Dear editor and Wausau District 3 voters,

My name is Jo Ann Egelkrout and I am a candidate for the Wausau City Council representing the 3rd district. Originally from Tomahawk, I have been a resident of Wausau since 2004. I have two daughters and eight grandchildren, all living in this city. 

Currently I am employed at  American Family Insurance. Previously, I worked at Aspirus Health System, and prior to that I spent 15 years at WPS Health Insurance. In addition to my work experience, I am a member of St. Mary’s Oratory Catholic Church on Grand Avenue where I am an active volunteer.

I came to Wausau in 2004 as a single mom with two children and know firsthand the value of hard work and the challenges of juggling work and family. I believe that my life experiences have uniquely trained me for future civic responsibilities and would be honored to bring those skills to the Wausau City Council.

The issues that come before the City Council are many and ever changing, consequently, I believe that having a guiding philosophy is necessary and should be well communicated to the voters. I am guided by Constitutional principles and I understand what local government should do and what it should not. This is why I have decided to run against the incumbent, Tom Kilian. In order to be forthright and transparent with the voters in my district and Wausau as a whole, I offer my broader views on local issues.  

Local officials should stick to traditional local duties. Improving our police, fire, public works, public safety and parks, not passing hollow resolutions or mandates. Promote business and workers. Business regulations are too burdensome in Wausau, but on the other hand employers have no right to control the private health or preferences of its employees. We must tax less, regulate less and mandate less. Incentivize work, not dependency. “Professional activists” have for too long controlled our elected officials and exploited its citizens’ generosity. Assistance programs should encourage work, not dependency. Protect our environment but be smart. Legislation to protect our ecology must be balanced against its costs to businesses and taxpayers. We cannot fall for the “Eco-Fear” lobby. We all want cleaner air and water but we should be able to ask, what is the cost?  Who pays? Promote tolerance and diversity. Racism should not be tolerated but neither should the reverse racism of “equity” or CRT. Resolutions that pit neighbor against neighbor should be opposed. Government’s decisions should be “colorblind,” not preferential to any group. Promote free speech and diversity of opinion. Opposing views are never dangerous. Government should not decide what views constitute “misinformation.” The “arena of ideas” makes us better and stronger and free speech should be promoted and never be censored. 

I would like to thank the Wausau Pilot and Review for this opportunity to introduce myself as a candidate for Wausau City Council District 3.  

Jo Ann Egelkrout of Wausau

Editor’s note: Wausau Pilot & Review gladly publishes commentary from readers, residents and candidates for local offices. The views of readers and columnists are independent of this newspaper and do not necessarily reflect the views of Wausau Pilot & Review. To submit, email or mail to 500 N. Third St., Suite 208-8, Wausau, Wis. 54403.