Can the Madison Common Council hold a police chief accountable?

By Greg Gelembiuk, Amelia Royko-Maurer and Nathan Royko-Maurer — Let's say we live in Madison, Wisconsin, where the chief of police has violated his own departmental rules and, in the spirit of law enforcement, we feel it is our duty to hold him accountable at a local level. How should we do this? Continue reading

Will the seventh site be lucky for a homeless day resource center?

By Dane County Supervisor Heidi Wegleitner — When and where will a day center for homeless people ever open? Over the last three and a half years, the County has pursued many different sites, some better than others, but ultimately resulting in continued delays, frustrated plans, wasted time and resources, and discouraged advocates. The center was planned for Wright Street, then 827 E. Washington Ave., Lien Road, Martin Street, Bellini’s, 1326 E. Washington (Messner’s), and now 615 E. Washington Ave., at the former Chamber of Commerce building.Is this latest building finally the development site that will make this long-awaited, much-needed project a reality? Continue reading

City Council: File Complaint Against Chief Koval

When is comes to policing issues, the Madison community has been through a significant amount of divisiveness and turmoil again this month.  It  started with the threatening and inflammatory blog by our Chief of Police, Mike Koval.  This was quickly followed by his contentious and disrespectful antics at the council meeting of June 7th.  And when things started to cool down politically, the community was rocked by the shocking video of Madison police officers beating, kicking and tasing a young black woman, Genele Laird.   “Some responses to this inexcusably brutal arrest suggest that the chief has been successful in creating a false dichotomy between concern for police as human beings and necessary criticism of wrongful police behavior,” said Sue Pastor, Progressive Dane Co-Chair. Continue reading

Madison Public Market: Re-visioning our twenty-first century Food Economy

By Meghan Blake-Horst —A dream of an inclusive and equitable Madison is in the forefront of many Madisonians’ minds. We have seen the studies and see these disparities in our food pantries, our schools, on the streets, in our jails and in the job market. We are in a crisis, and it is imperative that we work collaboratively and think of innovate ways to retool our community for the real needs of our 21st century workforce needs. Continue reading

A Different Look at Participatory Budgeting: Realistic Possibilities for Neighborhood Engagement and Equity

By Sue Pastor — Under the umbrella of “Greater Madison Engaged,” a number of groups brought area residents and public officials together in May for a day of conversation about civic engagement. Awareness seems to be increasing that our “technologies” for participation, such as the classic three-minute comment at public meetings, do not produce a swarm of residents eager to contribute—and have not produced a landscape of equal opportunity in our community. A variation on participatory budgeting may be a way to address the intersection of public participation and equity, with a goal of equitable participation toward more equitable outcomes. Continue reading

UW Alumni Urge UW Foundation to Divest from Fossil Fuels

A group of UW–Madison alumni will honor Earth Day by presenting to the UW Foundation an Open Letter, urging divestment from fossil fuels and reinvestment in renewable energy. The Open Letter, signed by more than 250 alumni and friends, will be presented to the Foundation on Friday, April 29, at 12:30pm, following a march from Union South on the UW–Madison campus. UW alumni also will present a simulated check representing $7,000 in donations diverted from the Foundation and invested instead in fossil-free funds through the Multi-School Divestment Fund. Continue reading

Join the Racial Justice Tipping Point campaign!

By Z! Haukeness, Wisconsin Network for Peace and Justice organizer — Wisconsin Network for Peace and Justice (WNPJ) has launched a project to engage 3.5% of Wisconsin’s population in a campaign called the Racial Justice Tipping Point (RJTP): that’s 200,000 people in Wisconsin and 8,500 in Madison. We will use grassroots organizing strategies to not only bring people together, but to take the big and small steps to make the big shifts that we need in order to make Wisconsin a more racially equitable state. We will be bringing groups together for a Kickoff Gathering on May 21 in Madison to train people to engage others in their local areas. The gathering will be held at James Reeb Unitarian Universalist Congregation at 2146 E. Johnson St. in Madison, from 9am to 5pm with lunch served. Continue reading

Crunch time on MATC plan to unload downtown campus

By Jody Knauss — Though some details have changed, MATC leadership continues full-speed ahead on its shortsighted plan to vacate the Downtown Education Center (DTEC) at 211 N. Carroll St. On April 6, President Jack Daniels asked the college’s Board of Trustees for permission to offer developers a minimum 50-year lease on the DTEC property, including the right to demolish the building and redevelop the entire block. Previously, Daniels had suggested selling the property outright. Community forums are scheduled for April 12, 6pm at DTEC and April 14, 6pm at Fountain of Life Church, 633 W. Badger Rd. (east of Park Street). A special MATC Board meeting to take public comment will be held on April 20 at Truax (Main Building, Room B3243/B3253), 4:30pm. Continue reading

Hearing in Dane County Landowner Lawsuit vs. Enbridge — Pipeline Cleanup Insurance

From 350 Madison — Hearing Monday, April 11, 1:30pm — Dane County Circuit Court, 217 S. Hamilton St., fifth floor, Courtroom 5D, Branch 9 Continue reading

Progessive Dane Seeks Additional Reform to City Council Process

Progressive Dane issued the following press release this week.  If you are interested in working on these issues - no experience necessary!  Simply contact Brenda Konkel or Mary Anglim (co-chairs of the policy committee).  brendakonkel@gmail.com or mtanglim@gmail.com Continue reading