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Disturbing Email Correspondence with Town Clerk Nancy Zastrow

Updated: May 26, 2021

To: Greg David; Dan Herbst; Dwayne Morris; Mike Kelly; Jeff Johns; Jeff Smith; Roger Lindl; George Jaeckel; John Kannard; Anita Martin; Steve Nass; Laura Payne;; David Drayna; Matthew Foelker; Joan Fitzgerald; conorn@jeffersoncountywi.gove; Mary Roberts

Subject: WE Energies LNG Plant - Jt. Developer's Agreement

Good Afternoon:

I am late in sending this to you, but this has been on my mind all day.

I am serving as the Clerk/Treasurer for the Town of Ixonia and last evening we had Town Board meeting. At this meeting Supervisor Amy Rinard was present and explained the County Board will be addressing the Jt. Developer's Agreement tonight. She said she had a couple more amendments that she wanted to add but there is no hurry to get this approved.

I want to share with you a few things:

I do not live in the Town of Ixonia - grew up here, but currently live in the Town of Watertown. I have been a Clerk for over 20 years with lots of experience with the first WE Energy facility on Hwy E near Watertown. I was serving on Watertown Town Board as Treasurer when that was proposed to be built. I also worked for City of Milton and worked with the Ethanol Plant when it was proposed to be built in Milton. I have extensive experience with big projects like this.

The Town of Ixonia has approved the Jt. Developer's Agreement as it is before you. No amendments, no additions or changes. Supervisor Rinard is stalling to delay the project.

The Public Service Commission has the authority to override the Developer's Agreement and also the County zoning if they deem this location the best place for it. Then the Town and County lose out on the items agreed upon in the developers agreement.

Supervisor Rinard had not attended a Town Board meeting during the time frame of September 12, 2020 - April 2021. She was presenting herself as representing the Town of Ixonia, but never spoke with the Town Board or sat at the table or even called anyone from the board to get input on the agreement, please do not be fooled that she represents the citizenry of Ixonia, she is battling this because it is in her backyard.

As a resident of Jefferson County this facility will enhance the budget as did the Concord Generating plant, financially as well as during construction bringing in many jobs. As a resident of Jefferson County I urge you to vote tonight to approve the Jt. Developer's Agreement as presented.

Thank you for taking the time to read this.


Nancy J. Zastrow

Town of Watertown


From: Laura Payne <>

Date: 5/12/21 6:09 PM (GMT-06:00)

To: Dale Zastrow <>

Subject: Re: WE Energies LNG Plant - Jt. Developer's Agreement

Dear Ms. Zastrow,

While I appreciate your email expressing your opinions and concerns, I could not disagree with you more. Supervisor Rinard is a dedicated and excellent county board supervisor, one of the best supervisors on our board. The town of Ixonia as well as all of Jefferson County are very fortunate to have her on the county board. She most certainly represents her constituency. I have received countless calls and emails from concerned citizens of Ixonia. I have attended all of the executive committee meetings pertaining to the JDA and have attentively listened to all comments and concerns of dozens of Ixonia residents. Except for the property owners who will greatly benefit financially from this proposed facility, Ixonia residents are opposed to this facility for numerous reasons including safety concerns, loss of property values, loss of quality of life, and environmental concerns. You may not be aware of these opposed citizens as the Town of Ixonia does not typically allow public comment during its meetings.

I carefully read the first draft of the JDA and all subsequent drafts. I made many written comments and verbal comments during the executive committee meetings. I do not sit on this committee but felt I had much to contribute as an environmental engineer who has had years of experience in stormwater and floodplain management. I have been involved with the siting and development of various large facilities. I am pleased to say that some of my comments were incorporated into the JDA. More importantly, Supervisor Rinard scoured the document and was open to suggestion from supervisors, residents, and other experts. Because of her, this document has been greatly improved.

Thanks to Supervisor Rinard, the Executive Committee that she chairs and the county negotiators, the JDA was vastly improved. Here are a few of the improvements to the JDA:

* Guaranteed payments to the town and county from Wisconsin Gas even if the State decides to keep and not continue sharing the utility tax revenue it collects from the company, which is very likely to happen in the future. That equates to $555,000 annually to the town and $1,100,000 to the County, which will also benefit the town.

* Reimbursement for some property owners who plant trees to try to shield their view of the 15-story LNG tank. Please note that Supervisor Rinard publicly noted that she would not take any reimbursements.

* Additional elements that must be in the emergency response plan

* Measurable standards for things like lighting so that neighbors will not be blinded by bright lights throughout the night.

* a list of all necessary permits (there is a very long list) to ensure that WE Energies is in compliance prior to construction

Here are the three amendments proposed by Supervisor Rinard last night. In my opinion, these are very reasonable requests. In addition, it is my understanding that at your town meeting on Monday night that the town board stated that the county is free to negotiate on these amendments. Furthermore, the town board stated that these amendments would be non substantive and that they would not need to vote on the JDA again.

