Colfax approves ATV/UTV route

By LeAnn R. Ralph

COLFAX  — The Colfax Village Board has approved an ATV/UTV route through the village, although the route will not be able to be used until sometime after October.

The public safety committee discussed the ATV/UTV route, and the general recommendation is to establish a route from county Highway M to Railroad Avenue as far as state Highway 40, with the return route going east on Railroad back out to Highway M, said Keith Burcham, village trustee and chair of the public safety committee, at the Colfax Village Board’s June 11 meeting.

Eldora Deraad, representing the Dunn County ATV/UTV Association, spoke to the Colfax Village Board at the May 14 meeting about designating several streets as routes.

Deraad also attended the June 11 meeting.

The Town of Grant has asked for the ATV/UTV route to use Highway M as well, Deraad said.

The Colfax Town Board is still waiting to find out what other routes are established before making a decision for the Town of Colfax, she noted.

Deraad said she has contacted Dunn County, and the county only makes a decision one time per year in October to add county highways to the list of where ATVs/UTVs are permitted to operate on county highways.

The village could only approve Highway M on that portion where M is 35 mph within the village limits, noted Colfax Police Chief William Anderson.

State law now allows municipalities to regulate ATVs/UTVs on streets and roads where the speed limit is 35 mph. ATVs/UTVs are not allowed to travel over 35 mph.

The biggest ride so far has been 56 ATVs that stopped in Wheeler for a hamburger, at the Grain Bin north of Wheeler for dessert and at Glenwood City for a beer, Deraad said.

The ATV/UTV association books stops ahead of time so business owners are not taken by surprise, she said, noting that a fund raiser in the Town of Spring Brook drew 95 ATVs/UTVs.

“Would I say that many would invade Colfax? No,” Deraad said.

But a typical weekend might have 20 or 30 ATVs/UTVs, she said.

ATVs/UTVs can operate in most parts of Dunn County from April 1 until December 1 from dawn to dusk, Deraad said, noting in some areas in southern Dunn County, ATVs/UTVs can be operated 24 hours a day seven days per week.

The Colfax Village Board unanimously approved an ATV/UTV route coming into the village on county Highway M to Railroad Avenue and west on Railroad to state Highway 40 with the return route east on Railroad Avenue back to Highway M.

The village board will have to approve an ordinance establishing the route, and the ordinance will have to be published in the village’s official newspaper, the Colfax Messenger, before the route will be available for use.

The Colfax Village Board is not anticipating taking any action on an ATV/UTV ordinance until after the county board adds Highway M to the list in the fall. If the Dunn County Board does not add Highway M to the list, an ATV/UTV route will not be established in Colfax.

Other business

In other business, the Colfax Village Board:

• Approved updates to the Municipal Emergency Operations Plan, which included updated telephone numbers and hospital names.

• Approved changing the name of the “spreading garden” at Colfax Evergreen Cemetery to the Memorial Garden based on the recommendation of the parks committee.

• Learned that the brick pillars at the entrance to Colfax Evergreen Cemetery are in need of repair. Lynn Niggemann, village administrator-clerk-treasurer, will find someone to do the repairs. In the September 13, 1951, Colfax Messenger it was reported, “Two new brick pillars were completed last week at the entrance to the village cemetery. The project was completed through arrangement of the Colfax Garden Club. The new pillars are of brick construction, 5 ½ feet high and 38 inches through, the labor being done by Gus Christianson and Melvin Hendrickson.”

• Approved bartender operator’s licenses for 46 individuals for July 1, 2018, to June 30, 2019.

• Approved a transient merchant license for Alvin Lu, China Taste, from April 1 to September 30. The transient merchant licenses go by quarter, Niggemann said, and Lu paid for two quarters at once.

• Approved a combination Class “B” beer and Class “B” liquor license for Mike and Mark Nelson, Outhouse Bar, 413 Main Street, for July 1, 2018, to June 30, 2019.

• Approved a Class “B” beer and Class “C” wine license for A Little Slice of Italy, 501 Main Street, for July 1, 2018, to June 30, 2019.

• Approved a Class “A” beer license for J&S Sales/Express Mart, 616 Main Street, for July 1, 2018, to June 30, 2019.

• Approved a combination Class “A” beer and Class “A” liquor license for Kyle’s Market, 115 Main Street, for July 1, 2018, to June 30, 2019.

• Approved a Class “A” beer license for Synergy Cooperative, 401 E. Railroad Avenue, for July 1, 2018, to June 30, 2019.

• Approved a Class “B” beer and Class “B” liquor license for The Blind Tiger, 512 Main Street, for July 1, 2018, to June 30, 2019.

• Approved tobacco licenses for July 1, 2018, to June 30, 2019, for J&S Sales of Chippewa Falls/Express Mart, Kyle’s Market, Mike and Mark Nelson/Outhouse Bar, Synergy Cooperative, Dollar General and The Blind Tiger.

• Adopted a resolution accepting the Compliance Maintenance Annual Report for the wastewater treatment facility for 2017. The facility received a grade of “A.”

• Received a report from Steve Ackerlund, Colfax FFA Alumni, about the new swine barn at the Colfax Fairgrounds. The project is nearly complete and will be finished in time for the fair, he said. The new swine barn cost about $40,000 all together, and the FFA Alumni are about $10,000 short, Ackerlund said. Gary Stene, village president, noted when the village board initially approved the project, board members wanted to see how much would be left to be covered after the FFA Alumni had done some fund raising before committing to paying for part of the project. Stene said he would put the item on the agenda for the village board’s consideration at another meeting. 

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