Gerard Griswold v. Wendy McCalvy Trustee Seat #2 Shawn Olley v. Tom Weatherston Trustee Seat #4
WHAT DO YOU THINK OF THE LAND USE PLAN/CONSERVATION SUBDIVISION ORDINANCE?
Gerard Griswold: Disagrees with Olley that the board keeps changing directions (see her response) since there haven't been many changes proposed. He would make a couple changes: 1) Exempt commercial/industrial developments in infill and redevelopment areas from the conservation ordinance which would almost immediately open up development on Douglas Avenue and in the Caledonia Industrial Park. 2) Reduce the open space requirement from 40% to 20% in sewered areas.
Wendy McCalvy: Feels this is the central difference between her and her opponent (Griswold.) The conservation subdivision will make our community something special in the future. It's not just for looks, but because of the open space, we don't have to run sewer and water all over. It contains more natural options to limit stormwater runoff and reduce future costs.
Things are not working well right now in open space subdivisions, but the Open Space Committee is looking at ways to revamp things and will present options to the board in the future.
Shawn Olley: This is tough to answer and make everyone happy. It needs to be used as a plan; a lot of money and time went into it, but don't necessarily have to go step for step. Some of her relatives' farmland is designated as "parks" in the plan, when they are not. The Plan is what we would like to be, but we can't keep changing directions with every new board.
Tom Weatherston: Likes the current Land Use Plan, but thinks we have to put it into practice and use it. We've been remiss in finding commercial and industrial business and helping them come here. Good example was Camping World - we missed that opportunity and have to make sure when those opportunities come along, we capitalize on them.
DO YOU SUPPORT A CALEDONIA SCHOOL DISTRICT?
Gerard Griswold: Concept wise it's a very good idea, but we're in a deep recession and it should probably be put on hold and talked about again at a later date.
Wendy McCalvy: The Village Board spent money ($30,000) on a study from Wisconsin Taxpayer's Alliance, but the board has nothing to say about it. We wanted the citizens to get the financial facts. The school buildings would be split up, but Caledonia would have to build a high school and that would be very expensive.
Shawn Olley: How much will it cost? How long will it take? If the citizen's group was interested they could have gotten information from the Department of Public Instruction.
Tom Weatherston: He would be supportive of public efforts to get a school district going, but feels the Trustees can do little in this instance.
AS THE CONSERVANCY ABSORBS PROPERTY, IS THIS PROPERTY THEN TAKEN OFF THE TAX ROLLS?
Wendy McCalvy Yes, it's for the public. It's the only way we can hold on to the land and make it available.
THE STATE LEGISLATURE IS CURRENTLY HOLDING HEARINGS ON BILLS THAT WOULD NULLIFY CALEDONIA'S SEXUAL OFFENDER RESIDENCY ORDINANCES. THE BOARD HAS PASSED A RESOLUTION OPPOSING THIS LEGISLATION. AS A TRUSTEE, WOULD YOU WORK IN OPPOSITION TO THE STATE LEGISLATION?
Gerard Griswold: Have to agree with everything Tom said. (below)
Wendy McCalvy: Absolutely. I don't know where it's coming from that the state wants to give sexual predators more rights.
Shawn Olley: Have to pass - don't know enough about it to comment.
Tom Weatherston: Yes. I've read the ordinances done by Trustees Morgan and Wanggaard - they are well done. We need to stay with the ordinances we have.
I'VE HEARD A LOT OF RHETORIC TONIGHT AND IN THE PAPER ON SEWER AND WATER AT THE FREEWAY. COULD YOU GET TO THE POINT ON HOW TO DEVELOP I-94 AND I WANT SOME STRAIGHT ANSWERS ON SEWER AND WATER?
Gerard Griswold: Have to look at changes to the Land Use Plan. Hwy K shouldn't be zoned for high density residential, this just puts more burden on police/fire. This should be zoned for commercial/industrial and then we can take baby steps. Sewer is already on K at the RR tracks and ready to be extended another 2,000 ft. We can do as Mt. Pleasant did and slowly work our way out to the freeway and have development help pay for the sewer and water. Wendy McCalvy: We would have to take out loans and eventually citizens would have to pay. We're between Oak Creek and Racine - Menards and Wal Mart are the same distance and that's part of the problem. We don't have the population to draw big business and we don't have the population to pay for it. Maybe we should have a referendum.
Shawn Olley: We should do our homework first so when businesses do want to come here we can tell them how long it is going to take and what is it going to cost.
Tom Weatherston: Sewer and water is going to be very expensive and the engineering isn't complete - we don't have the costs. As taxpayers, we're going to pay either way. We can have a referendum on this and get the sewer out at the freeway and have a better tax base, or we have tax increases on our homes to pay for services. We must a way to get this done.
WHAT WOULD YOU DO TO ATTRACT COMMERCIAL DEVELOPMENT?
Gerard Griswold: Change the open space requirement for commercial development. Eliminate micromanagement. Hire an intermediate level planner within the budget that could also be a grant writer and reduce burden on current engineering staff.
Wendy McCalvy: Need more volunteers to help. The business community should be doing this. She'd like to get a business association started and it is the citizen's job - the Village Board can't do everything.
(My note - From what I understand, another trustee and a couple businessmen have already started working on the business association.)
Shawn Olley: When looking for a site for her business, wanted a community that was fairly easy to move into. The Oak Creek Development Coordinator got her thinking about Oak Creek. "It's about relationships." PR is a cheap way to build name recognition. Make it easier for businesses to come here.
Tom Weatherston: This is what I did at Modine - site selection. Worked with economic development corporations and top realty firms. Partner with those organizations to advertise Caledonia and make sure people know we're here. Need firm set of plans and specs so when companies do approach us, they know what to expect.
SINCE EXTRA POLICE/FIRE WERE HIRED FOR CONSTRUCTION OF THE POWER PLANT AND WE ENERGIES GRANT MONEY IS RUNNING OUT, SHOULD WE RETURN TO A PRE-CONSTRUCTION STAFFING LEVEL?
Gerard Griswold: It was a bad decision to hire that many extra officers for the power plant. Think the board missed a sweetheart deal with We Energies at the time. I don't know if we have to lay off anyone or not, we have a budget and we have to look at reality. I'm not for increasing taxes. I don't know enough about it yet.
Wendy McCalvy: We needed the jobs at the time and still need them, doesn't mean we can afford them. This happened at the height of the bubble. McCalvy and Morgan introduced a motion to take $300,000 out of the upcoming budget which would have meant layoffs, the motion was voted down (3-3) and turned out we didn't have to go forward with layoffs.
Shawn Olley: Three years ago I had 45 employees, today I have 30 because some of the work has dried up. I can make those hard decisions. If officers knew they were temporary, they should have anticipated this would be the end result, but doesn't necessarily mean she would lay them off.
Tom Weatherston: We haven't grown in population, but crime rate and safety calls have risen dramatically. Getting rid of officers now would be detrimental. If they were only going to be temp employees, they should have been told that - they weren't. More officers have been hired "post" the We Energies officers.