After serving twenty years in the Illinois Senate, Chris was elected Kane County Board Chairman in 2012. His top priorities for over 523,000 Kane County residents are..."to freeze the county property tax levy"..."treat people respectfully"...and, "honest, competent administration of county business through innovation and austerity".
As Kane County Board Chairman, Chris is in the fourth budget year of keeping his campaign promise to freeze the county property tax levy in Kane County. Kane County has initiated its first-ever five-year plans for both operating and capital expenditures, as well as cash flow forecasts. At a time when county governments across the county have faced severe pension crisis, and with Illinois itself teetering on the brink of insolvency, Chris has overseen a fifteen percent reduction in the county's unfunded pension liability without cutting benefits for retirees.
An integrated planning process for public health, development and transportation, including bike trails and land utilization has been enhanced under Lauzen's leadership. The program includes a Green component which has already protected 5,000 acres of farmland by leveraging $12 million in federal funding.
Effective teamwork is earning Kane County statewide and national recognition. The Kane County Health Department was the first county health department in Illinois to be awarded National Public Health Accreditation. Kane County has been recognized as the only county in the state of Illinois to have earned a score of 100% according to the Illinois Policy Institute's 10-Point Transparency checklist.
During his 20 years of service in the Illinois State Senate, Senator Lauzen championed the issues that mattered to families and small businesses. His vision for government was based on his abiding faith in the capacity of people to see the good beyond the horizon and the discipline to make the journey. As Kane County Board Chairman, Chris continues to drive these important issues.
Senator Lauzen brought to the Illinois Senate, and has utilized as Kane County Chairman, his leadership experience of teaching 300 accountants how to go into business for themselves as President of Comprehensive Accounting Corporation. During his five years at Comprehensive’s Home Office, the number of franchise offices tripled to 450 nationwide, the pre-tax profit doubled, and the network served over 22,000 small business owners. Chris and his wife, Sarah, later purchased a Comprehensive Accounting franchise, growing the Geneva, IL business from scratch to managing the books and tax preparation for more than 200 small businesses in just 4 ½ years.
When Senator Lauzen was elected to the Illinois State Senate, he joined what became known as the “Fab Five”: a celebrated crop of young conservative senators: Peter Fitzgerald, Patrick O’Malley, Steve Rauschenberger, and Dave Syverson. Senator Lauzen held two main legislative priorities: cut wasteful government spending and create a business climate in Illinois where the private sector can maintain and create jobs paying higher wages.
Senator Lauzen helped to author landmark pieces of legislation.“Truth in Budgeting” required the state to eliminate a second set of books, so that Illinois taxpayers can see the same numbers as the New York bankers do. Senator Lauzen helped to lead the effort for Pension Funding Reform in these difficult times. He also sponsored the largest employment tax decrease in the past 19 years which kept over $250 million of excess unemployment insurance in the Illinois economy.
Senator Lauzen remained focused on some of the toughest challenges: property tax reform, education funding, and public pension funding. He had a proven record in Springfield as a financial expert who fought for those who sent their hard-earned tax dollars to Springfield.
Senator Lauzen served on the Pensions Committee & Committee of the Whole, Appropriations I and II, and the Revenue Committee, where he was the ranking Republican Spokesman on tax and fiscal policies. He served as Co-Chairman of the Legislative Audit Commission. Senator Lauzen was honored by the Illinois Chamber of Commerce with the “Champion of Free Enterprise” award and the NFIB “Guardian of Small Business” award.
Born and raised in Aurora, Illinois, Senator Lauzen earned his B.S., with honors, from Duke University, an MBA from Harvard Business School, and is a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) awarded by the University of Illinois. Senator Lauzen and his wife of 34 years, Sarah, are the parents of four boys: Ted, Elliot, Hans, and Robbie. Ted graduated with honors from Duke University and is a Capt. in the United States Marine Corps, a pilot, flying helicopters and is married to Sarah Burris with a young daughter. Upon returning from Afghanistan, Ted became an USMC Elite Athlete training at the US Olympic Training Center for the 2016 Olympics in the Modern Pentathlon. Elliot, a Harvard honors pre-med graduate, earned a MS in Biomedical Engineering at USC and is now working in the field of investment banking with emphasis in healthcare. Hans graduated from USC and is an officer in the US Navy currently assigned to the Pentagon. Rob graduated from Dartmouth College where he studied engineering and played Varsity football and is now working in investment banking concentrating in healthcare.