Kyle and her husband moved to Brookfield in 1986. She became active in local politics and started blogging in 2004. Her focus is primarily on local issues but often includes state and national topics, too. Kyle looks at things from the taxpayers' perspective in a creative, yet down to earth way, addressing them from a practical point of view.
I voted today.
Brookfield's City Hall had a room all set up, complete with voting booths, for those of us who need to vote early. (If you enter through the north entrance, you CAN'T miss it!)
Here I was all set to just quickly make my one mark on the ballot and vote straight ticket (Republican of course), but the ladies manning the voter rolls informed me there also was an Advisory Referendum question on the back of the ballot. That was news to me.
It is a separate question; you must complete the line for a Yes or No answer. It isn't on every county's ballot, but Brookfield is in one of the 52 counties that chose to include it on their ballots.
For your convenience, they had an explanation of the Advisory Referendum question posted on green paper in the room and at each voting booth.
The actual question reads: "Should the Wisconsin Constitution be amended to prohibit any further transfers or lapses from the state’s segregated transportation fund?"
The reason for asking is to hopefully put a STOP to RAIDING the fund.
The intent of our gas tax and vehicle registration fee money was to have it go into the Transportation Fund for road improvements. But since 2003, Wisconsin has siphoned off more than $1.3 BILLION from that fund, to pay for other non transportation related programs and projects in the state. This has got to stop. Our infrastructure is suffering.
"[St. Croix Highway Commissioner Tim Ramberg] pointed to reports that show $1.3 billion has been diverted since 2003. Over $850 million of that was replaced with borrowed money, but the net loss to the transportation fund was over $435 million." Raiding funds was one of Doyle's budget balancing tricks.
To get an idea of how this raiding has affected Wisconsin counties, read Referendum seeks to ban raids on state transportation fund.
This is only an Advisory Referendum, meaning if passed, it still needs to go through the amendment process where an amendment to the state constitution must pass 2 separate sessions in the legislature before going on the ballot for Wisconsin voter approval.
Getting a Constitutional Amendment through both houses of the legislature for those 2 consecutive sessions is not that easy. You may recall that the Constitutional Amendment for Voter Photo ID nearly made it through the last phase of the legislative amendment process. It would have made it to the voters, to decide the question once and for all, had it not been for the Senate Democrats in 2009. Read Dems Block Photo ID: The Roll Call. To save you the trouble, yes, State Senator JIM SULLIVAN voted NAY on bringing Photo ID to a vote. (Leah Vukmir voted YES in the State Assembly.)
Hopefully this advisory referendum on the Transportation Fund will pass. Too bad they didn't also include that Transportation Funds couldn't be used to study commuter and high speed rail in this referendum. But we may not need that language after all if Scott Walker is our next governor.
This is an important election. If you are in doubt as to if you will be able to make it to the polls on Tuesday, vote early. In Brookfield they certainly make it easy.
District 7 residents, on Election Day, remember you now vote at St. Lukes Catholic Church on Greenfield Ave. and Davidson Road.