The local economy sits at the center of the race for mayor of Elgin.
Joseph Galvan is running against the incumbent David Kaptain, who seeks his second term in office. Both candidates have focused on the economy in their campaigns, but they have very different ideas on how to improve it.
Kaptain, a retired chief chemist for the Fox River Water Reclamation District and former executive director of the Elgin Community Network, wants to bring the arts to downtown Elgin as an economic booster, according to the Daily Herald.
In 2011, Kaptain defeated a three-term incumbent, Ed Schock, by running as the "neighborhood guy" who wanted to increase community engagement.
Galvan, who heads the housing and development department of Galvan & Associates, disagrees with Kaptain concerning the arts and economic revival. He told the Elgin Courier-News that he thinks the arts are important, but if elected mayor he would focus on the real estate community to stop the decline in property values.
The need for both candidates to focus so much on the local economy comes from Gov. Bruce Rauner's recent budget cuts, which will cut income tax revenue shares to local governments.
Kaptain, 67, has only been mayor for one term, but he has served on the city council since 2005.
Galvan, 58, is a political newcomer in Elgin. But although he has no local political experience, he previously worked as the regional director for the Midwest region of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. He is also a board member for the Lutheran Social Services of Illinois.
In addition to the mayoral race, 11 candidates are running for the remaining seats on the city council: Andrew Cuming, F. John Steffen, Fred Moulton, Jaime Jhelm, Jason Dusenberry, Julie Schmidt, Kyle Scifert, Mohammad "Mo" Iqbal, Rose Martinez, Tish Powell and Toby Shaw.