Madison County Regional Superintendent Robart A. Daiber will seek the Democratic nomination for Illinois governor next year.
Daiber, 60, of Marine, has served as superintendent since 2007 when he was appointed to the position. He won elections, unopposed, in 2010 and 2014.
He is a lead proponent of a 1 percent sales tax referendum that will go to voters in Madison County on the April 4 ballot. Referendum supporters say revenue collected would pay for school construction costs.
In 2011, a proposed sales tax increase was overwhelmingly rejected by voters in Madison County, but Daiber said in an earlier interview with the Record that things may be different this year.
He said that growth in sales tax revenue since 2011 is a good reason to consider a sales tax increase for 2017.
“There has been an almost $2 million growth in sales tax revenue from 2011 when the initiative was put forth to today,” he said.
He said that school districts in the county would benefit from the added sales tax.
“The 13 districts would utilize the funds to do one of two things: maintain or complete new construction projects at schools or two, pay down existing bond debt of those construction bonds, which would reduce their debt,” he said. “The 1 percent sales tax can also be used to do a reduction in their levy on their health-life-safety fund, which inadvertently would help to reduce property taxes.”
He also said that a good percentage of revenue that would be generated from the increase would not come from Madison County residents.
"It is paid for by individuals passing through that may be buying things at interstate marts."
Daiber earns income from two sources of taxpayers: $110,217 plus a $6,500 state stipend as school superintendent and another $12,100 as Marine Township Supervisor, for a total of $128,817.
Other declared candidates for the Democratic nomination include Ameya Pawar, Chicago alderman, and businessman Chris Kennedy, son of the late Sen. Robert Kennedy.