Program to spotlight loss of local government control

A program will be held in Stoddard on Wednesday, Aug. 22, to discuss how laws passed by the Wisconsin legislature over the past several years have dramatically decreased local governments’ right to govern themselves.

Wisconsin Democracy Campaign executive director Matt Rothchild plus Vernon County chair Dennis Brault and La Crosse County chair Tara Johnson will speak at the event to be held at the Stoddard American Legion Post 315, 414 Broadway St., Stoddard. Officials and residents of Stoddard and nearby municipalities are encouraged to attend and discuss how the legislation has affected them and how to regain control over issues including schools, environment and property rights.

“The best democracy, the one you have the most control over, is local,” Brault said. “You don’t want the state or federal government telling you, ‘No you can’t do that.’ You don’t want a residential area down from a huge pig farm. These should be local decisions, but they have been taken away from us by the state.”

“But I want to bring the positive message that residents of Wisconsin towns still do have some local controls,” he said. “I want to encourage people to use those, such as the right to go to referendum.

The program, which will begin at 7 p.m., is free and open to the public. It is the fourth bipartisan discussion on the local control issue being sponsored by the Vernon County Democratic Party this summer.

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