Former candidate McNeil fears Ald. Brookins will leave 21st Ward residents out in the cold
More than a week after falling just short in his spirited run against four-time incumbent Ald. Howard Brookins Jr., Marvin McNeil still believes residents of the 21st Ward need better representation.
McNeil, who gained nearly 47 percent of the vote on April 2, told Chicago City Wire that Brookins will not provide the voice at City Hall the community needs to improve the lives of residents in the South Side neighborhood.
“A lot of things need to be improved, such as infrastructure,” he said. “We need someone advocating for us, and Howard Brookins is lazy and he’s comfortable, not a good combination. City Hall has a way of making the job of alderman really easy as long as you go along and vote ‘yes’ when it’s needed.”
After two unsuccessful runs against Brookins, McNeil, a retired zoning-code inspector for the City of Chicago, said he plans to stay active in the community, though that may not include another formal run at office.
“If I were to run again, it would be in the form of supporting a younger person for the job,” he said. “We need someone vibrant, someone that truly has the community’s best interest in mind.”
McNeil said he finds it almost revolting that city leaders are now marching toward passage of a $6 billion Lincoln Yards development project at a time when there are still broken up streets and sidewalks in his neighborhood.
“Half of that money could repair every sidewalk on the South and West sides of the city real easily,” he said. “I plan on doing everything I can to keep people informed.”
The 21st Ward includes parts of Auburn Gresham and Washington Heights.