Braidwood mayor to face election challenge
By Mary Baskerville Correspondent January 21, 2013 10:54AM
Updated: February 24, 2013 6:11AM
Bill Rulien says he’s running for another term as mayor of Braidwood because “we have progressed here a lot in the last couple of years.”
He most enjoys “seeing things get done,” he said. Rulien faces a challenge from James A. Vehrs.
The No. 1 challenge for Braidwood is finding new business, Rulien said.
Rulien pointed to his business experience as head of Beaver Creek Enterprises in Braidwood. It is that experience that helps him see Braidwood as a business with the need for a marketing plan, he said.
Rulien was elected to the council as the commissioner of accounts and finances, but became mayor following the death of Mayor Jerry R. Pressley in summer 2011. Rulien said that if he loses his bid for mayor, he would resume his duties as commissioner, in place of Elena M. Hibler who was appointed to fill that post.
Rulien said an accomplishment of the past two years has been “getting the town ready for business.”
Vehrs said he is running for mayor “for the good of the community … and also I’m running because of the overspending of the current administration.”
Braidwood’s biggest challenge is overspending, he said. It’s important to cut expenses, he said, “so homeowners don’t get in a bind.”
Originally from Lockport, Vehrs moved to Braidwood 22 years ago. Vehrs pointed to his involvement with the Knights of Columbus and work on fundraisers for community residents.
“I’ve been involved in the community for the last 20 years,” he said.
He has not held office before.
As a Local 150 operating engineer, he said his knowledge of sewers, water and roads will help him be an effective mayor. His goals include “putting the community back together.
“I am honest and sincere for the town of Braidwood. I love Braidwood,” Vehrs said.