Carousel Bayrd running the meeting! Packed house! So, briefly . . . . live blogged.
There were 5 people absent, deFelice and Salov excused, missed the others who were absent. Hesselbein announced she had to leave early. Ferrell left early.
Supervisor Pan did the inspirational for the meeting, he talked about being in an orchestra and coming together and making music. Sorry, was late, that is all I got, it was much more eloquent than that.
The first two speakers spoke about the Developmental Disabilities budget – I’m not sure what the first asked for. The second asked for living wages for workers and to keep the County Executive Budget.
Richard Harris spoke about the drug treatment program for African Americans. He says that they are having more and more white clients with heroin problems. He says because there are not openings in the program, African American men are doing prison time because they are overwhelmed with the white men with heroin issues. He talks about the referrals they make.
Several people showed up to support the skate parks. One of the speakers was a kid in Madison 26 years ago and talked about being chased by cops and security guards, he went on to be a professional skateboarder and traveled around the world, and came back to Madison and still they have no place to skate. He has a skate shop here in Madison now. He wants to have skate parks here in Madison – there are quite a few people who start clapping. A UW longboard student group rep who talked about the “economic externalities” and how it will save money by not having loitering and destruction to property.
Two people showed up to support the homeless day shelter. They report that they city just added $25K for the day center. They say that there are many positives to come out of this by building community to work against the problems caused by the Walker Administration.
Two CRANES members talk about supporting software for planning. They talk about how planning can help the environment. They say this software can save thousands of dollars for citizens. It can free up millions in municipalities and then we can spend money for folks who are here tonight. Any one of us could be homeless.
Another person speaks to people with disabilities. Also supports Parisi budget and a living wage. ARC Dane County board member supports the same issues. He says this is the 8th budget in a row that make cuts, it has been a reduction of 22%.
Another skateboard park supporter.
Another CRANES supporter lists off all the items in the budget that they support, I was not paying attention, sorry. Trying to catch up with emails and texts and other urgent matters people were contacting me about . . . grrr . . . . a bloggers nightmare. The room is packed and I’m anticipating a very long evening and won’t be able to blog in detail, but I can give you a flavor of the issues that people speak about.
Support for temporary warming shelter and the permanent day center. He says there is a 90 day limit for people to be in housing. Says 12 families are being turned away. Every morning you have to leave. You have about 1000 hours of shelter, and 8000 where you have no shelter. He was talking to Captain Gloede and there is no legal place to sleep. He says a day center would provide more than 4,000 hours of shelter. He also says that we needed $150,000 in operating funds and with your $75K in the budget, the $25K the city added, the $25,000 from a private donor and a major builder, we are nearly there. He also reminds them about the MUM report.
Mom and her son talk about skateboarding. She talks about the small skateparks in the area, which are great until he progressed and they no longer provide a challenge. She talks about driving him all around the state to find challenging skate opportunities and she thinks that we could become a skate destination. She says her son learns from watching more experienced skaters. The son says he is 10 and has been skating since 5 years old.
Photographer who moved to Dane County in 2005 talks about being unemployed since Feb. 2011. He is homeless, sleeps in his car. Goes to Princeton Club to shower and use the internet. He is a criminal, he has no legal place to live. He lives on $950 a month disability, spends $100 a month on car insurance, $125 to a mini storage (10 x 20 garage) where he has a shop set up. I’m a criminal for being homeless, and that is what it is like for one of your disabled residents. He says there should be a traumatic brain injury program that is different from the developmental disability program. He needs someone to help him get back into society. He was hired at the post office in July, one of 10 out of 1000, he had to turn the job down because he would have lost his benefits. He talks about brushing his teeth and using the bathroom at the BP station. When will this change. He’s going home tonight to his car. He wants to be encouraged, but he will lose his SDS budget if he doesn’t find a home.
More support for the software for comprehensive planning. I took another break, I know, weak. It’s only one hour in, but I got up this morning at 4:45, drove to Milwaukee, did an 8 hour seminar and drove home and haven’t had a break and I”m tired! And just didn’t have the extra capacity necessary to comprehend Arnold Harris.
Briarpatch Executive Director talks about a cut in federal funding for homeless street outreach, after 6 years of funding. It was $100,000, about 70% of their funding. Wisconsin was shut out this year and no programs got funding. He asks for support of a $30,000 amendment to Briarpatch that will be brought to Personnel and Finance by Supervisor Sargent.
Trout Unlimited (restores trout streams and improves public access), thanks them for their hard work, asks for support of the budget items supporting them. Says there are good items in the conservation budget and are particularly pleased with the stream bank program. He talks about the creeks where work has been done and will be done. He says it is sobering to hear all the good ideas coming forward, can say that trout are the most important issues to come before them and he wishes them luck.
