By Bill Hudson

FOUNTAIN CITY, Wis. (WCCO) — If you think it’s rewarding being a small town mayor, you’d better talk to Karl Hoffmann.

“You’ve got some false information!” Hoffman said with a large chuckle.

What’s no laughing matter is that answering the call of civic duty is the keystone of our democracy. But in Fountain City, Wis., the phone’s been silent at city hall. The election filing deadline came and went and nobody stopped in.

Mayor Hoffmann is not running for re-election and it appears that nobody else wants his job.

“If you get one person to run for mayor in a small town, you’re pretty fortunate,” said Hoffmann.

One reason might be this: For all its small town charm, Fountain City is plagued by aging infrastructure. Making matters worse, cuts in state aid means there’s little money to fix things.

That’s one big reason why bar owner John Jaszewski says being mayor of any small town is a thankless job. He said despite trying to make things better for everyone there’s always going to be constituents who criticize you for your work.

“Every time you enter into a large decision in a small town it’s a 50-50 split. And I wouldn’t want that job and a lot of folks in town don’t want to get anywhere near that job,” Jaszewski said.

It’s not the end of the world if nobody enters their name on the April 10 ballot. There is always the option of a write-in. Of course, the write-in winner would have to accept the job, which is never guaranteed.

Mayor Hoffmann said he’d probably accept another term if enough voters write-in his name and want to keep him as mayor. But he made it clear, at an annual salary of $2,500, it’s not the money that would make him do it, but rather the pride.

“It’s just knowing at the end of the day and the end of the week that you’ve done the best you can to move forward,” Hoffmann said.

Comments (10)
  1. Goob says:

    Give that idiot Scott Walker a call. I’m sure he’d help that little town out. He could use some good publicity these days.

    1. Wisc Badger says:

      You should move to Illinois where you can enjoy being ripped off by by public employee unions.

  2. chinwhiskers says:

    @ 48 bucks a week at that!

  3. Chad says:

    $2500 is pathetic. Even a fast food worker could make that much within just a few months.

  4. John says:

    You’re so right…it’s a thankless job. Hours are lousy, the pay is terrible, folks who let their dogs poop in other people’s yards are a pain, and yet somebody has to do it. Once in awhile, the word “satisfaction” comes to mind and that’s what keeps me doing it. What can I say?

  5. The Mayor says:

    Politics is not for me listening to all these peoples complaints and not giving a damm, I can’t stand it anymore. I mean really people you want government to wipe your butts, wipe your own damm butts.

  6. Jo Worker says:

    Hopefully the state can reduce their union baggage to the point they can start using some money to repair their infrastructure.

  7. Bob says:

    If Fountain City were in Illinois instead of Wisconsin $2500 a year could somehow mysteriously turn into large bank accounts in the Cayman Islands and Switzerland, plus limos, private planes, and a half dozen vacation homes.

  8. Homeless says:

    I’ll do it. People who hold political positions very rarely get punished for crimes. Look at Eric Holder.Karl Rove and the lying George Bush.

    They illegally sells weapons, start wars and rig elections and they get to walk around and sell books, no punishment

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