep up with Wheaton’s youth so that they can live and thrive.
Indeed, the Wheaton Park District was created to keep Wheaton’s youth safe and active, and away from the train tracks. Perhaps as a nod to the Park District’s World War I roots, the District’s logo includes the patriotic colors of the American flag. The later additions of Girl Scout and Boy Scout cabins to Northside Park are notable.
Ron and Victoria, his wife of nearly twenty years, have a junior high school-age son who is a Boy Scout at Troop 34 based in the Knights of Columbus in Wheaton. Perhaps coincidentally to the Wheaton Park District, this year his troop is celebrating its 100th centennial as well. The Almirons are parishioners of St. Michael Church, where Ron has been a Lector since 2015. More recently, Ron has been an assistant coach for his son’s basketball team at the parish school.
Ron recognizes that an elite park district with top-of-the-line facilities and a commitment to preserving the environment will serve existing Wheaton families and individuals well, and attract others to move to Wheaton. Overall, the Wheaton Park District’s enhancements and offerings could contribute to raising Wheaton’s property values. In addition, if elected, Ron will set environmental stewardship as an important priority.
Continuously for the past twelve years, the Almiron family has utilized the parks, facilities, and programming offered by the Wheaton Park District. Ron has often taken his toddler son to play starting at the Hawthorne Junction tot lot, then moving onto Kelly Park as he got older, then finally Northside Park. Ron & Victoria’s son later started karate classes, a basketball clinic or two, and swim lessons.
The swim lessons were particularly important, because Ron & Victoria’s son immediately did well enough to join the Wheaton Barracudas swim team. He is looking forward to an abbreviated season of competition this spring and summer. And Ron has been there as a Parent Volunteer for the team during events. The District swim program has been tremendous for the youngest Almiron. As Park Commissioner, Ron hopes to modernize its facilities and improve on the aquatics programs.
With a longtime commitment to public service, including seven accumulated years as an appointed public trustee or board member, Ron has demonstrated his readiness for the office of Park Commissioner in the Wheaton Park District. He has a long history of collaborating, whether as an attorney arbitrator for 23 years or a public servant. Indeed, the vast majority of recommendations made when Ron was a City of Wheaton Planning & Zoning Board member were unanimous. In addition, he blocked a $22,000.00 a year “consultant” early in his current tenure as Trustee for the Wheaton Mosquito Abatement District. Once elected Park Commissioner, Ron anticipates he will work well with the Park Board for the best interests of the Wheaton Park District’s users. For instance, he will research and implement Best Practices so that Staff will be able to do their jobs more efficiently for the benefit of the District’s taxpayers.
Ron has proven and recent public board experience that qualifies him to serve his community in the office of Park Commissioner for the Wheaton Park District. He will serve as the Park District taxpayers’ advocate and watchdog. Please vote for him on or before April 6, 2021. Then let us celebrate 100 years of the Wheaton Park District.
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Copyright © 2021 Citizens For Ron Almiron. ℠ Celebrating The Wheaton Park District’s Centennial … And Planning For Its Next One. All rights reserved. Webpage originally published 2.16.21.