Freeport mayoral candidates ask incumbent to slow down - WREX.com – Rockford’s News Leader

Freeport mayoral candidates ask incumbent George Gaulrapp to slow down

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FREEPORT (WREX) -

In the February primary, Freeport Mayor George Gaulrapp lost the chance to run for his seat again to a man he once replaced, Jim Gitz.     
      
Gitz and his people's party opponent John Staben call on Gaulrapp to stop making big decisions, now that the mayor only has about two months left in office.

Mayor Gaulrapp's term ends May 20th.  He says he has no plans to stop working for the city before that day.  But two of the people on the ballot to replace him, want Gaulrapp to slow down.

"Mayor Gaulrapp is a lame duck. I think the biggest concern right now is that the city's making changes 30 days before a general election," says Staben.

The mayor's biggest criticism stems from his effort to fix the Rawleigh building this close to the end of his time in office.

"The mayor wants to spend $40,000 immediately for repairs on the Rawleigh building," says Gitz. "This building is like a vending machine that you keep putting money into but you never get anything out of it."

But Gaulrapp says this accusation just isn't fair.  "We started this last September, we went out and got different bids, different viewpoints. It's a public safety issue, that's why we're making the repair. People have to remember Jim Gitz bought the Rawleigh building to the city of Freeport with no plan in place."

Gaulrapp's political opponents also question a recent hire.  His niece now works at city hall. "It's inappropriate. I think I've said it before, in business and in any government, we need to follow standard employment practices," says Staben.

But Gaulrapp claims the city did just that. 

"My mother had 14 children in her family, I have a lot of relatives in town. Do I give them special treatment? No, I don't. I did have a nephew who interviewed for a job about a year ago, didn't qualify, did not get the job,"

The general election is April 9th.

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