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Abbott: ‘If we don’t have the money, we don’t spend it’

Published: Tuesday, Oct. 30, 2012 1:15 a.m. CDT
William M. Abbott

I am William “Bill” Abbott, I live in rural Fulton, and I am a semi-retired farmer. I am retired from more than 20 years with the Whiteside County Sheriff’s Department as a sergeant covering about the western two-thirds of Whiteside County on patrol.

I’ve been a member of the Whiteside County Board since 1989, when I was appointed to fill an unexpired vacancy. I have served since that time mostly on law enforcement or finance/insurance committees.

We’ve tried to give our employees the best possible insurance the county could afford. On the finance committee, we have the responsibility of oversight of department budgets and how they’re met, which means taxes, and balancing the budget while maintaining essential services, facilities and equipment.

Whiteside County can be proud of its department heads and employees who make Whiteside County a good place to work and live. While we levy for taxes, we try to get our money’s worth, getting all the “bang for the buck.” If we don’t have the money, we don’t spend it.

My time on the board has shown how the system works. We try to operate in the best interests of county residents and the general well-being of the county. We can’t ignore opportunities for industry if we want jobs and increased tax base. Inevitably, it will be in somebody’s backyard, but will the overall good for the total county outweigh the not-in-my-backyard (NIMBY) syndrome?

I will have been married to my wife, Betty, for 65 years next June, and we have four children.

Both Mrs. A and I are graduates of the University of Illinois. I was a member of the Fulton Volunteer Fire Department for 36-plus years and an EMT part of the time, and at present, I am on the Whiteside County Farm Bureau Board.

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