Letters to the Editor

Wed
22
Apr

Bring shoppers to Stoughton and they’ll discover local gems

I was reminded again this week about the importance of customer service and also the plethora of benefits by doing business in my community.  

My glasses needed an adjustment so I stopped in at a local optometrist’s shop. Bruce cheerfully met my needs and when I asked about a charge, there was none! 

At a local hardware store, Jean answered my questions about an item and when I made my choice; she thanked me for my decision and again when I paid for it. I know, too, from past experiences when I have had work done on my lawn mowers, Mark assures me they will only do what is needed.  

It’s the same at my mechanic, when I need work on my car. The last time, Jim was able to help me the same day and he even picked me up after his lunch and took me back to the station to pick up my vehicle!  

Wed
15
Apr

StoughtonCARES has the 4-1-1 on 420

Hey parents, do you happen to know what the significance of 420 is for some of our youth? 

It is a code-term that refers to the consumption of marijuana. 

Those that smoke marijuana have some observances based on this such as smoking around 4:20 p.m. on any day and then celebrating marijuana on 4/20. There are a couple of stories as to how this all started, but the origin started back in 1971 and word has spread over the years.  This is something that is celebrated in our community by various groups of people that smoke marijuana.

For some youth that means not attending school that day so that they can smoke marijuana and celebrate this day with their friends.  

Wed
15
Apr

Thanks for helping in Central America

Special thanks to the Stoughton residents who ventured into the remote areas of Central America to develop essential infrastructures. (Hub 3/19/15)

Ending world hunger is more than just providing food sustenance. 

Some of the primitive areas in Central and South America are a significant challenge.

Norman C. Granvold
Stoughton

Wed
15
Apr

City leaders should heed referendum results

Last week, the City of Stoughton had a few referendum questions to answer about the Wal-Mart project being done here using TIF monies. 

The city answered the question with a resounding “NO”. 

This should send a message to all of our alderpersons and the mayor that we don’t want our money spent on this project. 

Also we voted “NO” on having the Wal-Mart store here. 

Now we can see if our alderpersons and mayor will listen to the residents here and do what we want here in our town. This is their job, to listen to the residents here and carry out our wishes when spending “our” money. 

If they don’t do what we request, then they must not be really listening to the citizens here. 

Maybe next election here they might get voted out of the city council if they don’t do what we request them all to do?

Randy Ree
Stoughton

Wed
15
Apr

Third ward voters have spoken

The third ward vote on the referenda was overwhelming and decisive:

• Referendum 1– Borrow $5.1 Million of TIF Funding: no, 430-235 

• Referendum 2– Focus on Revitalizing Downtown: yes, 535-129

• Referendum 3– Wal-Mart Supercenter: no, 390-278

Look at those numbers. Heed the voice of your people. Will you persist in voting against the wishes of your constituents? Or will you at long last represent us?

Who did you think you were representing with the history you have forged in supporting Wal-Mart and KPW?

Do you have the courage to change that history?

Steve Fortney
Stoughton

Wed
15
Apr

Referendums show need for downtown revitalization

For months, many of us have been advising the Stoughton City Council  against the agreement with the developer of Kettle Park West.

Many volunteers spent hours researching what revitalization strategies have worked in other communities and what strategies have failed.

In the end, many community members felt that  borrowing millions in TIF  for infrastructure development for Kettle Park West was financially irresponsible and not in the best interest of the Stoughton community.

Despite the overwhelming number of presenters  speaking out for months against borrowing millions to develop Kettle Park West, some members of our council chose to ignore their constituents, while claiming they were speaking for the “silent majority.” Clearly they were mistaken.

Wed
15
Apr

Voters don’t want TIF used for Kettle Park West

Last week’s election clearly demonstrated that a majority of Stoughton’s residents are opposed to the use of TIF for KPW; the vote was “no” on the first advisory referendum by a 20-point margin.  

One would hope such a result would be cause for some soul-searching among the elected officials who led the city down this road, confident they had the public’s backing (despite all indications otherwise).  Instead, in remarks in the Wisconsin State Journal (4/10), the mayor responded by questioning citizens’ understanding of how TIF works.

These remarks struck me as a bit patronizing, but then maybe I am among those who don’t fully understand TIF.  

Wed
15
Apr

Downtown needs Stoughton’s attention

The people have spoken. Our downtown needs more attention and preservation. 

I moved here from Madison in part because of the beauty and activity in the downtown historic district eight years ago. The pitch back then that this was quite a little hub for homegrown arts promotion. I see less and less of that each year now.    

The city council approved an “arts and entertainment” district/designation but what has been done to promote it? 

Could the city consider using the light post planter hangers and once again beautify our downtown with the hanging flower baskets that once graced Main Street? Edgerton is able to support this effort but why not Stoughton? I believe the planters were donated by our fine local greenhouses.    

Wed
08
Apr

Wal-Mart is desperate for Stoughton

For the last 13 years, the Waltons have been trying to develop a Super Wal-Mart in Stoughton. 

The argument back then was Wal-Mart will go someplace else like Oregon or McFarland. Well why haven’t they? It’s been 13 years.

Could it be that Wal-Mart only ever wanted to build in Stoughton, but is just too cheap to pay their fair share? Who could think such a thing? My bet is that Wal-Mart could.

Many now say the tax incremental financing money is not for Wal-Mart – it’s for construction of gas lines, water pipes and electrical. How many current home owners have had the city of Stoughton pay for all the costs of these utilities or even some of the cost on your lot? I would be astonished if anyone has.

Wed
01
Apr

Kettle Park West will help revitalize Stoughton

Over the course of the past two years much has been written and much has been said about the Kettle Park West development. Reasonable people can certainly disagree on the value of this development and how the process concerning this development has transpired. In my view, the process has not been perfect, and there are of course no absolute guarantees that Kettle Park West will be successful.

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