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**Editor’s Note: This letter to the editor was submitted by Sturtevant Trustee Chris Larsen
Racine Mayor John Dickert made two bold statements in the March 9, 2015 edition of the Times that I would like to address.
Mayor Dickert stated “We have outpaced the national and the state level in job growth in the city of Racine. And we have outpaced all of our neighboring communities as well.” Where is the data Mr. Mayor? The Village of Sturtevant has brought more jobs to the area in just UNFI and the Cree expansion than the city has brought in years. In fact companies in Racine like Johnson Wax and Case have eliminated more jobs than the city has brought in to offset. The City does not have the economic engine to drive development that the Village has which is the most successful TID district in the State. I would classify this statement by the Mayor as a boldface lie.
The second statement that raised my ire was “we are starting to do is more charging of outside municipalities for our services. So we are raising the fees for our services, because if people don’t live in the city they need to start paying for them. Everything from zoo fees to bus fees to ambulance rates, fire and police. Wherever we can raise a rate to make people pay their fair share, we are going to do it, because I can’t have my residents paying for everybody’s use of our products. We provide a lot of quality of life (benefits) for people who don’t live in the city, and I can’t have my taxpayers constantly paying for that.”
The Mayor is so out of touch when it comes to these statements. Mayor Dickert knows that as part of the revenue sharing agreement between the outlying municipalities and the City, money given to the city is to be used to improve the same quality of life issues the Mayor complains about. We in Sturtevant can’t control that the Mayor is using these allocated funds for projects like Machinery Row, Porters and other boondoggles and transfer’s to the City’s general fund. The Mayor is also proposing to have the municipalities fix the City’s lack of financial restraint. He wants to charge more for the bus, for water and sewer and if our Fire Department asks for mutual aid from RFD, the mayor wants to charge for it. I can’t have the taxpayers of the Village of Sturtevant paying for the City’s incompetence.
As a member if the Village Board I have always fought to keep the City at bay and stand up to their bully tactics. I will continue to do so as long as the good citizens of Sturtevant will have me represent them. Sturtevant is Strong and independent and I intend to keep it that way. No matter what the Mayor thinks.
Village of Sturtevant Trustee