Dorothy Krause

   Working in the community, for the community, as a member of the community

 

 
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Front of card to be delivered to ALL addresses in the district soon before the election:

Back of card to be hand delivered to every address other then those in apartments with locked lobbies.

Back side of card to be mailed to ALL apartment dwellers in the district.

Fitchburg Star ad

Reply to Fitchburg Star essay questions:

Why are you running for alder, and why should people vote for you?

Because I care, and because I represent every human-being in the city. I’m interested in the well-being of the city and all its residents, all races, religions, backgrounds, and economic statuses. We should all care, but I’m not convinced that everyone holds the people as our highest priority. We should.

What are the most important issues facing your district?

Increasingly, it’s crime and drugs, generally associated with poor lifestyle choices or poverty. I’d like to think the solutions lay in the social-service field rather than with the police, although they tend to work hand-in-hand. There’s a lot we can, and should, do before we are truly proud of Fitchburg.

Should the city move up the Town of Madison merger date? Why or why not?

It’s up to the town. There would be a lot of benefit, but no-one likes to give up control. The city of Madison has more resources for developing the Alliant Energy Center, which would benefit the entire county, but even that shouldn’t be the driving reason. We can be patient.

Does the city have an ethical responsibility to financially support nonprofits that serve its residents like the Badger Prairie Needs Network or the Boys and Girls Club? If so, how should that funding be given out?

We’re a small-city with big-city issues, lacking big-city financial supports for providing social-services. So we’re at a disadvantage. There’s some county money available, but not enough to make up the difference. Hopefully CEDA also sets-up accounts to make private donations available to agencies working for the good of Fitchburg residents.

Should the city focus its development in already developed areas or work to expand its development footprint?

A legacy of the formation of Fitchburg was being intentional about protecting our rural lands from overly aggressive development. We should honor the urban service area boundaries in our 50-year comprehensive plan, maintaining the average annual 75-acre agreement, and concentrate on high-value development within the urban service area.

How can the frequently disagreeing elements of the council work together?

Everyone has value and a unique perspective to bring to the table. When people are set aside for political reasons, we all lose. We need a variety of people on council that truly represent all walks of life, and we need to respect and value their contributions to the process.

How should the city balance its public safety needs with climbing taxes, especially after the costs for both new fire stations have surpassed original estimates?

The need for two fire stations has been known for years. We’re also paying for the library and discussing a police station. That involves huge numbers. We must bite that bullet. One answer is to be very selective in making TIF loans which are paid back by development property taxes.

Do you support the city’s effort to create a public dog park, and what do you think of the outreach process that has taken place?

The hard question, in every controversial issue, is how heavily to weigh concerns of adjoining neighbors with the overall good to the city. I’d almost rather have enough land to build small dog parks within walking distance of denser areas, so you don’t have to drive to walk a dog!

If budgets and spending limits did not prevent it, what is one project you would champion to improve the quality of life in Fitchburg?

So much that could be done! Generally, I’d add community-run gathering spaces. Transplanting the Goodman Center into one of our denser areas would be a great start, especially if it could host free or affordable events for those with tight budgets. It truly is about quality of life!

What is the best thing about Fitchburg?

I love the diversity of Fitchburg. Every kind of job, various shopping options, a variety of housing, dense urban areas to open rural lands, people of almost every culture and economic status. We are a complete city, albeit a young one, and we get to choose how we grow.

What does the city really need to work on?

We need to run a tight-ship financially (truly, we already do). We mostly need to help people better understand where their money is going and how their investment in the city is helping to improve an already great city and creating an expanding economy to help Fitchburg become more self-sustaining.


League of Woman Voters questionnaire answers:

1. What in your professional and community background qualifies you for this elective office?

Concurrently serving my third term on both City Council and County Board has given me unique insights into understanding issues within the community. Issues of diversity, housing, jobs, public safety, and taxes are common themes in both. Each has different roles, but it’s helpful to know how they coordinate. There are huge learning curves that come with the positions, which I’ve largely passed. That will be important this year since at least half of the council is guaranteed to be replaced in this election. I’m already teasing staff about the job they’ll have training the new crop of Alders!

2. What will you do to increase the amount of affordable housing in your community?

Fitchburg has a lot of aging apartments and homes in older, less-affluent areas of the city, and has been building primarily higher-end houses and apartments in green-field developments over many years, leaving us without enough mid-level housing for middle and lower income people, especially seniors. Over time I’ve encouraged the city to seek development opportunities to enable a variety of homes to be built allowing a good mix of options and price-points throughout the city. I appreciate the dilemma of builders needing a profit, so we also need to encourage the use of federal and state grant programs for developers.

3. What other important issue faces the community you seek to represent, and how would you address it?

The question asks for just one issue? Most residents are unaware that half the alders in Fitchburg represent majority-minority districts, with large areas of concentrated poverty. These areas create many issues that deserve a stronger focus. The city is responsible for decision-making on housing, jobs, and policing. We need to work with residents of those neighborhoods to increase income, improve housing and reduce crime. Easier said than done, but if we choose to focus on those areas, it is well within our ability to help residents become more productive citizens and raise the quality of life in the city overall.


