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Friday, December 30, 2011

Maibag: MoveOnOrg writes re Petition to prevent Gov from cutting Pensions

I'm writing because I want to make sure that everyone in Evansville sees this urgent petition opposing Governor Scott Walker's effort to gut the retirement pensions of Wisconsin public employees.

The petition was started by Kathleen Marsh, a MoveOn member from Townsend, Wisconsin, and already nearly 15,000 Wisconsinites have signed. Will you sign the petition and help reach the goal of 20,000? Just click here:

You can check out the original email about this petition below.


Dear Wisconsin MoveOn member,

Scott Walker wants to radically alter the Wisconsin Retirement System (WRS), our public employee pension system in Wisconsin. He plans to turn this 97%-funded, defined benefit system into a high-risk defined contribution system.

If he gets his way, his investment house buddies will cash in big, while Wisconsin retirees will lose the safety and security of one of the best retirement funds in the country.

That's why I created a petition on SignOn.org to Governor Walker, as well as the Wisconsin State House and Senate, which says:

Scott Walker: Keep your hands off the Wisconsin Retirement System!

Will you sign the petition? Click here to add your name, and then pass it along to your friends:

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Video: John Mourning Speaks: On land Purchase

School Beat; Ad Hoc Committtee: 9-10-2008: John Mourning speaks on purchase of land; on high risk of attempting to define ten years out the details of an educational system that is rapidly changing away from brick and mortar. Today, December 2011 the issue of what the educational system will look like in an era of declining enrollments and rising class sizes and full utilization of digital resources is on the front burner.

Libraries makin the move to Ebooks: Will Evansville follow?


Click on the post for the story in the Janesville Gazette today.  There is  a move to grow the digital books as opposed to stacking the books high to the ceiling.  It is no longer a space game....not the biggest library, but the one with the most digital resouces.  Stay tuned.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Monday, December 26, 2011

OpEd: After Scott Walker---What next for Wisconsin?

In a dialogue recently with a fellow resident, I mentioned that Minnesota had taken a big loss of jobs with the closing of the Ford plant in St. Paul---the home of the Ford 150.  Scott Walker was not the governor of Minnesota.

He agreed, but quickly added:  "This is a matter of priorities. The priorities will change."

Yes.  The new after Scott Walker will be about sacrifice and cuts----and the principle of ability to Pay will be the core----progressive taxation was the heart of the progressive movement in Wisconsin. The first quarter of 2012 may be stunning....the cuts will continue----and the pain will continue, because it took decades for the structural imbalance of Wisconsin finances to take their toll---those who think a mere change in the governors mansion will produce a miracle are mistaken....a total reversal of governance in all branches of government is required.

Former Evansville City Administrator Recommends Evansville Observer to citizens

(Ednote: Bill Connors posted this on Linkedin during the holidays.)

(The Observer) provides a tremendous service to the people of Evansville through his Observer blog. He makes it easy to keep up on what is happening in the community, school district, and city government. When I was the city administrator, I frequently posted messages or responses on the Observer as an effective way to communicate with the city's resdents.” December 14, 2011

Monday, December 19, 2011

Local Editors Visualize What is "News"


Click on the post for this breaking story.

Mailbag: Hurley writes: Evansville Schools Administrator Search Information

Hello Friends,

I know this is an extraordinarily busy time of year, but I wanted to let you know that the Evansville School District will begin its search for a new District Administrator as soon as school restarts in January, and the School Board would like to get as much input as possible. As you know, our District faces many challenges in the year ahead, and the Board wants to do all it can to find the very best fit for a new Administrator. Focus Groups will be held with the Board, staff, students, and the public at large on Tuesday, January 3 and Thursday, January 5. Each session will last about a half hour, and participants will be asked to answer 7 specific questions.

Some sessions are scheduled with specific persons or groups and some are Open Sessions for anyone to attend. Below are listed the dates, times, and places for relevant sessions.

Tuesday, January 3

Open Session 9:00 a.m. District Board and Training Room

Open Session 3:00 p.m. District Board and Training Room

Open Session 5:00 p.m. District Board and Training Room

Rural Townships 5:30 p.m. District Office Conference Room

Clergy/Daycares 5:30 p.m. District Board and Training Room

K-5 Parents 6:00 p.m. District Board and Training Room

6-12 Parents 6:30 p.m. District Board and Training Room

Thursday, January 5

Retired Teachers/Seniors 9:00 a.m. District Board and Training Room

City Officials/Former Board Members 9:30 a.m. District Board and Training Room

ECP/Chamber 10:00 a.m. District Board and Training Room

Open Session 1:30 a.m. District Board and Training Room

If you’re interested in attending one of these focus groups please contact Kelly Mosher at the District Office either by phone at 882-3387 or by email at mosherk@evansville.k12.wi.us. Kelly will need your address, telephone number, and email address so she can confirm with you the date, time, and location of your session and send you the questions to look at before the group meeting.

