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Letters to the Editor

Budget calculating


So when I hear that the St. Croix County budget has increased 34 percent-plus since 2014,

what's that mean? I came up with a higher figure. Read on and I'll tell you how I calculated at the bottom.

So 34 percent is a figure that seems mostly ubiquitous; 34 percent of what? 34 cents on the dollar?

A handful of pennies. That;s $340 out of a thousand. That starts getting up there. That approaches the amount of property taxes people pay monthly for the privilege of owning a home in Hudson Township. One month's worth! So now let's look at $34,000 out of 100,000. That's a big chunk of change. You could purchase a new Mercedes, a 2018 CLA250 4-Door Coupe. Let's continue. Now let's talk some bigger bucks, $340,000 big ones out of a million. Well that's a new home in prestigious Carmichael Ridge. Nice ones too.

Now imagine if you could afford a community of those nice homes. Eighty homes sounds like a nice community. Now get this. The amount that the budget has increased for St. Croix County since 2014 could purchase that new community. Eighty new homes for just the 3-year increase in the budget. Really?

I figured the percentage this way. The average operating budget last three years is $79.6 million. The average of new borrowing during those three years is $21.9 million. Total comes to $101.5 average per three years of increase. Using the average yearly increase of 28.2 ($101.5 million minus the 2015 operating budget of $73.3 million) and divide that by the average operating budget ($79.6 million) over that time gives us around 38.6 percent.

I'm using 34 percent in the example above.

I don't know about you but I'd vote out any incumbent except those who are fiscally conservative. I've had enough of this.

Dianne Joachim

New Richmond

Live Supreme Court candidate debate


Wisconsin Supreme Court candidates Rebecca Dallett and Michael Screnock will participate in a live debate to be broadcast statewide on Friday, March 30, at 7 p.m., on Wisconsin Public Television (WPT) and Wisconsin Public Radio (WPR), and streamed online at, and The debate will be moderated by WPT's Frederica Freyberg and WPR's Shawn Johnson.

The debate will occur four days before the general election on Tuesday, April 3, that will determine whether Dallett, a judge for the Milwaukee County Circuit Court, or Screnock, a Sauk County Circuit Court judge, will win a 10-year term on the Supreme Court. The seat is currently held by Justice Michael Gableman, who was first elected in 2008 and is not seeking re-election.

Watch the debate to get to know the candidates and decide for yourself who is most qualified to hold this important position. If you are unable to watch Friday's live debate, visit or to view or listen to it at your convenience.

Jeanne Larson


March for something that really saves lives


It was amazing to watch on TV the magnitude of the marches for gun control across the United States. Just think of the logistics of this not to mention the time involved, money spent, time away from school, work and other resources that go into a march like this.

Following this same logic used by these teenagers concerning gun control then we should be able to control DUIs by finding out what model vehicles are involved in DUI accidents, and ban those vehicles. That should really stop DUIs, right? If you are rational of course you know that action would not stop them.

I have a news flash for all the "Ban Gun" teenagers out there. Somewhere between nine and 11 of you die every day in this great country from texting and driving. Just think of that. Oh, and while we are at it we should make penalties for texting and driving exactly the same as DUI.

Again, following your logic, we should most certainly ban cell phones until you are 21. Also, we should go a step further considering how many of you die in car accidents every year and not award you a license until 21. Just think of the lives we could save in this country.

Now, these are two areas you should spend your time and energy on it you are really serious about saving lives, thousands of lives. Go march for these changes, and get these laws passed. I can't even imagine the blow back if these laws were really proposed by a lawmaker to make these changes. Let's really find out how serious you are about saving lives. Let's not stop gun control.

Joel Pederson

New Richmond

Alert! Alert! Alert!


This is a message from the citizen broadcast system. This is NOT a drill. Had this been an actual drill, you would have all been advised to continue on with your lives. This is not a drill.

Overboard? Maybe. Maybe not. Lives and families homes are at stake. I'm referencing the

members we have on our county board. Only three. Three. Voted against spending $65 million

worth of bonding over the last three-plus years. A huge chunk of this was done simply by pushing a resolution through committee and then having the typical 15-3 vote in favor of the big

spenders. There's talk that that there's more around the corner. A lot more! This was on top of

the 19 percent increase in taxes over the same period.

Solution: Vote the big spenders out of office. Who? Every one of them but three have voted NO on these spending measures. Find out who your incumbents are. If they are not one of the three, find out their opponents' name and when you go to the ballot box, check that name.

WARNING: By not voting, you are voting for even bigger and bigger spending.

Sarah Wang


Perplexed by big spending


I am perplexed as to what is occurring here in Saint Croix County. I can understand the cost of things the county does to go up, but 19 percent over the last three years is too much. A current Saint Croix County Supervisor was asked the question, "How much of the $84 million budget is mandated by the State of Wisconsin?" The answer I received was troubling. They said "We've been trying to figure this answer out for years." So asked what their best estimate was; they said "Between 25-49 percent!"

So this means we are forced to borrow money at a staggering rate yet spend between $21 million-$41 million on items out of the goodness of our hearts! We are forced to pay our property taxes where the county is using the force of a proverbial point of a gun or have our homes auctioned off to the highest bidder. Folks, this is the ultimate oxymoron, being forced to be benevolent. Please join me in putting a stop to property tax increases and the continuous "Spreading your hard earned wealth around." Vote April 3 for the three responsible incumbents and all the 15 challengers. For contact info on your candidate search

Sere' Leber

New Richmond