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The proposed 2015 Racine County budget has good news and more good news for taxpayers; property taxes stay flat, and several cultural, recreation and entertainment will get some much-needed funding increases for the first time in years.

Explaining that the zoo, symphony orchestra, and a proposed disc golf course are important quality-of-life issues, County Executive Jim Ladwig in his presentation to the county board.

“We want Racine County to be the place that people choose to live in and the place businesses choose to locate and grow,” he said. “Attractive and well managed recreation areas and available leisure activities are an asset to our residents and desirable to people and businesses looking to relocate.”

The increases may not last, Ladwig cautioned, but he told The Journal Times that if the money is available, upping the county’s contribution is the right thing to do.

“It’s important when we have those funds available that we make sure we’re supporting the quality-of-life issues here in the county,” he is quoted as saying.

Ladwig is proposing increased funding for the following:

  • $15,000 for the Racine Heritage Museum
  • $15,000 for the Racine Zoo
  • $10,000 for the Racine County Fair
  • $10,000 for the Southeastern Wisconsin Fox River Commission
  • $5,000 to the Racine Art Museum
  • $5,000 for the Racine Symphony Orchestra

Additionally, drivers will appreciate the $3.7 million allocated for roads projects, which, Ladwig pointed out in his presentation to the county board, is up from the $756,000 budgeted for roads when he took office in 2011.

County Supervisors will vote on the budget Nov. 3.