GENEVA – Fresh off winning re-election, a County Board member already has declared that this term will be his last.
Mike Donahue, R-Geneva, said in a conversation with the Kane County Chronicle after the election that he intends to serve the next two years in office, but then step aside and let another claim the seat in the County Board’s District 11.
“This will be the last campaign for me,” Donahue said.
First elected to the County Board in 2010, Donahue quickly stepped into a leadership role, taking the reins of a county effort to draft a plan to guide the redevelopment of the Settler’s Hill landfill.
The Settler’s Hill redevelopment project had stood at the center of his first election campaign.
Last year, the planning effort drew criticism from other board members and Tri-Cities residents concerned about the plan’s impact on the neighboring Fabyan Forest Preserve and about pollution from the landfill.
But Donahue ultimately steered the plan to approval from the County Board, who generally approved of the vision to use money the county had specifically collected as fees from waste haulers dumping at the landfill to convert the now-closed landfill into a regional recreational destination.
Donahue secured re-election, breezing to a win Nov. 6.
In the two years of his next term on the board, he said he hopes to help take the project from the drawing board to reality. But Donahue said that work will not lead him to remain on the board any longer than his second term, which expires in 2014.
He said he believes in term limits, and he should set an example for other County Board members and public officials.
“I’ve never really been interested in being re-elected,” Donahue said. “I gauge my effectiveness based on the feedback I get from people within my district.
“And in the next two years, I plan to stay pragmatic and objective, and not get involved in personal dynamics.”