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LETTER: Re-elect Koos as mayor in Normal

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Letters to the Editor - Pantagraph (copy)
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As our community casts their votes this spring, I would ask that you keep in mind the hard work and vision that Chris Koos has displayed as our mayor.

The most recent example of this is the increasing presence of Rivian that we see around town. Without essential relationship-building spearheaded by Mayor Koos, Rivian might have followed through on their plan to strip the old Mitsubishi plant for parts. Instead, they were welcomed into our town and returned the kindness by investing hundreds of millions of dollars into renovating the factory and turning it into a place that will create hundreds if not thousands of jobs.

There are many more examples of how the mayor has worked to make this a happier, more inclusive, and more sustainable community, from the Town’s continual expansion of the Constitution Trail to ongoing partnerships between Normal and organizations like Not In Our Town and the Ecology Action Center.

This is all before considering the massive impact Koos has had on the transformation of Uptown. Although sometimes contentious, this long-term project has weathered multiple challenges to create a place that has been recognized on the national stage for its atmosphere. Uptown has helped ISU steadily increase its enrollment numbers (except for this most recent pandemic year). Meanwhile, state colleges across Illinois have seen their enrollment numbers plummet year over year, gutting those communities. The award-winning sense of place in Uptown was also crucial in wooing Rivian into installing itself in Normal, rather than just picking up some spare parts. Ultimately, the wonderful area that has become such an engine for progress in our town would not exist in its current form without Mayor Koos’ influence.

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As such, I hope that you will join me in re-electing Chris Koos as mayor on or before April 6.

Dylan Hile-Broad, Normal

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