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Sheboygan Alderman District 2

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    John Belanger

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    Roberta Filicky-Peneski

Biographical Information

Why are you running for office?

Cite major goals you want to accomplish if elected and how you plan to achieve those goals.

How will you assist in bringing affordable housing development to the community?

Discuss your experience and how it qualifies you for the position you seek.

How will you assist with recruiting and maintaining talent in the community?

Campaign Phone 9209462738
Relevant Experience Alderman from 2012 - 2018 Chairman of Public Works Committee, Chairman of Building Use Committee, Member of Plan Commission, Member of Law & Licensing Committee
The current 2nd District alderman is unfit to serve. She was named in a federal lawsuit for her vote to fire the previous city administrator without cause.

She leaked confidential information from a common council meeting. She was recorded using the N-word She was censured by her peers on the Common Council.

She supported former HR Director Adam Westbrook who's facing charges of child pornography and sexual exploitation of a child.

City employees have experienced significant turnover and uncertainty. As the Vice Chair of the Finance and Personnel committee she has supported a toxic environment for city workers.

I'm eager to serve you. To provide stability to Sheboygan To lead your city forward
Aurora Memorial Hospital Site- Your voice matters to gain consensus on future of site. The Memorial Neighborhood should have the final say on the development of this site.

South Pointe Industrial Park- Your tax dollars are being wasted. Payments are due on infrastructure costs and no revenue coming in due to no development.

Marina and Lakefront Revitalization- Your lakefront will not generate economic impact without much needed repairs. Lack of planning has created a fiscal crisis.

Edgewater Power Plant- Sheboygan will lose significant tax revenue. Your taxes will need to make up the difference with no plan by current Common Council.

Financial challenges are real. There's no plan. No urgency. No desire to protect your tax dollars.

We need to be proactive and responsive the needs of the community. In the past the City has been reactive and with no sense of urgency. As a result the City lost out on multiple development opportunities. We need the City Administrator to lead in this area. In the past we had an Administrator that was more concerned about his own recognition to be bothered with economic development. I have heard positive things about the new City Administrator. We need Council leadership that is focused and understands the importance of economic development. We can turn this around and affordable housing is a piece of the puzzel.
Bachelor of Arts (Political Science / History) University of Wisconsin at Eau Claire Alderman City of Sheboygan 2012 -2018 Chairman of Public Works Committee, Chairman of Building Use Committee, Law & Licensing Committee Member, Member of the Plan Commission, Participant in Police Academy,

I have done this before. During my previous tenure on the Council we enjoyed tremendous economic development, as well as reducing the City debt from 68 million dollars to 26 million dollars. Problems can be solved in a fiscally responsible manner.
The greatest impact an Alderman can have is to work towards making Sheboygan the best mid sized City in America. This needs to be a collabrative effort. Currently the City of Sheboygan has a lot of negative PR that we must overcome. Unfortuately most of these have been self inflicted. Currently there are four lawsuits from former employees that were either terminated without cause or forced out. That needs to end. We have an Alderman that has been censured for leaking confidential information. We have an Alderman caught on tape using a racial slur. The City's former HR Director is facing child sexual exploitation and child pornography charges. There has been a great deal of negative publicity surrounding City government. It reflects poorly on the entire community. The culture within City Hall needs to change. People want to be proud of the community they live in. This will help employers attract and maintain talent. We also need City leadership to have a open communication with employers and HR Directors in southeast Wisconsin. We need to cast a wide net for talent. We have a fantastic community. We just need to be better at promoting it.
Campaign Phone 9204583432
Relevant Experience I am the incumbent Alderperson for District Two, City of Sheboygan, appointed by the council in July, 2020, elected in April, 2021 and re-elected in April, 2022. I am the Chairperson of the Sheboygan Redevelopment Authority, the Vice-Chairperson of the Finance and Personnel Committee, a member of the Joint Review Board - (reviewing Tax Incremental Financing for development projects) and the County Emergency Medical Services (EMS) Council. I attend Neighborhood Association meetings for Memorial, North Point and Vollrath neighborhoods when groups of citizens gather to discuss issues relevant to their area.
I am the incumbent alderperson in District 2 for the city of Sheboygan. I was appointed to the office in 2020, elected in 2021 and re-elected in 2022. As the City of Sheboygan grows more urban and more diverse and adapts to the fast pace of change, it is important to reaffirm the values that make our community unique: A robust and supportive business and manufacturing climate, a welcoming atmosphere, a beautiful lakefront and riverfront, unique resources like Mead Library and Uptown Social, and support for the many non-profit and religious resources that contribute to our quality of life. I have an interest in seeing to the continuation of this positive and supportive community.
The Redevelopment of the Memorial Hospital Site: When the development agreement between the city and Advocate Aurora was written, it was agreed that the area would be “developed in a manner consistent with the surrounding neighborhood.” The property is in the final stages of remediation. I have been on three zoom meetings with other city officials and the Aurora administration as we have discussed the progress with the neighbors. As the project moves forward, and with the many years of Redevelopment Authority experience in my background, I can knowledgeably give voice not only to the wishes of my constituents but also understand the needs of interested developers.

Communications: Several years ago, the city convened a committee composed of Communications Executives from area corporations and educational institutions. After a year of meetings, their primary recommendation was to hire a full-time Communications Director. There is currently a part-time position. In the intervening years there has been an exponential increase in the variety and number of media as well as the complexity of issues. There needs to be a full-time communications position added to the city’s table of organization so that we can begin the tasks associated with the dissemination of information and create a system that makes it easier for members of the public to communicate with the city.
For several years, housing has been a major goal of both the city and the Redevelopment Authority. Two housing developments will be coming on-line soon: 10th and Indiana (The former Koepsel site) with senior housing and work/live units and the development at 14th and Illinois with worker housing. In addition, two vacant sites – the former Jakums Hall and the lot at Erie and 13th are being proposed for worker housing with interested developers.

Incentivizing: Recently the Common Council passed ordinances creating four Tax Incremental Financing Districts (TIDs). TIDS enable the city to offer incentives for developments within those districts with specifications for what is to be built. In addition, the State offers tax credits for worker housing and senior housing (vs. market-rate units). It is also important to provide market-rate-units for those who want to “move up.” When they do, it creates vacancies in those more affordable units for others to occupy.
For 20 years I was a financial advisor. Prior to that I had a PR and Marketing firm. I bring both my financial and communications skills and experience to the Common Council. I am the Chairperson of the Sheboygan Redevelopment Authority, the Vice-Chairperson of the Finance and Personnel Committee, a member of the Joint Review Board – reviewing Tax Incremental Financing (TIF) for development projects, and the County Emergency Medical Services Council. I attend three Neighborhood Association meetings in my district to make sure that I am aware of issues of interest and concern.
I believe that statement that “Sheboygan is a great place to live, work and raise a family.” Notice that first is providing a “place to live.” Opening up more housing will enable the talented people to live in the community in which they work. Once there is a certain density within the housing market, retail and restaurant developments follow. We also have the wonderful natural resource of Lake Michigan. When we can enliven our waterfront, preserve its wonder and make it family-friendly, we will be able to go a long way in recruiting and maintaining talent.