May 11, 2021 – Washington Co., WI – Dear County Supervisor, 05/11/2021
I am writing to strongly encourage you to vote no on 2021 Resolution 11 and Resolution 13.
I understand that government needs to acquire private property at times for the greater public good. This is not one of those times. The vehicle crash reasoning is overstated and the travel time savings is minimal. On the other hand, the impact to the property owners is significant. To them it’s a loss of livelihood and history through no action or decision of their own. Even if it was a vacant piece of land used for nothing, private property ownership is an important part of being an American. The weight of that versus the minimal gains of seizing the land for a road should firmly put the scale in favor of voting no to the Hwy W relocation.
Also, you cannot excuse a yes vote as just “progress.” If you do, you are not governing for the “people.” You are just blindly following your transportation plan without thinking. The supposed “progress” is theoretical.
Maybe more people will travel to Hartford to work and do business but no one will ever know. There are too many factors affecting those kinds of issues. “Progress” in this case, is not a tangible thing. You cannot promise any real benefit. To the families, however, it is very real. To them, “progress” is likely a shameful and embarrassing government infringement on private property rights and the future of their farms. The 11.4 acres is measurable, the emotional toll can be seen.
I encourage you to amend Resolution 11 to remove the relocation of Hwy W and only make the improvements to Hwy S. This is, a reasonable action at this time and is consistent with other improvements that have been made to county roads in the past few years.
Lastly, if it was your piece of land, would you really agree the benefits of the government seizing it and building a road is justified versus the loss to you? If you vote yes, can you look each of the Wenninger’s, Gehring’s and Goeller’s in the eye and tell them this project is justified? I hope so.
Dale K. Schmidt, Town of West Bend
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