Meeting Minutes, Town Board and Public Hearing, November 11, 2019

Chairman Terry Theis called the Public Hearing on the 2020 budget to order at 6:30 pm on Monday, November 11, 2019 at the Liberty Town Hall and proper public notice was affirmed. A list of attendees is attached to these minutes. Clerk Polhamus reviewed the proposed budget and answered questions with an increase of 1.563% in new net construction equating to an overall increase of $1037 in the operating levy limit. The current debt is paid in full as of this month and the new debt service levy is an estimate that will be adjusted upon the Board’s decision on capital borrowing at tonight’s meeting. Adrian Amelse stated he would like the 1/3 allocation for the fire truck looked at again at possibly using equalized values rather than a straight 1/3 for each municipality. Motion by Adrian Amelse/second by Nicole Rakobitsch to adjourn the public hearing at 6:45 pm. All in favor. Motion carried.

Chairman Terry Theis called the Special Town meeting of Electors to order at 6:45 pm. Motion by Orlin Engh/second by Paul Linskens to approve the Operating Levy of $67,360. All in favor. Motion carried. Motion by Paul Linskens/second by Orlin Engh to adjourn the meeting of electors at 6:50 p.m. All in favor. Motion carried.

Chairman Terry Theis called the regular monthly meeting of the Town of Liberty to order at 6:50 p.m. and proceeded with the Pledge of Allegiance and a moment of silence for Veterans Day. Members present were Terry Theis, Adrian Amelse, Nicole Rakobitsch, Treasurer Karen Peterson and Clerk Lori Polhamus.

2. Clerk Lori Polhamus read the minutes of the October 14th and October 24th meetings. The date on the minutes should be changed from the 12th to the 24th. Motion by Rakobitsch/second by Theis to approve the minutes as corrected. All in favor. Motion carried.

3. Treasurer’s report (report attached) Peterson read the Treasurer’s report. Beginning cash balance as of 10/1/2019 was $47,091.27 and an ending cash balance as of 10/31/2019 of $63,318.63 was reported. Interest year to date on the General Fund was $19.73 and interest year to date on the Tax account was $76.16. There is $45,304.55 available in the tax account. Receipts include $10,000 from Ho-Chunk funding and transportation aids.

4. Patrolman’s report– Orlin stated we got the truck back and the cost was going to be around $6000 less the apron fix. Orlin stated he will shorten the chain on this. The new grader is a nice machine with good maintenance records. We will be swapping the tires from the old grader onto this one and have someone willing to give us $8000 for the old grader. We also need six more no shining signs.

5. First period for public comment– Bill Putze stated there were hunters from Indiana last Friday hunting on the old dump property that the Town owns and he would like to put up a bigger no trespassing sign on the Town fence that borders his property. Tom McInerney thanked the board for the culvert on Elk Run and we should put a reflector post up for the winter. Paul Linskens stated the beaver dam at Hwy 56 and County S should be removed.

6. Town Announcements– Polhamus stated we are meeting with FEMA on Thursday evening regarding the July 2019 flood.

7. Discussion with possible action on sale of property – Gabe Williams– Theis stated he received an email from a realtor regarding property that Williams is trying to purchase. This is a sixteen acre parcel off from a 130-acre parcel owned by Barns LLC. Rakobitsch contacted them about the potential zoning. He is trying to gain driveway access off from Boggs Road because the State won’t allow him a driveway off from Hwy 56. There is a triangle piece of property that the Town was granted an easement on as long as we continue to use if for highway purposes. If we no longer do it would revert back to the original owners which has changed hands several times since 1941. When a survey of this area was done, the parcel in question that the Town has an easement through was left off. A title search of this area was recommended before final action can be taken to make sure all parcels are accounted for and who owns what. The item was tabled for Theis to talk to Williams.

8. Discussion on transportation grant with possible action– this was tabled as we are not ready to apply by the December deadline.

9. Discussion with possible action on bank loan for capital expenditures– the Board discussed the possibility of adding insulating the shop to the list or using proceeds from the sale of the grader towards this project. Amelse was in favor of using the proceeds to pay down the debt first. The items to include in the bank loan would be the grader, fire truck, fire gear and truck repairs. Motion by Rakobitsch/second by Theis to approve a bank loan for capital expenditures in the amount of $195,300 for ten years at 2.75%. This consists of $60,875 for the grader, $121,325 for 1/3 of the fire truck, $7100 for fire gear and $6000 for truck repairs. Two in favor, one against. Motion carried. Amelse voting no.

10. Adopt 2020 budgetMotion by Rakobitsch/second by Theis to adopt the 2020 budget with the change in debt service to accommodate the long-term debt amount of $195,300. All in favor. Motion carried.

11. Discussion with possible action on fire contract– the fire contract was presented to the Village of Viola already as to how we want to set up the Fire Board. They will have more discussions on this at the next Fire Board meeting and Amelse would like to address the way the payments are split by thirds rather than other options such as equalized value.

12. Review of draft zoning ordinance with possible action– this item was tabled.

13. Discussion with possible action on Chadwick Hollow Road engineering costs and road maintenance– Theis was approached by Daron from Viola regarding Delta 3 engineers that are working on their Tid district. They had proposed having their engineers do a study on Chadwick Hollow and were asking us to pay part of the cost of the study. They would also work on grant funding. This item should start with the Town and not the Village of Viola as we own the road and it is not designated as an emergency route and it would have to remain gravel. If another meeting is set up regarding this subject, the entire Town Board would like to participate.

14. Action & approval on monthly billsMotion by Amelse/second by Rakobitsch to approve total bills of $79,031.43 as presented. All in favor. Motion carried.

15. Approval on building permits – there were two permits presented, Fred Hall for an outbuilding and Wayde Lawler for a storage shed.

16. Second period for public comment– none

17. Future agenda items– zoning ordinance, meeting next week for road rating, 11/21 at 1:00 pm. Fire Board meeting in December.

Motion by Amelse/second by Rakobitsch to adjourn the meeting at 8:26 pm. All in favor. Motion carried.

Minutes submitted by: Lori Polhamus, Town Clerk