Thursday, February 08, 2007

Press release from Larry Matson- Candidate for Village Trustee#1

Larry Matson, fresh ideas backed by years of experience

I am delighted to run for the position of Trustee #1 in the Village of Pleasant Prairie . I have 9 years experience in municipal administration, 24 years in Public Works, served 8 years as a village trustee and have been teaching at the College of Lake County for 11 years. Now I would like to put my experience to work for you.

Our citizens have been subjected to political rhetoric, emotional outbursts, grandstanding and incendiary statements by the current administration for far too long. I will not participate in this type of behavior! I do, however, recognize the reality of holding an elected position, and sometimes unpopular decisions must be made. I will do what is right, not what is popular. I will serve using one simple principle to guide me through the complexities of governing our Village. That principle is; RIGHT IS RIGHT REGARDLESS OF WHOM IT FAVORS. I will do what is in the best interest of our community by supporting measures that will clearly benefit our Village.

Sadly, our Village's financial agenda is unclear. Within the last year we were led to believe that our Village's finances were in good order. So good, in fact, that they were talking about spending $6.4 million for a new pool, $5.7 million for Phase 1 of the planned park system. Let us not forget about the $16.9 million recently discussed for past due road repairs.

Regardless of the source of the money for these endeavors, taxes or fees, it was the administration's intention to spend millions when they already have a debt of $93.4 million. How can they talk about new ways to spend money when they are forced to go to referendum to purchase basic life saving equipment?

At $5,131.00 for every man, woman and child, our Village carries more debt per capita than any other community in the State of Wisconsin . That's a staggering $20,527.00 for a family of four! Our debt is tied up in TIF districts such as WisPark, the RecPlex, sewer bonds and general bonds. Individually, these items are good, but collectively were too much, too fast. As a result, fiscally, we are at our maximum debt load and a critical state. This is unacceptable and dangerous. Should a serious emergency arise and we need financial credit, what then?

Asking our citizens to support last fall's tax increasing referendums for basic services for an ambulance, snowplow, heart monitors and the jaws-of-life illustrate how the Village's finances have been mismanaged. This is basic equipment that should have been planned for. Certainly the administrator and village president had to know for some time that this equipment was nearing the end of its life cycle.

It is time get our priorities straight. Past administration's failure to plan has created a budget that jeopardizes our employee's safety and diminishes their capacity to serve to the best of their abilities. The first step in financial recovery is to admit that there is a problem. I will stop the practice of creating new ways to spend your money! I will use my strengths and experience to redirect our community and realize its full potential. With new leadership, our future is bright and limitless. Together we will make a difference.

For more information about my campaign please visit

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