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Village Board Trustee Candidate Forum

Village Board Trustee Candidate Forum

March 21
5:30 pm
- 7:30 pm


The Mount Horeb Area Chamber of Commerce and the Mount Horeb Area Economic Development Corporation invite you to a Candidate Forum.  All are welcome to attend this public meeting to learn more about the candidates and the issues. This will be a facilitated Q & A session with questions from the MHACC moderator and the audience.

MHACC and MHAEDC are thriving business organizations that strive to strengthen the economic business climate for the benefit of the entire community and its citizens. We believe it is our responsibility to raise awareness and facilitate discussion concerning issues deemed important by our memberships and the community. This will be an opportunity for all candidates to share their priorities regarding these issues. After the forum constituents may meet with the candidates informally.  There is five candidates vying for three seats.  The candidates are:

Ryan Czyzewski (I)- I have lived in the village since 2003, after marrying Amy [Hefty] Czyzewski in 2002.  I have young daughters, and I want them to be proud of the community they are raised in.  I have been a village Trustee since 2013, serving as Public Works Committee Chair and a member of the Utility Commission, Finance & Personnel Committee, Room Tax Commission and Business Park workgroup. I also represent the Village at the Dane County Cities & Villages Association.I have been active in the Mount Horeb community since moving to the village.  I’m an involved member of St. Michael the Archangel Parish.  As a member of the local Knights of Columbus, I am co-chair of its Tootsie Roll Drive, assist in organizing the Summer Frolic Norsk Run, and was previously Recorder for 12 years.  I am active with the Mount Horeb Chamber, serving on the Board since 2013 and as Vice President since 2014.  As a member of the Mount Horeb Area Economic Development Corporation since its inception, I’m now assisting with New Business Outreach.  I enjoy coaching my daughters’ sports teams and partaking in many of the fun activities our community has to offer.

I have been employed at Thompson Investment Management since 2002, serving as IT Manager since 2008.  I earned a Bachelor of Science in Business Management from Marian University and an MBA from Globe University.

I believe in investing in our village through smart growth.  Now is the time to nurture the investments we have made in our community to ensure continued growth of our tax base, preserve our outstanding quality of life and keep village taxes low.  I hope to have the continued opportunity to serve our community as one of your Trustees.

Michael Dale Goltz- I’m Michael Goltz and have been fortunate enough to call Mount Horeb my home since 1984. In May of 1988 I became an employee of the Village of Mount Horeb as a laborer  and retired in July of 2015 with 26 years of service as the Wastewater Superintendent.  The Village of Mount Horeb has been a wonderful place to call home and the people of the Village have treated me as if I was born here. In the past I have served on the Dane County MARC Board of directors and was Treasurer for the Wastewater Operators Association (Southern District), for many years. Having retired from the Army as a Master Sergeant E-8 with both Active and Reserve for the 84th Division. Being an active member of the Chamber of Commerce for past years has provided me with many unique opportunities to meet other professionals and understand how business is the backbone of a thriving community. It is truly time to give back service to the community that has provided me with the deep feelings of now calling Mount Horeb, WI my home.  If elected to serve the Village residents as a trustee I will continue the pro-active approach the past trustees have initiated in making Mount Horeb a destination to visit and never want to leave.

Steven Grindle (I) 
I was raised in Mount Horeb, on a dairy farm.  I graduated from Mount Horeb High School in 1974.  After graduation I was employed at Oscar Meyer in Madison, WI where I was a laborer, and then a union steward.  In 1982 with Gino and Kathy Gargano, we opened Gino’s Italian deli. I continued to work with Oscar Mayer, and in 1989 I became a temporary supervisor for the company. In 1991, I could no longer do both Oscar Mayer, and Gino’s Italian deli, I retired from Oscar Mayer to pursue my career with Gino’s Italian Deli, where I currently reside.

In 2009 I was appointed to the village board.  In 2011, 2013, & 2015 I was re-elected as village trustee.  Currently I am on the village finance committee, public safety committee, and the Mount Horeb Fire Department board.

I have been married to my wife, Jeanie, for 40 years.  We have two children, and four grandchildren.  My hobbies include, spending time with family, golf, and Canadian fishing trips.  I enjoy my job, and serving the citizens of Mount Horeb.

