Posts tagged ‘Lake Michigan’

June 14, 2011

Enlightenment from Bruce Murphy

by thoughtfulconservative

You have to go all the way down to the “Buzz” section, but there it is

-Waukesha Mayor Jeff Scrima’s proposal to have a referendum to approve or reject the idea of buying water from Lake Michigan probably puts him on the side of average folks in the city and in opposition to nearly the entire leadership community of Waukesha. This is turning into a bizarre soap opera that could continue right through his four-year term.

via Inside Milwaukee – Dine, Shop, Entertainment and more.

If so, should we expect to see an increase in folks running against sitting council members who are roughly 12-3 against the mayor?

May 5, 2010

Waukesha water woes?

by thoughtfulconservative

So, did Waukesha get a glimpse of things to come? In a flurry of activity recently, we saw:

1. The Milwaukee County Board voted 13-3 on April 22 to oppose the Waukesha’s water plan.

Ostensibly the vote was to protect the county’s streams from pollution and erosion, but the comments from board members seems to indicate a different motivation, the kind you normally see from children.

“You have been sidestepped on this process,” said one. “We’ve been treated purely as an afterthought,” said another.

“They do not care about the concerns of Milwaukee County,” replied another.

“Why should I trust them?”

“They get the water and we get – I don’t want to say it – we get everything else,” intoned another.


Waukesha’s water utility manager, Dan Duchniak disagreed with the assessment, claiming that the water Waukesha puts into the creeks will be cleaner than the water flowing there now.

To be fair, the County Board is excluded from the process of approving or disapproving Waukesha’s request. The DNR and the Great Lakes states are the ones who will sign off on the request.

Racine’s representative Cory Mason is on record opposing dumping of Waukesha waste water in the Root River. (A tip of the conservative ball cap to James Rowen who recently posted on how new phosphorus rules could add to any plan’s costs.

2. Milwaukee aldermen and Waukesha’s new mayor, Jeff Scrima, traded letters about requirements for receiving Milwaukee water.

Scrima contended during the recent campaign that if Waukesha didn’t keep its options open it would lose some of its sovereignty to Milwaukee. He alleged that somehow, Milwaukee will use Waukesha’s needs for water to advance some dastardly purpose.

The water saga continues and will stretch well into the foreseeable future.

If you’ve been living in a cave the last few years, Waukesha needs water because of elevated levels of radium. Lake Michigan seems to have a lot of water and Waukesha would like to get some, but the Great Lakes Compact requires returning the water to Lake Michigan.

Waukesha’s plan, sent to the DNR earlier this month, is to return the water to Underwood Creek where it would flow to the Menomonee River and back to Lake Michigan.

Waukesha is somewhat under the gun, facing a 2018 deadline for cleaning up there water.

People talk regional cooperation but the playing out is a little more difficult. The suburbs think Milwaukee wants their tax dollars. Milwaukee thinks the suburbs are using their infrastructure without paying for it.

Obviously, more work needs to be done. Like maybe growing up and behaving like adults.

3. Two neighboring local governments have expressed concern about the city’s plan to drill shallow wells as a backup measure. The major concern here seems to be the potential for privately owned wells going dry as Waukesha sucks water from the planned area.

The road is long, the opposition varied and the clock is ticking.

And if both options go down in flames, what’s left?

There’s a lesson for communities everywhere—don’t outgrow your water supply.

Yeah, like they will pay attention.

February 2, 2008

Mayor optimistic on lake water

by thoughtfulconservative

Have you ever seen the mayor of Waukesha not optimistic?


October 15, 2007

Is the Journal Sentinel proposing a trade?

by thoughtfulconservative

Bus route 9 for Lake Michigan water?

As everyone who isn’t living under a radium-laced rock knows, several Waukesha County communities would like to get water from Lake Michigan. As long as those communities use water wisely and return that water to the Great Lakes’ natural basin, they should get it.

I’m thinking the environmentalists are already not liking where this is going.

But the search for water took another political hit last week, not from anyone in Milwaukee County but from Waukesha County supervisors who apparently can’t tell when their interests and those of Milwaukee County converge.

The Waukesha County Board’s Public Works Committee endorsed a plan to eliminate the No. 9 bus route, one of several commuter bus routes the county funds – in this case, one that brings workers to the county from Milwaukee. The committee also voted to increase the fee on another Milwaukee-Waukesha County route, the No. 10, which connects with Waukesha Transit buses at Brookfield Square mall. [Emphasis mine]

There’s the bus route part of the trade. So?

By themselves, the actions may not be significant – unless you happen to be a worker who uses the service – but in the larger scheme of things, they could cause some harm. Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett and others had pleaded for Waukesha County to spare the No. 9.

Which, as has been pointed out before, has 35 riders per day (3 per trip?). The companies involved who say this is vital have no interest in ponying up even a token amount.

Having rebuffed Barrett on this, how amenable do supervisors think the City of Milwaukee is going to be on other matters of regional cooperation, such as water?

Well, I don’t think it’s up to the City of Milwaukee. And the environmentalists will fight this hard no matter what the city says. Not that I necessarily believe them to be wrong here.

And although I’m sure the County Board would love to help Waukesha City (as well as the others) with its water problems (cough, cough), how much involvement does the county have in this?

So if we keep the bus route, we can get Lake Michigan water? Sounds like a deal to me.