Late Monday afternoon, organizers of a petition drive to collect signatures to halt the sale of the Dilworth and Cherek properties to the city for development as park land brought 3,400 signatures to the Muskego city clerk's office.
The result of about a week's worth of work, Muskego for Ethical Government also delivered a letter to Mayor Kathy Chiaverotti's office to "cease all further steps to prepare, negotiate or draft an offer to purchase along with preparation of any other related documents for the city of Muskego to acquire lake park property."
Lorie Oliver, whose kitchen has been 'ground zero' for the organization of the petitions, said they had packed up signatures to be turned in last night, when "at least more arrived early this morning, so we ended up redoing the paperwork."
The city will have 15 days to respond to the petitions, and it's expected that legal counsel will make a determination if the action will indeed require a referendum.
"The amount of signatures is nearly double that we were required to turn in," Oliver said. "I'd hate to think that the city would take a stand against this. To think that they wouldn't feel they have to respond is unthinkable."
The referendum, should it come, will take place during the April election and will not require a special ballot. However, it would be an advisory referendum, which would mean the matter could again come to the common council to accept or ignore. Ironically, a referendum which returned a yes vote for the city to purchase the former Dandilion park land more than 30 years ago was disregarded by the council.
The April elections will also include contested races in all three districts up for grabs. Of the three incumbents running for re-election - Tracy Snead (D1), Neil Borgman (D3) and Dan Soltysiak (D5) - two had cast no votes (Borgman and Soltysiak) in the 4-3 vote that approved the resolution.