Post Card for early doors

I really like this card, It's a bit of an awkward pause, but if you give people a bit of a chance to read into the list, they usually come up a something they want to know more about. I've yet to have someone ask about some of the less usual suggestions tho. If no one answered the door, I wrote a note in the blank area on the back and left it in the door.

I was on crutches and in therapy in December and most of January, so I didn't get started until early in February and wasn't able to get around as much as I normally manage.

Ad in the MOSES Annual

An affiliate of the WISDOM Network

MOSES is a non-partisan interfaith organization that works to promote social justice with a focus on ending mass incarceration.

Note in my Facebook page:

My thoughts on the upcoming jail presentation

Took time this to write a note for Progressive Dane that I thought should be shared here as well...

Tuesday, December 20th, at 5:15, in room 201 of the city-county building, Mead & Hunt will present their latest proposals on the Dane County Jail system to the Public Protection & Judiciary Committee of the County Board. Their last proposal was soundly rejected by PP&J, which then formed 3 study groups to give them clearer direction to help to re-write the version that will be presented on Tuesday.

After the presentation, there will be opportunity for public comment. Since there isn't information available ahead of the presentation that we can study, people will want to attend, pay close attention, and try to prepare to respond to the information given.

Whether we like it or not, there is no choice but to invest in the jail, which understandably isn't popular, but what we have now simply isn't conducive to outcomes that appropriately serve members of our society who find themselves interacting with the system. We have to change it, but we have to do it in a way that will best serve our community, especially those neighborhoods and populations that are most at risk.

I'd be able to say that whatever they present won't be the best thing for the community, it will be the financially and politically easiest thing to do. It will be two different versions of a downtown institution... which, if we are interested in helping get and keep our community members out of the system, is the worst possible place to put most of it.

I want a security tower downtown built behind the PSB, next to the court house, for people that really need to be locked up for their safety or others. It should include appropriate mental health and programming space for that group of people, plus the intake center and space for people coming and going to court. I've suggested that it be designed to start with housing space that can (and will!) be converted to programming space as we reduce the jail population.

Virtually everything else should be in a community based facility that feels more akin to a school. It can have a secure back entry where deputies provide supervised services, including lower security residents, huber and additional medical/mental health beds, electronic monitoring, etc. It should have a transitional space for "official visits" with attorneys, clergy, service providers and family in a secure setting.

And it should have the front entry where community members, restorative courts and service providers, including medical, housing, job service, etc. can interact with people on supervision, including attending programming designed to improve communities to help them stop sending members into the system, and strengthening folks already in the system so when they are released, they will go back to a better community as better people. And we don't see them again.

That plan would be expensive on the front end, and receive a great deal of resistance (you think locating a center for homeless is tough... try siting a "jail" within a community!) but, the long term good would far outweigh the relatively short-term hassle. If there is a good community-based campaign, long before we start picking potential sites, to help everyone understand the benefit of having it outside downtown, especially the cost savings of a reduced jail population and an increase in public safety as the result of improving our communities, then it is possible to gain acceptance before the fact.

In the end, I was unopposed in the election, and spent the season helping with other campaigns.


Note in my Facebook page:

League of Woman Voters candidate questionnaire

I love being able to answer the League of Woman Voters candidate questionnaire when I don’t have an opponent, because I can take more liberty in how I want to answer. Mine won’t come out until sometime in March as an insert in the Isthmus, but everyone has to get them in well before the primary date, so don’t hold your breath yet to find mine in print.

There will be some answers early in February that will have the responses just from those that have a primary and will be on the February ballot. For folks downtown, there is a 3-way race for the County Board district that represents that area, and should be interesting. The biggie, which will be on all Wisconsin ballots, will be Wisconsin Supreme Court race. Please read up on that and plan to vote on Feb. 16th.

Here are my answers:

1. What in your professional and community background qualifies you for this elective office?

First learning the wealth of cultures surrounding us by growing up attending the Holiday Folk Fair in Milwaukee, I continue to appreciate the diversity of people living in our communities. Sadly, we often fail to recognize contributions of other cultures living around us. Since being elected to the Fitchburg City Council in 2011 and the County Board in 2012, I’ve become invested in trying to help people become familiar with others outside their usual circles. If we can continue to honor the cultures around us while building a truly integrated society, we will have the best of all worlds.

2. What is the most significant environmental issue facing Dane County, and what should the County Board do about it?

Farming is an interesting study that should be considered more holistically, since it impacts all of our lives and the environment. Things like what we eat, how we fuel our cars, to chemicals used on farms, are changing. And they change the impact of farmland on our environment, especially our water, some for better, some for worse. The trend toward growing produce for human consumption is the most productive use of land, and has the side effect of helping us be healthier! Keeping our drinking water clean and safe is a priority, protecting the land that provides it is essential.

