Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Hurry up and wait

The Oshkosh Common Council continues to defy logic in its decision-making process.

The council had an opportunity this evening to approve a $1 surcharge on ticket sales for the Leach Amphitheater, the money then being set aside to go toward future upkeep and maintenance. Despite it being supported by the Leach family - the very donors of the amphitheater structure - the proposed ordinance failed 2-4, with council members Paul Esslinger and Meredith Scheuermann being the only ones, in my opinion, to exercise sound judgment on this issue and vote in favor of the charge.

Before the vote we heard silly comments from John Casper from the Oshkosh Chamber of Commerce that the Waterfest organization couldn't handle the $1 surcharge because they already had tickets and other promotional material printed. Mayor Bill Castle even admitted in a recent article in the Northwestern that the Waterfest people had gotten to him with their arguments. Too bad for the Waterfest organization, but this surcharge had been discussed since earlier this year and the Waterfest people should have taken that into consideration when setting ticket prices and printing literature.

We also heard comments from Bryan Bain, Burk Tower, Shirley Mattox and Bill Castle that we need to study the issue more; we need to decide where the money is going to go and how it is going to administered and by whom; so on and so forth. Why did they not look at these things before now, especially since they'd started discussing it months ago? More poor planning with respect to this entire project.

Burk Tower even said how it would not be smart to set the fee at $1 now, then next year decide it should be $1.50 or so. Costs and expenses for certain things routinely go up, often on an annual basis, Burk. My tax bill for example, due in part to you. Also, prices were set one year for admission into the zoo in Menominee Park, yet in a later year they were raised. There have been other user fees instituted for certain things one year and discussion held the following year to consider raising those very fees. Price changes, especially those which occur on a yearly basis, are a fact of life.

As I listened to all the nonsense spewing forth from the majority of our city council, I thought the exact same thing councilman Paul Esslinger later vocalized from the council dais. That being that the council hastily pushed the project through last year and had no problem indebting the taxpayers to the tune of $3 million or so with little to no planning and having virtually no answers to a plethora of questions concerning management and operation.

It further had no problem rushing through the construction of the bathrooms and concession area by waiving the bid process on said construction - something the state attorney general's office later said was a violation of the law.

The council wasn't too concerned when making multimillion dollar decisions, nor those involving hundreds of thousands of dollars. Yet suddenly with a $1 facility charge (surcharge) they have to have more information, a possible workshop and in-depth analysis. Absolutely incredible! Gives the appearance of more manipulation of the system by power-brokers, some who don't even live in the city. And it begs this question: Exactly whose interests is this city council really watching out for?

- Cheryl

[following are comments as posted to this story on an earlier version of Eye on Oshkosh]

Authored by: Anonymous on Wednesday, May 11 2005 @ 12:46 PM MDT
This is like taking $60,000.00 and throwing it away. What is wrong with a $1.00 fee this year and then evaluate the process (since they didn't the past 6 months) and come out with a plan for the seasons to follow. Do we not need the revenue?

Hurry up and wait
Authored by: Anonymous on Wednesday, May 11 2005 @ 12:58 PM MDT
Yes we do need the revenue now. But didn't you hear John Casper (runs the Chamber of Commerce) whining about how this would hurt Waterfest?!What a joke; like $1.00 extra is going to hurt that event.I hate to say it, but don't look at this Council implementing a fee anytime soon, and the taxpayers once again will be stuck with the bill!What a deal: The taxpayer's foot the majority of the bill, lose out on the concession revenue, and will now have to pay for the maintenance. Thank you to all of you idiots that voted for these clowns!

Hurry up and wait
Authored by: Anonymous on Wednesday, May 11 2005 @ 03:00 PM MDT
This idiot is fine with those clowns and their decisions.

Hurry up and wait
Authored by: Anonymous on Wednesday, May 11 2005 @ 04:34 PM MDT
If you're so fine with these people and their decisions, perhaps you'd like to pay for all of us who are not happy with them. They keep making ridiculosuly stupid decisions that just don't wash with their earlier decisions. Since they can't seem to rmember how they voted from one meeting to the next and remain consistent in their beliefs, we can only presume they suffer from short term memory loss. Someone call the psychiatrist right away. We need help up there.

