State of the County Address

Washington County Administrator Joshua Schoemann delivered his annual State of the County address at the June 13 County Board meeting. In his 2016 State of the County Address, Schoemann outlined his "Four Goals in Four Years." Schoemann used his 2017 State of the County Address to provide a status update on the Four Goals, highlight the top three accomplishments of 2016-2017 and forecast year 2018.

"Four Goals in Four Years"
1. Reduce Annual Budget Deficit
• Goal - Reduce by $300,000 per year through 2020
• Success - 2017 Budget adopted with $300,000 reduction
2. Replenish Health Insurance Fund
• Goal - $3.2M in Reserve by 2021
• Success - $2.45M in Reserve at 2016 YE
3. Create Capacity for Pay Plan Study/Implementation
• Goal - A fully funded overhaul of the 2012 plan
• Success - 2017-2019 Strategic Priority to propose a new compensation model, including sufficient funding and execution timeline
4. Hold or Reduce Tax Rate
• Goal - Reduce tax rate annually
• Success -2016 Mill Rate: $2.60/$1,000; 2017 Mill Rate: $2.58/$1,000

According to Schoemann, the top 3 accomplishments of 2016-2017 were:
1. Completion of the County's newly implemented LEAD leadership training by approximately 75% of all eligible employees;
2. Completion of the County's new Fiscal Health Tool and Resource Alignment Diagnostic Tool; and
3. Initiation of the County's new onsite health clinic, set to open in July, estimated to save nearly $1 million in the first three years and includes collaboration with the City of West Bend.

In addition, Schoemann listed several examples of collaboration for shared services, the unveiling of a newly formatted and integrated Budget Document, the development of a technology plan to guide decision making in the County and the implementation of paperless County Board/Committee meeting packets as key accomplishments for the County.

Schoemann listed his 2018 budget goals as:
1. Holding or reducing the current tax rate;
2. Reducing or eliminating the need to access fund balance to balance the budget;
3. A 4th consecutive pay plan adjustment; and
4. Implementing the Parks Fiscal Sustainability Plan.

Schoemann joins exclusive group of county leaders in nation's capital

Washington County Administrator Joshua Schoemann has been named one of a select group of 24 leaders in county government from across the country to participate in the 14th Annual County Leadership Institute (CLI), a rigorous program developed by the National Association of Counties (NACo) and Cambridge Leadership Associates.

"Josh is one of Wisconsin's brightest and most innovative local government officials. WCA embraces the opportunity for one of our state's best to further develop leadership skills through NACo. Josh is highly regarded and very well respected in Wisconsin's public policy arena. Continued refinement of his leadership skills will not only help Washington County but all of Wisconsin. We look forward to great things from Josh," said Mark O'Connell, Executive Director of the Wisconsin Counties Association."

Schoemann is a two time winner of the University of Wisconsin-Madison Robert M. La Follette School of Public Affairs Lloyd D. Gladfelter Award for Government Innovation, most recently for his work creating a regional health department between Ozaukee and Washington Counties. Last October Schoemann was a finalist for the Route Fifty Navigator Award in the State and Executive Leadership category for the implementation of Priority Based Budgeting. Earlier this year, he was recognized on a national "top 100 list" for local government influencers by Emerging Local Government Leaders (ELGL) noting him as "the new face of local government."

"With the impending challenges facing us in the next decade, we are embracing Josh's strategic approach to addressing unchartered waters in Washington Counties," said County Board Chair Rick Gundrum. "It's no surprise that he has been chosen as the sole representative for Wisconsin as his future in problem solving for local government is bright."

The institute, held June 4-8, 2017 in Washington, D.C., presses county officials to consider innovative approaches to address key issues facing their counties and constituents. The program is designed to help county leaders further develop their approaches toward solving complex challenges. It provides tools to encourage innovation and creativity; resources for invigorating organizational culture; and best practices in effective communication, collaboration and decision-making.

