Town Meeting Minutes | September 14, 2020
The monthly meeting of the Town Board of the Town of Cedar Lake was held on Monday, Sept. 14, 2020 at 6:30 PM at the Cedar Lake Town Hall. Present were Ken Leners, Chairman, Tony Wolff and Kory Weiss, Supervisors, Maryhelen Drew, Clerk and Gladys Roux, treasurer. Also present were 17 other people.
The meeting was called to order and the pledge of allegiance was said.
The minutes from the previous monthly meeting were read. Kory spoke to the discussion regarding the garbage bill from Republic. It has gone up $30 since last month. We will be switching to Independent. These were approved as read by Kory, seconded by Tony and approved by all.
As there was no public input at this time, the treasurer’s report was discussed. Both the treasurer and the clerk balanced with each other as well as the bank statements.
The past month’s road report includes the return of the backhoe from being repaired. A bill has been submitted to the Town of Doyle and Town of Oak Grove to help with the cost of this repair. The culverts are now complete. We have two spots that still need asphalt,27th Ave. & 30th Ave. doug fischer asked if there would be asphalt placed on the culvert spots on Methil this year. No, the preparation of the culverts hopes to lead to doing a 2 mile stretch of rebuild next summer. It is better to let everything settle before asphalt. Scott will be starting the second round of mowing soon.
Kory said that the county has placed a level monitor on the east side of Red Cedar Lake to the north of Walleye Park. The hope is that a person may login to the website at some point and monitor the level of the lake. Before this goes on the website, we need to see how this is going to work. Kory expressed to Tyler the concern for the level monitor when the ice forms and goes out in the spring.
Ken then spoke about the Birchwood Four Corners Emergency Services Dist. There has been a review of the by-laws with no changes to them at this point. Still pending. Ken made a motion to formally disapprove the current by-laws as submitted. This was seconded by Tony. Kory asked if we should wait for the addition of the residency requirements before disapproving? No, the Board will continue with this motion at this time.
Roll call vote taken: Ken,Aye: Tony, Aye: Kory, Aye.
Much discussion followed with explanations of what is happening at this time. Kory asked if there was any discussion to include verbiage to state non-members don’t vote on what they do not participate in. Tony said they should also not make a motion or second that motion. Kory will create a
draft regarding members voting on something not contributing to the budget. He will then forward this to Ken.
Tony had made a motion to cover additional ambulance costs at the last meeting. There was no second, so therefore no discussion. The commission discussed the fact that Cedar Lake has not paid their share of the budget for 2020 yet. They are attaching interest to the payment each month. Ken had refused to sign the by-laws as submitted so was chastised by the commission for being the only person to stand up. The commission had threatened to seek legal action. Tony spoke up to say that he has seen the heat that the commission has given Ken for many months. It is intense. At this point does the Board take a stand and turn everything over to an attorney? If we continue on this path our Town could become responsible for a lot more money. Kory feels that the representative to the commission from each entity should be a member of that town board instead of an appointed person from town. Kory also feels this should be turned over to an attorney as we are not seeing any changes. Seems to be the same old thing. Ken showed a copy of a letter to Jon Sleik from an attorney he had hired, Arnie Kohler. Feel like money is being wasted as this feels like an intimidation tactic. This is the third letter.
At this point Northwest Builders will not let the commission see the plans for the new building, saying that they own them. The commission now would like to ask for other bids. At the time, no other bids were requested. At this point, approximately $100,000 has been invested in the start up of this capitol project with these funds coming from operating funds. Obligating funds for purposes other than what was approved by the municipalities is misapplication of funds. Legal action against the BFCESD will likely become necessary.
Jon is drafting a letter to us regarding the interest charges on the budget assessment. Our original budget amount was $102,168.65. With the interest they claim the town owes, the total would be $110,977.57. This letter is not official at this time. Another attempt of intimidation.
Tony in addition to the by-laws not ever being written, what is being done with the funds for the new building? There has not been proper bidding. Doug Fischer asked if the funds collected from individuals are being held separately now? Yes, the BFCESD bookkeeper is tracking these funds separately.
At this time, Bill Zimmer, from Town of Edgewater, is redoing the bids. The major raise in this bid will be the materials due to COVID. It is already up around $2 million. Edgewater has not signed the agreement at this time
either. So, can’t break ground at this time. Everything is on hold until March 2021.
Linda Zillmer has been preaching the need to go out for other bids since the beginning of this process. Jon had told her that was not necessary. Another contractor has come forward and would like to submit a bid. She mentioned as well that the money used has been operating funds, not capital improvement funds. At this time Edgewater is re-assessing the $64,000 they pay Sawyer Co. for Ambulance service. It is a possibility that other entities may decide to withdraw from the agreement.
