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Write-in candidate emerges in City of Oconomowoc District 3

10-year resident Joe Warren emerges as challenger

Feb. 27, 2013

City of Oconomowoc - A write-in candidate for the Third District emerged at last week's Common Council meeting. Joe Warren, who has lived in Oconomowoc for 10 years, has decided to run for the post, creating a race for incumbent Mike Miller.

Warren, who lives at 1129 Emerson Drive, said he has attended nearly every Common Council meeting for the past year and a half, after the council passed a resolution on the extension of Thackeray Trail, which is in his neighborhood.

The city is studying an extension of Thackeray Trail from Silver Lake Street to Summit Avenue at the same time as the Highway 67 reconstruction. The city has been studying extending Thackeray since 2011. A group of residents in Whitman Hills Park subdivision is against the idea.

While Warren has been involved with the group opposing to Thackeray's extension, he said he's also been interested in development downtown.

"I do favor downtown development, and I don't mind the plans for expansion of Village Green, but I don't like the Fowler Lake Village," he said. The city recently approved a memorandum of understanding with developer Jeff Seymour to move his multiuse development, formerly called Rockwell, from its original site on St. Paul and Pleasant streets to an area closer to Fowler Lake behind City Hall.

Warren said he's also looked at the shape of lake community development in Pewaukee and Delafield and wonders if the city can work to create the same ambience established there.

Warren is a full-time engineer with a firm in Menomonee Falls, where he has worked for the past 20 years. When he married his wife 10 years ago he moved to the city; he said she has lived in the city for 25 years and encouraged him to run. He said he's also been tossing around the idea and remembered a comment by Mayor Jim Daley urging residents to run for office and serve their community.

"I know the mayor complained about unchallenged positions so I thought I'll take a shot at it. It doesn't hurt to get your name out there so people recognize you," he said.

According to the meeting minutes, Daley applauded Warren's interest, wished him good luck and said he could contact him as a resource. Miller also congratulated Warren on his candidacy.

Because he missed the filing deadline, those who want to vote for Warren will have to write his name on the ballot under a write-in candidate.

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