Incumbents get mixed results in Fredonia village trustees election

Bertram retains position but McCormick defeated as two newcomers get seats

From left, Jill Bertram, Richard Abegglen and Joshua Haas.
By 
JOE POIRIER
Ozaukee Press Staff

Incumbent Rudy McCormick lost his seat Tuesday in the Fredonia Village Board election, which had five candidates running for three spots. 

Out of the 681 votes cast, incumbent Jill Bertram received 376 (26.4%), while newcomer Joshua Haas collected the most votes with 383 (26.8%). Newcomer Richard Abegglen secured the other seat by getting 274 votes (19.3%). 

McCormick received 212 votes (14.9%) and Daniel Paulus got 170 (11.95%).

Bertram, who has been a village trustee since 2008, said serving on the board has been a rewarding experience and she would like to continue the work she has done on the Parks and Recreation and Finance committees. 

As chairman of the Parks and Recreation Committee, Bertram is planning to create a new park with a playground next to the post office, which she said will become a focal point for community events.

Bertram said she would like to see a grocery store in the village, mentioning the closest one is about eight miles away. 

She also said she is fiscally conservative as being a small business owner and wants to keep track of how the village’s money is being spent.

“People don’t always know where their tax dollars are going,” she said. “For me, checks and balances are really important when managing a local government.”

Haas moved to the village last year and applied for a vacated Village Board seat in December. He said he’s been going door-to-door speaking with residents and believes he can bring new ideas to the board.

Abegglen has experience in business management and would like to see the village grow economically.

All three election winners said they would like to see more businesses open in the village, which would increase its tax base.

“Small businesses are the backbone of the country,” Abegglen said.

“I would like to see additional restaurants and boutique shops come here to draw additional revenue and tourists.”

Haas said Highway 57 is an asset to the community and should help draw more businesses into the village through the corridor, noting more manufacturing jobs can bring in more residents.

Abegglen wants the village to offer more family-friendly activities and said he would work with Northern Ozaukee School District to create more after-school programs for youngsters.

Haas said the community is at risk of losing students to other school districts and supported the school district’s $14.95 million referendum that will be approved by voters on Tuesday. 

Haas said he will work with the schools to find more opportunities for students.

He also said he would like to use social media like Facebook to keep residents informed.

McCormick has served on the board since being appointed last December after former Trustee Lisa Dohrwardt resigned. 

He is also a member on the Parks and Recreation Committee.

Trustee Kris Roden did not seek re-election.

Members of the Village Board serve two-year terms.

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Wisconsin’s largest paid circulation community weekly newspaper. Serving Port Washington, Saukville, Grafton, Fredonia, Belgium, as well as Ozaukee County government. Locally owned and printed in Port Washington, Wisconsin.

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