APPLETON, Wis. (WBAY) - The annual hearing for the City of Appleton budget drew a large crowd Wednesday evening.
The city's Twitter account says most people who came to speak at the hearing were concerned about funding being removed for the Diversity and Inclusion Coordinator position.
Before the start of the hearing, Mayor Tim Hanna announced the amendment to remove that funding wasn't going to be submitted.
"This position is important because by reporting directly to the mayor, I am responsible for the direction and the advisement to all of the department directors, and so by doing so it really helps all of the directors do everything from their strategic planning to their day-to-day operations what their employees with a purview what they're looking through the lens of diversity and inclusion," diversity coordinator Karen Nelson said.
The city has had the coordinator's position for 22 years.
Mayor Hanna announces prior to the start of the public hearing that an amendment to remove funding for the diversity and inclusion coordinator position for the 2020 budget is not going to be submitted.— City of Appleton (@cityofappleton) November 7, 2019
A number of people are hear to speak on that topic. #Appleton
Several more speakers after that came to support the work of the diversity coordinator position. Many sharing stories of how the position works with various groups in the community and the impact that diversity in communities has in making them welcoming and inclusive places.— City of Appleton (@cityofappleton) November 7, 2019
Apologies. The budget public hearing wrapped up a few minutes ago. Most speakers for the hearing tonight were here to support the diversity coordinator position.— City of Appleton (@cityofappleton) November 7, 2019
Others touched on a range of topics from safety to infrastructure and spending/debt.
Great to see the engagement!