Clerk and Town Mailing Address: 4177 Old Stage Rd., Brooklyn, WI 53521  608-455-3925     Town Hall: 785 Center Road, Stoughton, WI 53589
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Rutland Center Church

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New Referendum on the Spring Ballot

Town of Rutland electors will see a referendum on the Spring ballot asking them if the Town Clerk position should be changed from an elected position to an appointed (hired) position. For several years the Board has discussed and considered the merits of this change and this Winter took it to vote for the first time and unanimously voted in support of it. A majority vote by the townspeople on April 4th will determine if it passes or fails.

The referendum question will be:

"Shall the person holding the office of town clerk be appointed by the town board?"

A "YES" vote mans that you approve making the Clerk's position appointed starting in April 2019.

A "NO" vote means that the Clerk's position will remain an elected position.

The core issue behind the change is the Town's ability to attract and hire the best person to fulfill the duties of the Clerk. In the early days of Townships, Town Clerks had relatively simple duties. That has changed dramatically in the past couple of decades. Clerks now perform and are responsible for many more critical Town functions. These include, but are not limited to, financial budgeting, payroll, paying Town bills, issuing legislatively required notices of meetings, taking and recording minutes for meetings, documenting and storing critical town documents for retrieval when needed, issuing permits and recording such, setting up and running elections, maintaining voter registration lists and changes, assisting the Board with any requested work, research and documentation of Town issues, completing State documentation for road construction programs, assisting with the Fire and EMS districts that provide service to residents and many more activities that arise in the course of Town business.

Many other Towns (including all 7 Towns immediately surrounding Rutland), recognizing how critical the Clerk position is to efficiently running a Township, have moved to, or are moving toward, appointed Clerk positions (a 2014 report by the Wisconsin Towns Association indicated that 23% of clerk or clerk/treasurer positions were appointed versus elected, and the trend was continuing in that direction). While an elected Clerk position may attract qualified candidates, an election has no guarantees of that and the voters or Board have no easy means of removing a Clerk who fails to perform their job function.

The Board recommends, for the Town's future, an appointed Clerk position (which will take effect in 2019 if this year's referendum passes; the clerk elected in April will serve the two-year assignment, regardless of the outcome of the referendum). The position of Clerk being monitored and managed by the Town Board is the model put forth on this referendum and the Board recommends that Town residents vote in favor. The Treasurer position will remain as a separate, elected position.

Here are some additional documents for residents to review on this issue:


NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN to the electors of the Town of Rutland, in the County of Dane, State of Wisconsin, that a Town Caucus for said town was held at the Town Hall, 785 Center Rd., in said town on Tuesday, January 17, 2017, at 6:30 p.m. to nominate candidates for the following offices to be voted for at the Spring Election to be held on Tuesday, April 4, 2017. The following candidates were selected at the Caucus.

Town Chairman: Mark Porter
Town Supervisor: Dave Grueneberg or Kelsey Wollin Dunn
Town Clerk: Dawn George
Town Treasurer: Kim Sime
Town Constable (2 positions): Nels Wethal and Shawn Hillestad

Town of Rutland officials Nov. 2015

Town of Rutland Officials:
Front row:
Clerk Dawn George, Chairman Mark Porter
Back row:
Supervisor Milt Sperle, Nancy Nedveck, Treasurer Kim Sime, Supervisor James Lunde .

Meeting Dates

Planning Commission Agenda
    • March 6, 2017
Town Board Agenda
    • March 7, 2017
Planning Commission Agenda
    • April 5, 2017
Town Board Agenda
    • April 6, 2017
Annual Meeting Agenda
    • April 18, 2017

Town Board Minutes

   • Feb. 7, 2017
   • Jan. 18, 2017
   • Jan 4, 2017

     2016 Minutes Archive

     2015 Minutes Archive

Current Information:

Current Agenda button Notices of regular meetings and
agendas no longer published
in The Oregon Observer
More Information

Spring Election

April 4th, 2017

Polls are open from 7:00 a.m. until 8:00 p.m. at the Town Hall at 785 Center Road Stoughton

Evansville Ballot
Oregon Ballot
Stoughton Ballot
Absentee Ballot Information


SPRING PRIMARY - Feb. 21, 2017


Community Deputy
Leslie Fox

Dane County Sheriff's Office - Southeast Precinct - Field Services Division

Phone: (608) 266-9122

Fax: (608) 873-5523

Dispatch: (608) 255-2345

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Town of Rutland Representatives
Wisconsin Legislature
    Senate District 15
    Janis Ringhand
  Assembly District 43
    Don Vruwink
United States Senate
    Tammy Baldwin
   Ron Johnson

U.S. Representative
    Mark Pocan

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