3. What is the most pressing social service issue facing Dane County, and what should the County Board do about it?

Across the country communities are struggling with racial diversity, incarceration, and homelessness. The Board should continue to look toward improvements in our criminal justice system, in coordination with human services, with a focus on helping strengthen community-based and family supports. This will help ensure that the young members of our communities never get into the system in the first place. The county (and the state) needs to work with municipalities to help promote education, job development, and housing to ensure that all our residents have enough ‘legal’ income to support their families. That’s how to reduce crime in our neighborhoods.

 

12/13/15 Campaign Kickoff Event

 

Early doors card, distributed late in 2015 for the April 5th, 2016 election

Opinion piece in the Fitchburg Star 11/13/15

Note to my Facebook page:

So often I’m torn by issues within the community.

I’m not sure why, but it seems much of the bad stuff that happens in the Madison area involves my district in Fitchburg. Quick example, Saturday (August 8th), I went to the service for Aprina Paul, who lived in the district along with her family and was killed as the result of an online interaction.

It’s painfully obvious to me that we have significant problems within some of our communities.

One of the big questions I have in my work on the Alternatives to Incarceration work group, as Dane County considers the need for changes to our jail system, is what needs to happen within our communities to help keep our kids out of the system. For the most part, I see the need to involve the members of those communities in finding the answers, which the work groups are doing in part, with service providers that work within the community on related issues. 

Some answers are obvious: family sustaining jobs, more working-class housing, better educational opportunities, etc. I also see much more subtle issues that deserve attention, many of which stem from the larger issues. However, I don’t want to impose my second or third-hand observations on the folks involved; I’d rather they tell us. 

I’d also like to have a better understanding of some of the contributing issues from other perspectives. For two full days earlier this week, Monday and Tuesday I attended the Madison Region Gang Summit hosted by the Madison Police Department. I have been looking forward to learning more about the signs and symptoms of gang activity in the area and how police respond to it, as well as what citizens can do to minimize problems within their communities.

It’s very apparent, as I get news from various sources, that residents across the city are concerned about the variety of incidents our police deal with fairly regularly, anything from domestic disturbances, alcohol or drug abuse and burglaries, all the way up to and including gun shots and murders, sadly. 

One of the reasons I’m interested in working with communities where problems often originate is because I’d like to help the members of those communities figure out how to reduce problems from within and support their efforts rather than using various city enforcements to try to compel behavior. Presumably, in addition to being more effective in the long run, it would also be less expensive for taxpayers in the city to work more closely with residents and less with police. 

What I would like to do is to give our residents the opportunity to help us define those issues within our communities in Fitchburg. I’m not certain how much I can add to my plate, but I intend to try to organize some neighborhood gatherings in various areas, perhaps with the help of some of the faith community in which those residents are members. 

Please contact me at dorothyk@charter.net or 271-7532 if you’d like to be involved.

Dorothy Krause represents northern Fitchburg (District 27) on the Dane County Board of Supervisors.

Fitchburg Star August 14, 2015


Note to my Facebook page:

My Alternatives to Incarceration recommendations

While most of the members of our Jail Study workgroup are working more directly with more traditional forms of alternatives, I've chosen to focus on helping keep people out of the system in the first place as being the best alternative. There have been 2 requests for direct recommendations to the group, these are what I've offered:

From: Dorothy Krause
Sent: Sunday, July 19, 2015 8:49 AM
To: 'LINDSEY DRAPER'
Subject: Community based solutions to avoid entering the system

I’d like to develop a list of programs or types of programs that the county and municipalities can encourage and financially and otherwise support which will contribute to the improvement of communities and populations within areas that tend to struggle.  Some are big and obvious such as the Boys and Girls Clubs, but others are tiny, often neighborhood specific, such as Allied’s “Mothers in the Neighborhood” group. In the end, I’d like to recommend ways that we can work toward keeping our young people out of trouble, giving both them, and adults in the community, productive activities that will enhance their lives and keep them from getting into situations that put them at risk so they never enter the corrections system in the first place.

Many more than this… but I’ll start with:

Boys and Girls Clubs -- http://www.bgcdc.org/
Madison Out of School Time (MOST) -- https://www.cityofmadison.com/dpced/communitydevelopment/most/madison-out-of-school-time-most-initiative/499/
Mothers in the Neighborhood -- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fqEN9rhPZAo
Joining Forces for Families (JFF) -- https://danecountyhumanservices.org/family/JoiningForcesForFamilies/default.aspx
community Centers -- http://www.eastmadisoncc.org/
Girls Empowered by Motivated Sisters (GEMS) -- http://madisoncommons.org/?q=content/lack-of-area-schools-pushes-allied-drive-neighbors-to-create-their-own-sense-of-community
home improvement -- http://www.projecthomewi.org/ and http://workshops.homedepot.com/workshops/home
financial literacy -- http://www.greenpath.com/about/locations/madison and http://dane.uwex.edu/family-living/financial-education-center/
Rev. Alex Gee and “Justified Anger” -- http://host.madison.com/news/opinion/column/guest/alex-gee-from-anger-to-action/article_cc8014d5-14c6-5c02-b0c6-d4e8ffcccb79.html
Mentoring Positives, Inc -- http://mentoringpositives.org/
job training -- http://www.ywcamadison.org/site/c.cuIWLiO0JqI8E/b.7964755/k.9688/Job_Training.htm

If members of the group can list what they are aware of, or work with leaders of such neighborhoods to gather more information that we aren’t already aware of, we can organize the information and develop a summary that can evolve into a recommendation from the workgroup.

