The New Berlin School Board’s request to continue holding regular monthly and any related special meetings at City Hall was approved by aldermen (4-2 vote) at the October 9 Common Council Meeting.
So, the School Board gets to use City Hall. And it does not pay a user fee.
That's ironic, considering-----
- We New Berlin residents/taxpayers aren’t allowed to use City Hall for meetings. (although our taxes pay/paid building, maintenance, repair, and utility costs for the facility) Community and citizen groups including Scout troops and charitable organizations, are not permitted to have their meetings at City Hall. We can not have voters forums there, either. Why? Because the Common Council adopted a policy last year restricting the use of our City Hall to City staff, local elected and appointed officials, and Federal legislatures.
- The School Board has imposed user fees on the City (and other groups) for school facility use. But the School Board wants or expects to use City facilities (City Hall) for free?!!!! What a double standard. (Of course, our taxes pay/paid building, maintenance, repair and utility costs for school facilities, too).
- Last August, the School Board unilaterally canceled a contract signed in 1968 that required the District and City to negotiate any changes to that agreement, including changes in charges (such as increases) for use of school facilities (mostly by Park & Rec. Dept.). The SB unilaterally opted to charge for school facility use and sent a new contract to the City. See NewBerlinNow article containing this quote: “This is not going to be a negotiated contract with the city, board president Keith Heun said. “It’s going to be ‘here’s our terms and conditions'.” ( The SB was unwilling to negotiate a contract? It resorted to 'my way or the highway' -type stance and swagger?!)
- The Common Council voted on December 11 to table its meeting agenda item “Agreement for Use of School Facilities-NB School District” after the City Attorney indicated there's an issue regarding any additional charges that may come up and how they are handled that needs to be resolved. There was some discussion on this topic at the Dec. 10 School Board Meeting, too.
- At the December 10 School Board Meeting, District Superintendent Paul Kreutzer assured the School Board that the Use of School Facilities Agreement does not give preferential treatment to the City. The District could choose to approve requests by groups for school facility use on a first come, first serve basis, give city groups higher priority than county groups, or whatever. It was also mentioned that some groups made it known they’d like to reserve a school facility for the maximum time the District would allow.