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By LeAnn R. Ralph
MENOMONIE — All-terrain vehicle enthusiasts will soon have more choices for routes in Dunn County.
The Dunn County Board — after suspending the rules requiring a second reading — approved an ordinance adding a list of county highways to the available ATV routes, including the portion of county Highway H containing the Caryville bridge.
Every year, the county board’s highway committee brings forward a list of county highways to add to the ATV routes, said Kelly McCullough, county board supervisor from Menomonie and chair of the highway committee.
Various ATV associations ask to have certain portions of county highways open, and then the committee evaluates the sections of highway for safety criteria, he said.
Gary Bjork, county board supervisor from Colfax, asked if the routes could be used before signs have been put up, but McCullough said they could not.
The ordinance had been considered and reconsidered at five or six meetings, and in the confusion of all the discussion, two changes needed to be made to the ordinance, McCullough said.
County Highway E in the Town of Spring Brook between 730th Street North to 730th Street South must be removed, and county Highway H where the Caryville bridge is located should be added, McCullough said, noting that the use of the Caryville bridge will be reviewed after one year.
That portion of Highway E was removed from the list because the average daily traffic count is higher than the highway committee’s policy for allowing ATV traffic allows, he said.
The Dunn County Board unanimously approved an amendment to the ordinance removing the section of Highway E and adding the Caryville bridge.
Under the county board’s rules, the ordinance would come before the county board for a first reading at the March meeting and for a second reading at the April meeting.
During the second reading, county board members would consider whether they were going to approve the ordinance.
Are county board members in favor of opening the routes sooner or waiting another month? asked David Bartlett, county board supervisor from Boyceville and chair of the Dunn County Board.
A two-thirds vote is needed to suspend the rules, he noted.
Mike Rogers, county board supervisor from Menomonie, said he questioned why the rules would need to be suspended to move the ordinance forward faster.
If you are an ATV rider and you are waiting for more routes to open up, you would wish for approval now, Bartlett said.
In addition, approving the new routes now would give the all-terrain vehicle clubs time to obtain signs, to mark the routes and to have maps printed so the routes can be used sooner, he said.
Mike Kneer, county board supervisor from Menomonie, asked if McCullough was confident the language was correct in the ordinance.
“Yes,” McCullough said, pointing out that the ordinance had been discussed by the highway committee in five or six meetings.
In other years, the Dunn County Board has approved additions to the ATV routes in October.
Ron Score, county board supervisor from Boyceville, asked if the additional routes would connect dead-ends in the townships.
“That’s the goal — to connect the dead-ends,” McCullough said.
John Calabrese, county board supervisor from Menomonie, asked if there was any concern from the highway department about opening the additional routes a month earlier but was assured there was no concern.
The Dunn County Board, on a roll-call, voted 28 “yes” to one “no” to suspend the rules, with Rogers voting “no” on the motion.
The Dunn County Board voted unanimously on a voice-vote to approve the ordinance listing the additional ATV routes.
Here is the list of routes added to the ordinance:
• Highway H Caryville bridge.
• Highway E (north), Town of Red Cedar, 670th Street to 640th Street.
• Highway F, Town of Sherman, 920th Avenue to 865th Avenue.
• Highway BB, Town of Colfax, 850th Avenue to Village of Colfax.
• Highway G, Town of Tainter, 850th, state Highway 25, to Highway D (south).
• Highway V, Wilson, Highway 25 to 610th Street.
• Highway Q, Town of Lucas, Highway N (west) to state Highway 29.
• Highway N, Town of Lucas, St. Croix County line to Highway Q.
• Highway W, Town of Grant, Highway MW to 1015th Avenue.
• Highway MW, Town of Grant, Highway W to Highway M.
• Highway M, Town of Colfax, state Highway 40 to Town of Elk Mound 910th Street.
• Highway N, Town of Colfax, Chippewa County line to Highway A.
• Highway N, Town of Colfax, Highway A to 970th Street.
• Highway A, Town of Colfax, Highway N to 890th Avenue.
• Highway Y, Town of Eau Galle, 350th Street to 360th Street.