* No construction trucks at the intersection near the elementary school during drop-off and pickup of young children during school days when there are many cars backed up. This is to protect our youngest and most vulnerable population.

* Equitable distribution of reimbursement of trees for neighbors in the line of sight to this giant facility.

* Provide the emergency response plan to neighbors so that neighbors know what they could do that might help save their lives and the lives of their children. It's a public document and ultimately can be available to the public.

Now, let's go over what was not added in the JDA as it was obstructed by the town:

* Inclusion of other fire departments that certainly would be called upon in the event of an emergency. Why would the town not want other fire departments to be provided money and training to help save their community?

* Limiting the Ixonia Fire Department compensation to $50,000. That is an inefficient amount of money. Why wouldn't the town want to be reimbursed the actual costs for EMS and rescue equipment and other necessary items and training to address an emergency which could be quite catastrophic?

Please be aware that the proposed LNG facility will not be on the PSC's agenda for many months. There was no reason to rush the JDA. Time was productively spent negotiating and making necessary improvements to protect the safety of the citizens and the environment. In my opinion, it has been greatly improved yet not sufficient. In addition, the Board of Adjustments is currently reviewing the County's Conditional Use Permit to determine its validity. At his time, there is no CUP despite the JDA passing last night. The PSC permit cannot be granted without a valid Conditional Use Permit. Furthermore, as a condition of the CUP, the JDA must also be approved by the Jefferson County Board of Supervisors as a condition of a PSC. The PSC could not decide that the JDA wasn't necessary.

Finally, I want to address Supervisor Rinard's absence at some of the town meetings. We are living in a pandemic. The town board meetings are not available on zoom and masks are not being worn in the meeting. It is my understanding from an article in the Daily Union that one of your town supervisors was compelled to resign due to lack of safety precautions during these meetings. Supervisor Rinard is very fortunate to have a healthy 94 year old mother that she needs to care for and protect. She started returning to your meetings after both she and her mother were fully vaccinated.


Laura Payne

County Board Supervisor, District 16

From: dnzastrow1976 <> To: Laura Payne Subject: Re: WE Energies LNG Plant - Jt. Developer's Agreement

Whoa! I guess I know where you stand. Sorry I bothered you. I worked in many municipal environments, this was a disgrace to jefferson county and future projects! Sorry to have bothered you and when Jefferson County stops growing put a feather in your cap! Wow!

From: dnzastrow1976 <> To: Laura Payne Subject: Re: WE Energies LNG Plant - Jt. Developer's Agreement Oh, and the town board never said that they weren't substantive. More lies! Sent from my U.S.Cellular© Smartphone

From: Laura Payne <>

To: Dale Zastrow <>

Subject: Re: WE Energies LNG Plant - Jt. Developer's Agreement

Dear Ms. Zastrow,

This is NOT a lie. I assume as the clerk/treasurer that you would have been at that meeting and have taken the meeting minutes. Please let me refresh your memory by providing you with excerpts from your meeting minutes that I found on the town's website regarding the additional amendments that Supervisor Rinard stated she wanted to include in the JDA:

Attorney Riffle – things may not be the same in the final agreement as this one, suggest having flexibility, non-substantive amendments are those not heard up until the day. If the county expands the landscaping plan – this board would be okay with that, do we have a problem with that? Other issues relate to signage for construction purposes any other public safety concerns the board is okay with. You can approve this in its current form. Give the chairman authority to approve the sole responsibility of how Fire & EMS- public safety, the vote would be to approve authorizing in his position changes in non-sub-stative nature per our conversation

Supervisor Derge moved to go forward with the draft based on Attorney Riffle recommendations. Supervisor Jaeger seconded. Supervisor Mark asked for clarification on the non-substantive includes the landscape and the school arrival. Motion carried.

As an elected official, I am greatly disappointed that you as a government representative are misconstruing facts. I am even more disappointed that you are disparaging Supervisor Amy Rinard. As a dedicated elected official, her only goal is to provide as much as possible for Jefferson County and the Town of Ixonia. As mentioned in your meeting minutes, her efforts have resulted in a much better JDA. She has helped secure moneys for the future and helped improve the safety and other concerns of Ixonia residents. Finally, her efforts to improve the JDA for our citizens have not held up or jeopardized the PSC process.

Laura Payne

County Board Supervisor, District 16

From: To: Laura Payne

Good Morning Ms. Payne,

Thank you for your comments. I would like to point out to you that even though we do not have a public comment period, that all who wanted to be heard were. We allow unlimited time for residents to speak on the items on the agenda.

Thanks, Perry

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