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Author: watchmaster

California Liberal Heading for Vacant District 7 Board Seat

In April, Laurie Bergren, Supervisor of district 7 in Hudson, announced that she would be moving out of the district, and vacating her seat on the County Board effective May 04, 2017.  Under the current rules, the Board Chair Roger Larson is responsible for identifying and appointing a suitable candidate within 60 days. The appointee is then approved by a majority vote of the full Board at the regular monthly meeting.  Candidates must live in the district where the vacancy exists. The search initially yielded two candidates, Ms. Tammy Moothedan, and Ms. Sarah Yacoub.  In the event of multiple candidates forwarded by the Chair for consideration, an election is held, with sitting Board members voting.  Once approved, the appointed candidate will serve until the April 2018 spring election. Ms. Moothedan recently withdrew  her name from consideration, leaving Sarah Yacoub as the only candidate under consideration.  Only a “no” vote from a majority of the current board could cause the search to continue. Ms. Yacoub, a liberal Democrat,  ran against Mike Nieskes in a contentious race for the St. Croix County District Attorney position in 2016.  Despite her filing a complaint with the State’s Elections and Ethics Commission alleging election corruption in the DA’s office, Mr. Nieskes won the election by a significant margin. Sarah spent six years as a Deputy District Attorney in Los Angeles County, CA, prior to relocating and entering private practice...

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Administration Alerts Board to Looming $1.5 Million Annual Operating Deficit

County Administrator Patrick Thompson, and Operations Manager Ken Witt presented their strategy for developing St. Croix County’s 2018 operating budget at the Administration Committee meeting on May 17.  The final budget will be prepared by the Administration, and presented to the Board for approval later this year.  For Fiscal Year 2017, the current budget is fairly well balanced, with projected revenues equalling projected expenses, both totaling about $85 Million. According to Witt, the currently established automatic annual wage increase for County employees, combined with the projected increase in health care costs will create an approximately $500,000.00 deficit in the 2018 budget....

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Comprehensive Bike and Pedestrian Plan Adopted by St. Croix County

After more than an hour of public comment, with many individuals speaking both for, and against the plan,  as well as a significant amount of additional discussion by board members, the County Board approved the adoption of the Comprehensive Bicycle and Pedestrian Plan in a 13-5 vote. The plan was developed under County contract by Toole Design Group, and funded by a Transportation Alternatives Program (TAP) grant, combined with matching funds from the St. Croix River Crossing Mitigation Growth Management Fund and St. Croix County budget.  It is designed to serve as a roadmap for the on-going development of bicycle...

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Living Wage Ordinance Discussion on Committee Agenda for May 17

One of the agenda items for this week’s regular monthly meeting of the County Administration Committee is a discussion of the creation of a “Living Wage” ordinance that would affect any company that does business under contract with St. Croix County.  The proposal to begin discussions on a Living Wage ordinance was originally made by Supervisor Roy Sjoberg (District 5 – City of Hudson Wards 1, 6, 9, 10) at the January regular meeting of the County Board. This proposal was made at the same time as he proposed beginning discussions of the County adopting “sanctuary” status to protect illegal immigrants...

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Upcoming Board Resolution Insists on an End to Gerrymandering in the State

One of the lesser of the business items on the agenda for the St. Croix County Board to vote on at its May 02, 2017 meeting is a resolution insisting that the Wisconsin State Legislature create a completely non-partisan procedure for the preparation of the upcoming legislative and congressional redistricting plans. Every 10 years, consistent with the results of each US census, the boundaries for state legislative, and congressional representation districts are re-adjusted based on their populations so that each district has approximately the same number of people represented by each elected representative.  Sounds simple, right? It’s generally the...

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