Ken mentioned that we would wait and see if the actual letter will arrive from the attorney. At this time, disapprove the by-laws as submitted.
In discussing the FY2020 for BFCESD which the Town has not submitted at this time is not hurting anyone as they have a large cash balance on hand.
As to the FY 2021 assessment, this will be discussed at the budget work meeting in October. If the by-laws are at a stalemate, need to decide what to do at that time. Concern was mentioned that if the amount were not paid that the Town would be without fire and ambulance coverage. Don’t think they could do that. Ken will ask the attorney how to hold those funds.
This situation has nothing to do ith the fireman or the EMT’s. They are all doing a very professional job. The board of commissioners is the unprofessional part.
Next item for discussion is the alley abandonment. Ken will contact Mike Clamer for a cost estimate and to see if there is a date to proceed.
Next the Board discussed the public nuisance problem concerning Terry Bygd. Ken has gone past Terry’s and the backyard looks good as well as the front yard. He has pallets on the back of the truck which are all loaded and covered. There are 3 vehicles per ordinance. Ken feels that Terry has done very well, the neighbors are happy that he is making progress. In the big picture of 1 – 10, feel that this would be a 5 and acceptable. Tony and Kory agree. Ken asked if he would be getting a culvert for his driveway. Yes, at the point he can afford, he will purchase, as it is needed. Tony asked that if Terry has met the standard are we providing a document to him that he has met the standard? Ken will be sure that Terry receives one.
Ken then asked Doug Fischer if the Loch Lomond Beach Club was satisfied. Doug said that all is well with them also. Ken thanked Terry for the good job and suggested that he keep up the good work.
Next, Ken asked if Terry would like to negotiate the fine which has been multiplying since July 1? Yes, he would. The Board will forgive this debt.
Kelly Weiss spoke about some old business regarding streetlights. He had talked with Xcel Energy regarding installation of more lights near his property. That was last winter. The lights have not been installed. So, needed to start the process again. The bill will be included in the Town streetlights.
Next discussion is in regard to speed signs in the Highland Platt, corner of Hwy. V and hwy. 48. It has been brought to the attention of the Board that there are no speed signs. Kory has researched this and according to statutes, the road has a speed limit of 35mph. There followed much discussion as to whether the Board should start signing all roads or just Erin Lane. If this needs to be done, we need to get locates before winter to be able to install the posts. Tony asked that if there is a problem in that division, why not get the Sheriff involved? The Sheriff has already been involved. Also, mentioned was that there are no stop signs or yield signs in that area either. Kory said that speed limits aside, he will direct Scott to assess what is needed for signs and if we don’t have, order them. There needs to be legal signage. Also will look at Statutory requirements.
Ken is in receipt of WISLR road certification packet from the state for road mileage. He will contact the company who helped with this last year.
There was a situation over by the beach club which included several young children in an ATV accident. They had no helmets as well as many other violations. No one was seriously hurt, but citations were issued. This is the second accident since opening roads to ATV/UTV four years ago. Both incidents were the result of negligent adults.
Ken talked about two incidents within the Town where buildings are being built but do not need Town of Cedar Lake land use permits. These properties are zoned Ag 2. The only permits needed are through the county, no additional permits required.
The clerk was instructed to send an invoice to the BFCESD for storage in our building of the fire equipment in the amount of $6089.00. At this time, there is a red truck and the fire trailer stored.
As to communications received during the month, Kory spoke about an email from a company regarding permits for solar panels. Board status, needs to go to the county. Other emails regarding advertising, new websites, do not reply.
Kory has been approached by Mosaic regarding future plans which may include our town and some grants. May have a person to discuss this at the October meeting.
Kory has contracted with Snergy for propane for this next winter.
Tony has met with the new owners of The Gathering Place in regard to the landing. When the deeds got transferred at the time of the sale, a quit claim was not signed for the V landing. They are understanding that it is a public access. The only concern is people bringing invasive species into the lake. Discussed possibility of signage. Doug Fischer suggested that the lakes Assoc. might help with that. Hopefully this situation is resolved for future Boards.
Maryhelen had suggestions from Ken Widiker regarding his road. There are no speed signs and he would like to see white strips on the side of the road. Kory does not believe in stripping town roads.
Next a date needs to be set to work on the Town budget for 2021. That date will be on Oct. 14, @ 9AM, following the Board meeting on Oct. 12th.
As the posting for this meeting did not get into the Chronotype, it is noted that it was posted on the website, Red Cedar Country Store, The Grill, Bear Trap and the Town hall.
Tony made the motion to pay the bills and adjourn. (8:20)