JOLIET – Joliet voters can get an in-person look at mayoral and City Council candidates at three forums and debates scheduled this month.
The first is 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday at the Unity Community Development Corp. office at 1 Doris Ave.
All three mayoral candidates and the 13 candidates seeking five district City Council seats in the April 7 election have been invited to the forum, according to Unity CDC.
The mayoral candidates are Mayor Tom Giarrante, Councilman Bob O'Dekirk and Andy Mihelich, chairman of the Joliet Junior College board.
According to Unity CDC, the forum will give candidates an opportunity to express their views and will be broadcast on Joliet Community Television. Joining Unity CDC in sponsoring the forum are Second Chances Expungement and the Black Bar Association of Will County.
A mayoral debate is scheduled to start at 6:30 p.m. March 12 at Cantigny Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 367 at 826 Horseshoe Drive.
The Cunningham Neighborhood Council has organized the debate, but other organizations, including the Forest Park Community Center, are also participating, said Candace Johnson, one of the debate's organizers.
"We want everyone involved," Johnson said, noting the debate will not just involve issues affecting the Cunningham neighborhood. Citywide issues will be addressed, she said.
Candidates will answer questions prepared before the meeting. Then, Johnson said, "The candidates will be able to ask two questions to an opponent of their choice. Then they'll have closing statements."
The Joliet Region Chamber of Commerce & Industry will hold a candidates forum March 25. It will be co-hosted by the Kiwanis Club.
The chamber forum will be part of a member lunch. Cost is $35 for members and $45 for non-members.
All candidates have been invited to speak. The lunch and forum is 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. at The Jacob Henry Mansion Estate – Victorian Ballroom, 15 S. Richards St.
The event has a March 20 reservation deadline. Reservations can be made online at www.jolietchamber.com. The chamber phone number is 815-727-5371.