Vitals: Anthony Hunt II, 21, was born in Rockford, but moved to Rancho Cucamonga, Calif., when he was 16. Hunt II returned to Rockford after living in Minneapolis for eight years. Hunt II is closely involved with Rockford’s hip-hop music scene and produces, writes and records music with several of his musical colleagues.
1. If you could choose any elected official – local, state or national – to speak with one-on-one, who would it be, and what would you say? Rockford’s Mayor Larry Morrissey (I). I’d like to know why Rockford’s west side is in the state it’s in. There are so few opportunities for young people on this side of town. There needs to be more access to activities that will encourage kids and teenagers to try new things, including educational programs and social activities.
2. When you moved away from the Rock River Valley, what three things did you miss the most? My family is pretty much all I missed.
3. Do you feel that the recent changes to the Rockford School District’s discipline code will help or hurt Rockford’s schools? I think it will help kids because they aren’t just throwing kids out of school. Now, it seems like this approach will get at the motivation that caused the incidents in the first place. Maybe they can teach kids to use their brains, and hopefully prevent many future discipline infractions. Plus, these kids stand a much better chance of learning if they are in school.
4. Will the proposed layoffs to Rockford city employees impact the service we receive from the affected departments? Certain departments, like the police and fire departments, the ones we need every day, may be negatively affected. If they let go of these folks, there will not be as many officers and firemen available to respond to everyday emergencies. Plus, when people are fired, the unemployment rate goes up, and the crime rate follows soon after. We should be adding jobs to these departments if it weren’t for the budgetary restrictions of the city. Adding jobs now would help Rockford more than any of us understand.
5. Question from last week’s “This week in The Times” participant Steve Pearce: What is your favorite restaurant in the Rock River Valley? Capri Pizza on State Street. It’s one of my favorite pizza places in the state. I have a ton of good memories of eating pizza with my family there.
“This week in The Times” is a weekly survey of people selected by The Rock River Times staff. The column does not accept unsolicited submissions.
From the September 30 – October 6, 2009 issue.