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A 20-year veteran of the Dane County Board, David Wiganowsky, faces a challenge April 1 from Andrew Schauer, a union attorney. Wiganowsky, a conservative business owner, is also up against the 2011 redistricting that took away rural areas he had long represented and added new territory, including sections of Madison’s Far East Side.

Andrew Schauer

Age: 37

Address: 5336 Congress Avenue, #2, Madison

Current job: Staff attorney, Wisconsin Professional Police Association union

Political experience: Former commissioner and vice president, Milwaukee City Services Commission

Other public service: Volunteer, Government Accountability Project through the Lutheran Volunteer Corps

Education: Bachelor’s degree in political science and theology, Marquette University; law degree, UW Law School

David Wiganowsky (I)

Age: 64

Address: 3363 Burke Road, Sun Prairie

Current job: Self-employed, Wiggies restaurant and bar

Political experience: President, Madison-Dane County Tavern League; director, Wisconsin Tavern League; chairman, town of Burke board; member, Dane County Board; member, many county committees, commissions and task forces

Other public service: Founder and former operator, Safe Rider Program

Education: Graduate, East High School

Q&A

Why are you the better candidate?

Schauer: My experience working with people of all political persuasions all across Wisconsin have resolved employment conflicts, saving taxpayers money while still treating public servants with dignity. I have the expertise and temperament to work with this county board to accomplish our shared goals more effectively than my opponent.

Wiganowsky: I am not beholden to any political party, special interest group or current “in-crowd.” I enjoy helping people and trying to keep taxes low.

What are your top priorities for County Board action?

Schauer: 1) Keeping down response times for Sheriff’s Deputies and first responders, which will keep our streets safe. 2) Making sure our Sheriff’s Department is properly funded, and has the personnel and equipment necessary to deal with 21st century crime. 3) Getting the permanent homeless day center open and running.

Wiganowsky: Making sure of less government involvement. Dealing with the homeless issue in Dane County. Consolidation for cost saving.

Do you agree with the county’s decision to extend its labor contracts despite Act 10?

Schauer: Yes. Act 10 has not given counties the economic boost its supporters had hoped. Taking public employees out of the process of reaching fair terms and conditions of employment has never maintained a productive work environment. Extending our labor contracts is our best option until this failed law can be replaced.

Wiganowsky: This is a past issue. My interests are the ones that move the county forward.

What is your view of the complaints made by municipal officials regarding the county 911 Center?

Schauer: The 911 Center receives over 300,000 calls per year, but only 32 errors have been identified. While emergency services must always be as effective as possible, it is important to understand the scope of the problem. The 911 Center is the prime example of where local governments must work together.

Wiganowsky: Evaluate all complaints and look for ways to improve this service.

Should the county build a new jail at a cost that could exceed $100 million?

Schauer: We should wait for the release of the study commissioned by the board to determine how best to upgrade the county’s jail facilities, not to increase capacity, but to safely house the current inmate population. Our corrections employees must have the equipment and facilities necessary to do their job well.

Wiganowsky: Can’t make a decision until the space needs study comes back to see what the options are.

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Steven Verburg is a reporter for the Wisconsin State Journal covering state politics with a focus on science and the environment as well as military and veterans issues.