Damakant Jayshi

The Diversity Affairs Commission on Wednesday voted to send an amended version of the ‘Community for All’ diversity resolution back to Marathon County’s Executive Committee.

The proposal is likely to be voted on at the Executive Committee on August 12, though given the staunch opposition to the measure this is by no means certain.

At its meeting on Wednesday, commission members held a brief discussion before voting, unanimously, to refer the diversity-focused proposal to the standing committee, according to La’Tanya Campbell, a member of the commission. In May, the 10-member committee had voted down an earlier version of the measure 6-2 with two members absent. A number of members of the county’s Executive Committee as well as members of the Common Council of the City of Wausau have resisted the ‘community for all’ resolution. 

The development comes after Chair of the County Board and the Executive Committee Kurt Gibbs barred two county supervisors from bringing the measure to the full Board’s meeting on Thursday, citing lack of time and the need for the amended resolution to go through the entire process again.

This took the two supervisors – William Harris from Dict. 3 and Yee Leng Xiong from Dist. 19 – who support the resolution by surprise. Xiong is also the chair of the Diversity Affairs Commission.

No public comments phase preceded the discussion and the subsequent vote at the Diversity Affairs Commission on Wednesday, Campbell said.

In its last meeting on June 30, the commission had agreed to form small groups to hold additional discussion on the proposal. Chair Xiong told Wausau Pilot & Review that those groups have not been formed yet..

Both the city and county failed to take a final decision on their respective versions of the ‘community for all resolution.’

Damakant Jayshi is a reporter for Wausau Pilot & Review. He is also a corps member with Report for America, an initiative of GroundTruth Project that places journalists into local newsrooms. Reach him at damakant@wausaupilotandreview.com.