It's easy to overlook the importance of the Dane County Board, and County Board elections, when we think about politics here in the Madison area. But the Board determines environmental, land use, and human services policy for the entire county, including Madison. As these ratings show, there's an enormous difference in the way liberal and conservative County Board members vote on these issues.
The first two charts show ratings for every County Board Supervisor based on their votes on environmental (1st chart) and non-environmental (2nd chart) issues since August 2006. I've grouped the liberal Supervisors (blue) and the conservative Supervisors (red) so you can see the rather astonishing contrast. The average score is more than 90% for liberals verses less than 20% for conservatives. Click on the charts for larger versions.
Below are the individual voting records of each Supervisor for every issue I used in my ratings. I ignored absences and abstentions when I calculated the percentage ratings, but they're shown in the vote records. Some County Board members miss a heck of a lot of meetings, and you should consider that when you evaluate them.
Finally, here's info about each vote that went into these ratings. The numbering corresponds to the charts above. For more details go to the Dane County Board Minutes and Agendas web page, and use the dates in the tables below to find the appropriate minutes. Keep in mind that many of these votes are on amendments or proceedural moves, so you may have to work backwards through the history of the issue to really understand what's going on.
|Vote #||Date||Minutes Page||Item||Significance|
|1||8/17/2006||108-109||Res. 73||Purchase of conservation land - Dunn, Pleasant Springs.|
|2||9/21/2006||147-148||Res. 102||Delay action on purchase of land next to Brigham Park.|
|3||9/21/2006||150-151||Res. 103||Independent study on power lines.|
|4||11/15/2006||193||Budget||Cut conservation fund from $5 million to $1 million.|
|5||2/1/2007||269||Petition 9335||Zoning change to permit development adjacent to Military Ridge Trail.|
|6||2/1/2007||270||Petition 9632||Re-refer loosening zoning restrictions - Blue Mounds|
|7||3/1/2007||294-320||Ord. Am. 26||Loosen floodplain restrictions. (Sub. 2).|
|8||4/5/2007||371-372||Ord. Am. 34||Delay effective date of Coal tar sealcoat restrictions.|
|9||5/2/2007||26-28||Res. 290||Delay action on Bio-Ag, Town of Dunn.|
|10||8/16/2007||107||Petition 9721||Zoning change to permit construction - Vermont.|
|11||8/16/2007||114-116||Res. 57 Sub. 2||RTA - Adoption of Res. 57 Sub. 2.|
|12||9/6/2007||134-135||Petition 9611||Zoning change to permit construction - Vermont.|
|13||9/20/2007||146-147||Petition 9474||Re-refer zoning change to permit development - Springfield.|
|14||9/20/2007||155-157||Res. 94||Motion to cut Conservation Fund.|
|15||11/1/2007||207-209||Res. 127||Delay action on Saddlebrook purchase.|
|16||12/6/2008||244||Petition 9474||Zoning change to permit development - Springfield.|
|17||12/20/2008||271-274||Ord. Am. 26||Postpone action on Transfer of Development Rights (TDR).|
HUMAN SERVICES & OTHER VOTES:
|Vote #||Date||Minutes Page||Item||Significance|
|1||6/1/2006||47||Res. 36||Retirement incentive for county employees to reduce need for layoffs.|
|2||8/17/2006||110-111||Res. 35||Honor US Troops - includes troops home language.|
|3||9/7/2006||131-134||Ord. Am. 7||Forbids housing discrimination based on receipt of "Section 8" assistance.|
|4||10/5/2006||174-175||Res. 110||Opposition to WI referendum banning gay marriage and civil unions.|
|5||1/4/2007||244-245||Ord.Am. 27||Right of nursing mothers to breast feed in public locations.|
|6||4/19/2007||8||Ord. Am. 17||Motion to permit "Section 8" housing discrimination, would reverse #3.|
|7||6/21/2007||62-63||Ord. Am. 2. Sub. 1||Requires county contractors to comply with fair labor standards.|
|8||8/16/2007||118-121||Res. 60||Impeach Bush & Cheney.|
|9||9/20/2007||153-155||Ord. Am. 12|| Forbids county from profiting on phone calls and other services provided to jail inmates.|
|10||10/4/2007||167-169||Ord. Am. 18||Strengthen fair housing requirements and enforcement.|
|11||10/18/2007||189-190||Ord. Am. 19||Family medical leave|
|12||11/12/2007||217-224||Budget||Add 12 new sheriff's deputies without offsetting revenue|
1. Due to his voting record I listed Richard Brown as a conservative despite the fact that he was endorsed by the Democratic Party in his last run. The Dem Party actually endorsed Lisa Subeck against him this time around, and Brown was eliminated in the primary.
2. Although I did the ratings and made the charts, I didn't compile the actual vote data. Many thanks to my co-conspirator who did most of the hard work to make this post possible.
3. I apologize for using images rather than tables, but blogger has a hard time dealing with anything other than very simple tables.