Perhaps, as we are doing with thoughts on alternatives programs, we can start by inviting members to contribute what they already are aware of and make suggestions for people/organizations to visit with for thoughts outside the group. Then you, or staff, can begin to organize the info, and at the next (3rd to last) meeting, we can ask for members that would like to make additional contacts. At the next (2nd to last) meeting, we can spend a bit of time developing the basic framework of a recommendation to finalize at the last meeting.

--and--

From: Dorothy Krause
Sent: Friday, August 21, 2015 12:24 PM
To: LINDSEY DRAPER; Bauman, John
Subject: recommendation for the next meeting

Beside my main call for a lot of community based programming for non-incarcerated inmates, including working with community and family members to improve conditions that lead to incarceration or recidivism, it is not inappropriate for the group to suggest recommendations for the physical plant that would lead to the best possible outcome to help inmates participate in alternatives programs.

A jail-like environment is not conducive to helping achieve successful reentry. Therefore, to enhance the potential for the success of alternatives to incarceration programs:

1. The jail proper should contain only those inmates that need to physically be behind bars and (in addition to staff needs) include adequate:

  a.          Safe and secure, but minimally restrictive, housing
  b.          Medical facilities for physical, emotional, and mental needs
  c.           Proper meeting spaces for 1 on 1 interactions with attorneys, parole and probation, medical, spiritual leaders, etc.
  d.          Adequate library and education spaces
  e.          Appropriate recreation places and opportunities
  f.           Exposure to sunlight, fresh air, and nature as much as possible

2. Provide a community based facility containing Huber residents, a day-reporting program, and educational facilities:

  a.          Separate, but attached, secure quarters for overnight use
  b.          Relatively secure day-use areas for potential highly-charged situations; meetings with attorneys, parole and probation, medical and AODA, spiritual leaders, etc.
  c.           A variety of classrooms for education and work development opportunities
  d.          Community space for discussion and education involving family, friends, and neighbors
  e.          Discuss the feasibility of an inmate run business onsite, such as a café and catering service, to serve the facility

Opinion piece in the Fitchburg Star 8/14/15

Opinion piece in the Fitchburg Star 6/12/15

Note to my Facebook page:

Never in my memory, and probably throughout history, have all people had the same opportunities for a decent life. A strong middle, along with fewer at the very top or very bottom seemed the ideal. You have to reach back into history to find when and how, and why, the US went from a slave economy to one that treated people with respect and dignity at all levels. But this isn’t about black or white.

It took time and determination, and more than a little bloodshed, to develop that strong middle. It is the foundation of our society, the people that hold up and support the rest. The people that get into uniforms of various sorts, including suits, and go off to their work-a-day world every day. The people that build and maintain our homes, roads, vehicles, and workplaces; that grow, process, cook, and serve our food; that are charged with caring for our individual well-being and the well-being of our society in general.

Most take great pride in a job well-done and would like to do even better. To keep improving our society, we have to keep strengthening that middle, and bring more and more people into it. To keep producing we have to have consumers. To keep consuming, we have to have income, and to have income, we have to have jobs. Seems simple. By funneling money to the largest segment of our society, we have enough people buying what we make that it creates an endless cycle of buying and selling.

What happens when you remove the ability to spend money? When the masses in the middle don’t have enough to buy what others are busy making? When consumers stop consuming? Eventually society comes to a screeching halt. But what happens before that point? Chances are, unless things change, we’re going to find out.

We have to keep strengthening that middle. We have to maintain quality and pride in everything we do. We have to constantly re-cycle money to the middle so the majority can keep buying and producing. We have to ensure that there are enough jobs so everyone is able to have what they need and some of what they want. What stops that cycle are people at the top hoarding money, making it unavailable to those in the middle.

Money at the top filtered up via the blood, sweat, and tears of the middle, but many at the top choose to not see that simple fact. They only see that it came to their account and believe they should be able to keep it, without regard to the well-being of the society that made it possible. In fact, many are actively working toward a less equal society, in which the vast majority of money goes to the top and stays there. That, my friends, is what needs to change.

Being rich isn’t the American Dream it was cooked up to be, in fact, it’s become a nightmare for far too many.


