The passage of Assembly Shared Revenue Bill 245 will bring approximately two million additional dollars ($2 million) to the City of Appleton.
Appleton Concerned Taxpayers (ACT) became actively involved in promoting the increase in State Shared Revenues after Mayor Jake Woodford said the city’s increase in Capital Project borrowing was partly due to the freezing of State Shared Revenue in 2011.
ACT compiled and sent data with analysis to State Assembly and Senate leadership. ACT members attended local listening sessions hosted by State Representatives Nate Gustafson (District 55) and Dave Murphy (District 57) and State Senator Rachael Cabral-Guevara (District 19), speaking in support of action to increase State Shared Revenue. We not only offered our own ideas with rationale, but also commented on proposals that we were led to believe were on the table at the time.
ACT also discussed Shared Revenue with State Representative Tony Kurtz (District 50), a member of the Joint Committee on Finance. Representative Kurtz pointed out that State Shared Revenue was last revised in 2008 and heavily favored the larger cities and Metro areas. He stressed that they were seeking a solution that would be equitable as well as sustainable.
The fruit of efforts by ACT, as well as many other supportive groups, mayors, and municipalities, was the passage of Assembly Bill 245. The table below, taken from Rep. Dave Murphy’s June 23rd e-update, is illustrative of how Appleton and the surrounding area benefited from this bill.
|Municipality||Existing Aid||New Aid||Total Aid||Aid Increase|
|Town of Center||$39,139||$91,646||$130,784||234.2%|
|Town of Dale||$47,793||$78,652||$126,446||164.6%|
|Town of Grand Chute||$236,172||$562,490||$798,662||238.2%|
|Village of Greenville||$75,449||$320,761||$396,210||425.1%|
|City of Appleton||$9,630,029||$1,926,006||$11,566,035||20.0%|
At the Appleton City Council meeting on August 2, ACT was presented with an award for its efforts on behalf of the Shared Revenue measure. When accepting the award, ACT founder Mike Thomas thanked Mayor Woodford and the Council, expressing gratitude for the open lines of communication. He said their willingness to listen to ACT concerns and engage in solution-oriented exchanges opened the door for cooperative action with “win-win” results.
A complete record of the Appleton City Council discussion concerning Shared Revenue and other issues taken up at the August 2 meeting can be found at All Things Appleton on its website and on Facebook.