The Forest Park park board finds itself at a critical juncture as it continues to work towards the acquisition of the coveted Roos property. For months the board has spent the majority of its monthly meetings in executive session laboring over this issue.
A year after a tax referendum was passed, which will raise enough annual property tax revenue to use as collateral for the sale of up to $7 million in municipal bonds for the project, many Forest Parkers have no idea what the park district is doing.
Because of this uncertainty, and a technical mistake in the wording of the tax referendum which forced the passing of a state law to permit the park to collect revenue, we are somewhat skeptical about incumbents Roy Sansone and park President Cathy McDermott. We appreciate them getting the park district to this point on the Roos. We have questions about the district’s ability to close the deal and build out the project.
On the flipside, we feel strongly about non-incumbent John Hosty, a project manager with Northern Trust Bank. He is sharp and business-savvy. Hosty has talked about accountability throughout his campaign, and if elected, we think Forest Parkers will begin to get some answers – be they good or bad – regarding the Roos. He will bring a new and more focused approach to this project. He is driven and wants to make the park district a destination spot and, likewise, a revenue generator.
There are two open seats for the park district and our second pick goes to McDermott, albeit with some reservation. Between McDermott and Sansone, McDermott seems to know more of the details surrounding the Roos, though after all this time she appears to not be entirely cognizant of how to seal this deal. We believe that someone with better business skills, like Hosty, can help bring this vital project to fruition.