Treasurer race brings candidate to Eastern

Bob Galuski, Editor in Chief

As the race for state treasurer heats up, candidate Mike Frerichs stopped at Eastern Wednesday as part of his “downstate swing.”

Traveling through the state south of Chicago, Frerichs is on a mission to visit various areas, including a number of colleges.

Frerichs, who has served on the Illinois Senate since 2006, is now running for state treasurer.

Frerichs said as he is going through the colleges, he understands the importance and the struggles of college students trying to minimize their debt.

“For the first time student debt is greater than credit card debt,” he said.

Frerichs said he wants to help push through the Pay It Forward, Pay It Back bill in the senate, which would have post-graduates paying for college, rather than undergraduates trying to pay while they are still in college.

Frerichs said during his voyage through downstate Illinois, he has come into contact with families that have taken out loans and have had it cost more since the Bright Start funding lost more than $150 million.

Frerichs said he wants to shake up the treasurer’s office, if elected. He said he knows Illinois is a good investment and wants to have it work.

While in office as senator, Frerichs served on numerous committees, including Agriculture and Conservations, Committee of the Whole, Energy, Financial Institutions, Higher Education, Licensed Activities and Pensions, Public Pensions and State Investments, Subcommittee on Food Labeling and the Subcommittee on Natural Resources.

Voting for state treasurer is Nov. 4, and Frerichs is going up against Republican Tom Cross and Libertarian Matthew Skopek.

Rep. Cross first was elected to office in 1992.  Now, Republican leader, Cross is running against Frerichs and Skopek for treasurer.

Cross wants to institute quarterly audits of the Bright Start College Savings program to ensure funds are being invested wisely and safely — all in order to protect the college savings of Illinois families.

Cross also works for reform and wants to establish a Government Integrity Unit to further transparency within the political system.

Matthew Skopek, running on the Libertarian party, also appears on the ballot. In order to appear on a ballot, the third party candidate needs to garner five percent of the vote.

Like Cross, Skopek also stands on a platform of transparency for the government and the people.

“I want Illinois to be the beacon of light which other states look to for transparent and responsible government regardless of the party in office,” his website states.

Skopek clarifies, stating taxpayers have the right to specific financial information, not summarized broad categories. He also said he would want to “tear into Illinois financial records and bring everything to the public.”

The polls open Nov. 4 for voting.

Bob Galuski can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected].