Tuesday, October 25th, 2016

Muskego hires Maistelman to help with recalls


The city of Muskego has retained the services of Maistelman and Associates to assist with legal questions surrounding the recalls of the mayor and two aldermen. Given the turmoil in that town, they should just set up an office for Mike Maistelman and his new associate Dennis Krueger.

(Waukesha County residents may remember Krueger from his stint in the DA’s office and as a former candidate for Waukesha District Attorney. Krueger, a former state prosecutor, is also going to be working on the defense for Walker associate Tim Russell.)

Mayor Kathy Chiaverotti wrote a letter to the editor to the Waukesha Freeman that appeared Wednesday attempting to defend herself.

The lake park issue is over. The property owners have backed out and requested their properties be removed from the city’s master plan. I will be asking the council to honor their request. You should also know that the city did not bring this proposal forward. The council merely reacted to a proposal by the property owners based on the city’s existing master plan.

Many residents based their opinion of the lake project on incomplete information. While the Common Council was within its purview to approve moving forward with this project, believing the development would benefit the city in the long term, in retrospect, more time to examine this issue by the council would have better served the community. That is why the council voted in March to stop moving forward with the project until the many questions raised by concerned residents were answered to the community’s satisfaction.

The dissemination of financial figures to a broad audience is not easy and facts can easily get lost in translation. Despite financial and spending problems at the state and federal levels, the city of Muskego’s financial health is excellent. The council was aware that the city’s existing debt was on schedule to be paid off in eight years. Based on that information, the Common Council had planned to pay for the park using segregated funds that should not be used for normal operating budgets. The council felt this was a good investment for Muskego’s future but the timing turned out not to be right.

The city has other important business to pursue and it is now time to put this issue behind us and proceed forward.

My advice to incumbents facing recalls is not to the the constituents that they were wrong because they were ignorant. Far better to say, “I heard from a number of you, and I now understand…”

Just some free advice.

As long as I’m offering advice, perhaps Waukesha County’s clerk office could use Maistelman in a similar capacity as outside legal counsel for the upcoming elections.

(Full disclosure, Maistelman and Associates has represented me in open records disputes.)

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