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Green Bay Mayor Sentenced To Fine, Community Service

Mayor Jim Schmitt Pleaded Guilty Monday To 3 Misdemeanors

Jim Schmitt
Patty Murray/WPR

The mayor of Green Bay has been sentenced to do community service and pay a fine for violating the state’s campaign finance law.

Mayor Jim Schmitt pleaded guilty to three misdemeanors Monday in Brown County Court after being charged with accepting several donations that exceeded the $1,040 individual limit.

Green Bay Mayor Jim Schmitt in court for his sentencing hearing Monday, Dec. 5. Patty Murray/WPR

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The judge sentenced him to perform 40 hours of community service and ordered him to pay a $4,000 fine. WLUK-TV reports the judge required Schmitt to do both within 60 days.

Schmitt apologized to his family and constituents during the sentencing hearing.

“Your Honor, I’m really sorry, I am,” Schmitt said. “I apologize to the court, to my family and especially to the citizens of Green Bay. … This will never happen again. I’m sorry. I apologize.”

Schmitt has served as mayor for 14 years and has two years left in his term, which he vowed to finish it, though he did hint he will not seek reelection.

Some on the city council may move to oust him.

Alderman Guy Zima said if three quarters of the council votes to remove Schmitt, Schmitt could be forced out. However, Zima won’t introduce such a motion “because whoever introduces a complaint could not participate in it. But I think there are numerous citizens who will not stand for this and are going to file a complaint.”

Zima said other politicians with similar campaign finance violations were charged with felonies.

Schmitt’s attorney, Patrick Knight, told reporters his client’s violations were not involved in his mayoral duties, instead they were related to his campaign. Knight concluded there is no basis for removing Schmitt from office.

Editor’s Note: This story has been updated with original WPR reporting.