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Village of Boyceville buys new water meters, discusses moving village offices

BOYCEVILLE — The Village Board approved buying new water meters for the Village’s water utility to be installed in users’ residences next year. They also approved a set back request, talked about the possibility of moving the village offices and approved the 2018 salary schedule.

Village Trustee, Jonathan Farrell, reported to the board about the plans on replacing water meters with a new type of meter that can be read by just driving by a resident’s property. Farrell presented bids for the project, which totaled $125,000 for the new meters, installation and inspection of plumbing within the village.

The Village’s Public Works Supervisor, Don Rose, spoke about the amount of time these new meters would save village employees by not having to visit each home to read the meter. He also noted that the State Public Service Commission would have to be on board with the system and informed the board that it would not be until late next year that the system would be up and running. Besides allowing the meters to be read by driving by, they will more accurately measure the amount of water being used, provide leak protection and are able to measure the temperature of the water during the cold months of the year.

Village president Gib Krueger questioned Rose as to how long the present meters have been in place and Rose indicated that they were installed in 1974. When Krueger found out that the new meters had a useable life of 20 years he commented that he would like to see “something that lasts longer.”

Trustee Bud Gilbertson reported to the board about the possibility of moving the village offices from the current village hall into the Community Center. Gilbertson had several ideas from his committee meeting but indicated that these were just ideas and asked other members of the board to think about the ideas for the next month and the board could take action on moving. Krueger noted that the center would still be available as a storm shelter. 

Police Chief Greg Lamkin had made some drawings of how the village offices could fit into the Community Center and even had a plan to enlarge the center to accommodate all the offices including the police department. But it was also suggested that when the new fire station is built, the police department could move into part of the old fire station.

The board entertained Ronald and Deanna Steinberger during a public hearing where the Steinbergers requested a variance on the setback ordinance at their property at 336 Nordveien Drive. They informed the board that they would like to build a shed about two feet from the rear property line. They told the board that moving the new shed forward on their property would disturb the natural flow of the water and would require the moving of a lot of earth.

The board had received paper work from their neighbors about the project and no one was opposed to it. 

In his report, Police Chief Greg Lamkin noted that the calls for service were up last month with a total of 119 including four for mutual aid calls outside of the village and that 17 calls were handled by the Dunn County Sheriff’s office.

His report indicated that two juveniles were arrested for misdemeanors and five for felonies. He spoke about three separate calls at the high school. One involved a 13-year-old and other a 15-year-old and he said that they arrested a 19-year-old after she punched another during an incident in the cafeteria. He also noted that they arrested a registered sex offender who was out on bail. “He was at the school and he is now in jail,” Lamkin said.

In his report, Don Rose noted that both the Freedom Park and Pafko Park are closed and that the lawn mowers have been put in storage and the snow removal equipment is prepared for the season.

The village board reviewed the utility disconnect procedure, noting at present when a water bill is not paid the village sends a letter and then attempts to call and if the bill is still unpaid the deputy clerk is required to post a notice on the resident’s front door with the information that the water will be shut off. Village President Krueger had some reservations about sending the deputy clerk to post the notice and suggested that the police accompanied the deputy clerk.

The board also adopted the salary schedule for 2018, which shows a small increase across the entire number of village employees except for some part time limited term employees. Krueger noted that the board had spent four hours on the new schedule at their recent meeting. The schedule notes that employees who work after 6 p.m. and before 6 a.m. will receive an additional $1.00 an hour.

The board also made a slight adjustment about an employee attending a funeral of someone who is not a relative.

The board also approved a renewal contract with Weber Inspections for building inspections. They allowed the village clerk to start a Facebook page for her office and approved an operator’s license for Brenda McClelland.