You can find more information on the District Administrator search by looking under What’s New on the district’s home page. Click on District Administrator Search Update. If you would like to give your input on the DA Search but can’t attend a focus group you can still provide feedback through the Community Survey, which should be posted on the district’s Web site in the near future.

I hope you’ll consider giving us your input. Thanks for getting through this email. Have a wonderful holiday. Hope to see you in the New Year.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Movie: Catch the Culture: Terry Whipple speaks

Click on the post for a memory from the Economic Development conference in Evansville.

Video: 2008: Merry Christmas Musical Bonus--

Musical Debut: 2008: George Wollinger and Jacob Wollinger----Christmas Day---St. Paul's Church--Evansville, Wi.

Video: 2009: I & E Club: Dr. Carol Scovotti

Video: 2009:Dr. Carol Scovotti; "Killer Mistakes in Marketing Small Business----

Evansville Observer video now on Youtube: Check it out.

Selected videos from the Evansville Observer are now on Youtube. Click on the post for the channel. If you go full screen, Youtube fully displays the video and audio quality. Enjoy.

Nostalgia: Memories of the Candidates Debate: 2006: Mason Speaks on Possible Pipedreams

(Ed note: This is a copy of the original post of 2006)

Last night at the Bauer Haus was a mayoral forum that consisted of two parts---first a 10 minute presentation by each candidate, and then a short question and answer period where each question asked was answered by each candidate.

The first question was asked by Mason Braunschweig, 590 W. Main, an aldermanic candidate in the April election. He asked " What would you do as Mayor to reduce taxes?"

There was a moment of silence since it may have been a long time since the prospects of reducing actual spending has been in view. Both Sandy Decker and Mike Anderson responded that they felt the city budget was in order and so no area that could sustain big cuts. Karen Aikman, the current Finance Chair, responded that yes Evansville taxes were high, but the thing to concentrate on was developing more commerical and industrial tax base which might provide some relief to homeowners. The key was not to concentrate on absolute cuts but on having the homeowner tax burden shrink relative to the total taxes paid.

If any candidate wants to add to this description, feel free to do so.

The comment line is open.
Posted by Evansville Observer at 2:05 PM Email ThisBlogThis!Share to TwitterShare to Facebook
Mason B. said...
The question was fair and so were the answers...mostly.

A popular answer is that if we bring in commercial industries and businesses then we can help reduce the tax burden felt by the citizens. That is all well and good, but what if the courtship of a large scale industry is a pipe dream? What if we have spent too much on the downtown restoration that we have little left to offer in incentives to a new industry here in Evansville? I am not saying downtown restoration is a bad thing, I am saying you can stretch a dollar only so far.

I understand that my queries call for speculation based upon premises that have been created by the local government in place, however I think the local government must realize that we cannot have our cake and eat it too!

I like the idea of grant applications and requests. I hate that this idea is not already been abused by our local government.

As for the presumption that there is no fat to trim in Evansville, well I find that a little hard to believe. I know an awful lot of money goes to the police department. How many costs are associated with ridiculous internal investigations or flipped squad cars in this city?

I have yet to attend a city council meeting or a committee meeting where someone requests money and has been turned down. Maybe it is time to check the little "drops in the bucket," because they have certainly accumulated.

10:55 PM

Shooting in the courthouse in Grand Marais, Minn: Mpls Star

Click on the post for the latest. They had a sign on the door. yo.

Rich People DON'T Create the Jobs: Yahoo: Blodgett

Click on the post for the story.

Changes Coming for Evansville: Gazette

City Administrator Dan Wietecha will be leaving...

Click on the post for the article in the Janesville Gazette by Gina Duwe.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

OpEd: Evansville needs a strong City Administrator: Not "Billy bob"

Years ago there was a referendum where the city of Evansville residents decided...decided that we needed...and at the time very desperately...a strong city manager...that the weak decentralized way of doing things...a way that I term "billy bob" was not going to work..it had led to multiple disasters...

Now more than ever we need a wise experienced city manager that can stand and represent the interests of Evansville citizens and not just the few. Stay tuned.

Friday, December 02, 2011

Yahoo: Finance: Relax ...Markets will act

Do not worry about the politicians--the markets will act. Click on the post.