Six State Senators will face off with their challengers at the voting booths tomorrow (Tuesday, August 9): Rob Cowles versus Nancy Nusbaum (district 2), Alberta Darling versus Sandra Pasch (district 8), Sheila Harsdorf versus Shelly Moore (district 10), Luther Olsen versus Fred Clark (district 14),A Map of Senate Districts involved in Recalls Randy Hopper versus Jessica King (district 18) and Dan Kapanke versus Jennifer Shilling (district 32). For a quick review of the candidates and the issues, click on the image to the left (or alternately click here). This will open a clickable map of the elections in a separate window. There’s summary information about the races, available by hovering your mouse over a Senate District, and clicking the District connects you to additional candidate information including endorsements of the candidates by PACs, unions and public welfare organizations. There are also links to the Voter Public Access website, that will tell you precisely which Senate District you’re in, and where you go to vote.

By the end of the day Tuesday, we may know if the Republicans are going to hang on to the State Senate or not. However, there will be two more recall races a week from tomorrow, so this could be a drawn-out nail-biter.





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Tuesday, July 12, there’s a Primary election for Senate District 2. Remember to vote, if you live in the northern or eastern part of Little Chute, or in any part of Senate district 2 outside of Little Chute. This district covers parts of Outagamie, Shawano, Oconto and Brown counties.

Map of Senate District 2 in the Little Chute and Kaukauna area

The incumbent in this election is State Senator Rob Cowles, a Republican ( He has no opposition on the Republican ticket, so there is only a Democratic party primary on Tuesday. There are two candidates on the Democratic Primary ticket: Nancy Nusbaum ( and Otto Junkermann (, and

Because Senate district 2 cuts through Little Chute, only residents in the northern and eastern wards will go to the polls Tuesday. Residents in wards 2, 8, 12, 13, 16, 17, 18 and 19 will vote at the Village Hall Tuesday, while those in wards 1, 4, 9, 10 and 15 will vote at the Civic Center. Residents in wards 3, 5, 6, 7, 11 and 14 will not vote in this election, because they’re in Senate district 1, not district 2. Click on the map above to open a new window of the Senate Districts map at the Wisconsin Interactive Map Server. There is also a detailed ward map of Little Chute at (in PDF format, 290 KB).

The General Election for Senate district 2 will take place on Tuesday, August 9 between Republican Senator Rob Cowles and the winner of Tuesday’s Democratic primary.

As confusing as all this may be for our Village, it’s even more complicated when you look at the Fox Valley as a whole. There are two more Democratic party primaries in the Fox Valley on Tuesday, for Senate districts 14 and 18. The other Senate District in the Fox Valley that is undergoing a recall election is Senate district 30. There is no primary for Senate district 30, because this district has only one Democrat (the incumbent) and one Republican (the challenger).

The General election will take place on Tuesday, July 19 for Senate district 30. The General election will take place on August 9 for Senate districts 14 and 18, just as it will for Little Chute’s Senate District 2 race.





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OK. I’ve had writer’s block since April. I keep focusing on politics instead of fun things like CheeseFest and Memorial and Flag Day parades and sports and such. Focused, but unable to write about it. Much to my own dismay and distress.

I keep waiting for, I don’t know, reasonableness maybe? Civility, perhaps. Or maybe just congratulations for the Victor by the Vanquished after a hotly contested election or a difficult legislative vote. And then the welcome sight of everyone moving on with the next order of business for the state, or county, or municipality.

I just try to envision the astonishing sight of the minority being respectful of the majority’s will and decisions. And the equally astonishing sight of the majority being respectful of the minority’s rights and perspectives.

Or some such.

Let’s see. We had a very close Supreme Court election in April, with a wildly erroneous unofficial result on election day, and an official margin of victory of less that one-half of one percent in favor of Justice David Prosser. Then we had a protracted recount through May, requested by the candidate who took second place in this very close election, Joanne Kloppenburg. And a lot of grumbling from Republicans that she didn’t have to pay for the recount, since the initial margin of victory was so small. But to me, continue reading…

Interesting Election results last week !

In Little Chute, we had a landslide victory for Mike Vanden Berg for Village President. In addition, the two incumbent Trustees (and one retiring Trustee) were replaced by challengers. This means that in little more than a year, all of the Village Board and the Village President have been replaced, with the exception of Skip Smith, who was defeated for re-election in 2010, and then elected again last Tuesday.

