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Forum will examine issue of reducing size of Wauwatosa Common Council

Feb. 23, 2012

Should Wauwatosa reduce the size of its Common Council? That's the question that will be posed to voters in the form of a referendum on the April 3 election ballot.

To help voters understand the issue including the existing structure and its benefits and drawbacks, the Wauwatosa Chamber of Commerce will host a forum with a panel of former and sitting city officials March 15.

The 7 p.m. forum will be moderated by Rob Henken, president of the nonpartisan Public Policy Forum, in the Civic Center on the lower level of City Hall.

The public will have the opportunity to ask questions of the panel members: Jim Benz, former mayor and alderman; Craig Maher, former alderman and professor of government studies at the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh; Dennis McBride, 4th District alderman who pushed for the referendum and former alderman Joe Ptaszek.

The council has 16 members, two from each aldermanic district. There is no specific alternative number of representatives suggested in the referendum questions. Rather a "yes" vote simply would indicate the size should be smaller, while a "no" would mean the council should continue to operate at its existing size.

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