Bednar bests Blumenthal for recorder post
Updated: March 29, 2012 3:39PM
Republican Bob Bednar of Mundelein has won the chance to try and unseat incumbent Lake County Recorder Mary Ellen Vanderventer and then work toward phasing out the office.
In a back-and-forth race, Bednar finally topped Marty Blumenthal, 59, of Highland Park with the unofficial vote total of 52 percent (18,806 votes) for Bednar to 48 percent (17,375 votes) for Blumenthal, an attorney and a certified public accountant. The results are unofficial because not all of the absentee and early voting has been counted.
“I’m glad, the effort was worth it,” said Bednar. “It was a lot of hard work. Marty did well too,” he said of his opponent, “we were very friendly in our campaign.”
Bednar, 55, who lived in Lake Bluff for more than 20 years until recently, is the treasurer of the Lake County Republican Party.
“It’s unfortunate about some of the garbage that was in other campaigns,” he said. While he was happy with the win, he was dismayed with voter turnout at about 17 percent. “We didn’t do robo-calls and didn’t do a lot of mailings,” he said.
“We did go to every forum we could to talk about (the campaign),” he said.
Bednar has been researching how other counties handle the recorder’s office. He found that 86 of the 102 counties in Illinois either never had one or converted it with the clerk’s office with new technology.
Kendall County has the issue on the ballot this year and two years ago Tazewell County near Peoria had a candidate who ran for the job while thinking of getting rid of it and 65 percent said get rid of it in a referendum. Cook County officials, too, have discussed eliminating the elected post.
“I’d like to see Lake County join those ranks,” said Bednar before the election.
Once in office, he would work to put the issue to referendum. Instant savings would come from getting rid of the six-figure salary of the recorder and perhaps some other positions. “We’re basically doing the same functions on two different floors of the County Building,” he said, referring to the clerk’s office.