Rufus  Smith-  Rusty Smith, and his wife Anne, retired to 201 Westmoreland Drive in Mount Horeb in 2012 after serving as Network Engineer for a quarter century at UW-Madison.  Previous professional experience includes the University of Southern California and the IBM Corporation.One of his strengths is working with a variety of people who have a need for technology to help them do their work more efficiently.  Another is the ability to problem sole in a way that provides results to the largest number of people in a cost effective manner.   He has been a key leader in projects that had budgets ranging from tens of thousands of dollars to many hundreds of thousands of dollars.  These accomplishments allowed him to retire as emeritus academic staff at U.W. Madison.There are parallels between providing services and setting forward directions for a university or a village.  Neither generate funds independently as a business would.  Both rely on tax generated funds, grants and other sources of income.  Both need to be forward looking as a community of people with very diverse needs.Rusty developed a deep interest in Village policy when in 2013 he objected to a proposal before the Plan Commission to develop a mega complex of 234 apartments within one block of his home.  Rusty was instrumental in helping the Village finally approve a Plan for a more reasonable 82 apartment development, in line with the Village’s own Comprehensive Plan.Rusty wants to give-back to the Village, that he and he and Anne have come to love, with his experience, time and energy as a Village Trustee.  “The charm and uniqueness of this village must be maintained, while stimulating future growth that brings economic stability”.

Brent Yauchler – My name is Brent Yauchler and I am a business owner and resident of Mount Horeb.  My wife Dani and son Elliott and I have lived in Mount Horeb for the last 9 years and feel very lucky to be a part of such a vibrant and wonderful community.  Everyone we have met, worked and lived with has been welcoming and has embraced us as “locals” from the start.I originally started my business, The Electrician, Inc., in Baraboo, WI almost 13 years ago and moved our center of operations to Mount Horeb in 2012.  Through strategic planning, collaboration with our industry partners and working with the UW-Madison Small Business Development Center, our company has been able to sustain a high degree of customer satisfaction and quality of service.  Our company continues to grow year over year and employs several local people.

I am active in several local organizations as well.  I’m a club board member and past president of the local Rotary Club, a member of the Mount Horeb Food Pantry Board and a board and committee member for the Mount Horeb Area Economic Development Corporation.  I’m also serving as acting treasurer for the Madison chapter of Breaking Barriers Mentoring, Inc.

I feel incredibly fortunate to have a loving and supportive family, a successful business and to be able to live in a community like ours.  That being said, I look forward to the opportunity to be able to serve my community in the role of Village Board Trustee.

Also serving on the panel:
Randy Littel – The Village Board President position is an unopposed seat and we have invited the incumbent to be a part of the discussion.

 I am currently the President of Mount Horeb.  I have been honored to serve as your President for the last year and I am running for a two year term, unopposed.  I ran for the Board in 2010 and have served ever since.  I was appointed to the role as President by the Board when President Becker left the post a year ago.  My past experience includes being a Council member on the Monona City Council for 8 years from 1992-2000.  In both Monona and Mount Horeb, I have held a variety of committee positions, including Finance and Personnel, Plan commission, Park, Recreation and Forestry, Library, and Utilities, just to name a few.  I have also been heavily involved in the Mount Horeb Area School District, being involved with the recent Superintendent search, the Facilities committee, and serving as the School Liaison for the village.Personally, I am married to Renee for over 20 years.  We have two children in the district, ages 16 and 9.  I have been in the insurance industry for over 25 years, currently working at Humana.  I grew up on the near west side of Madison and have lived in Dane County my entire life.  We have lived in the Village since 2001.  My hobbies include home repair and improvement, (our house is 117 years old!) , And just enjoying our yard.  Oh, …and I like to decorate for the holidays…… as everyone knows! Mount Horeb is a wonderful place for raising a family!

Bios and candidate’s answers to one of the questions will be posted to this site in the upcoming weeks.  Watch for further updates.

Question #1:  Thinking about the next five years down the road, what is your short term and long term vision for the village and downtown?

Czyzewski response– In the short term, the village should continue its planned commercial growth.  By investing in our downtown, pushing for developers to build out the eastern corridor, and work to develop a southwest business park the village would see expansion of our tax base.  These projects would lead to more local jobs in the village and increased consumer base for our local retailers.  We need to continue to pursue the types of businesses that complement our existing ones.  I envision the perception of downtown to encompass more than Main Street, creating a natural extension to Front Street.