Note to my Facebook page:

I wrote this in another thread about the "Black Lives Matter" movement. People need to understand the perspective of poor people to appreciate why what is happening in politics is so devastating to so many, and why it's so important to change what is going on in this county and around the world.  "It's just business" turns out to the beginning of the end in so many ways. It's a phrase that means "I don't care about you, money is what is important."

~~~~~~~~~~~~

Far more than anyone else in the race, Bernie can and will make a difference for poor people of all colors. EVERY other candidate is far more interested in the politics of wealth and doesn't even look at poor. Bernie, at the very least, will make them talk about current politics that funnels all the money to the top, including that which poor people have to scrape by with, including social security and any type of welfare. They want it all and don't care that there isn't anything left for people on the bottom. If we don't change that, nothing else is going to matter. The politics of wealth includes protecting that wealth, including by using police to ensure that we remain separated from "their" wealth as represented by fancy homes, cars, retail stores, entertainment, etc. We can't have it, and the police will help make sure we don't take what is theirs. Republicans of old created programs to help the poor, the current rulers have no interest in such things. Bernie is the best hope BLM has... and they need to get behind him and help him speak. He speaks for you/us, all the people at the bottom, and those that are getting thrown off the cliff to land on us.

~~~~~~~~~~~~

And this just the beginning. They are also looking at deregulation so they don't have to pay so much to protect the land they want to take from, or be responsible to the land or the people when they mess it up.


 

I was honored in April 2015 to be re-elected to the City Council without opposition.

Early card I made to take around doing early doors in the distrtict, December 2014

Article as it appeared in the Fitchburg Star in November 2014.

Written and carried to doors during the Burke campaign, October 2014

Posted to my facebook page. Re: Ferguson, MIssouri
https://www.facebook.com/dorothy.krause

Equal Justice

A friend asked on his page for thoughts on equal justice. I replied:

It is such a challenge to try to understand our incredibly complex society.

In a lot of ways, a smallish percent of the African American community have created a self-fulfilling prophecy of extreme wariness of anyone that looks like them. And in another is a police culture that maintains separation from those communities such that they don't get to know the people in order to break down the stereotypes. 

People, including Madison's Police Chief, Mike Koval, that talk about community policing, in which officers are assigned neighborhoods rather than districts, have it right. Get to know the people. Find out that the vast majority are good people, and identify and deal with the bad. Help the good get comfortable interacting with police to recognize that the bad among them can be dealt with. 

But, most of all, be willing to take a look at what our society has done to those communities economically. They have no money to save or invest. The "American Dream" comes to shareholders, not hard workers. We haven't given so many people (not just black) the opportunity to pay their most basic bills, nonetheless even consider saving anything. So who is to blame if some look to illegal sources of income to have their version of the dream? 

And the economic reality is becoming worse as the well off want an ever increasing share of wealth. Business needs ever more profit to appease shareholders, so they cut product expenses and layoff or reduce benefits to non-management employees. And taxpayers elect people to government that are intent on reducing services and income opportunities to those same people. 

Until the well-off wake up to the reality that the poor people live, things will fester until they explode. I'm hoping that they wise up first and install a steam valve in the system. A $10.10 minimum wage is a beginning for those that have a job, but that's only $21,000 gross income. I'm not sure that anyone would think that even that would be adequate. In any case, learning to share is the real answer to what ails our society. Sharing in the form of choosing people over profit in the creation of jobs, among other things, so that everyone that can has the opportunity to make at least $10.10 an hour. 

Glad you asked? I'm glad to know that you'd welcome my answer.

Note posted to my facebook page, written for the Jamestown Neighborhood Association's newsletter, but I thought it was worth sharing with a wider audience.
https://www.facebook.com/dorothy.krause

Dane County Jail Study

The Dane County Board recently received the results of a space study for the Dane County Jail. Wanting first-hand knowledge of the conditions in the current jail that necessitated the study, Fitchburg Alder and County Board Supervisor Dorothy Krause took a personal two-hour tour with Chief Deputy Jeff Hook this month to add to a recent tour of the juvenile jail and an earlier tour of the Huber facility. She also attended a tour in January of the Scott County, Iowa jail with a number of other County Supervisors and Sheriff's staff.

A major track at the National Counties Association convention that Dorothy attended in July was focused on juvenile justice, which tied nicely with both the jail study and her concern about increasing problems with youth and young adults in our neighborhoods. While there is a recognition that potential problems within communities should be identified and dealt with long before children find themselves in the justice system, the reality is that some children will end up in the system. It is their experience there that determines how well their eventual return to our community will go.

And that brings us back to the jail study. The adult jail was built in the 50's, with an addition in the 80's, using a design that promotes a sense of isolation which reduces the potential for successful reentry into our society. Many inmates have few opportunities for contact with staff, and virtually no opportunity for exposure to the possibility of a better life. Even in group pods there is one big room with stacks of bunk beds at one end and cafeteria tables at the other. People live in close quarters 24/7, and Deputies are charged mostly with behavior management in extremely difficult environments.

During the tour, Dorothy experienced both the crowded conditions of some and the social isolation of others as well as the lack of facilities for education, recreation, or even medical care. She saw how much staff time is required to monitor inmates and she heard their concerns about the aging plant.

