Wausau residents to vote on possible government change in April
WAUSAU (WAOW) -
Wausau residents will have a chance to vote on if the city should change its form of government, which means possibly switching from a mayoral government to one run by a city administrator.
Wednesday, the city council voted 10 to 1 to include an advisory referendum on the issue this April.
Council members decided to make it an advisory referendum, which means the results of the vote aren't binding.
Officials say this will help them gauge the public's opinion.
In July, Mayor Jim Tipple called for a consultant to evaluate whether there should be a change in government.
Councilman Keene Winters then later presented a road map to create a task force on the issue.
On Wednesday, council members argued if residents should vote on the referendum this November or April.
Some said they wanted to take advantage of possible higher voter turnout in November.
Others argued November was too soon to educate the public.
"There's a whole lot of things to go into this and simply looking at it as if people already made up their mind, well they don't know what they made up their mind about if that's the case," said Tom Neal, a councilman, during the meeting.
"I think if we want to ask the public a question and we want their feedback in earnest, we need to ask them at a time when the most of them will be going out to vote," said Lisa Rasmussen, a council person, during the meeting.
The motion to move it to November failed narrowly, 5 to 6.
Mayor Tipple says he's setting up the consultation to take a closer look at the government change.
Council members say once the consultation is completed, they plan to educate the public on the findings.