Also interesting, is that Bob Berken is the only “new” Trustee elected to the Village Board, in the sense that all of the others elected last Tuesday have served prior terms on the Board of Trustees. Bill Peerenboom, for instance, served as a Trustee in the past, hasn’t served as a Trustee for a number of years, and was elected Tuesday to another two-year term. And of course, the three sitting Trustees elected in 2010, Tammy Frassetto, Jim Hietpas and Dan Mahlik, now each have a year’s experience as Trustees as well. An interesting mix of experience with new faces !

At the county level, the County Executive race ended with a victory for Tom Nelson. In addition, Lori O’Bright won the County Clerk’s race. And at the state level, the result of the Supreme Court race appears to be David Prosser, but the official results won’t be available from the Government Accountability Board until the County Boards of Canvassers have completed their work. A recount is still a possibility after that work is done.

The Candidate Summary Tables have been updated to show the winners in each race.

A sincere “Thank You” to the Old Country Buffet in Appleton, and the Kimberly – Little Chute Public Library for hosting the candidate interviews. They provided quiet rooms and a relaxed atmosphere for conducting the interviews.

In other news, Wisconsin was hit by several tornadoes on Sunday, one of them in Kaukauna, where there was major damage to homes and other property. Coverage can be found at WBAY, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, the Wisconsin Ag Connection and the Post Crescent. Many volunteers are already assisting residents. A relief account has been set up at the Unison Credit Union to help those affected by the tornado. Donations can be made at any of the 4 Unison Credit Union locations. Our prayers and thoughts will be with the families affected by the storms that passed through our state and surrounding states.

Looking ahead, tomorrow (Wednesday, April 13) there will be a Wisconsin State Joint Finance Committee (JFC) listening session on the budget bill in Neenah. This listening session will be held at the Pickard Civic Auditorium of Neenah High School, 1275 Tullar Road, Neenah between 10 AM and 6 PM. Testimony will be limited to two (2) minutes per speaker.

If you support the Governor’s budget actions, please consider attending the listening session and voicing your thoughts. If you don’t support the Governor’s budget actions, please consider attending and voicing your thoughts, too. Our legislators need feedback from us if they’re going to govern effectively. If you can’t make it tomorrow, you can email your comments and concerns to You can also contact the committee’s Senate Chair Alberta Darling or Assembly Chair Robin Vos.

If you want to contact your legislators directly, you can always find their contact information at the Wisconsin State Senators page or the Wisconsin State Representatives page. These pages are lists of legislators in the Senate and Assembly. But there are also links on these pages that allow you to find your legislators by your address, municipality or by using maps.

Lastly, there is a new round of sewer lateral replacement mandates going around the Village. There will eventually be about 600 households (out of 4000 or so) in Little Chute that already have replaced or still have to replace their clay sewer laterals, by Village ordinance. The cost will run around $2,000 per household, but can go much higher, depending on the individual situation. The mandate is claimed to be necessary to meet the Heart of the Valley Metropolitan Sewerage District (HoV) requirements for “I/I”. “I/I” is short for “Inflow and Infiltration” the water that flows into the Sewer System from non-sewerage sources (like rain). There is no cost-sharing with the Village for the sewer lateral replacements, because the laterals are all privately-owned pipes, not Village-owned pipes. For more information, you should attend the Informational Meeting held in the Community Room at the Village Hall, 108 W. Main Street, Little Chute, on Monday, April 18, 2011 at 6:00 p.m. The Village staff will try to answer any questions or concerns you may have at the meeting.





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The Spring 2011 General Election will be held on Tuesday, April 5. There are 19 candidates running for 11 different offices that affect us in Little Chute. The offices include two Lower Court races where the candidates are running uncontested, and a hotly contested Wisconsin Supreme Court race. There are the County Executive and County Clerk races in Outagamie County. And in Little Chute, there are races for Village President, three Village Trustees and two School Board positions.

We’ve completed podcast interviews with Tom Nelson and Jack Voight who are running for County Executive. We also have new interviews with Brian Joosten, Bill Peerenboom, Bob Berken, John Elrick and Don Van Deurzen competing for three Village Trustee seats. And the podcast interviews with Mike Vanden Berg and Chuck Fischer, running for Village President, are still available as well.

We’ve also got Candidate Summary Tables and a Candidates Contact Information Page, with name, phone number(s), email, website and party (where applicable) for each of the candidates.

Please remember to vote tomorrow (Tuesday, April 5).  And I hope that these Podcasts help you make an informed choice !!





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