By contrast, Scott County designed their jail with an eye toward the day people would be released, and their focus is on preparing them for that day. Even though there are still many inmates in each unit, housing is separated into smaller clusters, with partitions between the cells and the day rooms, where a centrally located Deputy can see into each cell at all times,maximizing human contact while allowing them far more time to interact in positive ways with the population. There is also additional meeting space designed so people can spend time regularly in programming intended to encourage them to make choices that move them toward success within their community.

Even though the price will be high, no matter what options we look at, the value of working with people to encourage them toward good citizenship can not be understated. Whatever we decide, we need to be very intentional about designing a plant that will reduce the overall costs long term, especially to stop paying people that only watch cameras or peek into small windows of solitary cells every 15 minutes. Staff time should be spent interacting as much as is practically possible to provide positive models and help inmates become the best people they can be, regardless of their past or current circumstances. After all, they are literally a captive audience that came from our community and will be returning to us, generally within a year.

While they are in our jail, we should invest in helping to return productive people to us rather than simply locking them up to wait out their time, then releasing people we know will soon be back in the system.In the end, the cost of recidivism is far higher than the price of helping our residents. But first, we need a facility that will provide that capability. 

Note posted to my facebook page
https://www.facebook.com/dorothy.krause

golf course more important than children? <sigh>

My statement to the Fitchburg Common Council... who ultimately voted to keep the golf course

Since moving near the Allied community in 2002, and becoming active in volunteer work within that population of poverty, I’ve become interested in the dynamics of similar communities, to the point that it got me elected to both to my city council position,then to the county board, where I’ve become even more aware of the issues of poverty, including the racial disparities that we’ve been hearing so much about in the news lately. I’m also a named stakeholder for the Arbor Hills Leopold neighborhood plan, which includes the golf course property.

A lot of the disparity issues reach down into Fitchburg to a point where my county board seat, fully within Fitchburg, is one of two majority minority districts in the county.

We know, as a basic rule, that poverty follows minority populations, and although clearly,not all people of color are poor, there are easily enough poor whites to offset those numbers.

I’ve said over and over that I want to live in a society that I can be proud of, one that meets the needs of all its residents, including the poor and undocumented. I realize that I risk the ire of many voters by insisting that I represent the needs of all the residents, not only the ones that vote or are likely to vote for me. And I talk to all of residents, rich and poor, all cultures and races,and all political leanings, so I can learn the needs and desires of all the people to help me in making the best, most balanced decisions possible.

It’s not only a source of community pride to meet basic needs and create a more productive society, in the long run, it’s also less expensive.

Municipalities make decisions about jobs and housing, which are two of the biggest things we should be looking at in meeting the needs of our residents. If we can bring enough of the right jobs to Fitchburg so virtually all the residents that need a job will have one, and if we can find ways to provide housing that is affordable at the wages that those jobs will pay (too often under $10/hour)than a lot less of our tax money needs to be spent on giving them what they need.

But those are even bigger issues than the one we are looking at tonight. .Considering the whole big picture is outright depressing, almost incomprehensible, from my county board perspective.

What we are looking at tonight is simply what we should do, given a community of need, to help provide recreation that is appropriate to the need of the residents impacted. My estimates have apparently been low, I’d been talking about something over 2000 low income people in a very concentrated area, needing productive recreational opportunities, for children, teens and adults. The correct number is apparently over 4 thousand.

As the Health Impact Statement showed, the physical, mental, and social well-being of our population will be greatly enhanced by having quality affordable recreation available to them.

The balance is whether the golf course option will be effective enough at providing those needs. I truly wish the answer was yes. But, having talked at length to the residents of the surrounding community, it is very apparent that they are neither interested in learning to golf, nor can afford even the season permit to be able to golf, if they were interested.

They want,and need, somewhere for the children to run around and play, somewhere for families to picnic and spend time out of doors, somewhere for teens to gather in appropriate ways, and somewhere for adults, including teens, to play sports that are culturally relevant to them, particularly soccer. Disc golf has proven to be a “sport” that ends up appreciated across cultures, and would be welcomed by the community.

The Parks Department has gone to great lengths to determine activities that would be appropriate for the community and, for the most part, I support their decisions,knowing full well that the park map would change as a result of continuing discussions.

One of my biggest concerns in considering an arrangement of sharing the space with the community of non-golfers is that children do not appreciate the care that keeping the golf course in good shape requires. I fear that there would be continued frustration from both sides if children would be allowed on the course for things like movie nights or other suggested activities. That might well be the case even if the community were allowed access to golf more casually than occurs now.

As to the most recent survey, I made no effort to distribute it or encourage anyone to participate in it. I felt as though the way it was presented made it only about money, using inaccurate and misleading numbers. The fact is that Sam has been accepting a personal 25 thousand dollar ($25,000) annual loss, according to a recent statement he made at a committee meeting, and which Scott indicated was also reflected in Sam's financial statements.

It would be presumptuous,and incorrect, to extend that $20,000 figure out for the 20 years that the survey implied. I can’t imagine that anyone but Sam has the passion to continue to do all the work that he does without a decent wage for doing it. 

