A Better Mt. Pleasant
Press Release

Village of Mount Pleasant to Certify Foxconn Redevelopment & Blight Resolution in Illegal Meeting

“CDA lowers the bar from censorship to outright secrecy in attempt to avoid their own residents. Chairman Richardson should step down immediately.”

By - Jun 19th, 2018 12:50 pm

MT. PLEASANT, WI JUNE 19, 2018 – The Mount Pleasant Community Development Authority (CDA) plans a vote today to certify the Foxconn Redevelopment Plan, including the controversial resolution to “blight” 2900 acres of farmland and residences, according to a village agenda posted online.

The CDA agenda posted on Thursday, June 14, 2018, says the CDA meeting would take place at 3:00 pm at Village Hall – while the village calendar and a weekly meeting list posted on the village website indicated the meeting would take place at 3:30 pm.

A Better Mt. Pleasant contacted the Racine Journal Times (the newspaper of record) Tuesday morning after discovering no published notice of the CDA meeting was printed in the paper. The Journal Times reported they were never notified of a Community Development Authority meeting – which is required by state law.

“By standards clearly defined in the Wisconsin Open Meetings law, this CDA meeting is an illegal convening of a governmental body,” says Kelly Gallaher, spokesperson for the grassroots organization A Better Mt. Pleasant. “Sadly, this is not the first or even the second time Mr. Richardson has failed to uphold the basic responsibilities of CDA Chairman.”

On April 17, and May 9, 2018, CDA Chairman Richardson tried to prohibit members of the public from speaking about items on the agenda during public comments in CDA meetings.

Those actions are currently under review by the Wisconsin Attorney General after a formal request was made by Wisconsin State Representative Peter Barca.

“Chairman Richardson’s attempts to prevent the public from speaking to the CDA on actions which affect their homes and property ultimately failed. However, today he lowered the bar from censorship to outright secrecy and confusion,” says Gallaher.

“The Village of Mt. Pleasant is required by law to correctly notice all public meetings. As Chairman of the Community Development Authority, it is Mr. Richardson’s responsibility and obligation to ensure this happens. Mr. Richardson has shown too many times he does not take his responsibilities as chairman seriously. I believe he should offer his resignation immediately.”

In addition to the controversies surrounding CDA proceedings, the review, approval and posting of CDA minutes – the public record of actions, discussions and votes – have been delayed by as much as six months in recent days.

According to Gallaher, “The CDA is deliberating the plans and activities regarding the largest, most expensive development in the U.S. and Mr. Richardson can’t be bothered to even follow state law by correctly posting the minutes and notifications of CDA meetings. How can the public have any faith in his ability to responsibly execute this or future projects?”

A Better Mt. Pleasant is a nonpartisan, community organization dedicated to advancing a fair, accountable and transparent local government in Mount Pleasant, Wisconsin.

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