Contested races expected in Park Ridge’s 2nd, 6th Wards
Updated: January 7, 2013 6:36AM
PARK RIDGE — Two more candidates have emerged in the upcoming races for alderman of Park Ridge’s 2nd and 6th Wards.
Dr. George Korovilas, a dentist with a practice on Chicago’s north side, has announced plans to run against Nicholas Milissis in the 2nd Ward, while Vincent LaVecchia, a Midwest business development manager for New Jersey-based Accurate Box Company, is preparing to challenge incumbent Marc Mazzuca in the 6th Ward in the April 9, 2013 election.
Both candidates are nine-year residents of the city and this is their first time running for elected office.
Korovilas, who serves on the city’s O’Hare Airport Commission, said he made the decision to run for city office upon hearing that long-time 2nd Ward Alderman Rich DiPietro was not seeking another term.
Korovilas said he feels the city does not communicate effectively with citizens and he would like to see City Hall have an e-mail alert system similar to what Park Ridge-Niles School District 64 uses to communicate information with parents.
“It seems that our concerns are not answered,” Korovilas said.
When asked to name some of the top issues facing the city, Korovilas said he would like to see a curbside leaf pick-up program added, fewer permit requirements for residents who want to keep up their properties, and the addition of more police officers. Korovilas cited an incident where he felt a police officer took too long to respond in order to take a report.
Korovilas, a father of three, said he can add “accountability” to the City Council and believes current officials have not been strong decision-makers.
“If you have an issue, regardless of what it is, I think it’s the job of elected officials to look into it and tell that person yes or no or tell them, ‘I don’t agree with your stance,’” Korovilas said.
Sixth Ward candidate Vincent Lavecchia said if elected he will conduct town hall-style meetings with citizens and, like Korovilas, wants to improve communication between elected officials and their constituents.
“There needs to be a voice that is more friendly to things that homeowners care about,” he said, stating that finding revenue sources that do not involve property-tax increases is a primary issue. One way the city can do this is by drawing in new businesses, he indicated.
“We have to bring people into Park Ridge,” LaVecchia said. “Most people my age, we go to Edison Park, Rosemont. We should be able to go to nice parks, nice restaurants and nice shops (within Park Ridge).”
LaVecchia said he will be bring “energy and new ideas” to the City Council, as well as an understanding of real estate due to his brokerage background. In referring to himself as a “new voice” for the City Council, LaVecchia stated that he is the father of three young children.
Neither Korovilas nor LaVecchia said they were encouraged to run for office by any elected officials.
In addition to the 2nd and 6th Wards, an aldermanic seat is up for election in the 4th Ward, though no candidates have yet made formal announcements of their intentions to run. The offices of mayor and city clerk are also up for election.