Wednesday, December 22, 2004

Hentz Speaks Common Sense

Contributed by: Laurie M.
You've got my vote! Just saw your program with our former mayor - who by the way should be our future mayor - and you two broads make more sense than any room full of men I've ever seen! Every citizen of Oshkosh should see that program and get an eye opener as to what our City Council is really up to. Maybe then Oshkosh would be a place we'd be proud to say we live in.Keep up the good work. Hopefully we'll have more candidates that are on the same track as you. Good Luck!
Laurie M.

Sunday, December 19, 2004

Common Council without common sense!!

Contributed by: Mike
As a concerned taxpayer in Oshkosh I must comment on the actions of our Oshkosh Common Council. It seems to be a common theme this council has that even my three year old daughter can relate to “Momma duck (the Chamber) goes “quack, quack” and all 5 little ducklings (you guess who) line up.” This current council has five members who have voted for service fees, removing street lights, closing pools, etc… all to reduce tax rates. These same people have also voted to raise the tax levy by entering into public / private projects which are partially funded by taxpayer’s money. The most published project, the Riverside amphitheater, has continued to drain the pockets of the Oshkosh taxpayers throughout its first phase. At the Dec.14 meeting, the council again used its wisdom to eliminate a bid process for work on this project so it would be completed three months earlier. Is it really necessary to put this on the fast track since they have not even secured the management or decided on the concessions vendor? Evidence of a lack of planning or as Mr. Poeschl stated, “Putting the cart before the horse.” Even more importantly this move also eliminated the ability of local contractors to submit a competitive bid to do the work and simply awarded the project to C.R. Meyer. As a taxpayer, I would like to apologize to these contractors for the potential loss of work on this project. It makes you wonder what phase two will cost us. Do we waive future bids and once again utilize C.R. Meyer in order to expedite progress on future expansion as this and uniformity were cited as the reasoning used to waive the bidding process. I think this is a reasonable question since we all know we are in for more irresponsible spending.

At a time when shared revenue is being cut, cost of living is going up and jobs are being lost in the area, most taxpayers cannot afford this irresponsible spending. We have many streets in poor condition, sewer problems and aging city vehicles, which we can’t afford to replace. Yet, the majority of the council feels we can tap into the general fund for $675,000 to build restrooms in our new park. Understand this money will not affect your taxes because it is unused tax monies from previous years. During some of these same years we cut services and instituted fees. Maybe Councilor Mattox can figure out how many Butter burgers each taxpayer needs to give up in 2005 to fund buying police vehicles or turn on some lights to provide a brighter outlook for all of Oshkosh.

I understand that we are trying to create a better vision for our downtown but if we want to venture into further development we need to listen with an open ear to our taxpayers concerns. Maybe we could look at how UW-Oshkosh proceeded with the development of their sports complex. It seems to me that this was a well thought out plan. I don’t want to be viewed as one of the so called people who is “biting the hand that feeds it” so I do want to say thank you to the donors. I don’t think they envisioned the turmoil that has occurred with their donation. The problem the taxpayers have is with our councils actions.

In closing, I’m proud to throw myself into the ranks of a so called “Cobblestoner.” You can belittle these cobblestoners for not agreeing with the special interest groups ideas but in reality you are only hiding the fact that they care about “Joe Citizen.” They care about making this city fiscally responsible with their tax dollars and being like stone, it takes a lot of pressure to make them crack.

As the elections are approaching in February I hope for the taxpayer’s sake that they take the time to vote. Remember during the primary your vote is just as important, if not more important, without your support your candidates may not make it to the spring election. It’s truly time for change!!

Mike Domke
Candidate for Oshkosh Common Council

Wednesday, December 01, 2004

Eye on Oshkosh host Hentz to run for Common Council

For a little more than two years now I have been proud and honored to host Eye on Oshkosh - and in doing so, have helped enlighten the citizens of Oshkosh about the ridiculous spending ways of the majority of our current Common Council members...

With the exception of Paul Esslinger and Brian Poeschl, our city council members have displayed an attitude of "spend now and figure out how to pay for it later." They seem unable to distinguish between needs and wants and they don't seem to care that they are indebting the hardworking citizens of this community for projects that often are not well thought-out or carefully planned.

A certain amount of spending on development is necessary - but it must be done prudently and judiciously. So far, that has not appeared to be the case with many of the projects this council has approved or actions it has taken.

The good people of Oshkosh have said they are fed up with the council's "business as usual" attitude and many have asked me to consider running for a Common Council seat. So, after giving it much thought and discussing it with those closest to me, I have decided to throw my hat into the ring and seek a city council position. We don't need to stop progress altogether, but we do need to turn things around so we stop the runaway spending locomotive of recent years.

In addition, there are a couple of relatively new groups in Oshkosh which are tied, directly or indirectly, to the Oshkosh Chamber of Commerce. These groups are "Propel" and "Progress Oshkosh." It is already clear that members of these Chamber-sponsored organizations will be running for the Common Council and possibly even the mayoral seat. It is reasonable to assume that if these people are elected we will likely face more of the same "business as usual" approach in the city of Oshkosh. We cannot afford for this to continue and I am asking for your help in stopping the pork-barrel spending.

If you would like to get involved with my campaign by signing or circulating nomination papers for me; by making a donation to the campaign; or by getting involved in any other way, I would welcome your support. Feel free to contact me at:; 426-4123; or Cheryl Hentz, PO Box 1628, Oshkosh, WI 54903-1628.

Individually we cannot bring about much change; but together we can accomplish great things and get the city back on track where there are not so many unhappy, overtaxed and frustrated residents.

I encourage you to get involved with, or at least support, candidates who most represent your own philosophies about what a local leader should be. We need your help to ensure that we don't continue putting people into office that will spend your hard-earned money without asking enough questions before doing so. Enough is enough!

I look forward to hearing from you. Thank you!

Cheryl Hentz
Host/Producer of "Eye on Oshkosh" and
Candidate for the Oshkosh Common Council