7:46 ROUND OF APPLAUSE! Done a little earlier than expected. Adam Johnson opened it up for one-on-one conversations with the candidates.
Voting takes place on April 6th. Candidates are willing to talk to students who have questions/concerns.
Find out more! Become involved!
Overall, good debate. The room was pretty full. Maybe 10-ish seats left unfilled? The room got as warm as predicted. The Herald and Cardinal reporters were present.
Two cameras up and running-look for the live debate online!!!
And thats all for tonight folks! My sincerest apologies for rather abrupt sentences and any spelling errors….I didn’t have peanut butter M&Ms tonight, so I may have typed a little slower. 😦
Have a good Monday night! 4 more days till Spring Break!!!!!!! Hang in there.
7:44 Balance preservation of natural with economic developments?
MJ: Edgewater and other issues, but problem to balance is- cant build on isthmus, water level…continue to crowd the water level; ruin balance. Need to find different ways to develop instead of into the water and areas like that. Sustainability of the environment. Need to preserve it for future generations.
A: Huge advocate for conservation and preservation; but I recognize development is important. Leads to more jobs. Economic benefits. Need to be careful with this balance. Look at each development situation and project. What will this do? Costs/benefits? I think that by looking at it, finding balance we can continue to grow as a community/county and protect the water and land.
7:38 Audience question: If elected you will deal with campus and county issues. What ones outside of Madison interest you the most?
A: I think its not just issue focused on community but also rural, is access to human services. People outside need to have access to these services in far corners of county. Huge county. Have many different types of communities. Make them more accessible. Make it happen. Human services interests me the most.
MJ: Protection of green space and environment. Farms. One of most important things, balancing development while protecting the green spaces. Rural reps. There is a lack of green space. Work on that. Not build giant highway system destroying communities, but at the same time-some of the issues Im going to press for arent going to be ones that everyone will agree with. Come to a compromise and find what people CAN agree with.
7:35 What makes you different from the other candidate and why should students choose YOU!?
MJ: Analiese has done a great job with the Dem party and I definitely respect her work, but on the LOCAL level, and being a leader I think I have the advantage. I dedicated my time making Madison a better place. Being more involved in this level. Being able to go to a meeting and take the issues and bring those who care about it together.Students should consider my expereince. Making Madison a place we can enjoy and live and learn in.
A: I am running not as an activist but as a fellow student. Looked at County Board as place where we NEED a student voice. Need to look at real issues important to students and those outside of city of Madison. Committed my years to working with students and bridging gaps between groups. Helping people work together. Bring people to county board. Through that experience achieve better Dane COunty for everyone.
A: Eli Judge. Former District 8 Alder. No offense to Eagon sitting in the crowd. But Judge was a fantastic rep. Made sure students knew issues. I want to be like him! (awww!!!)
MJ: Two people. One is former district 8 alderman King. One of the most innovative, creative. Promote affordable housing was his idea. I look to how he was a good rep, very well respected by both sides of the board. The ‘Awesome King’ seat. Also, Mike Verveer. For many reasons, want to rep just as well as Mike Verveer. Be a good leader to everyone in the county.
7:27 Less about issues, how do you plan to keep constituents involved and maintain a level of transparency? What does county board even do…there hasnt been a lot of outreach back.
MJ: Want to be type of supervisor, go to student orgs, homes, and say ‘hey! How would you like to help? Influence decisions etc” Can’t be distant from people you work with, represent. Need to be proactive. Not have them come ask, but stay in contact through phone calls, emails. Talk about issues. Be Proactive!
A: One of the reasons I’m running to rep students is because there has been a lack of communication and representation. Personally, this is incredibly important. Make open-line of communication. Doesn’t necessarily include going to meetings. I strongly believe in making myself available and publicize that. Office hours. Making sure its known; raise profile of the position. Have people be comfortable approaching and asking questions. Important to have relationship with STUDENT NEWSPAPERS!!! Be interested in establishing a relationship and working with them-what’s going on in county board this month-guest column. Using the Internet. I read alot of my news online, read a lot of blogs.
(Hopefully this one…because, c’mon! Its awesome….oh! Back to the debate. Sondra, stop laughing at me! Im typing as fast as I can!!!!)
7:26 At all levels of government, position on non-binding resolutions?
A: I do NOT non-binding resolutions. I dont think thats why we’re called to serve. Tend to take away from the work that we actually need to be doing.
MJ: Can bring forth issues, that don’t take considerable amt of time but people still feel strongly about. Criticizing certain government policies, etc.
7:24 ….Adam Johnson!!!! Youre too quiet!!! Say what?!!?
They essentially just reiterated what they said before. Mk, good good.
7:21 Stance on levying of taxes to support RTA? Reasons why?
MJ: Look at experiences. Milwaukee as example…removed tax; effective. Focus on people who USE it. A lot of people outside the region who won’t use it. But there will be people who come in from outside to use it. definitely would support levy that focuses funds directly. Make sure there are funds there to build it and make sure it is safe.
