Supervisor Michael Mayo Sr. Vows to Fight County Board Downsizing
Says Downsizing Would Increase Constituency, Make It Difficult to Represent All Residents
(MILWAUKEE) – Supv. Michael Mayo Sr. today criticized a resolution that passed the County Board by a 9-7 vote asking the state Legislature for permission to downsize, saying it is the wrong approach to County reform and that it would potentially hurt minority representation on the Board.
“I will fight hard for minority representation and make sure there is a balance in representation between the City of Milwaukee and the suburbs,” he said. “Downsizing is the wrong approach to reform. The resolution passed today was called a ‘tool’ for downsizing and reforming County governance. But this resolution is not a tool, it’s a mallet.”
Mayo, Chairman of the Transportation, Public Works and Transit Committee, said that downsizing the Board would actually mean that supervisors represented more people than members of the Legislature.
He said that even with 18 Board members, each Supervisor represented roughly 52,000. With a reduction of three Supervisors, that number would jump to about 67,000.
“How can you represent your constituents with a lack of resources and no staff?” he asked, referring to a bill before the state Legislature that would cut the salaries and the staff of the County Board. “The Legislature isn’t interested in reform, it’s interested in stripping power from the Board and giving it to the County Executive. That’s not reform, it’s a tremendous shift in power away from the Legislative branch.”
Mayo said that although he strongly opposes downsizing, he will work hard with his colleagues and his constituents to see that any reform such as downsizing will benefit the entire County.
“We might get lemons, but I’ll work to make sweet lemonade,” he said.
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