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Bertino-Tarrant, Peck Talk Education, Pensions at Candidate Night

Candidates are running to represent the 49th District in the Illinois Senate.

The two candidates seeking election to the 49th District State Senate seat may be from opposite ends of the political spectrum, but on Thursday night, they appeared to agree on one thing.

“What we can’t have happen is for the state to put more responsibility on our local taxpayers,” Democrat Jennifer Bertino-Tarrant said of her opposition to a proposal that would shift the state’s nearly $90 billion pension liability onto local school districts.

Republican Garrett Peck, a Plainfield village trustee, also opposes the pension shift.

“I’m tired of watching Illinois bring itself to the verge of bankruptcy,” Peck said. “ … I’ve decided I want to reach out to residents and say, ‘What are your thoughts?’”

Peck went on the offensive, several times linking Bertino-Tarrant, who currently serves as the Will County Regional Superintendent of Schools, to Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan.

Referring again to the proposed pension shift, Peck said, “My opponent cannot say no to Mike Madigan when that vote comes up … I can.”

But when quizzed about her allegiance to Madigan, Bertino-Tarrant insisted she would represent her district, not the House speaker, in the State Senate.

“I’m an independent voice,” she said. “I live here and I have to come back to this community. My family built a name and I plan to protect that name.”

Bertino-Tarrant touted her 18 years of experience in education — including dealing with funding cuts.

“Almost every year I’ve been able to give money back to the county,” she said.

“Some think the only solution is to cut,” Bertino-Tarrant added. “We need to prioritize when making cuts.”

Bertino-Tarrant said she plans to stimulate the economy by focusing on small businesses, offering tax credits for hiring unemployed workers and providing job training to those who are out of work.

“I look forward to talking with individuals at their doors and listening to people,” she said. “We need to listen to our voters and I will do that.”

Meanwhile, Peck cited his experience as a small business owner, noting that he launched his first business eight years ago and his second three years ago.