A: Very much looking forward to proposal RTA puts together, which includes how they intend to pay and make it a reality. As a taxpayer and student with limited income…oh, increase bad! I hope the RTA does has, take the initiative to look at other forms of funding. I will be…making my decision along with everyone else who votes on the referendum.
7:18 …sorry, missed the question. Johnson! Speak up! Thanks 🙂
A: I think RTA is going to be extremely beneficial. Not a lot of us have cars. Need good, affordable public transportation. Still has a long way to go, but has incredible opportunity to provide better transportation. Look forward to seeing what they do, what they put in their proposal.
MJ: Happy to see they created this. Very important tool. Significant. Students need to be able to move around freely; talking to students…one who had missed his bus; could lose your job! Focus on Regional Transit Authority…develop the system to work for greatest amount of people.
7:16 Details about where would we get money for these initiatives and programs?
MJ: For affordable housing: I think in the future, take alot of stress off taxpayers and providing a fee structure on people who are m ost likely to use this service. Affordable housing trust fund.
A: Federal grant money. Fed and state money that is available that we can get. In tough economic times, we need to take advantage of this. In Dane County we have an advantage in getting these funds. Think about what is realistic, what we can do. Advocate; write requests for this money.
7:11 Housing and environment as common themes; any specifics?
A: Im a huge advocate for the environment. Cleaning up Lake Mendota and other waterways would be a big thing I’d work on. Apply for Federal Grant money-specifically deals with waterway recreation; research etc. Having that as a CLEAN, SAFE place to be is incredibly important.
Also possible clean-up things: last December county looked at a program that would separate food waste and turn it into fuel and sell it. Potential for $4Million dollars!!!!! and 45 new jobs!!!! The plan has some kinks but alot of potential and should be looked at seriously to become a greener community.
MJ: Affordable Housing-restarting the committee for it. Funding stream to allow for working towards affordable housing-rates too high: Lucky, Grand Central etc. Find incentives to build on affordable housing. Live more centralized. Also affordable housing for the county: poverty rates. I hope that by advocating for resources people will want to live here etc
7:07 What issues county board working on that are pertinent?
MJ: Making housing more affordable. The environment. (Really folks, he had ALOT of good things to say. However…I cant type that fast!)
A: Many issues: Freakfest, Mifflin; Dane county enforcement makes sure students are safe. Resource center. Housing. Working with so many students on environment. Raising the profile to be more pertinent to our lives. Transportation.
(Sondra made it! Ill fill her in on the first two questions)
7:03 Adam Johnson hopes this is informative. Says he will be accepting questions towards the end (see below!) If there is time he will try to ask them.
The candidates introduce themselves.
Analiese: Thank you to everyone! Will be a victory-lap senior next year. Looking to stay here for Grad school
Michael: Last year at junior college. Will be transferring to UW next year.
Adam Johnson: Why are you running for this position???
A: I am incredibly passionate about students and representation. It has been lacking in past years and really deserves a voice. Had opportunity to work with different student orgs on political campaigns and through those experiences worked on issues that County Board has also worked on…things I share a passion about. I feel Im the best person.
MJ: Originally from Milwaukee. got involved with an organization in Dane County. Created a student chapter. Worked on issues such as student housing. Feels those who have filled the seat before have been activists. This seat allows for significant amount of creativity. Best way to rep students is to be an activist connecting the community…rep special interests or organize these things. Be held accountable and have support of the community. Being a political activist on numerous issues that students are passionate about, I feel I am the best candidate.
7:00 Lets get this party started! (Without Sondra 😦 She promised!)
The two candidates have sat down. Adam Johnson has begun to speak. QUIET DOWN!!!!
6:57 Jamie Stark-not a girl-has joined the room. As well as Dan from College Dems. There are approximately 34 people (not counting myself) in the room. 2 more minutes!
Oh! And the infamous Mr. Eagon has entered the room. A hush* descends upon the crowd…
*actually, it got louder because the Dems all greeted him.
6:54 The candidates are walking to the front of the room. The cameras are being set up. Tension is building…..
….well, not really. But the heat is. Literally.
6:52 Famous faces in the crowd:
Moderator: Legislative Affairs Chair Adam Johnson
Fellow blogger: Student Council Secretary Kurt Gosselin
Mayor of Bascom: SC Vice Chair Tom Templeton
Several College Democrats: Emma, Evan, Maggie….missing from the crowd is my roommate Sondra. No worries, she’ll be here.
And for those of you who didn’t catch it the first time, welcome to your 7PM Dane County District 5 County Board Debate; brought to you from the sweltering depths of Humanities Rm 1101.
The candidates: Analiese Eicher and Michael Johnson
The show will begin in approximately 10mins, 23 seconds.
And for your reading pleasure, please write any questions you may have in the ‘COMMENTS’ section, and if there is time Ill try to ask them and write the responses for you. Cheers!