Hurry up and wait
Authored by: Anonymous on Thursday, May 12 2005 @ 07:27 AM MDT
You people don't want the amphiteatre, no zoo, no downtown, get rid of the Grand. Streets alone do not make people want to come here to visit or live. With nothing in the city to attract people and business you will have no $$ for all your streets. But we will have Walmart, bars, and bowling alleys. Ahh, the Cobblestoners vision!

Hurry up and wait
Authored by: Anonymous on Thursday, May 12 2005 @ 08:41 AM MDT
No one said we did not want those things. We want proper planning and a say in that planning, just like other cities. Are you that much of a block-head that you cannot hear the message. Open your ears for once, as well as your mind and you might hear what people are actually saying. But, ah yes, to be progressive you must stick to your own vision because only you can see what's best for us.

Hurry up and wait
Authored by: Anonymous on Thursday, May 12 2005 @ 08:56 AM MDT
The zoo was planned years ago, we are following the plan. The amphitheatre has a 3 phase plan, we are finishing phase one. The downtown was planned out years ago, remember the meetings at the convention center, and we are following the plan. The problem is you do not like these plans.

Hurry up and wait
Authored by: Anonymous on Thursday, May 12 2005 @ 11:17 AM MDT
Wrong again ole wise one. You obviously have not been around very long, and certainly are not in the know as to how any of these projects were to have proceeded. First the "zoo" project descsion was based now on lies and over extended and over zealous people. The Zoological society made promises to the taxpayers via the city council that they would not EVER charge a fee for the zoo, and that the exhibits would be paid for by them solely through their fund raising efforts. This is not now the case, and yet the taxpayers are not being asked if this "plan" is still acceptable with them, as well as the huge bills!Second, there is a use of the word plan associated with this entertainment venue and it is insulting. There is most assuredly 3 phses, that is because of the way the Capital improvement budget as well as the city budget is designed to work and flow. It has, nor had anything to do with plan for the program it self, but rather how they could extract the most tax dollars with the lest amount of notice and noise. Thus you take varying amount through out the budgeting cycles then most people lose track of how much this THING has cost the taxpayers!. Even the Northwestern can't keep or even get the numbers straight. The original plan was to have complete taxpayer input on every phase of the downtown redevelopment. A couple of meetings at the convention center were a designer tells you what is going to be really doesn't meet the standard again in keeping a promise to the taxpayers.So if according to you, we don't like "the plans" maybe now you can see why. As for your remarks to Cobblestoners, if it weren't for those of us who have lived, paid taxes and raised our multi-generations of families here..people like you wouldn't have had a community to run to when you got sick of your Milwaukees and chicago's, that is after you tryed to make them too be all things to all people. So wise-up and read-up before you open up your large mouth and plant and even large foot in it!

Hurry up and wait
Authored by: Anonymous on Thursday, May 12 2005 @ 11:49 AM MDT
I just love how negative you are. Nothing is ever right. We elected the current council to make decisions, not take an opinion poll on every issue before they vote. We voted out Poeschl because of his negativity and Esslinger will be next if he continues down the Melanie road.

Hurry up and wait
Authored by: Anonymous on Thursday, May 12 2005 @ 12:31 PM MDT
Speaking as a member of a family who has been here since the 1850s, I would appreciate if you didn't make all long time Oshkosh residents sound like provincial small-minded imbeciles. This is the mentality that really repulses people from coming to our city. Not all longtime residents are "cobblestoners" (a term I absolutely detest) and not all "cobblestoners" are longtime Oshkosh residents. So please, before you start claiming Oshkosh's legacy as the birthright of those who do not desire to see her reach her potential, think again. Plenty of us are proud of our heritage, appreciative of our roots and excited about the bright future this city has under the current leadership.

Hurry up and wait
Authored by: Anonymous on Thursday, May 12 2005 @ 02:14 PM MDT
My,My,My..aren't we just alittle full of ourselves.1850's really? Was that back when the powers to be made sure slave wages were paid to the workers at the lumber yards? When the powers to be made all the decisions for the entire community, because the lowly workers were too uneducated to really know or understand the fine print?Not much has changed in the mind set of your community since the 1850's. Still have the upper crust telling the worker bees how it's going to be!All I'm saying is, if I pay,I have a say. You don't have to like it, but it is the American way, and that my good old friend is the way it should stay!Speaking more to the heritage of this community, we have always questioned and demanded the best bang for our buck, your idea that this is somehow a parochial view of government or a fundamental process is laughable. Could it be that ones nose is too high in the air, so as to deprive one of the proper 02 flow to the brain?

