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District 3

Alder Erik Paulson

Image of Alder Erik Paulson

Alder Erik Paulson

Contact Information

Council Office

Common Council Office:
210 Martin Luther King, Jr. Blvd
Room 417
Madison, WI 53703
Phone: (608) 266-4071
Fax: (608) 267-8669
WI Relay Service

Alder Paulson’s Updates

Week of Nov 14: Hayride on Sunday night, Airport noise study, coffee with a cop, city budget, and more!

November 13, 2022 1:41 PM

Jump into the holiday season with a hayride at Olin Park, Airport Noise Study open house, "Coffee with a Cop", the 2023 budget, and more this week. Also, I've been out of town for my day job much of this past week, so I'm still catching up on some email, so I apologize if I haven't yet gotten back to you.

  • Hayrides at Olin Park on Sunday night!
  • Airport Noise Study open house on Monday night
  • East District Coffee with a Cop on Tuesday morning
  • 2023 City Budget deliberations are this week
  • Other City Meetings - Transportation Planning and Policy Board, Sustainable Madison Committee, and more
  • Events: Hmong Institute's Noj Tsiab (pre-New Year) and Thanksgiving Celebration, Musician and activist Lyla June to speak on Indigenous rights, World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims, Madison Libraries and Audubon Society on lecture to highlight the connections between race and birds
  • Annoucements: HealthCare.Gov enrollment has started for 2023 - get help signing up at Madison Libraries, and Public Health Violence Prevention & Intervention Speaker Series featuring the Rape Crisis Center 

Hayride through Holiday Fantasy in Lights on Sunday at Olin Park

See the Holiday Fantasy in Lights  at Olin Park aboard a haywagon! No reservation is needed.

TIME: Nov 13th 4:30 - 8:00pm (last ride begins at 7:30pm)
MEETING LOCATION: Olin Park boat launch
PARKING: Limited parking is available in the Olin Park boat launch and along Olin-Turville Court.
COST: $3/per person (children 2 and under are free) *cash only, exact change is appreciated

Airport Noise Study open house November 14th:

The Dane County Regional Airport is currently in process of updating its noise mitigation plan as result of the 115th Air National Guard transitioning from F-16s to F-35s.  The FAA Part 150 is process used to determine eligibility for and fund sound mitigation inside the airport's mapped noise contours.  The second open house of the noise study will be held Monday November 14th from 6-8pm at the Dane County Regional Airport (between terminal doors 1 and 2).

Information about the study process and materials from the first open house are on the DCRA's noise mitigation plan (Part 150) webpage

Coffee with a Cop on November 15th:

The November 'Coffee with a Cop', at the Madison Police East District Station (809 S Thompson Dr., Madison Wisconsin) is scheduled on Tuesday, November 15th, 2022 from 10:00am-11:30am. Please feel free to stop in at any time to participate.

2023 Budget Meetings this week

(This part of the update is largely cribbed from Alder Heck's blog)

The city's budget for 2023 will be debated, amended, and adopted by the Common Council on November 15, 16 and possibly 17. Details on watching the meetings and/or giving real-time or written public comment are listed at the top of the meeting agenda for Nov. 15. If public hearings are closed during the course of the Nov. 15 meeting, which is very likely, real-time public comment will not be taken at the subsequent budget meetings. You are always welcome to email me at any time with your budget input (

Both the Capital and Operating Budgets, as submitted by the Mayor and subsequently amended by the Finance Committee, will be the starting points for the Council's consideration. Alders have submitted 8 proposed Capital Budget amendments with a cumulative total of $7,018,000 of additional General Obligation borrowing to fund various items. This type of borrowing is commonly referred to as the city's debt and we pay interest on our debt. I am not proposing any amendments to the capital budget.

On the Operating Budget side, alders are proposing 16 amendments. If all 16 amendments were to be adopted, the city would be in violation of state law because we would be exceeding our Maximum Allowed Levy for 2023 of $273,684,407. Each year, this Maximum is set by the State of Wisconsin for each municipality. As earlier amended by the Finance Committee, the city proposes to spend $273,413,811 leaving just $270,596 in potential additional spending before reaching the Maximum. The 16 amendments would result in cumulative additional operating expenditures of $824,588, so it is clear that some of these amendments cannot move forward. Alders will be debating and choosing which of the sixteen amendments, if any, will pass. You can find all sixteen proposed Operating Budget amendments here, including their sponsoring alders, impact on the Operating Budget, and analyses.

I am propsoing two operating budget amendments. The first spends no new money but moves up the start date of our new Emergency Management Coordinator, which is a new position the Mayor is proposing and is in my opinion crucial to the City. The Finance Committee delayed several new positions until later into the year to use the salary savings elsewhere, however, in coordination with the Fire Chief, I'm proposing a few changes to which positions start when to better align to priorities. The second amendment does spend some additional funds. Former Mayor Soglin established a partnership with the UW-Madison through the 'UniverCity Alliance', but thus far we have not directly funded programs through the Alliance. This amendment, in the spirit of the Wisconsin Idea, would commission a report through the Alliance on different tradeoffs in how we evaluate 'affordability' in student housing. 

Alders can also offer budget amendments from the floor of this week's meetings, but that is not a typical occurrence because Finance staff, staff from the impacted agencies, and alders, don't typically have sufficient time to fully assess late-arriving amendments. That said, there almost certainly will be changes to the already offered amendments during the budget meetings, which is not as unusual.

For more information about the budget and budget process, I suggest watching one of the virtual community sessions on the budget hosted by City Finance staff. They provided background information on the city's capital and operating budget process, including highlights of the 2023 Executive Budget. You can watch a recording of the Oct. 14 Virtual Community Session here.