Goltz response- My primary short term goal is being able to address our parking situation, which effects all of our downtown businesses.  With our continued positive expansion, parking has become a critical issue that needs to be alleviated as soon as possible.

There is a small passage from our North side parking lot to Main Street.  It is not noticeable and very uninviting to business customers, especially in the evening hours.

One of my long term goals would be to actively pursue & establish a west side business park along Hwy 78 South.  It would provide industrial lots for both new and existing businesses that want to expand.  The area appears to be easily developable with great access to the Hwy 151 corridor.

Another future, long term goal would be to black top the existing gravel bike trail from South 4th St to Blue Mounds Road.  This would create a safe and accessible pathway and increase foot traffic to our local businesses.

Many future plans have been implemented, or are presently in the formation stage.  The current & past members of The Village Board & Chamber of Commerce have had a positive, proactive approach for sustainable growth which will be my focus for our village in years to come.

Grindle response-  In short term it will be the growth of our new TIF in the downtown area, along with the new Mount Horeb Police and Fire station building, and our sewer plant.  So, as you can see, we have a lot going on, but we need to figure out how to get more development in our TID 3.  We now have a new partner, the Mount Horeb Area Economic Development Group.  With their help we will be able to fill TID 3 with a long term goal of developing an industrial park, which will be on the edge of the Mount Horeb village; finally bringing us true manufacturing to the village area.

Little response-  For the short term, we are on a fantastic track.  We have several large projects just getting underway which will help with growth, but more importantly, improve our downtown area.  This growth helps everyone, the village, the school district, and the taxpayers of this great Village.  I joke when I use the phrase, “if you build it, they will come”.  Well, I believe it.  Our long term vision is starting now with the current development.  We have a great beginning and I only see it continuing.  TID 5 will likely help the growth in our other two TID districts as well.  Residents, developers, our village employees, business owners, and Dane County in general, are looking to Mount Horeb as the place to be.  It is my focus to help that continue.  We will maintain excellent services, spur growth to help the taxpayers and residents, and make this community even better than it is.

Smith response – The primary goal I have for the Village of Mount Horeb is to continue as a location known for being pleasant and charming for both the residents and visitors.  Economic stability and growth is vital to maintaining both of these qualities.  In the short term we need to make sure current local businesses can thrive while we need to proceed in a way that there are no dependencies on a few select businesses. That is not an issue today but is one that can be observed in other communities experiencing growth.

The Village already has plans and policies in place to continue the success of others who have gone before.  Yet forward progress depends on being able to keep the core values that created those successes while adjusting the implementation of growth to meet changing needs and changing times.  A team of trustees with varying backgrounds and experience working together will greatly aid in the success of approaching the future positively.  As a newcomer who has lived here for five years, and visited friends and business here for several decades, I feel that my contributions to the Village will be balanced with the past and the future in mind.

Yauchler response -I believe our community has been incredibly fortunate to have a group of engaged, intelligent and hard-working people participating in our Chamber of Commerce, Village offices and the recently-created Mount Horeb Area Economic Development Corporation.  It has been the vision, strategic planning, dedication and drive of these folks that has allowed our community to experience a considerable increase in the growth of commercial and multifamily development on the east side of town, as well as several upcoming projects along and adjacent to the downtown corridor – all of which has and will lead to supporting and helping to grow our already vibrant and attractive community.  I believe that, as a Village Board Trustee, it will be most beneficial to our community to continue to support both the Chamber, MHAEDC, our school district and our municipal districts in an effort to sustain the achievements and momentum created by the efforts of those before us.  I believe this will give opportunities for continued growth and development within our community the best chance for success, both in the short term and down the road.

I also recognize that our community was founded and has evolved over decades around a culture of hard-working, family-oriented folks.  Our tradition, history and culture is embedded in our community through the activities and involvement of our citizens, and within our existing businesses, buildings, green space and amenities.  These characteristics lend to what makes our small town so loved by the people who live, work and visit here, and I believe that work and projects to improve and develop our infrastructure, new businesses, existing businesses and the like should be approached with those important considerations in mind.