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11/13/11 Turbine trouble in Village of Cascade


by Eric Litke,


November 12, 2011 

Cascade officials were more than happy to talk publicly about their two wind turbines last summer, when the 120-foot generators made the village the first in the state to power its wastewater treatment plant solely by wind.

But one resident says village government was too quiet in the months leading up to construction, alleging in a lawsuit that the seven-member board violated state open meetings law by repeatedly discussing the $500,000 expenditure using vague agenda items that gave residents no warning or chance for input.

Susan Lodl, 60, of Cascade, filed the lawsuit in November 2010, and her effort garnered some judicial backing last month when Sheboygan County Circuit Court Judge Terence Bourke ruled there was enough evidence to proceed toward trial on the core allegations.

Lodl said she didn’t set out to sue the village that has been her home since 1974, but she was left with no recourse when the board responded to her initial objections with indifference and even hostility.

“A number of us started going to meetings, and we were treated quite rudely. A friend of mine was even called names,” she said. “I even told them at one of the board meetings, ‘Your agenda and your minutes do not coincide.’ And they just kept doing their thing. … They just blew me off as a disgruntled village resident.”

So Lodl decided to take a stand.

This Special Report appears in its entirety in the print edition of The Sheboygan Press. To read the complete story, pick up a paper from one of our many newsstands.


Written by Eric Litke, www.sheboyganpress.com 12 November 2011 

Facing a lawsuit alleging an array of open meetings violations, the Village of Cascade has responded in part by restricting public access to village government, removing meeting agendas and minutes from their website.

“They’re not required to, but if they really are trying to demonstrate a commitment to open government in the face of an open meetings lawsuit, to start providing less access and information to the citizens seems to be an odd step to take,” said attorney Matthew Fleming.

Fleming represents Susan Lodl, a Cascade resident who filed suit against the village in November 2010 alleging it repeatedly discussed the purchase of two wind turbines without adequately advising residents on agendas. The lawsuit details numerous meetings where minutes show the wind turbines were discussed but the agenda contained no mention or only a vague mention of the topic.

Those agendas and minutes are no longer accessible online, however.

This Special Report appears in its entirety in the print edition of The Sheboygan Press. To read the complete story, pick up a paper from one of our many newsstands.

Posted on Sunday, November 13, 2011 at 09:33AM by Registered CommenterThe BPRC Research Nerd | Comments Off

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