Village of Pleasant Prairie will hold the first of two information sessions on the $1.6 million referendum on public safety on Wednesday evening | Local News

PLEASANT PRAIRIE — The Village will hold the first of two information meetings this week as it seeks to educate voters on the $1.6 million public safety referendum question that will appear on the April 5 ballot.

Village officials are encouraging residents to attend at least one of the virtual information sessions, which will be held on Wednesday and March 16. Sessions begin at 6 p.m. both days.

The purpose of the meetings is for the public to learn about the public safety referendum and to understand the community‘s growing safety needs. The meetings will include presentations from Village Administrator Nathan Thiel, Police Chief David Smetana and Fire Chief Craig Roepke and offer a Q&A segmentGrowth, demand and inflation have outpaced income due state-imposed limits, according to village officials. The public safety referendum on the April 5 ballot will ask Pleasant Prairie voters to decide whether they support raising the village’s $1.6 million annual tax to cover hiring and retention costs. in post of four additional police officers and 12 additional firefighters and rescuers, starting in 2023.

The village is currently serviced by 36 sworn police officers and currently 25 of the 27 full-time fire and rescue personnel for it has budgeted.

The referendum will appear on the ballot with the following legal notice:

“Under state law, the increase in the Village of Pleasant Prairie levy for tax to be assessed for the next fiscal year, 2023, is limited to 2.57%, which translates to a levy of 14 $619,727. Will the Village of Pleasant Prairie be permitted to exceed this limit and increase the levy for the next fiscal year, 2023, for the purpose of hiring and retaining additional sworn police and fire and rescue personnel , for a total of 10.94%, resulting in a drawdown of $16,219,727, and on a continuing basis, including the increase of $1,600,000 for each subsequent fiscal year? »

According to the resolution, the referendum would be binding. A majority “yes” vote will allow the village council to exceed state-mandated levy limits to pay for additional staff. The increased levy would apply on a continuous basis thereafter by including it in the basis used to calculate the levy cap in the future. A “no” vote does not allow the village council to exceed the drawdown limits for additional staff. The two public safety departments would continue with their current staff.

Residents can participate in virtual sessions through Zoom online meeting software on a smartphone or computer. Attendees can select a meeting link for Wednesday at or March 16 to and enter a name and email address when prompted to register for meetings. Guests without access to a computer or mobile device can attend the meeting in person at the Village Hall Auditorium, 9915 39th Ave.

More information about the referendum can be found on the village website .

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