Tim September 22, 2012 at 11:03 PM
What you 'believe' is irrelevant. What matters is reality. And reality shows that Garret Peck 'abstained from voting' to bring a business incubation program to the village. These are the commercial revenues you speak of, this is exactly where they start. And your belief, directly contradicts with reality. http://plainfield.patch.com/articles/business-incubator-center-flies-with-village-board "While he[Garrett Peck] didn't vote against the proposal, he did abstain." All that remains to be seen, is if your allegiance lies with the man, or the facts.
Raquel September 22, 2012 at 11:21 PM
That's a great debate question. The candidates need to answer for their records. Perhaps, there should be a debate? Thanks for posting the article. Not a good substitute for a debate nor are you a good substitute for Ms. Bertino -Tarrant. Your time is better spent convincing her she owes it to the voters to come forward rather than arguing with the folks here. Thanks!
Tinfoil Hat September 22, 2012 at 11:54 PM
I'm glad Peck voted against the low income apartment community. He has my vote! Plainfield is crowded enough with traffic.
Jason September 23, 2012 at 12:28 AM
On Saturday, I received one of Garrett's attack flyers in the mail. I have never met Peck, so I will not comment about him personally. However, as a concerned citizen, I am compelled to comment on his misleading information from his Bright Future/Change card. He has stated numerous times that "68% of his oppenents schools have failed under her leadership." Now, as a candidate running for state office, I would have hoped that Peck would have at least a basic knowledge of how fundamental municipal and state government works. The ability for school districts to determine their own courses of action, curriculum, spending, etc.. quite clearly reside with their elected community school board. Many of these individuals are honest, helpful citizens who have little real knowledge about educational institutions, but all are citizens from the communities they serve. In Illinois, the role of the regional superintendents is to advise and to act in other various resourceful acts to school board members, administrators, and teachers. Regional Superintendents do not have unilateral power to dictate to the community school boards they serve on what they can and can not do with their own community tax dollars. Now, I am extremely concerned how Peck does not already know this which would make him at best an incompetent, unknowledgeable public servant if elected. If he does realize this fact, then giving misleading facts for political gain is what we already have in Springfield!
Tinfoil Hat September 23, 2012 at 02:20 AM
Mr. Peck has been endorsed by the National Federation of Independent Businesses, Illinois Chamber of Commerce, The Illinois Association of Realtors, and the Illinois Manufacturer's Accosiation PACS. He clearly is for small and medium business owners! Maybe Tim should dig a little deeper before he acts like he knows the facts.
Tim September 23, 2012 at 02:00 PM
50% of the endorsements you claim, are not even listed on his own website! http://peck4senate.com/endorsements/ I can 't seem to find any mention at all of the Illinois Chamber of Commerce endorsing him on their website, and there are multiple pages with differing 'endorsements'; http://peck4senate.com/endorsements/ http://redfoxtechnology.net/peckforsenate/?page_id=27 (which doesn't show ANY of your claimed endorsements) Did Jim Racich withdraw his 'endorsement', or was it just there for padding? Kind of like how John Argoudelis is listed twice as an endorsement. Either way, if the candidate himself can't keep track of his own endorsements, I don't think they should be relied upon very much. I'll stick to using his voting record, which consistently shows 'abstain' votes, and votes against small business, as has been listed above. Perhaps you should do your homework?
Margie Bonuchi September 23, 2012 at 02:08 PM
Trustee Jim Racich just took over 20 signs for Garrett, so maybe he is supporting Garrett PEck for State Senate.
Margie Bonuchi September 23, 2012 at 02:11 PM
Also Jennifer Bertino-Tarrant's information lists all that she has done for the school districts, so you can have it both ways. In my opinion, she can't claim to have done so much for education then support the statements that she has no power to make that happen.
Tim September 23, 2012 at 02:22 PM
And Peck claims to be for small business, yet abstained in the voting in his own town at the creation of a business incubator. Both ways, indeed. Margie, it would be wise of you to disclose that you have also officially endorsed Peck using your position on the village board.
Olddeegee September 23, 2012 at 02:59 PM
Peck is a Republican caricature. He has no innovative ideas. He's simply playing at being a politician.
Raquel September 23, 2012 at 03:01 PM
This is silly. Where is the argument? Whether you agree with Peck or not, he has a stance on the issues. He is willing to debate his stance in public. Tarrant is not. It ends there for me. You can't have a candidate run for public office who is afraid of the public. She has no stance. So, voters don't know what they are voting for. Ridiculous! It's as if you are helping her run her campaign by proxy with innuendo, indignation, and accusatioa; and that's the most egregious offense of all. Voters deserve better. They don't deserve a ghost who uses her lackeys to speak for her on a patch forum. I would rather vote for someone whom I disagreed with on half the issues than someone whom I have no idea whether or not she knows what the issues are. You all seem to be pretty knowledgeable (albeit misguided) but you aren't running. She is running. She wants the job. She needs to face the public in a debate. Until that happens, she is an apparition. I don't believe in ghosts.
Tim September 23, 2012 at 04:44 PM
