Three Candidates to Square off in Feb. 15 Primary
Phil Esche, Andy Reiland and Richard Badke are running for District 13 aldermen.
Three candidates are gunning for the seat on the Waukesha Common Council representing District 13 left open by Aldermen Rick Tortomasi, who is not seeking re-election . As a result, there will be a primary election Feb. 15.
Phil Esche, Richard Badke and Andy Reiland are running for the open seat. They have different reasons for running and different ideas as to how best serve the community in District 13.
Esche is running in part to improve the internal workings of Waukesha government, namely by improving unity and communications within the system, two areas he said he feels have suffered in recent years.
"I feel there's a change that needs to be made," Esche said. "My whole thought is a positive force running to help move Waukesha forward, and there's some issues in front of Waukesha that will have an immediate impact on the taxpayers."
Reiland said he will listen to the voters and make decisions that are in the best interest of the community.
"The main thing is to be a voice of the residents of the district and Waukesha," Reiland said. "I want to continue to protect our parks and recreation areas and continue to make our community safe."
Badke could not be reached for an interview.
While the candidates have different reasons for running, Esche and Reiland agree that the water situation in Waukesha is a top priority.
"The biggest thing is with the water," Esche said. "Sometimes ... the people involved are too close to a situation to really step back and look at things.
"They put their blinders on and drown out everything else that should be looked at."
Esche said he would keep an open mind and examine all possibilities regarding the city's future water supply if elected to the council.
Reiland said he hasn't taken an official stance on how to handle Waukesha's water dilemma, but thinks keeping the long-term ramifications of any decision in mind is essential.
"Long term, the community has to do something," said Reiland. "We can't really rely on our well water. The last thing we want to do is a short-term fix."
Esche said he would also make sure the Waukesha West Bypass project is handled properly, an issue he feels is pertinent to traffic safety in District 13.
"Something has to happen and we need to do it right," Esche said. "I know some lands may need to be altered in order to do this, but it has to happen."
Esche and Reiland agree that handling the city's budget is another important issue.
"It's imperative right now given the current economic conditions that the Common Council is very attentive to whatever expenditures they make to keep the city tax rate in line," Esche said. "Too many times the city government forgets that they are not spending their own money."
Reiland said he would keep an eye on the allocation of tax dollar funds.
"We all pay taxes," Reiland said. "I'll make sure our tax dollars are going to the right areas."
The top two candidates in the primary will advance to the spring election.
Name: Phil Esche
Address: 830 S. Comanche Lane
Education: Bachelor of Science in communication and journalism from University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point
Employment: Stein Garden Center, also teaches an advertising and marketing course at Waukesha County Technical College
Other: Graduate of Waukesha Business Alliance's Leadership Waukesha 18.
Name: Andy Reiland
Address: 1012 Fieldridge Court
Education: Bachelor of Arts in finance from Marquette University
Work: Safeway Services
Other: Board President of Wisconsin Cycling Association