"We have a lot of ambitious goals in Washington County. I look forward to having a hands-on experience that will help us accomplish these goals over the next 18 months," said Schoemann. "This is a unique opportunity to learn from experts and work with other county leaders as we strengthen our skills to tackle public sector challenges."

Matthew Chase, NACo's executive director, said, "County officials often address similar issues and can learn a great deal from one another. The County Leadership Institute fosters peer-to-peer learning and encourages common-sense solutions to challenges that counties and residents face every day."

Since its inception, the Institute, known for enhancing the capacity of county officials to identify and implement innovative solutions to complex challenges, has graduated nearly 300 leaders from 172 counties across 45 states. This year's program will focus on the demands of personal leadership in the modern era of government, once characterized as a "permanent crisis" by Cambridge Leadership co-founder Marty Linsky.

The program is made possible with the support of IBM, NACo's Financial Services Center and the National Council of County Association Executives.

New Leadership takes reins of Human Services Department

Washington County recently announced the appointments of Julie Driscoll and Sandy Hoefert to the positions of Director of Human Services and Deputy Director of Human Services in Washington County.

"I am very excited about the combination of Julie and Sandy," said Deputy County Administrator Matt Furno. "Julie's energy and ability to lead innovative change combined with Sandy's proven track record of over 25 years of experience in Washington County will serve our population extremely well."

"I am honored to join the great team in Washington County and I look forward to serving the community to support the health, well-being and safety of individuals and families," said Driscoll.

Driscoll holds a Masters of Social Work from the University of Wisconsin - Milwaukee. She is the former Director of Family Service, Health and Nutrition at Acelero Learning. Prior to Acelero Learning, Julie was a leader for the City of Milwaukee Health Department. She has been married to her husband Mike for 17 years and has two teenage daughters, Maura and Delaney. She enjoys camping, cooking and watching my daughters play competitive volleyball.

With roughly 130 employees, over 100 community programs and a 2017 total budget over $20 million, the Human Services Department is the County's largest department, managing a wide variety of community programs for individuals and families challenged by disability, economic hardship and safety concerns. The department includes acute care services - crisis intervention team, the children and families division, an economic support division and the behavioral health services division.

Hoefert has a Master's Degree in Social Work and has been a part of the Washington County Children and Families Division since 1989. Before serving as the County's new Deputy Director, she worked as a Social Worker, Senior Social Worker, Supervisor and the Children and Families Division Manager. She believes in an approach to partners, co-workers, families and clients promoting a "we are in this together" attitude.

County Considers Fiscal Sustainability Plan for Parks

The Public Works Committee is set to review the first draft of a Fiscal Sustainability Plan for Washington County Parks at its April 26th meeting. The plan was named a goal of the Washington County Board of Supervisors earlier this week at its annual strategic planning meeting. The goals set by the County Board indicate the items of the highest importance to the County.

2016 Postponed Real Estate Taxes

2016 Postponed Real Estate Taxes

The second installment of postponed real estate taxes are due on or before July 31 to the Washington County Treasurer. Payments that are mailed must be postmarked no later than July 31st to be considered timely.

Checks are to be made payable to the Washington County Treasurer and mailed to 432 E Washington St, PO Box 1986, West Bend WI 53095-7986. Enclose the payment stub from your tax bill or write your tax parcel number on your check. If you would like a receipt, please enclose a self-addressed, stamped envelope.

You can use the Washington County website to look up your tax information by either your parcel number or the address of the property. From the County’s home page, click on Departments, then click on County Treasurer, and click on the Tax Information link.

If you need assistance, please contact the Washington County Treasurer's office at 262-335-4324. Our office hours are Monday thru Friday from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Board and Committee Interest Form Available


Any Washington County citizen looking to get involved on a Board or Committee for the County can express their interest by filling out the "Board and Committee Interest Form."

Board and Committee Interest Form (pdf)

Washington County Strategic Priorities Now Available

The Washington County Board recently approved Strategic Priorities for the Quality of Life of the Citizens of Washington County.