The only 'debate' she isn't going to, is the one Peck decided to request in the past few days. There are already multiple debates between the two of them scheduled, that were already agreed upon. The fact that Peck tried to schedule in another one, knowing full well what the upcoming schedule already is, is just a political trick. Now you are claiming she isn't 'showing up' to debate, and ignoring everything else. Did you even read what this article was about? As in, the two of them making a public appearance to discuss the issues, at the same time. Granted, neither one of them is showing any backbone when it comes to pension reform. Putting the responsibility onto the school districts that approved all of the payouts in question, is not only what needs to be done, it is what has to be done. Margie Bonouchi's husband, is on the D202 school board. He also supports Peck, and why wouldn't he. Peck has no intention of making him responsible for the decisions he has made.
Raquel September 23, 2012 at 07:06 PM
Tim, A forum is not a debate. The structures are completely different. If you weren't so busy polishing Tarrant's apple and watching Springer you would have had time to look up the two definitions. If I were a candidate, I would be at a debate you offered up with bells on. Let the people know who I am and decide. I wouldn't be afraid to espouse my position. I'd put my views against yours anytime. I would even let you pick the time and place. I would even let you stack the deck with your Patch friends to make it easy for you. That is the kind of candidate voters deserve. You wouldn't know that. You are a weak sycophant afraid for people to know your ghostly candidate has no substance by badmouthing a candidate that is willing to go on record. Peck is willing to talk to voters and answer the hard questions in an open public setting. It has been about two weeks (not last few days) since Peck made the offer. Tarrant flatly declined. She didn't even counter with a compromise to make it fair for herself. She's hiding behind you. How does that help our district? Is she going to hide if she gets elected? That must be haunting you because you yearn for her to be real. She's not. You know she's not. That's why you're spending so much time defending the indefensible. She's not present and neither are her solutions. She just wants the position the easy way. The people of our district should say no to that game. We want leadership!
Tim September 23, 2012 at 11:58 PM
Did you not notice that I don't much like her? However, she is still 'less bad' than Garrett Peck. Neither of these candidates are offering any real solution, even in their forums. I don't need to listen to a debate to know that someone tied at the hip with the education unions isn't going to do much meaningful reform to pensions, and I don't need to listen to forums to know that Garrett Peck abstained from most meaningful votes during his time as a trustee. His record speaks for itself, anything he would say would just be trying to deflect away from his abysmal voting record. If a 'debate', a.k.a. selling you a concept with words, while you ignore actions, is all it takes to convince you of something... well, that is a shame. Like I said, she is just the less worse option here. In a choice between a stupid candidate, and a borderline sociopath like Peck, I'll take the stupid one any day.
Raquel September 24, 2012 at 12:08 AM
Illinois can't afford stupid anymore. We've met our quota. Sociopath? Do you have a degree and a license for that opinion?
k.free87 September 24, 2012 at 04:17 PM
I wouldnt vote for either of them...Especially Peck...NEVER!!
Ray September 24, 2012 at 06:48 PM
He came to my neighborhood and my house. Shook my hand. Told me about himself. He likes what I like, he has a firm handshake, he looked me in the eye and answered my questions without a lot of bullshit and tapdancing and I liked the answers. He says he is against the Mike Madigan led policies of the past, which in my opinion are the biggest part of why Illinois might very well be the first state to file bankruptcy if something isn't done soon. Those are my facts and they took place between me the man and god. He's got my vote.
Truth Squadplfd September 24, 2012 at 10:43 PM
I took it upon myself to meet with both candidates. For 1) Mr. Peck's office was able to provide me with proof of every endorsement. If you take a trip to his office, they have letters from groups such as the Illinois Chamber of Commerce, Chicago Chamber of Commerce, National federation of Independent Businesses etc, and emails from all of the elected officials whom have endorsed his candidacy.- FACT Peck has all of the endorsements he claims. If you beleive this blogger, then email his campaign yourself- www.peck4senate.com Fact: I met Mrs. Bertino. She is a nice person but has no backbone. I like her stance on saving Techer's pensions, but she cannot back it up financially. FACT Madigan/Quinn/Cullerton will send her orders and she will be a good little girl. Fiction- Mr. Peck hasn't accomplished anything in Plainfield. I had a 20 minute conversation with him about what the current administration on the Village has accomplished and what role (s) he played. Fact- JBT who is sponsored by Madigan will be trying to buy this election. Just watch her IL State Board of Election filings and watch........ She will outspend Peck 2 to 1.... If you vote for JBT, you will get what you see-- a nice person who cannot say NO to the Chicago mechanics. Fact: if you ant to get to know her personally, ask her Brother :O)
Tim September 24, 2012 at 11:39 PM
So, Peck can't even get the information right on his own website as to who supports him? Did you ask him why he padded the 'endorsements' by including the same people multiple times to make the list look larger than it is? You had a 20 minute 'conversation' with Peck, when he extolled all the wonderful things he did, and yet you still couldn't list a single one of them here? There sure a lot of mysterious things he has supposedly done, but nobody seems to be able to list even a single specific one. Not.One.Single.Thing. His voting record speaks for itself... abstain.... abstain.... abstain... other than talk about vague accomplishments, without listing a single one, he isn't on record as actually DOING anything in his currently elected position. Which is exactly what the main criticism of him has been for quite awhile now. That his only intention was to use the office as a stepping stone for his own ambitions. He abstains himself from voting for important issues, which is exactly what he was elected to do. That isn't public service, it is the behavior of a sociopath.
