Voter Guide

The counties included in the voters guide for the Nov. 5, 2019 elections are: Montgomery, Warren, Miami, Greene, Clark, Champaign, and Butler.

NOTE: Not all communities have issues or candidates on the ballot. Guide does not include uncontested races.

Urbana Council 4th Ward

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  • Candidate picture

    Richard Ebert
    (Rep)

  • Everett Ray Piper
    (Dem)

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Biographical Information

What can elected officials do to necessitate growth in downtown Urbana? What can be done to further that development? What has been lacking in the past in terms of bringing investors and growing preexisting investment in Urbana?

What can be done to usher job growth in the city and in Champaign County? What can be done to keep Urbana residents living in Urbana? What are some of biggest challenges facing Urbana? What can be done to improve student performance at Urbana City Schools?

How important is it to pass an income tax in the city that would help fund emergency services?

What are the biggest challenges facing the city?

What else to you want voters to know about you?

Experience I currently serve as Chair for the City of Urbana Planning Commission. I was elected to the Republican Central Committee where I spent four years representing the City Of Urbana, Fourth Ward. I have owned several small businesses including Ebert Entertainment. I have worked for several proud Urbana businesses and have enjoyed helping customers both local and out of town as they discover what a great community Urbana is.
Education Graduated from Urbana High School Graduated with a B.S. of Business Management and Human Services Leadership from Urbana University
Elected officials can help by supporting the city Economic Development Manager Doug Crabill and Champaign Economic Partnership Director Marcia Bailey in their work. They have done great work to bring projects and investors together to get things done. Continued support both financially and in helping them with research. I’d like to see a business incubator in the downtown. Somewhere where potential entrepreneurs could test their ideas without the huge capitol investment required to start a business. A place where they could have a mentor help them with the process of opening a business. A safe environment that would allow them to “fail” without losing their life savings. The goal to move the business out and survive on it's own. I cannot speak or speculate on the reasoning for an investor to choose to do so or not.
I currently see “Help Wanted” signs all over Champaign County. I have talked to people who are driving here from other communities to work in Champaign County. Businesses are hiring and at good wages. While job growth waxes and wanes, we are in a period of growth both in Champaign County and in the areas surrounding us. In my job, I talk to people everyday who are planning on or have already moved to Urbana or Champaign County. They come here because of the quaintness of the town, the slower pace of the community and the charm of the county. We are special in that we have a great mix of Industry and arts, unique businesses and agriculture and residents who love being here. Urbana City Schools does an amazing job at educating students. The educators at the schools are truly second to none. I support the schools and the job they are doing. I believe the State Grade Card is not totally indicative of the educational system standards implemented at UCS.
In my view, this question is self evident. It’s vitally important to fund our Emergency Services. The question about IF an income tax is important is misleading. No city leadership wants to unduly burden tax payers. However, funding EMS is imperative. If the only viable option is to place a levy on the ballot, then yes, it is important.
Affordable housing availability, in my opinion, is reaching a critical level and will become a huge challenge.

Another challenge will be updating and replacing older and outdated city infrastructure.
I’m humbled to be running for a seat on the Urbana City Council. I was born and raised in Urbana. I graduated from Urbana High School and from Urbana University with a degree in Business Management and Human Services Leadership. I currently serve as Chair for the City of Urbana Planning Commission. I was elected to the Republican Central Committee. As a city council member, I will listen to my Ward’s residents and the residents of Urbana. I will research each issue and do my best to meet the needs of the residents with the requirements and needs of the city. I believe that civil service is still a noble endeavor, and as such, the whole constituency of my Ward and city will be considered in my decision making process. I want to see the residents and businesses of Urbana not just survive, but to thrive and invest back in our city. To come together and work to make Urbana a better place to work, live and play. I want to help keep moving Urbana forward!
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