All content, of both the original and this blog, is written from my point of view and is my opinion. I believe it to be accurate at the time it is written. ~ Kyle Prast, Brookfield resident since 1986

Monday, March 20, 2006

The real unedited Letters to the Brookfield News

This is the first of unedited letters to the Public Forum of the Brookfield News. Unfortunately, the paper has taken to editing letters people send in. When they do that, the letter ceases to carry the same meaning as the original.

It is my opinion, that if a letter meets guidlines of 400 words or less, and does not contain any inaccuracies, it should be printed as written. Space was not a problem, other letters from outside our community were included.

These will be posted in alphabetical order.

Dear Public Forum-
There are numerous excellent reasons to vote for Lisa Mellone for District 7 Alderman. I have the privilege of knowing Lisa for over 3 years. She is a neighbor, fellow public school parent, and fellow church member. Lisa is bright and ambitious and has chaired and served on various committees at Swanson Elementary School, Elmbrook Church, and Elmbrook School District. She is a graduate of UW-Milwaukee with a B.A. in Business Administration - Finance.

Lisa is trustworthy and reliable. She says what she means and means what she says. We trust Lisa with our son when the children play and we trust her with our home while we are out of town. Lisa recognizes a need for better citizen representation in our 7th aldermanic district and, since last fall, has immersed herself in the issues affecting District 7 and the city of Brookfield as a whole. Lisa's goal is to effectively communicate these important issues to residents so we can develop well-informed opinions on the direction we would like our city to go.

Currently, our Common Council seems to enjoy decision-making in a dusk-like atmosphere, frequently ignoring the voiced wishes of citizens. Lisa, in contrast, seeks to shine a light on these issues so citizens will have knowledge of issues as well as the process, and, ultimately, have our opinions represented through her on the Common Council. What a refreshing idea - Democratic Government in action! Thank you Lisa for taking a stand for better representation and accountability in District 7 and our City Government.

Sincerely, Eileen M. Bastin

Who does the City of Brookfield belong to?

At the January 17,2006 Public Hearing at City Hall, a young woman from Brookfield asked the Mayor ansd Council, "To whom does the City of Brookfield belong, the citizens or the developers?" "Sadly, from what citizens have witnessed in the past few years, City Hall does not speak for citizens. Developers prevail. Officials are supposed to listen. Why do citizens keep losing? How did developers get so much power over our local government?"

Rest assured, Alderman Kilkenny was one of a few supporters of residents, not only in her 2nd district, but also of those in districts who were not served by their representatives.

Residents are not opposed to development, however, we have been forced to accept high-density development that threatens the integrity of our community. Alderman Kilkenny has worked tirelessly to try to obtain compromises, reduce density and encroachment on established neighborhoods. If she does not prevail in her bid for Mayor, you can bet the developers and speculators will be lined up at City Hall on April 5th with requests for zoning changes to PDDs (affording greater density) and TIFs (requesting city financial help for their projects).

Something better can happen. Your vote for Cindy Kilkenny will insure reasonable growth and the best interests of citizens and Brookfield will be served.
Joan Carnell

The misinformation campaign is in full swing.

Cindy Kilkenny is not against development but she does oppose ill-conceived, irresponsible high-density development and an unfair share of costs being born by the residents of Brookfield. She does support the rights of citizens to be heard in more than a pro-forma way. Citizens of Imperial Estates know what it is to be ignored and have plans railroaded through the Council. She listened, she took our concerns to the Council, she defended our rights as citizens and taxpayers. Asking for responsible leadership and fair play for all citizens should be regarded as a virtue, not a sin in this community. Isn’t it time that the citizens have someone representing them in the Mayor’s office who appreciates the years they have “invested” in supporting the schools, churches, and civic organizations and who views them as valuable “developers” who support the “tax base"? Where was Jeff Speaker when we asked the tough questions about this development? He told a group of us that he couldn’t oppose it because “…you know why.” Yes, we do know why and we haven’t forgotten.

Fran Luebke

Lisa Mellone will work for us
We first became acquainted with Lisa Mellone during our effort to save Swanson School. She expressed in a letter to the school board how the Swanson Swap threatened our community. That letter closed with , "our quality of life is not for sale".

