March 11, 2009 | 09:37 AMWalworth — Dennis Vanderbloemen decided serving as a trustee would be a good way to become more involved with the village.
On Monday night, the Village Board appointed Vanderbloemen to fill in as a trustee during Trustee Matt Long's deployment to Iraq.
"I've been getting more involved with the village during the past few years and thought this was a logical next step," Vanderbloemen said.
Long was recently deployed to Iraq and is expected to be gone for about a year. State law allows the village to appoint a trustee during the interim.
Village President Todd Watters said he recommended Vanderbloemen because of his experience in municipal government.
Vanderbloemen has served on the Plan Commission for three years. Prior to that, he served on the Park Commission for four years and the zoning board of appeals for six years.
He served as the chairman of the Zoning Board of Appeals for two years.
"I like Dennis' background in terms of municipal experience," Watters said. "I'm comfortable with his opinions, approach and personality."
Watters said his intention was to appoint Vanderbloemen to the same committees that Long served on. Long was on the village's Plan Commission and public works and Ad Hoc Joint Service committees.
"I have no agenda. I'm basically trying to get involved in the ongoing operation," Vanderbloemen said.
Vanderbloemen said the biggest challenge is going to be the continued effort to consolidate services with the village of Fontana.
"That is going to present quite a few challenges," he said.
He said he also is looking forward to working on the Public Works Committee and gaining a better understanding of the department's daily operations.
One of the biggest issues facing the village's Plan Commission is the proposed construction to Highway 14 and the village's square.
Vanderbloemen said he is opposed to the ideas, which were presented by the Department of Transportation.
He also saw some problems with the village's counterproposal. He said he doesn't want to lose any buildings in the downtown and would like to try to preserve the square.
Vanderbloemen said he may run for a trustee position in April 2010 after his appointment ends.
"It's possible, if I find I can get involved and maintain good working relationships with everyone," he said. "It's depends on how I fit in and how it fits in with my life."
Vanderbloemen has lived in the village for the past 14 years. He is married and has two adult daughters.