Monday, July 31, 2006

Sensenbrenner disses citizens group

An attempt by a 5th Congressional District citizens group to enlist their Congressman against a project in his district fell on deaf ears. You can guess who the Congressman was. From the Daily Reporter:

On Sunday night, the [Highway J Citizens Group] unsuccessfully tried to convince U.S. Rep. Jim Sensenbrenner to back its cause at the congressman’s Richfield Town Hall meeting.

“I have approached Congressman Sensenbrenner many times over the last seven years in regards to these problems, and all he ever says is that it’s not a federal issue and I should bug my state legislators,” said Gonyo. “He wants to pass the buck.”

Gonyo said 80 percent of the funds used for both the highway expansion and bridge project are federal and that the Federal Highway Administration signed off on them.

“We are suing in federal court over federal laws to stop a federal project, and yet (Sensenbrenner) is saying it’s a state and local issue,” Gonyo said.

Sensenbrenner could not be reached for comment.

The group has several local politicians in its corner, including Sensenbrenner’s opponent in this year’s election, Bryan Kennedy. State Rep. Don Pridemore, R-Hartford, Washington County Supervisor David Radermacher and state Assembly candidate Bob Collison were all present at a rally held prior to the town hall meeting. Citizens for Responsible Government is also supporting the group’s efforts.

In January, Pridemore and state Sen. Ted Kanavas, R-Brookfield, asked WisDOT not to enter any further contracts on the project until the lawsuit was settled.

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