Since then, we found we shared many opinions about other important issues in Brookfield: respecting residents in rezoning and development decisions , keeping taxes low, protecting property values, stopping developer subsidies through taxpayer funded infrastructure and TIFs, avoiding traffic problems, and preserving green space.

Lisa Mellone will work for us with a vigor and enthusiasm we have not seen in the 20 years we have lived here. Her business degree and involvement in the community add to her qualifications , but her greatest asset is her passion to represent us.

We endorse Lisa Mellone for district 7 alderman; she will make an excellent alderman. It will be refreshing to have an alderman who will work hard for us during the next 4 years , not just during the campaign season.

David and Kyle Prast

Why people support Kilkenny for Mayor

Who is supporting the mayoral candidates? Just drive down the streets of Brookfield and you will see that the majority of signs for the incumbent are on commercial properties, while a majority of the Kilkenny signs are on residential properties.

Look at the contributors to the mayoral candidates and the picture becomes clearer. Follow the money. The mayor received more than half of his $17,000 war chest from developers. Kilkenny has declined developer donations. It’s not surprising that developers like VK and the owners of Brookfield Square contribute heavily toward the mayor’s reelection campaign. They have a lot at stake. He supports the TIF—developer welfare, eminent domain—the forced sale of private property benefiting a new developer, and other taxpayer subsidies for their high density projects. These developers know they are getting a good deal at the taxpayers expense, and so they support the incumbent. So who is supporting Kilkenny for mayor? The Brookfield citizens who want a listening ear in city government back her wholeheartedly. She has consistently been an advocate of neighborhoods throughout the city. After all, they not only built this city, but they pay the majority of taxes too.

The smaller businessmen and residents who want to feel secure that eminent domain will not take away our homes and livelihood support Kilkenny. She believes property rights are a core American value, and so she opposes the use of eminent domain for profit. The thousands of people who opposed the Swanson Swap support Kilkenny. They saw the swap was a bad deal for Brookfield and only a good deal for VK. The people of Brookfield deserve a mayor who will act on behalf of the average taxpayer, a leader who will put citizen needs before developer wants. I encourage you to vote Kilkenny for mayor; we need a leader for a change.

Brigid Riordan

Topic: Blank checks vs Votes for a better Brookfield

When a candidate for mayor, who is known for listening to constituents and representing their concerns is criticized by the developer/lawyer who threatened to sue the city over the controversial Shire subdivision , shouldn't we all consider the source?

Many of us are impressed with the problem solving skills and sound judgment of candidates like: Cindy Kilkenny for mayor, Lisa Mellone for alderman , and Barbara Roncke for County Supervisor. They all share our vision of what would make a better Brookfield.

It is pathetic that those responsible for the failed "Swanson Swap" are still trying to put a positive spin on the secrecy and subterfuge surrounding that fiasco. Were you among the thousands of taxpayers who attended that November 2004 meeting looking for straight answers? When leadership was needed most, cooperation and openness between our representatives was sadly lacking. Sadly, the finger pointing still continues, with unanswered questions regarding Mayor Speaker's role and lack of accountability in the whole affair.

We have only lived here 12 years and realize we are junior to the many taxpayers who grew this city and school district to its former prestigious status. We say "former" because many people are concerned that our city's rank has slipped. Many question why the relationship between constituents and those they elect has turned adversarial. Why are taxpayers now compelled to stop their representatives from carrying out more unwanted invasions ? Why must we fight City Hall's development proposals, shouldn't who you elect strive to protect our quality of life and protect our property values?

How comfortable are you that Mr. Speaker and candidate Schellinger refused to participate in the pre-primary mayoral debate? And what that about the loser of the primary now endorsing a Speaker-repeat , with the reciprocal endorsement for a continued council position for Schellinger? Haven't you also had enough of the systematic "good ole boys club" ?

Didn't you vote for a change in the last mayoral election? Did you get the mayor you elected? Did the mayor you elected keep his promises, or has he become part of the problem? You can vote for real change in leadership that will make for a better Brookfield on April 4th. Elect representatives like Kilkenny, Mellone, and Roncke that will work for you, or please share any questions ?

Marcy & David Schmidt

Links: Mayoral current campaign related news and updates:
Mayoral Campaign:
Aldermanic races district 6 & 7:
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