Today’s referendum ad

A little research later, and I now know who paid for this ad:

Brookfield High Schools
April 1st Referendum
-High School athletes NEED more gym space.
-Now High Schools are limited with only 5 Gym Stations.
-Referendum plans 6 new Gym stations plus 2 old gym stations, new gym lobbies, new locker rooms, and new gym storage.
-Old (failed) referendum “wanted” 6 more new gym stations.
-97% of all New construction (91,000 sq ft) at the High Schools will be spent on new gyms and athletic facilities.
-$21 Million, (more than one third of the total $62 Million referendum), will be spent on new gyms and athletic facilities.
-Referendum allows for “re-purposing” old gym space for academics.
-The 21 million dollar “Sport Package” is now embedded in the single referendum question. (Residents will not be able to vote it down separately like the could in last year’s referendum.)

If you agree that our athletes NEED $21 million dollars more gym space and facilities,
Please vote YES on April 1st High School Referendum (we appreciate your support)

Paid for by Brookfield residents for better schools.

I know the ad is illegal. I don’t think the person that ran it knows that, though. I wish that person had not, it makes it so much harder to argue one way or another when the rules aren’t followed.

By the way, my earlier profile was pretty much dead on. Also, you can expect a full-page version in the Brookfield/Elm Grove NOW on Thursday.


  1. Wisconsin State Statute – 11.23(1)
    (1) Any group or individual may promote or oppose a particular vote at any referendum in this state. Before making disbursements, receiving contributions or incurring obligations in excess of $25 in the aggregate in a calendar year for such purposes, the group or individual shall file a registration statement under s. 11.05 (1), (2) or (2r). In the case of a group the name and mailing address of each of its officers shall be given in the statement. Every group and every individual under this section shall designate a campaign depository account under s. 11.14. Every group shall appoint a treasurer, who may delegate authority but is jointly responsible for the actions of his or her authorized designee for purposes of civil liability under this chapter. The appropriate filing officer shall be notified by a group of any change in its treasurer within 10 days of the change under s. 11.05 (5). The treasurer of a group shall certify the correctness of each statement or report submitted by it under this chapter.

    You can bet the ad was more than $25. So, someone would need to file before spending this kind of money. According to the district, no group has for FOR or AGAINST the referendum to be voted in less than 3 weeks.

  2. Assuming this is a WHOM rather than a who, this law is unfortunate–free speech and all that.

  3. BrkfldDad says:

    This isn’t from our Citizens Against Blank Checks buddy is it? He’s been quiet for a long time.

  4. No Voter says:

    Maybe I’m the only one to whom this is so obvious, but the person(s) who paid for this ad are in fact actually trying a bit of reverse psychology. They are clearly AGAINST the referendum but pretend to be FOR the referendum and point out that most of the money is going to be spent on athletics, not education, so if that’s what you want (and presumably most district residents DON’T, especially the 60% no voters from last time) then you should vote FOR the referendum. A backhanded, Clintonian type of strategy (maybe Geraldine Ferraro paid for it)…

  5. No Voter (which I suspect you are not), you’re wrong. Since I know who this is I can vouch that the attempt was indeed tongue-in-cheek and not the “reverse psychology” you find so obvious.

    PS you need to find a name and stick to it if you want to keep commenting.

  6. No Voter says:

    Why would you think I’m not a no voter? I did in fact vote no on the previous referendum, and I’m undecided (but leaning towards no) on this one.

  7. Not for the referendum, just pithy.

  8. Dan, I don’t know this person, but I know the name. I have pretty good reason to believe the sincerity of a “vote no” effort.

  9. Dave Frank says:


    You are right they do. Kids are practicing for sports late into the evening because of the lack of space. The reality is that the majority of referendum is going to improving acedemic space. I know 97% of the new construction is the gym space, but that is a compromise from all the new construction in the old plan. It seems some poeple want it both ways by complaing about the old bloated plan and then complaining that all the new construction is for athletics. It doesn’t work for me.

    By the way, I don’t love this plan. I wish we had looked harder at one school. Sorry I am getting off topic here…..

  10. BrkfldDad says:

    Gibson is quoted in newwatch on JSOnline as saying the ad is misleading, only $14MM is going towards athletics, not $21MM.

  11. “I’m waiting for someone to give me good reasons why the athletics facilities DONT need a good overhaul.”

    Why should anyone since you don’t vote or pay taxes in Brookfield? You don’t have a horse in this race.

  12. And Dan, the facilities have gone downhill in the 5 years since you’ve graduated.

    How do we solve the atheltics problem? Combine the high schools into one, offer gym credit for participating in a sport which means we can sack the gym teachers and keep one who teaches the kids who dont wanna go out for a sport.

    Of course, this plan would mean we would need even more sports teams. But heck, I think it could work.