The planning that goes into making Post Prom such a success is no small feat, and this year is not proving any different for organizers. Because the event is moving to Sturtevant, there are some new hurdles to clear that are a little unexpected.
Representatives from Rotary Club of Racine, primary sponsors of the party, are expected to appear before village trustees on Tuesday at the Continual Committee meeting to make formal requests for road closures and perhaps financial assistance to help cover the costs for police at Post Prom.
At the center of the issue is how to pay for 13 to 15 officers from the City of Racine and under whose jurisdiction, complete with liablity, they will operate. According to Sturtevant Police Chief Sean Marschke, and confirmed by Mount Pleasant Village President Carolyn Milkie, Rotary is asking for somewhere between $8,000 and $10,000 to be split between the Villages of Caledonia, Mount Pleasant, Sturtevant and Union Grove to cover the cost.
"If we had more time, this wouldn't be an issue," Marschke said. "But we're already going to be extended for the night paying for our own overtime. More time to plan would have meant more time to organize resources and minimize costs as well."
Given their years of experience with Post Prom, Marschke said the city department has been nothing but open and extremely helpful.
Milkie pointed out that with 2012 being an election year, the villages are already expecting to pay out in overtime when political candidates visit the area. Any extra expense for Post Prom was not budgeted or anticipated.
"We did receive an email from Rotary asking the village to share the costs for protective services," Milkie confirmed. "Even at $2,000 to $3,000 though, which doesn't sound like a lot, adds up when you add it to the overtime we're considering this election year."
Sturtevant Village Administrator Mark Janiuk said Rotary should not expect village taxpayers to pay for a party for high school students. Plus, he said the short timeline leaves just a few weeks to get details like jurisdiction and liability worked out.
"Usually organizations work with the municipality months in advance to hammer out these details before a decision is made and an annoucement follows," he said. "Our residents should not have to pay for a party for high school seniors when we don't even budget for the annual fireworks and we've asked employees to make concessions to balance the budget."
Patch spoke with Julie Craig, chair of the Post Prom committee, and she said Rotary is working with the villages to work out the issues.
"There are a lot of steps to go over, but we're working it out," she said.
Patch tried to reach Jessica MacPhail, president of Rotary, for comment as well, but our call has not yet been returned.
Prom is scheduled for Sat., May 19, and Post Prom is set for 8:30 pm to 2 am at the Sturtevant SportPlex.