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Racine City Hall, photographed showing the new landscaping. 

RACINE — City aldermen opted not to act Tuesday on a request by the organization behind Racine’s Fourth of July parade to continue building floats in a Water Street building.

The conversation was sparked by Racine’s plan to demolish one of the facilities that houses float building as part of a new direction for riverfront development. In a written request to the City Council, the organization’s Board of Directors asked for access to the building until it is razed or sold.

“This building, due to its location and door heights, fits our needs perfectly,” the letter states. “With your help in securing this building for use by our organization, we can continue to build the quality of the parade.”

City Council members discussed with city staff Tuesday the available options and associated liabilities to allow the organization to remain in the building. Some aldermen indicated they wanted to work with Fourth Fest of Greater Racine, either by determining a suitable arrangement in which float building could remain at 1010 Water St. or by helping Fourth Fest find a new spot.

The building is not the city’s property at this time, staff said. Without ownership, the Committee of the Whole voted only to receive and file the matter.

Part-time mayor talk deferred

Aldermen deferred discussion of a proposal to reduce the mayor’s office to a part-time level, which they were scheduled to address during Tuesday’s Committee of the Whole meeting. The idea was proposed by 12th District Alderman Henry Perez, who was absent from the session.

Perez previously told The Journal Times that he does not think the city needs both a full-time mayor and a city administrator.

City Council President Dennis Wiser, who represents the 10th District, told The Journal Times prior to Tuesday’s meeting that he did not see the idea as a prudent move for Racine. Wiser filled the seat after John Dickert left office and before Mayor Cory Mason was elected; he said he believes the workload necessitates full-time hours.

Because the mayor is an elected position, the council could reduce only the mayor’s income, Wiser said. He said he thinks a smaller salary would deter potential candidates from running for the office.



Sari Lesk covers the City of Racine, Gateway and UW-Parkside. She is new to the community and moonlights as an amateur baker.

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