In addition,the survey did not give information about the HIA process or speak of the surrounding community or other background information to enable residents to respond to the survey in an informed way.

And, as has been very apparent, survey results have been manipulated in unethical ways.

Therefore, I personally have discredited the survey and would encourage the rest of this body to do so as well.

4/10 Note posted to my facebook page
https://www.facebook.com/dorothy.krause

Perpetuated Poverty - Breaking the Cycle

April 10, 2014 at 3:58am

The leaders of Fitchburg face an interesting conundrum in the next month. As an elected representative for most of the older urbanized portion of the city, I am all too familiar with the amount of poverty in Fitchburg, largely contained within concentrated pockets within my County Board district. The quandary for the people of the city, especially those involved in city and county government, is what can, or should, we do for people living in poverty in our community?

First, we need to realize that the vast majority of residents in poverty did not choose that lifestyle. They are generally good people stuck in a system beyond their ability to escape or change on their own. If we are willing to acknowledge the problems which perpetuate poverty, we can begin to address them.

One of the biggest problems created by poverty is idle youth. When children do not have appropriate activities, they create their own, often to the detriment of the community. This is a long perpetuated cycle that needs to end.

We need to help parents and youth by providing activities that they are eager to participate in, that are affordable and readily available to them, that our society will generally approve of, and that will distract them from ultimately becoming part of crime statistics in our society.

The biggest area of concentrated poverty is in the Nine Springs area near Leopold School. According to information from the Park's Department, 16.4% of the city’s population live in that area and the area is deficient by 22 acres of parkland.

The conundrum that we have is that there is city-owned green space available to them, but for the fact that it is currently run as a city-owned golf course, used by a comparatively small number of residents.

While I have no problem whatsoever with golfing or golfers, and it is nice that Fitchburg has a golf course, the need for appropriate activity space for area residents should be an overriding consideration in the decision of the best use of this land.

Since our comprehensive plan defines a large area of parkland at the southern edge of the urban service area, we should look at the long-term future of developing a golf course there, one that Fitchburg can be truly proud of promoting. I’ve suggested that thought to many people in the area and it’s been well received.

3/12 notes

  • What is "Progressive" anyway?
    Progressive is NOT left of left... it's a moderate position that looks at the whole picture, and makes decisions based on what is best overall.

  • The result of the political climate in the county, filtering down to Fitchburg, has caused a massive financial squeeze to be put on Dane County and the municipalities in it. Money doesn't exist to do all that should be done, we have no choice but to pick and choose priorities. I base my decisions on the greatest good.

  • There is supposed to be a laser focus on jobs in Wisconsin. If we want to get people out of poverty, they have to have jobs that are available to them.

  • We need to eliminate the pendulums... from the stock market that our whole economy hangs on, all the way though the partisan politics in Fitchburg. Talk about a tall order!!

3/5/14
Door card that I'm carrying around as I make another visit to residents... my third in many/most cases.

2/19/14
As I've talked about my district, the land use map keeps coming up, with the very apparent areas of high density housing (brown areas marked HDR) on both the east and west ends.MDR is generally duplexes. Orange, pink and purple are business, industrial, commercials areas. Each outline is a single lot, including the big lots in the middle, which are all single family. Do not want their tax bill!!

Click the map for a full sized image

Added 2/5/14

Come one, come all, to Dorothy's first ever fundraising event!

As much as she loves getting out to talk to people to hand them a personal invitation, this has been a really harsh winter for spending time in neighborhood's, so she hasn't gotten out nearly as much as she did in November.

Click on each page for a full size image

1/14/14

Moving right along. Below, and linked, is the newsletter that I carried around the district to over 2,500 homes beginning in October 2013. A lot of what is important to me is represented in it.

Click here for full-sized pdf file

And, um, yes, if anyone still wonders, I won my Alder seat once again.

3/4/13

Back to the Alder race. I participated in a candidate forum hosted by a neighborhood association that clearly supports my opponent. I kinda enjoy those sorts of things because they are such ripe opportunities to try to help people understand some of the dilemma's that people who are not as fortunate as themselves can face in life.

I ended up typing out my "thinking out loud" notes and putting them on my letterhead to make copies available for people to take home with them along with copies of a lot of the information that DOT has been making available related to the Verona Road project. Here are my notes:

Click here for full-sized pdf file

 


3/4/13
Ended up calling off the County Board campaign due to lack of an opponent. Asked my supporters to send their time, money, and energy to the recall campaigns instead. Have been spending most of this year learning Dane County after a year of learning Fitchburg. Lots of water over the dam, much of which can be read at my Facebook page.

1/19/12
Change is in the air... and not just the fall temperatures!


