I have served on the Outagamie County Board for ten years, including six as Vice Chair. I served as a member of the Property, Airport, Recreation, and Economic Development Committee for the first eight years, and as a member of the Highway, Recycling, and Solid Waste Committee for the last two years. Also, I have been the chairperson of the Outagamie County Greenway Implementation Committee for eight years. I am proud of the work that the Outagamie County Board has done during these ten years, and I hope to continue serving on the board and putting my experience to good work during the 2022-2024 term.
I have been a strong advocate for bicycle and pedestrian projects, as well as the parks system. I am supportive of innovative human services programs, including the treatment courts and child welfare programs. I voted to create the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) position which I believe has been beneficial for Outagamie County. I try to be influential for “the good of the whole” including people and our environment. I will continue to serve to the best of my ability in a respectful and thoughtful manner. I kindly ask for your vote on April 5.
What are your plans/ideas to increase affordable housing in Outagamie County?
Affordable housing is a big concern in Outagamie County. The building of new affordable housing has not kept up with the gradual, yet steady, increase in the population and the changing housing needs in Outagamie County in recent years. Also, with the increase in building costs, it is difficult to build affordable housing. I acknowledge that there is a serious problem.
Affordable housing is one of the areas that the Outagamie Rescue Plan (ORP) is focusing on. The ORP is in response to the funds that Outagamie County received through the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA). County staff are currently working with community partners to determine which investments will help the most with affordable housing. Those ideas will be brought back to the Finance Committee and County Board for review and approval. Furthermore, our zoning rules are being revised as a result of the approved Outagamie County Comprehensive Plan 2040. I will monitor those rules as they go through the committee and board process and advocate for zoning ordinances that allow for compacting of dwellings on land which is already designated for single and multi-family housing.
Given that there are consequences to unplanned and sprawling urban and semi-urban development what are your plans for protecting agricultural, forested, wetland or other types of undeveloped land in Outagamie County?
This is an important question. I do think we need to contain our sprawling housing developments and protect agricultural, forested and wetlands. No more land will be created, and we need to consider land use for current AND future generations. I have spoken up for, and voted in favor of, farmland preservation programs and conservation programs in Outagamie County. I have often spoken on the county board floor about the contribution that runoff in Outagamie County has to the health and wellbeing of the Fox River, Bay of Green Bay and the Great Lakes. I will continue to support farmland preservation and conservation initiatives with my voice and vote.
What is your priority for how Outagamie County should utilize American Recovery Plan Act (ARPA) funds?
Primarily we should support the folks who were impacted the most by the effects of COVID-19. Outagamie County has already distributed over $2,000,000 in small business and nonprofit grants into the community. The ARPA priorities are housing, childcare, behavioral health, and broadband. I think some of the funds should be used to help secure a better future for the health and wellbeing of our society in these areas.