Letters to the Editor: Three readers write in on Saratoga elections
My support and respect for incumbent Saratoga Town Chairman Terry Rickaby and Supervisors Patty Heeg and Doug Passineau comes from observing and working alongside these fine public servants. As a resident, business owner and founder of Protect Wood County and Its Neighbors, I have attended every Saratoga Town Board meeting for the last seven years. Our board works cohesively and discusses matters in a civilized manner to work through the many delicate issues that arise as public servants in a small town.
Our incumbent Town Board has been sued by the Wysocki Companies because they stepped up to the challenge of preserving our community when their constituents demanded action. I am thankful, as a resident and business owner, that they immediately recognized the imminent threat to our water and incompatibility of converting thousands of acres of Saratoga’s forested land to irrigated cropland and a massive concentrated animal feeding operation (CAFO). They are not afraid to do the right thing for the community.
In the upcoming primary election on February 19, our incumbent board is being challenged. These challengers consist mainly of local business owners and a few friends who are dissatisfied with Town ordinances; specifically, the public nuisance ordinance. They feel they should be able to do whatever they want on their land; however, this ordinance is in place for all residents’ wellbeing and safety. The town constable only visits a residence if a complaint has been filed – they don’t seek violations. There was one instance of drone use to survey a property after a complaint had been filed and the constable was concerned about going on the property. The drone use was legal by State statues, and was used to protect the safety and welfare of the constable. If everyone were allowed to violate this ordinance, can you imagine the effects on the town? Unsightly yards, attraction of pests such as rodents and mosquitoes, fire hazards, groundwater contamination from disabled vehicles leaking fluids, and unhappy neighbors!
Please ask the challengers the following questions:
· What changes would they make in Saratoga if they were elected. Why?
· If elected and a Town resident were non-compliant with any
ordinance, how would they handle it?
· Do they believe consistency in ordinance and law enforcement is important?
· Are they up-to-speed on the Wysocki CAFO fight? What is their plan going forward?
· What is their vision for the future of Saratoga and how does it conform with recent survey results?
Listen closely to their responses.
Our incumbent board needs our votes. They have supported new, law-abiding businesses, and have kept the proposed Wysocki CAFO out of Saratoga. The survey done by the Town last year revealed 98 percent of residents want Saratoga to remain a forested residential/recreational area. We don’t want any business that will destroy our forests and clean water. Saratoga is NOT SUITED for agricultural or industrial use.
Please help us keep our current, experienced board working together for our community. Vote for Terry Rickaby, Patty Heeg, and Doug Passineau on Feb. 19.
Wisconsin Rapids, WI
My name is Bill Leichtnam. I represent a good portion of Saratoga on the Wood County Board. To do my job, I need to know the problems facing my constituents so I attend every meeting of the Saratoga Town Board.
Residents need to know that there are no better, selfless public servants than the Town Supervisors who work to provide you more than adequate services at the lowest price of any municipality in this part
of the state. Furthermore, I have watched them work tirelessly over the past 5 years to encourage town residents who might not comply with Town ordinances to become compliant. They explain, they counsel, they grant extensions. We can asked no more of them.
Please re-elect Chairman Terry Rickaby and Supervisors Doug Passineau and Patty Heeg. Keep them working for you! Vote Tues., Feb.19. Vote for experience; vote for competence; vote for people you know. It takes a long time to reach their level of performance. They serve us well.
I attended two meetings with a new group in the Town of Saratoga who promoted themselves as a business group for the Town. Being a business owner myself, I was interested in meeting with other business owners. However, I quickly discovered it was mainly a political action group consisting of those who were dissatisfied with Town ordinances. I went to the Saratoga Town Board to check the facts, and found many things they were saying were simply not true.
The main ordinance they had issues with was the public nuisance ordinance. They felt they should be able to do whatever they want on their land; however, this ordinance is in place for the wellbeing and safety of residents. The town constable will only visit a residence if a complaint has been filed – they do not go around looking for violations. There was ONE instance of drone use to survey a property after a complaint had been filed and the constable did not feel safe. The use of the drone was legal by the State statutes – I have checked it all out and this is the truth. It was done as a means to protect the safety and welfare of the constable. Can you imagine the effects on the town if everyone were allowed to violate this ordinance? Unsightly yards, attraction of pests such as rodents and mosquitoes, fire hazards, groundwater contamination from disabled vehicles leaking fluids, and unhappy neighbors!
There will be a primary election in the Town of Saratoga on February 19 and the incumbents, Chairman Terry Rickaby and Supervisors Patty Heeg and Doug Passineau, need our votes. They have supported new, law-abiding businesses, and have kept the proposed Wysocki Golden Sands CAFO out of Saratoga for close to 7 years now. According to the survey done by the Town last year, 98% of residents want Saratoga to remain a forested residential and recreational area. We don’t want any business that will clear-cut acreage. This is why we all moved to the area and have remained here – trees and clean water! This is a residential area, as well as a recreational destination, and is NOT SUITED for agricultural or industrial use.
Please help us keep our current board working together for our community. Vote for Terry Rickaby, Patty Heeg, and Doug Passineau on Feb. 19.