Hurry up and wait
Authored by: Anonymous on Thursday, May 12 2005 @ 02:23 PM MDT
Everyone has an opinion and should have their say. But there will be a losing side on every issue. One may have 10,000 citizens behind him and still not be in the majority. We seem to have the mentallity in Oshkosh that if we get 50 people to a meeting then the "people have spoken" and the board must vote in favor of the 50 people who spoke at the meeting. There are thousands who voted these people in who are perfectly comfortable with the direction the city is going. If they do not perform as advertised they will be voted out next election.

Hurry up and wait
Authored by: Anonymous on Thursday, May 12 2005 @ 10:35 AM MDT
Well idiot could you be kind enough to give us your name and addres so that I might be able to send my portion of this tax to YOU!It my by fine with you to be lead around by the nose and told how you are going to spend your hard earned dollars, God knows we are in need of more brain less sheep in this country. But IT IS NOT okay with me. As a taxpayer for a great many years in this community, I demand to have a say in this types of venture expenditures. I firmly believe that this is an issue for referdum!!So again idiot, give a real name and address and the pleasure can be all yours..I'll bet I'm not the only one who would love to send a wise -ss like you the bill!

Hurry up and wait
Authored by: Anonymous on Wednesday, May 11 2005 @ 03:03 PM MDT
Speaking of the idiots that voted for these clowns, didn't Jef Hall (Chairman of the Democratic Party) support Castle, Bain, and Mattox in the last election? Remember, these three voted against the ticket charge.Thanks Jef, now the taxpayers will have more money coming out of their pockets for the amphitheater. Good move; got any more stupid moves up your sleeve?

Hurry up and wait
Authored by: Anonymous on Thursday, May 12 2005 @ 08:14 AM MDT
MY GOODNESS WHO CARES?The only reason Jef Hall has anything to do with these websites is because you people keep bringing him up just to provoke him! What on earth would you do that for? How does it add to the already pretty low brow discussion at the root of this issue (Who's to blame for Oshkosh being bad)? OK, OK I think by now we all understand that you think Jef Hall is stupid. Maybe you should make some bumperstickers. Or maybe buy a billboard. Perhaps you could rent an airplane to fly around the city with a banner to bring your message to the masses. But in reality, WHO CARES? He's not running for office, he's not in office, he's not making policy for an organization that has any effect on any of us (Being a Democrat, I can say that no Democrat has actually had an effect on anything political in a VERY long time, nor have I ever met Jef Hall), so quit trying to bring him in to these discussions just so you have someone you feel you can make character attacks towards. What legitimate point does it serve other than stroking your ego?

Hurry up and wait
Authored by: Anonymous on Thursday, May 12 2005 @ 08:30 AM MDT
Remember, Jef Hall ran for office, and I'm sure he'll run again. I think everyone should have the fact that Jef Hall is an idiot fresh in their minds.

Hurry up and wait
Authored by: Anonymous on Thursday, May 12 2005 @ 08:35 AM MDT
No, they should have the fact that even if they don't agree with him, they should probably be able to disagree with him more intelligently than by calling him "stupid" or an "idiot". You and your low-brow posts are an embarrassment to the political process, not Jef Hall. At least Jef states ideas, facts and opinions (whether you personally agree with them or not, which in a lot of cases I don't) in a manner consistent with intelligent, rational, adult behavior instead of simply calling those who disagree with him names.

Hurry up and wait
Authored by: Anonymous on Thursday, May 12 2005 @ 08:46 AM MDT
I'm sorry mom; I'll watch my behavior in the future.

Hurry up and wait
Authored by: Anonymous on Thursday, May 12 2005 @ 10:02 AM MDT
Perhaps the problem is that you weren't listening when your mom started talking about treating people with respect and basic common courtesy, as well as acting like an adult.

Hurry up and wait
Authored by: Anonymous on Thursday, May 12 2005 @ 10:11 AM MDT
I always listened to my mom. I just didn't always agree with her, and I still don't always agree with her.But I always love and respect her. She's the best mother in the world!


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