Janesville36.8°

Four seek spots on Milton council

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Stacy Vogel
March 27, 2009
— Milton's city council race started short one candidate, but it now has more candidates than seats.

Two write-in candidates, Jeremy Hoff and Brett Frazier, applied after learning only two candidates had registered for three seats. Those candidates are incumbents Maxine Striegl and David Schumacher.


Council President Sharon Rozelle is not seeking re-election.


Here are the candidates' views on some topics:


Development

Frazier: Development is the most important issue for Frazier, he said. He works in Verona and has lived in Stoughton, communities that have aggressively promoted development. Milton can learn from those communities, he said.


"Everybody's concerned about property taxes, but at the same time we want the same services We can't just be a collection of houses and empty commercial properties. We really need to look at (offering incentives for) investment in Milton."


Hoff: The city should see if there are ways to lower taxes to attract more business, Hoff said. It also can attract business by promoting its small-town image.


"We should also look at businesses that exist right now. We have some great businesses in town as we speak."


Schumacher: "I'm an ardent supporter of the Milton economic and industrial base." The city should continue to support the industrial park and look for ways to promote development when the state renovates highways 26 and 59. It also should emphasize the tax incremental financing district on Parkview Drive.


"I'd sure like to see that success there that's happened on Merchant Row."


Striegl: "Right now it's going to be hard to promote development because of the economy We have other needs besides growth right now as far as I'm concerned."


Budget priorities

Hoff: "Public safety is always a plus. We should always be supporting our firefighters and our police officers at all times. That's a big issue for me."


Schumacher: "What we've got to look at is being as economical as we can and providing the same services we have been." The city has to look at its aging fire station and public works building and continue to focus on business and industrial development, he said.


Striegl: Recent growth has put a strain on Milton's services, including the police department, public works department, joint fire department and EMS.


"We're in dire need with all those department, so that would be my major concern for this next couple years I think they've been running at bare minimum now, and I think we really need to concentrate on upgrading them all."


Frazier: "Right now I think we've got to take a wait and see approach. Nobody knows what the economy is going to do We need to make sure that the dollars that we have are allocated properly and efficiently and adequately. (We need to) look at ways that we can be a little bit more conservative and hold off on things that might be nice or even things that we might be used to."


Ethanol plant

United Ethanol has faced violations from the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources in the last year. The Janesville Gazette asked the candidates if they're happy with the way the city is handling the issue.


Schumacher: Schumacher is frustrated the DNR didn't do more to help the new plant learn the regulations and come into compliance, he said.


"To me what it seemed like was the DNR issued this report with 178 (violations) or whatever it was, and it really was just to make a big name for themselves. That just blows everything up, makes a mountain out of a molehill. I'm not saying some things weren't serious but I'm not happy with how the DNR worked with (the plant)."


Striegl: The city's hands are tied as it waits for the DNR to address the problems, she said. "I would like to see them resolve that as quickly as possible because I'm concerned about the health of the residents right now. I know they (the DNR) have to do a certain procedure, but gee, it's been two years."


Frazier: "That's exactly the kind of corporate development that we want in Milton, but at what cost to the town? If immediately after getting the conditional use permit, the council becomes completely powerless and the citizens become completely powerless I don't know if that's a good situation.


"Has the city done what it should do? It sounds like it's doing all it can do, but that's not enough."


Hoff: "If they (the plant) have violations out there, they should be held accountable for it. Just like any law, big business has to be held accountable for their actions, too."


Qualifications

Striegl: "I'm experienced. I've been on the council. I'm level-headed and concerned about the city. I've lived here all my married life. So I just feel like I'm very interested and concerned with what happens" to Milton.


Frazier: As a parent of young children, Frazier represents much of the community, he said. "I care about safe streets. I care about safe schools. I care about making sure the parks are clean and safe for our kids, and I care about making sure our city stays vibrant, the way I remember it growing up I think I represent a lot of Milton, and I think I'll bring that to the council."


Hoff: "I'm a strong leader I'm going to push for things for this community and the citizens that live in this community."


Schumacher: "I've had quite a bit of experience. Anything that comes up, I look at it from the standpoint that I'm for whatever benefits the city and this population as a whole and not just individuals."


Bios

Brett Frazier


(write-in candidate)


Address: 423 Rogers St.


Age: 28


Job: Account executive, actor.


Education: Graduate of Milton High School, 1999; attended UW-Rock County, 2000-01.


Community service: Community theater


Elected posts: None


Jeremy Hoff


(write-in candidate)


Address: 739 Ansley Ave.


Age: 29


Job: Correctional officer for Rock County Sheriff's Office


Education: Graduate of Milton High School, 1998; attended UW-Whitewater, 2002-03, and UW-Rock County, 2007-08.


Community service: U.S. Marine Corp., 1998-2003.


Elected posts: None


David Schumacher (I)


Address: 101 N. Clear Lake Ave.


Age: 72


Job: Retired from General Motors


Education: Graduated high school in 1955; spent one year at Northwestern Watertown and 1.5 years at Milton College.


Community service: Board of directors for Mid-Continent Railway Museum in North Freedom.


Elected posts: Milton City Council member on and off since 1985


Maxine Striegl (I)


Address: 1012 Sue Lane.


Age: Preferred not to say


Job: Retired; formerly owned and operated beauty salon.


Education: Graduate of Whitewater High School


Community service: American Legion Auxiliary


Elected posts: 10 years on the Milton City Council



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