A Publication of WTVP

As green begins to appear all over central Illinois, we are reminded that spring is upon us, and with it new beginnings. Opening up the office windows for the first time this year is an invigorating feeling, an inspiring feeling that moves us to set new and greater goals for ourselves. We once again feel as though we can make a difference. It’s ironically appropriate that spring also coincides with local elections. On April 17th voters around the area have an opportunity to make a difference on city councils, park boards, school boards, community college boards and other local units of government; we have the freedom to elect the individuals who will decide the future course for our community.

Business and government share an interesting relationship. While business can survive on its own, the cooperation of government can make the difference between an economically prosperous community and a stagnant one. And while elected officials make decisions that can make or break a positive business climate, the business community does not always share the same level of influence on the government.

The Peoria Area Chamber of Commerce has formed the Progressive Peoria Political Action Committee (PAC). The goal of the PAC is to endorse and contribute to candidates who support growth policies and practices, work for a responsive business climate and bring leadership to their elected position—all resulting in a progressive future for our area. These are principles shared by the members of the Chamber. Through proactive participation in the political process the business leaders of our community can ensure that the officials we elect will work to maintain the economic prosperity we all enjoy.

In the race for Peoria City Council there are 10 candidates running for five positions. Three of the candidates are incumbents, which means that at least two new members of the council will be elected. The Progressive Peoria PAC has endorsed the following individuals for city council: Dan Irving, George Jacob, Patti Polk, Ryan Spain, Gale Thetford and Eric Turner.

The PAC is also endorsing Linda Butler and Rachael Parker for the two 2nd District positions on the Peoria Public Schools District 150 Board and Tim Cassidy for the Peoria Park Board President. Both the Chamber and the PAC are excited and honored to participate in the political process, but the only way to make a difference is to vote. Please mark your calendar for Election Day, April 17th or contact the County Clerk in your county or the Peoria City Election Commission in the City of Peoria to find the early voting site closest to you.

The Chamber is also hosting a breakfast meeting featuring Gerry Shaheen, chairman of the Board of Directors for the United States Chamber of Commerce and a group president for Caterpillar’s mining and construction equipment division. Mr. Shaheen also actively participates on many other boards and community programs. The event will be held at the Country Club of Peoria on Friday April 20th at 7:30 a.m. At press time, there are still a few seats still available; if you are interested, please visit the Chamber website at IBI