Even with the push to get residents to vote early and by absentee ballot, polls will be open Tuesday, April 7, for the spring election and presidential preference primary.

There is also a statewide referendum question on the ballot: Additional rights of crime victims. Shall section 9m of article I of the constitution, which gives certain rights to crime victims, be amended to give crime victims additional rights, to require that the rights of crime victims be protected with equal force to the protections afforded the accused while leaving the federal constitutional rights of the accused intact, and to allow crime victims to enforce their rights in court?

A yes vote would provide crime victims with specific constitutional rights, including the right to:

– Be treated with dignity, respect, courtesy, sensitivity and fairness.

– Privacy.

– The protection of information that could be used to determine the victim’s location, allow for harassment or discover confidential information.

– The timely disposition of any criminal cases.

– Be present at all criminal proceedings and hearings,

– Reasonable protection from the alleged criminal,

– Be notified of criminal proceedings and outcomes and of the release, escape or death of the alleged criminal in a timely manner.

– Confer with the government prosecutor.

– Speak in any hearing related to the rights of the victim.

– Submit information about the case to authorities.

– Refuse an interview, deposition or other discovery request made by the alleged criminal.

– Restitution and compensation.

– Receive restitution before the payment of any government fines, penalties or debts.

–Be informed of all rights and protections granted by the constitutional amendment and related laws.

Currently, crime victims’ rights include a right to be treated with fairness, dignity and respect for privacy; a right to a timely disposition of criminal cases; a right to attend court proceedings unless court findings declare the victim’s presence would preclude a fair trial; a right to be protected from the alleged criminal; a right to be notified of court proceedings; a right to confer with the prosecutor of the case; a right to speak at dispositions; a right to restitution and compensation; and a right to be informed of the outcome of the proceedings and the release of the alleged criminal.

Ballots also include the following local offices.


Four candidates are seeking three spots on the Monona City Council. Each will be for a two-year term.

Candidates are incumbents Jennifer Kuhr and Molly Grupe, and newcomers Christopher Henderson and Kristie Schilling.

Incumbent Michael Finley is seeking re-election to a four-year term as municipal judge.

Cottage Grove

Three candidates have filed for three positions on the Cottage Grove Village Board. Each will serve a two-year term. Candidates are incumbents Melissa Ratcliff and Troy Allen, and newcomer Paul VanderVelde.

Incumbent Trustee Jon Russell is not running for the board; rather, he will be one of two candidates seeking the four-year term as municipal judge. Incumbent Judge Mark Hepfinger will also be on the ballot.


Four candidates will seek three spots on the McFarland Village Board. They are Justin Rupert, Alyssa Charlesworth, Carolyn Clow and Michael Flaherty. Each spot is a two-year term.

Incumbent Randi Othrow will run unopposed for another four-year term as municipal judge.

Town of Blooming Grove

Incumbent Supervisors Dan Larson and Jeff Teuscher are unopposed for a pair of two-year terms on the town board.

Town of Cottage Grove

Incumbent Supervisors Kristi Williams and Mike DuPlayee are unopposed for a pair of two-year terms on the town board.

Town of Pleasant Springs

Jay Damkoehlers and Janiece Bolender are unopposed for a pair of two-year terms on the town board.

McFarland School Board

Craig Howery is running unopposed for a three-year term.

Monona Grove School Board

Candidates are incumbents Susan Fox, Monona, and Loreen Gage, Cottage Grove, and newcomers Chris BonDurant, Monona, and Elizabeth Cook, Cottage Grove.

The top two vote-getters will serve three-year terms, and the third-place candidate will serve one year.

Dane County Board

Blaire Adkins, Madison, is unopposed for the District 16 seat.

Sarah Smith, Monona, is running unopposed for the District 24 seat.

Supervisors Patrick Miles, McFarland, and Melissa Ratcliff, Cottage Grove, are unopposed for their seats representing Districts 34 and 36, respectively.

All positions are two-year terms.

Supreme Court

Incumbent Wisconsin Supreme Court Justice Daniel Kelly, North Prairie, will face a challenge by Jill J. Karofsky, Madison, for a 10-year term.

Court of Appeals, District 4

Incumbent Judge Rachel A. Graham is unopposed for a six-year term.

Dane County Circuit Court, Branch 7

Incumbent Judge William E. Hanrahan is unopposed for a six-year term.

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