Other Upcoming Meetings

To see the full list of City meetings scheduled for the week, please consult the City meeting schedule.


  • The Hmong Institute's Noj Tsiab (pre-New Year) and Thanksgiving Celebration: The Hmong Institute is hosting the Hmong Noj Tsiab (Pre-New Year) Celebration on Thursday November, 17th from 10 a.m. - 1 p.m. at 4402 Femrite Drive, Madison. Noj tsiab pronounced "naw chia" is the meal held the night before the Hmong New Year festival begins. Noj Tsiab and Noj Peb Caug (New Year Festival) are traditionally celebrated after the harvest season. The Noj Tsiab tradition constitutes ritual activities such as a hu plig (soul calling), lwm qaib (bless the new year while washing away all negative energy with the old year), giving thanks to the ancestor's spirit for a good harvest and for keeping the family healthy. A meal or feast is then served to the guests. 

  • Teejop & Beyond: Celebrating Native Nations of the Great Lakes, October - December 2022: Eight Native presenters will lead programs highlighting both traditional and contemporary practices, stories, and community relationships. Upcoming programs include:
    • Nov. 5, 19: Family History Writing Workshops with Sherman Funmaker (Bear Clan Elder, Ho-Chunk Nation)
    • Nov. 9: Indigenous Birth and Traditional Parenting presentation by Raeanne Madison(Crane Clan, Bois Forte Band Ojibwe Nation)
    • Nov. 12: Art Walk in Monona with Kristie GoForth (Sault Tribe of Chippewa Indians)

      Learn more: Website | Graphics + Photos | Press Release
  • Musician and activist Lyla June to speak on Indigenous rights, revitalizing ancient Indigenous land practices at free event on November 14th: Bringing her perspective as a woman of Diné (Navajo), Tsétsêhéstâhese (Cheyenne) and European lineages, June's 90-minute talk will include both lecture and Q&A portions. The event, titled "An Evening with Lyla June: The Power of Indigenous Knowledge in an Age of Neocolonialism," is free and open to the public, with no tickets necessary. Combining her personal experience with her studies in human ecology and Native American pedagogy, June advocates for Indigenous rights, the use of traditional land stewardship practices and mending from historical trauma. Patrons can learn more about the upcoming, free talk with June click HERE!
  • World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims: The City of Madison along with the Vision Zero Stakeholder Task Force will commemorate World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims the week of November 14-21. The week features a memorial for people killed over the last 5 years that will be out all week in front of the Madison Municipal Building. Here is our news release about the event and week. Everyone is invited to a short press conference to remember victims of traffic crashes and renew the call for support to eliminate serious and fatal crashes. 
    • Date: Tuesday, November 15th
    • Time: 10:30 AM
    • Location: Madison Municipal Building, 215 Martin Luther King Jr Blvd – Outside
  • Birding Backpacks + Madison Audubon Event, Always Available + November 15th: Madisonians who are bird curious can check out a Birding Backpack from Madison Public Library for up to one week. Backpacks include binoculars and field guides for one adult and one child, as well as a local birding guide that highlights locations close to each library. This project was made possible thanks to donations from the Feminist Bird Club - Madison and the Madison Public Library Foundation. 

    On November 15, we'll be hosting an event in collaboration with Madison Audubon to highlight the connections between race and birds with Brigitte Fielder at Meadowridge Library. The UW-Madison professor will weave together the historical context of antislavery imagery, African American folklore, children's stories about abolitionist views, and more, as she illuminates human-animal relationships that illustrate Black people's resistance to oppression. 

    Learn more: Birding Backpacks Website | Graphics + Photos | Audubon Event Page


  • Open Enrollment Kick-Off: The Open Enrollment period for 2023 health insurance on kicks off on November 1st, 2022 and runs through January 15th, 2023. Consumers must sign up by December 15th for coverage to start on January 1st. 

    Madison Public Library is partnering with Covering Wisconsin to get the word out about this timeline to ensure that all Dane County residents know about affordable and low-cost health insurance options available to them. We are also hosting two open enrollment events at our libraries: 

    December 3, 10am-2pm - Hawthorne Library, 2707 E. Washington Ave
    December 10, 10am-2pm - Pinney Library, 516 Cottage Grove Rd. 

    Feel free to attend the press event to learn more (see attached release), or contact Courtney Harris, Covering Wisconsin Outreach & Partner Relations Manager; 608-262-1838; for more information to share with your constituents, neighbors, or service/program recipients. 
    More information is available on the Covering Wisconsin web site, including downloadable promotion materials. Free, local, unbiased help is available statewide. Consumers can visit to learn more, or call the 2-1-1 Helpline (877-947-2211) to find an expert near them.

  • Public Health Madison & Dane County Violence Prevention Speaker Series Event, November 16, 2022: In partnership with Rape Crisis Center (RCC), PHMDC's Violence Prevention Unit is hosting a virtual session on sexual assault prevention and services. The virtual session is free but registration is required: RCC Speaker Series Registration link. The session will be recorded and made available on public health's Violence Prevention Unit's webpage. This is the sixth of a "Violence Prevention & Intervention Speaker Series".

    The upcoming session with Dana Pellebon from Rape Crisis Center (RCC) will provide information about their outreach, education, and prevention programs, services and advocacy for those harmed by sexual violence, and information on sexual violence. 

    The series will be sharing the latest violence prevention and intervention strategies, methodologies, and theories. It will also highlight VP Coalition members and the work that is being done in Madison and Dane County. It is open to everyone in the community, so please share with your networks.

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