Tim September 24, 2012 at 11:45 PM
It is not unusual for a conman to be able to convince you of anything he wants. Tell me, why do you think a US state can declare bankruptcy? Should you perhaps tried to understand the legal framework first, before making such inaccurate statements of 'fact'. If you don't understand the complexities of what you are talking about, how can you possibly make an educated decision on it? Hint: There is no legal framework that currently exists in US law, that would allow a state to file for bankruptcy. It is not currently possible, no matter how bad the finances are.
Tim 324 September 25, 2012 at 03:09 AM
Tell us more about Peck. I beg you!
Tim 324 September 25, 2012 at 03:13 AM
Did he cause hurricane Katrina ?
Shannon Antinori (Editor) September 25, 2012 at 03:13 AM
I can't find any record of either of these candidates being charged with any crimes. Please stick to the topic and refrain from making unsubstantiated accusations. From our Terms of Use: Without limitation, you agree that you will not post or transmit to other users anything that contains Content that: is defamatory, abusive, obscene, profane or offensive; infringes or violates another party's intellectual property rights (such as music, videos, photos or other materials for which you do not have written authority from the owner of such materials to post on the Service); violates any party’s right of publicity or right of privacy; is threatening, harassing or that promotes racism, bigotry, hatred or physical harm of any kind against any group or individual; promotes or encourages violence; is inaccurate, false or misleading in any way;
Ray September 25, 2012 at 12:47 PM
@ eyes on Plainfield. Thank you. I liked what he said but more to the point I liked how he said it. He looked me square in the eye man to man and answered me without hesitation without wandering eyes without any of the nervous body language so many of our politicians exhibit. I got the feeling he beleived what he was saying and since I share many of his beliefs he has my vote. As for Mike Madigan, while it won't on it's own get my vote, anyone who says they don't like him is welcome in my little corner of the world anytime. The man is a cancer on this state and has been for years.
Ray September 25, 2012 at 12:51 PM
@ whichever of the three or four Tims on here didn't like my use of the word bankruptcy. I apologize Tim. Shall we say default on it's loans and go broke. There is talk in the media almost every day about cities towns and states going broke or filing for bankruptcy. On a recent MSN survey Illinois was ranked first in states likely to default on all their loans. (I beleive that is the definition of bankruptcy). Joliet made it into the top ten list for cities. I'm not a lawyer so I don't know if a city or state can "file" bankruptcy but I think you know full well what I meant. Also now that I'm typing it if you're as smart as you want everyone to beleive you are I think you should be taking issue with my use of the word file bankruptcy. By definition Illinois is already both financially and morally one of the most bankrupt states in America and as a location probably in the world. Yes my disdain for Mr Madigan runs deep. 42 years he's been down there. Maybe he can blame Bush too. One last thing Tim. Don't be a keyboard badass.I hate people who sit on these things and shoot off their mouths and spew hate at everyone when in 99% of the cases if they were talking to the person they're hating on face to face they wouldn't do it. I was honest enough to share what I experienced and how I felt about it and you took a misuse of a phrase on my part and attacked me personally.
Ernie Knight September 25, 2012 at 02:02 PM
Tim, As a purveyor of illegal substances, your qualifications in the arena of mental health are of interest. You again misuse some knowledge by twisting it to match your perception. I can't imagine an actual mental health professional who would attempt the type of judgement which you are making. Garrett Peck was the trustee pushing for term limits, when no one else wanted to listen. He's so consumed with gaining power, that he wants limits on the number of terms someone can run for. Basing perceptions on one or two votes is ridiculous. But liberals love to blow things out of proportion and call names. Garrett Peck will stand up for what he believes. He doesn't need focus groups to tell him what to do. Nor does he need advice from a left-wing pot advocate.
Skyler Perry September 25, 2012 at 04:48 PM
Ha! Accusing the officers of the Plainfield Police Department of bribery. Apparently desperation really IS a stinky cologne.
Tim September 26, 2012 at 04:28 PM
Public officials are not protected in the same ways that private citizens are. Patch is not above the law in this respect. "When officials are accused of something that involves their behavior in office, they have to prove all of the above elements of defamation and they must also prove that the defendant acted with "actual malice." Absence of evidence does not prove that it is false. Shannon, I really hope you don't travel down the road of censorship that the last editor enjoyed so much.
Tim September 26, 2012 at 04:34 PM
Luckily for the rest of the world Ernie, what you are able to imagine using your limited experiences has no bearing on what is true in the rest of the world. But since YOU brought it up, what was the vote by Peck for the term limits you mentioned? That's right. It was never even brought up for a vote. He couldn't even follow through with what he 'wanted' to even get it to a vote. Not a strong point for him. I don't care what he 'believes', I care what he DOES.
Ernie Knight September 27, 2012 at 01:33 PM
We're still waiting for your mental health professional qualifications, Dr? Tim.

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