Fitchburg Common Council
District 1, Seat 1

Supports strong neighborhoods, sustainable communities, affordable housing, and more

  • Promote old-fashioned walkable neighborhoods
  • Demand sustainable practices in area development
  • Protect parks and green spaces for future generations
  • Encourage local production of fresh foods
  • Empower neighborhood associations
  • Encourage public participation in all city processes
  • Ensure that the people’s voices are heard in city Hall
     

Economic Development

  • Focus on creation of jobs for workers at all levels.
  • Advocate for small, local businesses that serve the needs of area residents
  • Promote a well-trained workforce that can afford to live and work in our community

Transportation

  • Stay involved in the Highway 151 / Verona Road reconstruction project
  • Support expanded bus service, shared taxi system, bike alternatives, etc, in the region

Public Safety

  • Encourage neighborhood police officer program
  • Improve communications between residents and police, fire and 911 services
  • Participate in plans for building new fire stations with expanded training facilities
  • Assist in development of neighborhood centers

Working in the community,
for the community,
as a member of the community

 

Follow me on
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Please contribute
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Quick links to:

Fall 2015 door card

Fitchburg Star 11/13/15
Ugly Government

Fitchburg Star 8/14/15
Community Solutions

Fitchburg Star 6/12/15
Jail Study

3/15/14 door card

Land Use Map

2/24 fundraiser

Fall 2013 Newsletter

Nice things people have
to say about me:

"Dorothy has been a pleasure to work with. She's actively involved in making the community a better place and brings a wealth of creative ideas to the table. I've thoroughly enjoyed working with her as a community activist, and will look forward to continuing to work closely with her as Fitchburg Alder."

Brian Solomon, Alder, Madison District 10

"I have worked with Dorothy Krause in my capacity as community parish nurse at the Allied Wellness Center for several years. I am continually amazed at how resourceful she is at getting information, and at how dedicated she has been in improving the Allied Dunn's Marsh neighborhood. She regularly attends the Allied Area Task Force meetings, community meals and other neighborhood events and meetings, bringing good ideas and input. Her commitment to the community gardens and all activities that impact a neighborhood, speaks clearly of the passion and integrity in which she would serve as alder. Because I work rather than live in her district I cannot vote for her, but she certainly has my vote of confidence."

Susan Corrado

"I've known Dorothy since she moved to the Dunn's Marsh neighborhood 8 years ago. Over this period of time she has become more and more deeply involved in community organizations both within the neighborhood and beyond. Because she has attended meetings of all sorts on a regular basis, she comes "service ready" and with a wide knowledge base to the Fitchburg City Council.

"From working on church committees and in the Marlborough Park Community Garden with her, I know that she is attentive to both details and larger issues, is able to express herself efficiently and effectively, and is acquainted with many individuals and organizations in the Fitchburg/Madison area. A good listener, she is also adept at talking to and working with other community leaders or government officials.

"Coming from a working class background, Dorothy isn't afraid of hard work, throws herself fully into projects she supports, and is completely dependable in the obligations she accepts. She has lots of energy and fresh ideas. I know she has a special place in her heart for creating community among people of diverse backgrounds and that she would like to see her district and Fitchburg grow in sustainability."

Mary Mullen

"Dorothy has demonstrated her singular focus on the good of our community through her persistent activism in community organizations. It is only natural that her next step be to take her vision and hard work to the next level. Our streets, our parks, our neighborhood, and our community are better places because of Dorothy Krause."

Jeffrey Glazer

"In addition to leading one of the most successful local Freecycle chapters on the planet, Dorothy has been a member of the Freecycle global leadership team and helped get Freecycle.org established as a international gifting concept as well as the largest recycling and reuse community on the web. Kudos to her and congrats to Fitchburg for having such a committed local leader. If you figure out how to clone her, let me know..."

Deron Beal
Executive Director
The Freecycle Network

"Dorothy has boundless energy and enthusiasm for seeking out opportunities to make her community better and the ability to energize others to get involved in serving their community. She is always looking for ways to create common sense solutions to community needs."

Duncan McNelly

"I have known Dorothy for approximately two years, and have been impressed on her dedication to be helpful in very meaningful ways.  Her active presence on many community organizations in the Allied area bespeaks well of a hard work ethic.  She does not shrink from responsibility. I feel Dorothy genuinely desires to be helpful, and is very able to tackle the business and human issues of being an alder."    

Barry Hayes

"Dorothy Krause's competence, positive work ethic and experience with neighborhood improvement projects makes her an ideal candidate for alderperson. She would bring a valuable combination of networking, problem solving and technical skills to that role".

Doleta Chapru

"I have known Dorothy for many years. She is a very creative and resourceful person who cares about her neighborhood and the people who live there. She has many fascinating ideas about how to improve the situation in the Allied Drive area, networking, creating jobs and food security in the process. She knows and works with many key players in the neighborhood (including the local residents)."

Judy Skog

"Dorothy is a woman with a big heart, and has ideas and energy to match her heart. She is a dedicated community activist, giving much time to numerous causes that have improved the lives of those around her. She is generous with both her time and her talents, and has good common sense. She is knowledgeable about community needs and concerns, and has proven herself to be a hard worker through volunteer service. I am proud to support her for alderperson!"

Linda

 

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