Green Lake gets new police officer and a hero lauded

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Green Lake Mayor Ray Radis reads a statement welcoming officer Michael Bennett to the police department and the city. Bennett was with the Berlin Police Department for four years before coming to Green Lake.                                                                               

Monday’s Green Lake Committee of the Whole meeting began with the welcoming of a new police officer to the Green Lake Police Department.

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Emily Bennett, wife of new Green Lake police officer Michael Bennett, pins his badge on him at the Committee of the Whole meeting Monday.                                                      

Michael Bennett was introduced by officer Jessica Schroeder, who was filling in for Chief Jason Reysen. Bennett grew up in Appleton and most recently served for four years on the force with the Berlin Police Department. He also has experience as a school resource officer, which may come in handy, according to Schroeder.

Green Lake Mayor Ray Radis read from a prepared statement, comparing the police badge to a knight’s coat of arms, and welcomed Bennett to the city.

“A law enforcement badge does not just symbolize an officer, It holds a measure of respect, accountability, integrity, empathy, adaptability and that you, Michael, are a part of a team,” Radis said. “You are part of our team now. Welcome to Green Lake. May your badge never be tarnished.”

Bennett’s Green Lake police officer’s badge was pinned on him by his wife, Emily. Members of his family also were present for the pinning ceremony.

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State Rep. Alex Dallman, (D-Green Lake) addresses the Committee of the whole on funding.      

State Rep. Alex Dallman (R-Green Lake) was the next guest speaker, informing the council about possible funding opportunities for the proposed all-inclusive playground that is under consideration.

He said the state government has created a $50 million fund that will issue grants for local projects. It is not up and running, since it was recently passed by the state Legislature, but organizations and municipalities can log onto its website to get information on when to apply and deadlines associated with the grants.

Dallman also spoke about shared revenue.

“A big thing that we did was shared revenue this year,” he said. “We heard from all of you for the last several years that you need more funding on the local level, and it’s something that we really worked across the aisle on. The city of Green Lake will be getting a 194% increase in their shared revenue, or an increase of $46,000 to go towards anything from infrastructure to law enforcement, to whatever you might need in essential services,” Dallman said.

He also said that Green Lake County will receive an additional $355,000 in shared revenue, about a 506% increase. No municipality across the state, he said, would receive less than a 20% increase this year.

The project for the all-inclusive playground at Playground Park is ongoing, and two members of the committee presented the Committee of the Whole with an artist rendering of what the park might look like. Amanda Castleberry and Jill Williams told the Committee of the Whole that they had multiple sources for income to build the playground, and that the city would not have to pay anything.

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Amanda Castleberry, left, and Jill Williams with Playground Pals, shows an artist rendition of the all-inclusive playground to members of the Committee of the Whole at the Monday meeting. The project will be paid for by private funds raised by the organization, with no cost to the city. It will take two years to complete.                      


Among funding sources, they cited an agreement with the Milwaukee Bucks, parking at EAA funding and a planned street ball for some time in the near future.

“This is just the sort of thing we need to be doing as a council,” Radis said.

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Green Lake Mayor Ray Radis and Green Lake Police Officer Jessica Schroeder present Avery Nigbor, attending via Zoom, with a commendation letter for helping save the life of an elderly women who was drowning on July 29. 

Green Lake resident Avery Nigbor also was recognized by the Committee of the Whole for her rescue of an elderly woman who was drowning in Green Lake on July 29. The commendation letter was read by Schroeder.

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Avery Nigbor attended the Green Lake Committee of the Whole meeting on Monday to receive her letter of commendation from the council for saving an elderly woman’s life from drowning on July 29.

“It is my belief that Avery Nigbor saved the life of a fellow Green Lake citizen that day,” read the letter in part. “Her selfless example should prove to be an inspiration to others.”

Nigbor was away at college at the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse and attended the meeting by Zoom.

Common Council


The meeting of the Common Council began with a series of approvals of street closures for upcoming events in the city, including a homecoming parade Oct. 1 by the Federated Church of Green Lake. The parade will close down the northbound lane of traffic and parking from Mill Street from Gold to Scott streets, to include a trailer and walkers in the parade.

The Green Lake Ice Yacht Club requested street closures for its ice boat swap meet on Oct. 22 from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. for Water Street from Mill to Gold streets, and Gold Street from Water to Hill streets.

Goose Blind made two requests for closures, one for Harvest Fest (Sept. 23 and 24) for part of Hill Street and Gold Street, and for an Oktoberfest event Oct. 14. A further request from Goose Blind for a Class B Fermented Malt Beverage and Class B Intoxicating Liquor License to Terrace Cafe was tabled, due to conflicts with state regulations. Further work was needed, according to Radis.

Ordinances that had been studied and adjusted over the last several council sessions were brought up for approval, including the Chronic Nuisance Ordinance and the Remote Attendance at Meetings Ordinance. Both passed with no comments by unanimous vote.

Additionally, the council approved Katie Culver as the replacement agent of record for Norton’s of Green Lake LLC.