Source: Lake Geneva Regional News

Four join Fontana trustee race
Pollitt won’t seek second term

by Rob Ireland

December 29, 2011

FONTANA — Up until last Wednesday morning, the trustee race in the village was looking pretty dull.

Two incumbents had turned in papers seeking re-election, and another was seemingly circulating those forms.

However, last Wednesday morning, instead of turning in nomination papers Trustee Peg Pollitt dropped off a declaration of noncandidacy. With Pollitt out of the race, only two incumbents were set to seek three seats.

Pollitt’s decision not to seek re-election quickly became public and later that day Rick Pappas and Scott Vilona entered the race. Before the week was done, Plan Commissioner Derek J. D’Auria and Brandon Marvin, who serves on the Human Resources Committee, threw their hats in the ring. The deadline for a candidate to turn in nomination papers is Jan. 3. The general election is set for April 3.

Pollitt was contacted briefly last Wednesday morning, but unable to speak because she just arrived at a vacation destination. Check next week’s Regional News for comments from Pollitt regarding her experience as a trustee and why she decided not to seek re-election.

Incumbents Patrick Kenny and Cynthia Wilson both have turned in papers and are seeking another term. Kenny chairs the village’s Finance Committee and Wilson chairs the Park Commission.

Vilona is a member of the village’s Finance Committee and is a Certified Public Accountant with Financial Advisors, Inc., in Delavan. He also earned an MBA from Loyola University in Chicago.

For the past 13 years, Marvin has worked in the Human Resources Department at Dean Foods. He earned an MBA from George Williams College.

Pappas serves on the village’s Lake Front and Harbor and Protection committees. He also is a member of the Board of Review and an alternate on the Board of Appeals.

D’Auria has served on the village’s Plan Commission since 2006 and is the Director of Development at George Williams College.

Before Pollitt declared her noncandidacy, Vilona, Pappas, D’Auria and Marvin said they were mulling over entering the race.

“I have been interested in running for a while, and I was waiting for a good opportunity,” Vilona said. “(Pollitt) not running made that decision easier.”

Vilona said he entered the race because he wants to make sure Fontana remains the quiet side of Geneva Lake.

“I don’t want the village to become too built-up, too fast,” Vilona said.

Marvin said he was encouraged to run for the board by Trustee George Spadoni, who he works with.

Spadoni and Marvin are co-workers and neither one supervises the other, Marvin said.

Marvin said he wants to make sure Fontana remains a nice place to live for his children.

“ I came from Harvard (Ill.,) and I saw a family-friendly town kind of become unsafe and the taxes went crazy,” he said.

Marvin, 40, said he also wants to make sure someone is on the board who can represent the views of someone who has a young family.

Marvin is married to Tricia and the couple have two children Ayden, 5, and Addisyn, 3. Marvin also is running for the Fontana School Board.

If elected, Pappas said he would like to see Fontana stay “the great resort town that it is.” Pappas said he will be an independent voice on the board.

“I may bump heads with one person on one issue and then be their biggest supporter on another issue,” he said.

He was also critical of the board’s recent decision to borrow money for road and utility repairs.

“I’m not happy we borrowed money to meet obligations that we have, but in the meanwhile we did nothing to curtail our expenses,” he said.

Pappas pointed to his service on various village committees and his volunteer efforts with the annual Pig in the Park event and with Van Slyke Creek clean up effort as some of his qualifications for the board. Pappas, 49, is a bookkeeper and has lived in Fontana for 11 years.

There is no burning issue that pushed D’Auria to run, but he feels the board is moving in a good direction.

D’Auria has been part of effort to rewrite of Chapters 17 and 18 of the municipal code, which regulates zoning and building requirements in the village.

“I think we are moving in a good direction. We want to help businesses in the village and help them move forward,” he said.

D’Auria is married to Donna and the couple have to children, Elizabeth, 12, and Jonathan, 7. His wife is a teacher at Williams Bay Elementary School.

Vilona grew up in Fontana and lived in Chicago and Madison. However, he returned to the village because he wanted his children to grow up in a safe atmosphere.

“That’s one of the reasons I brought my family back,” Vilona said. “The only thing I want to have worry about is my kids tripping on one of the potholes that we are trying to get fixed.”

Vilona, 37, is married to Meghan and the couple have two children, Roman, 2-1/2, and Cassidy, 5 months.

His family also has a history in village politics. His mother, Irene LaBonne, was Village President from 1995 to 1999 and was a trustee from 1989 to 1995.