Architectural rendering of the proposed new Village of Kewaskum building. The modern, two-story brick and stone structure features large windows on both floors. Landscaping includes grass and small shrubs. The building is shown at dusk, with interior and exterior lighting illuminating the space. The "Village of Kewaskum" signage is prominently displayed on the front facade.

A New Era for Kewaskum: Investing in Our Future

Addressing the Needs of Our Community

When I ran for Kewaskum trustee, the number one issue that I shouted from the rooftops was that I supported a new facility for our police department, library, and village operations. The conditions in that building were abhorrent. No police officer, employee, or librarian should have to work in those conditions. Who would want to? The walls were crumbling, there were buckets in the ceiling to catch leaks, and the boiler couldn’t hold a temperature. You may have seen the people in hazmat suits pulling out asbestos and mold, and who knows what, from that building in the last few weeks. It was bad.

This project had been long and publicly debated. The plans that were drawn up before I joined the board cut into the downtown parking lot and would have caused hardship for the downtown businesses. We listened and attempted to move the building closer to the 9/11 Memorial, but that still cut into the lot.

The Regal Ware building was an intriguing option. But once we dug into the renovation costs, we found that they would cost much more than we were willing to spend. Even if we could have gotten it down to equal the current budget, the cost of heating a huge building and maintaining a 50+ year-old building would have been even costlier down the road. There were also concerns about having the police department that far north and the village operations away from the center of town.

At one of the many, many, publicly posted, open meetings we finally determined that keeping the police department and village hall in the current footprint was the best option.

The new building was designed by a village resident. It gives the police department the space it needs to conduct its business and park its squads. Police officers will no longer have to process evidence at the same table on which they eat lunch. Female officers will have a place to change. It will properly serve our department.

It will also be sized right so that the village doesn’t have to go back to the taxpayers to build the next time the village grows. It’s what we need, and not more.

It will also be the building that represents our village when people come to our schools, dine at our restaurants, visit the Memorial, take the Eisenbahn Trail, or speak to the village about bringing their business here.

Plus, if we wait any longer, it will only cost more.

For those blocking board members and employees, planning protests, and whatever else you’re doing behind the scenes, this is America. It is entirely within your rights to do so. You were also within your right to attend any of the many public meetings and forums before this point. You also have the right to vote—and even run for office.

I have a family. I own a business. I volunteer at a nonprofit. The village is important to me, and I make the time.

I’m proud of the building, and the village will be, too.

Related Posts