BLOOMFIELD — Two seats on the Bloomfield Village Board are before voters this spring, and six candidates are competing in a Feb. 19 primary.
With six candidates on the ballot Feb. 19, the top four vote-getters will advance to the April 2 spring election.
The field of candidates includes incumbent village trustee Natalie Alvarez along with challengers Eileen DiMarco, Rosemary Badame, Vicki Nelson, Rita Marcinkus and Steve Doelder.
Village board members serve two-year terms at a salary of $4,000 a year.
In addition to Alvarez, the other seat is held by incumbent Dan Aronson, who is not running for re-election and instead is running village president.
DiMarco has two decades of experience working in the U.S. Postal Service. She has also worked at the Nippersink Resort.
DiMarco said she is running for trustee because she believes the course of Bloomfield government must change to alleviate the village’s $6 million debt load.
“We cannot continue on a ‘business as usual’ path,” she said. “I don’t know what ultimately will get us back into sound financial shape, but the situation will not be arrived at quickly or easily.”
DiMarco named accountability and transparency as necessary qualities for a trustee, and she encouraged more Bloomfield residents to attend government meetings and stay informed.
Badame has experience as a business owner, a real estate agent, a bank associate, a caseworker and a hospice volunteer.
Badame served as a town supervisor for the town of Bloomfield prior to the village’s incorporation.
She has also served as a Walworth County Board supervisor, represented lake districts, and performed work on village and county committees.
“For seven years I have witnessed village board cover-ups, a lack of transparency and financial inequities,” Badame said. “No accountability and participation by some of the trustees has become the accepted norm. This is not acceptable. I can do better.”
Nelson has led a career in social work at the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs medical center in Milwaukee.
She ran for trustee in 2017, but lost to Aronson by six votes. She has served on two village committees, but left because she felt the committees were not making progress.
“Sweeping changes are needed on the village board, bringing fresh ideas and willingness to work for change,” she said. “It is imperative there is accountability and integrity throughout our village government.”
If elected, Nelson’s plans include re-evaluating the village budget, reworking committees and improving community relationships.
Alvarez has served on the village board since 2015. She is co-chair of the village’s parks, lakes and recreation committee.
Alvarez could not be reached for comment.
Marcinkus spent much of her career in the food service industry, and she also has education and experience as a chemical lab technician.
A community activist who attends as many government meetings as she can, Marcinkus also made a run for trustee in 2014, but was eliminated in the primary.
If this year’s run proves successful, Marcinkus said she hopes to cut spending, promote economic development and encourage more recreational activity on Pell Lake.
“My knowledge of the history of the area could be used to better the future,” she said. “I’d like to bring people together for a better cause — unite the community, not divide it.”
Doelder, a teacher for many years, now serves as chairman of the board of the Democratic Party of Walworth County.
Doelder has run for Bloomfield trustee and Walworth County Board supervisor, and he served on the village’s ad-hoc finance education committee, which spent last year teaching the public about village finances.
After learning much from the experience, Doelder wants to run for office to help alleviate the debt.
He also wants the village to look into green energy and better broadband coverage to bring more businesses to the area.
“I have interest in making sure the village runs properly and fiscally responsibly,” he said. “Over the long haul, something has to be done.”