A MATC representative and resident of Truax Neighborhood shows up to speak about the Winter Center on Wright St. talks about safety concerns for the neighborhood, she says its a good idea, just not there.
A formerly homeless person who just moved to Madison talks about the day cetner being a good idea, he says luckily he was not disabled or sick or otherwise inhibited. He got out of homelessness with the help of people who showed compassion towards his situation. He says he was homeless in the south and that was easier, winter is coming, campgrounds are closing and people freeze to death every winter. He says that he also didn’t have to worry about his property being stolen, even by the police.
Speaker asks for support of Wind and Solar Improvements, Safety improvements for the bike trails and the software for regional planning. She says this is an investment in our future. Talks about road work at S & M and it costing $21M and the county spending $6M towards it, this is the third time the county is subsidizing improvements, but with proper planning we might not have needed to spend this money.
Southdale neighborhood resident talks about improvements needed to the neighborhood and is in support of $300,000 amendment. Second person also speaks to it.
Homeless guy speaks in support of the day center. He says there are all kinds of homeless in the city. He talks about them staying at the shelters, under bridges, outside, hanging out everywhere. Day center is a proposal to look after them. Winter is coming, wants to be in a warm building. Services are icing on the cake. Homeless cause problems, but we also need your help. WE get in the way sometimes, but if you move us to a good spot, we can get services to get us on our feet. Says the urgency is for being warm this winter.
East Madison Community Center staff person speaks against the Wright St. location next to a low-income housing project and is far away from the services they need. Adding 150 people added to the neighborhood would not be good. The are the former Allied Drive. People who come to the day shelter won’t stay there all day, but there isn’t any place for people to go but the college and the community center. They don’t have the capacity to help 150 more people at the community center – they can’t serve the needs of this population as well. The site is where youth walk to school every day. They don’t have the staffing to walk people to and from school. The older kids catch buses on E. Washington – all the youth in the neighborhood will walk by here twice a day unsupervised. She knows that not everyone is a criminal, but they have a higher prevalence of alcohol and drug use. There are worried about where people will go after 5 pm.
DD Coalition staff talks about cuts to the DD coalition and a pattern of cuts. Asks them to support the Health and Human Needs budget. Another person speaks to the history of support for the Developmental Disability services. Also asks for support of HHN budget.
People have left.
Another skateboard supporter. They ask all the skatepark supporters to stand up – there are probably 25 people standing. They talk about wanting to be part of the community and not being pushed to the margins. They talk about the things the city has done to make this happen and how the $200,000 would help them. They will just need to raise $250,000 after this from the private sector. He talks about various reports that the county has done and how the reports recommend positive spaces and activities for youth. He talks about how skateboarding cuts across age, race, socioeconomic lines He says it will be an economic boost as well.
Retired Navy Captain speaks in support of bus passes for disabled veterans. It’s a little over $8,000.
Pastor who moved here 12 years ago who grew up skateboarding talks about moving here and finding a community in the skateboard community.
Mother talks about disabled son and him being in the community, but says the cuts have put a hold on a lot of things that people with developmental disabilities are able to do. She talks about lack of transportation and staff to accompany them in the community, so they are becoming isolated. Supports the 2% cuts, there are great things in the budget, but we have to stop cutting or they will be more isolated than when they were in institutions. She also supports living wage for those who work with people with disabilities.
Supporter of the day center. Homelessness should not be a crime – for living in the streets. He also says that he is not advocating for any particular location, but there is no place in the city or county where people will come together and welcome the homeless. There are ways to resolve potential problems that might arise. He volunteers at the laundry program for the homeless that was set up by a private person with private donors and this is only a limited time each week. He has met several people volunteering there. One woman with 3 or 4 kids. 12 year old sleeps outside the car so there is enough room for the younger kids. They are not alcoholics or criminals. He knows another person who doesn’t have a mental health issue or alcohol issue that is living on the streets and he is out there until November 1 and then he will only have 60 days and he can’t get services. He is a talented out of worker person who was downsized, his savings ran out and he found himself on the street. Please approve the day center and not ship people out of town.
Support the conservation budget. Especially the connect kids with conservation dollars.
Audobon Society speaks in support of expansion and enhancement of parks and the environment and in support of the conservation fund.
Supporter of the conservation budget as proposed by Parisi, also supports the renewable energy programs. Another supporter of conservation fund.
Another person speaking to developmental disabilities services funding and how it effects him if he doesn’t have staff and other services.
A final skateboarder speaks.
People registered as follows:
3 – opposed to human services budget
1 – opposition to the budget
40 – support skatepark
23 – support budget
21 – support DD budget
6 – day center, homeless services, Briarpatch
6 – Human Services budget suport
2 – Sheila Stubbs support
So, there you have it, sorry its a little weak – long day. And I’m not done yet!
Categories: | Dane | Madison | Media