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

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Can Public Pressure Ever Influence Government's decisions?

Government entities are not immune to the influence of public outcry, despite what you might think, based on the way Brookfield responds to citizen input.

On the state level, look at the ethanol bill and the repeal of the automatic gas tax increase last year. Citizens flooded the switchboards of their elected state officials and our representatives listened.

Currently, some legislators are changing their stance on the controversial sick leave benefit. But the key to ever influencing decisions is to get many people to call, write or email.

In Brookfield, the public has lost heart. When public information meetings were held for the widening of Calhoun Road south, residents from all areas of the city did show up and voice their opinions. Approximately 50 residents filled out public comment forms AGAINST the widening. Only 3 left positive comments. Did our Engineers and City heed those against? I think we know the answer to that one.

Last Tuesday, Dec. 5, there was a Public Hearing regarding the 2020 Master Plan. There were only 3 people in the audience—I think only one spoke. Reason? People feel, what is the use?

I firmly believe we CAN make a difference—even in Brookfield and Elmbrook, but it will take EFFORT. None of us have a surplus of free time; all of us are extremely busy, but there are issues in the works that will change the complexion of our beloved community forever. If we do not speak up, these plans will become reality. The easiest way to voice your opinion is via email like the AFA alert/action system highlighted in the previous blog entry.

People, you still have a voice. Use it, or roll over and resign yourself to living with and paying for Brookfield’s new interchange, fire stations and Elmbrook’s 4 year old kindergarten and 2 new high schools!

Coming up next:
4-K is coming , UNLESS you contact all of the school board members and tell them 4-K should not be a taxpayer expense. (Board will start discussing 4-K on Dec. 12.)

Links: and You may wish to check out too. It looks like blogger Matt Thomas will touch on Brookfield, county, and state issues from time to time.


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