In the previous POST it was revealed how the Facade Program was recently expanded to include BARS. Once again, here are the particulars of the program, along with a recent applicant for a taxpayer funded grant.
The complete details on the Facade Grant Program can be found by clicking HERE. On Feb. 7, 2013, The Downtown Area Design Review Board held a meeting where Downtown Bar Owner and City Hall crony and insider Doug Nicholson requested a facade grant.
This group certainly consists of many City Hall cronies and insiders. Doug Nicholson is a very active and prominent businessman in Downtown Racine, in addition to being heavily involved with City Hall. Micah Waters is another active and prominent businessman in Downtown Racine, in addition to being heavily involved in City Hall. These two men share one other thing in common – both are the beneficiaries of TID’s and depend upon lots of taxpayer subsidies. Matt Sadowski is employed by the City of Racine and is the contact for the facade grant program, as well as a member of the Downtown design area review, and they are all linked together in BID #1. Everyone of these people’s welfare is taxpayer dependent.
SO who’s guarding the Henhouse? And why is Mayor John Dickert crying “BROKE” and asking non-profits for donations? Meanwhile City Administrator Tom Friedel tells residents that more CUTS in services will be necessary.
One group of residents have their street lights targeted to be turned off, while another group of residents, the Downtown residents, not only have normal street lights that are lit, there is also an extra set of lit decorative lights.
While a member of one group petitions City Hall to keep his street light lit AND pay extra for the privilege of retaining it, another group helps themselves to taxpayer money to fund the cost of their private buildings exterior facade renovations.
While City Hall requires numerous discussions and months of Departmental meetings to work on Karl Fuller’s request, then adds an administrative charge to process the papework, Doug Nicholsons request for taxpayer money is quickly approved and there is no charge to him for administering the program.
While The Journal Times chronicles every minute detail of Karl Fuller’s battle with City Hall, another group votes themselves taxpayer money with no scrutiny or notice whatsoever.
What’s even more ironic is that Karl Fuller’s property tax money is being freely given by City Hall to Doug Nicholson, who is a member of a GROUP that opposes property tax accountability for City of Racine license holders.
January 30, 2013 from The JT
RACINE — Racine resident Karl Fuller’s effort to get City Hall to create a city-wide “adopt-a-streetlight” plan cleared another hurdle Tuesday night.
With Fuller watching from a chair in the back of the committee room, the Public Works and Services Committee voted unanimously to approve a plan drafted by Public Works Commissioner Mark Yehlen that would allow a person to pay to keep a streetlight targeted for removal.
Under the draft plan, which must still be approved by the City Council, a typical 150-watt sodium vapor streetlight would cost $205 a year to keep lit plus a $15 administrative fee. A 50-watt alley light would cost about $136 a year plus the fee.
Facing cuts to his 2013 budget, Yehlen told the council in November that his department would again be removing We Energies-owned streetlights as a way of reducing costs. At the time, he estimated the department might remove about 500 lights at a savings of roughly $90,000 a year.
Last week, however, after completing an initial survey of the city’s We Energies streetlights, he issued aldermen a draft proposal that called for eliminating 785 mid-block streetlights.
Fuller, 52, gained permission from aldermen last spring to let himself and a neighbor to adopt two streetlights in the 2400 block of Jerome Boulevard.
Welcome to the bizarre-o world of Comrade Napoleon, aka, Mayor John Dickert.
While residents must fight for streetlights, Downtown Racine insider and crony Doug Nicholson purchases 220 State St. In an odd series of events, Joseph J.Keller first purchased the property for $19,500, then immediately turned around and sold it to Doug Nicholson for $35,000, who then asked for a taxpayer funded facade grant. Racine City Hall has it assessed at $95,000. Click on images to enlarge.
Feb. 25, 2013 from The JT
Facing cuts to his 2013 budget, Yehlen told the council in November that his department would again be removing We Energies streetlights as a way of reducing costs. At the time, he estimated the department might remove about 500 lights at a savings of roughly $90,000 a year.
Waiting in the wings are two other proposals regarding streetlights: the adopt-a-streetlight program brought forward by resident Karl Fuller, and a request by aldermen Melissa Kaprelian-Becker and Bob Mozol to have Yehlen to look at eliminating city-owned streetlights before We Energies lights.
Aldermen have taken the same tack with the adopt-a-streetlight plan, which would let a resident “adopt” a typical 150-watt sodium vapor streetlight for $205 a year plus a $15 administrative fee.
If you’re lucky Racine, you can adopt what you already pay for, then pay separately for it once again, plus an additional administration fee. You must be a very special and fortunate person to live in Comrade Napoleon’s City.
It’s so much easier if you are a special member of Comrade Napoleons Team.
Of course, if residents think they have been treated unfairly and that City Hall gives preferential treatment, you can always file an Ethics complaint. Surely, it will be received and filed.
From The Racine Post (in response to numerous assertions that the City can’t enter into contracts for longer than 2 years, with the information being given as the reason why the City appealed the contract decision and will win)
UPDATE: Link HERE