A new Waukesha citizens organization is calling on the city's water supply negotiating team to clarify public certain water policy matters and conduct discussions with Milwaukee out in the open.
Here is the text of the letter (below), a link to the City of Milwaukee policy resolution the letter mentions, and background about the organization.
Steve Edlund, Chairman Waukesha Citizen Accountability Board PAC 426 Prospect Ave Waukesha, WI 53188
July 22, 2011
Mr. Steve Crandell Waukesha Water Negotiating Team Spokesperson
City of Waukesha 115 Delafield Street Waukesha, WI 53188-3615
Dear Mr. Crandell,
A June 29, 2011 correspondence from the City of Milwaukee Mayor, Tom Barrett requested a reply as to whether Waukesha is agreeable to the terms outlined in Milwaukee Resolution 080457 before negotiations on the sale of Lake Michigan water to the City of Waukesha can commence.
Milwaukee has asked for a simple yes or no response to whether Waukesha accepts the terms of Resolution 080457 by a written report indicating that the “community has adopted and implemented” The reporting requirements of section D, items D-1, D-2, and D-3.
Waukesha’s response to Mayor Barrett by Mr. Dan Duchniak dated June 29, 2011 requested that the requirements (of resolution 080457) be discussed in the context of an entire water supply agreement.
As written and approved by their Common Council, Resolution 080457 has no provision to allow segregation of its terms.
Waukesha has specific requirements outlined in the resolution and the resolutions clearly states, “Requirements before negotiations of a potential agreement may occur”.
Resolution 080457 and the negotiation for a water sale are mutually exclusive and one a prerequisite of the other.
Waukesha and Milwaukee citizens have expectations of openness and transparency to the acceptance or rejection by Waukesha of resolution 080457 in its entirety prior to a potential negotiation of a sale of Lake Michigan water from Milwaukee to Waukesha.
The response by Waukesha, that the certain terms of resolution 080457 be “negotiated” in another context than that of the resolution would permit the process to be conducted in closed door session and out of the public view by using the Wisconsin Open Meeting Law exemption for conducting business in closed door session.
Given the significant socioeconomic impact of resolution 080457 upon Waukesha, in the greater interest of the public right to know, and by the narrow interpretation of Wisconsin Open Meeting Laws, Waukesha citizens expect the Waukesha Common Council as represented by the Waukesha water negotiating team to respond to Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett concerning Milwaukee’s Resolution 080457 in either a “no”, meaning you will not agree to the complete terms of resolution 080457, or “yes”, meaning you completely accept all the terms and reporting requirements of resolution 080457.
If the Waukesha Common Council chooses to accept the complete terms of Resolution 080457, Waukesha citizens would expect those terms to be discussed in public by the Waukesha Common Council as part of section “D” reporting requirements and that this business be conducted in an open meeting(s) as there will be no need to negotiate the reporting requirements.
Steve Edlund Chairman Waukesha Citizens Accountability Board
cc: Tom Barrett, Milwaukee Mayor; Willie L. Hines Jr. President City of Milwaukee Common Council; Micheal J. Murphy, Chair of the Finance and Personnel Committee, City of Milwaukee Common Council; Waukesha Common Council President Paul Ybarra