November 28, 2018
Sharon Corrigan, County Board Chair 608.333.2285
County Board

                                            Airport director, renewables chief set for confirmation Thursday


Two experienced county employees are up for major promotions before the Dane County Board at its regular bi-monthly meeting Thursday night.


The Board will consider the appointment of Kim Jones as director of the Dane County Regional Airport and John Welch as head of the newly-created Department of Waste and Renewables.


The meeting begins at 7 p.m. in Room 201 of the City-County Building.  Also on the agenda: a resolution opposing privatization of healthcare for veterans, an affordable housing project in Sun Prairie and a key land deal for the North Mendota Trail.


A resident of Sun Prairie, Jones has worked for the Dane County Regional Airport since 2004 and was named the Deputy Airport Director of Finance and Administration in 2011. She would join some 35 other women nationwide who lead airports, including facilities in Denver, Los Angeles and Philadelphia. Her base salary would be $183,350.


An engineer by training, Welch lives in Madison and has worked for Dane County since 2006, most recently as Solid Waste Division Manager. He would head a new county department, the Department of Waste and Renewables, which is designed to help support the county’s growth in renewable energy. His salary would be $119,500.


“Kim Jones and John Welch are both dedicated public servants who bring a wealth of experience to these important positions,” said County Board Chair Sharon Corrigan (District 26, Middleton). “I enthusiastically support them and am confident they will serve the county well in their new roles.”


 In addition to affirming the new department heads, the Board will also vote on a resolution sponsored by Supervisor Mary Kolar (District 1, Madison isthmus) opposing privatization of Veterans Administration healthcare and supporting the William Middleton VA Hospital in Dane County.


Some federal officials have proposed a “Choice” program designed to help veterans get access to local healthcare when they live far from a VA hospital. But Kolar thinks the program is being used to steadily transition veterans to private -- and ultimately more expensive – healthcare. 


"There is an effort at the national level to transition veterans’ care funding from VA facilities to private facilities but when more taxpayer dollars go to private care, less is available for maintaining the quality of our VA facilities,” said Kolar. “Less funding at VA hospitals and clinics means more problems used to justify for more privatization. This doesn’t help any veterans as their healthcare becomes more expensive and less available."


Also, the Board will consider a $300,000 award from the Affordable Housing Development Fund to Gorman & Company to finance the Main Street Apartments in the City of Sun Prairie. Gorman has partnered with the Dane County Housing Authority and was selected to receive low income housing tax credits from the Wisconsin Housing and Economic Development Authority (WHEDA). The development will include a total of 64 housing units, with 55 set aside for households with incomes between 30% and 60% of the local median income.


Finally, the Board will vote on a $200,000 easement on 5.8 acres of land along County M for a long-desired recreational and transportation amenity called the North Mendota Trail. The Town of Westport, Village of Waunakee and City of Middleton are working to complete various segments of the Trail, which will eventually have links to Pheasant Branch Conservancy, Mendota County Park, Schumacher Farm County Park and Governor Nelson State Park. The new easement would result in a nearly ½ mile stretch of trail connecting to Governor Nelson State Park.


About the County Board of Supervisors:

The 37-member, nonpartisan Dane County Board of Supervisors represents the needs and welfare of all residents of Dane County, Wisconsin, and sets policy for County operations in the areas of human needs, infrastructure, criminal justice, the environment and County finance.  The County Board meets twice monthly at 7 p.m. in Room 201 of the City-County Building.