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Coleman Board Adopts State Campground Rule

At a brief monthly meeting on Monday, April 3, Coleman Village Board by unanimous vote adopted some new language for its building code ordinance as recommended by Building Inspector Tom Smith. The new rule, which apparently is mandated by the state, governs campgrounds. Currently there are none in the Village of Coleman, but Village President Glenn Woulf explained the new regulations would govern if they ever get one.

At the start of the meeting Woulf read a letter from Smith, of Tom Smith Inspections, LLC, explaining need for the village to add the language to its Uniform Dwelling Code ordinance.

He said SB 94 created Wisconsin Act 49 that directed the Division of Industry Services at the Wisconsin Department of Safety and Professional Services (DSPS) to adopt rules to establish standards for the construction and inspection of new camping units on fixed locations in campgrounds licensed by the Department of Health Services (DHS) that contain a sleeping place and are used for seasonal overnight camping.

"This is a state mandated uniform standard that requires all municipalities that have adopted the Uniform Dwelling Code to adopt this additional code language and issue permits for new camping units in licensed campgrounds," Smith wrote. He said there is an option for a municipality to opt out, "but it makes absolutely no sense for a municipality to do that...as permits will still be mandated for any new camping unit built in your municipality. The only difference is that I will not be able to issue the permit as the state will contract out your municipality to some other agency."

In a brief summary of the law, Smith said camping units are defined as any framed or other fixed structures including those with fabric walls or roof under 400 square feet used for seasonal overnight camping at a licensed campground. It only applies to units that are located on a licensed campground maintained or intended to be used for seasonal temporary overnight sleeping accommodations, with or without charge, and does not apply to repair or maintenance of structures. It does require a campsite owner to be issued a building permit for a camping unit by the municipalities' UDC Building Inspector prior to starting construction. Gnarly

In general, electrical, plumbing, HVA and construction standards in the UDC were used to develop standards for camping units, with a few changed to reflect special situations in these small buildings.

Transfer tanks or other wastewater disposal units are to be inspected. Rough-in inspections of all units are mandated, along with requirement for the issue of a special Wisconsin Insignia Seal that must be purchased from the state upon final inspection. The seal must be applied to the unit and requires specific inspection records to be kept for at least 10 years.

Smith said he will treat these as special inspections, so the municipality will not need to change existing fee resolutions for UDC inspections.

Before the unanimous vote approving the ordinance change, Trustee Diane Patz asked for an explanation of who Smith is, and what he does for the village.

Woulf explained Building Inspector Dennis Gross is not licensed by the state, so the village has contracted with Smith for several years to handle inspections of new construction in the village.

A bit later in the meeting the board accepted the monthly report by Gross as Building Inspector. In addition to usual permit issues Gross had called Smith about electronic filing for new construction, and was advised that Smith will apply so the village is compliant.

One resident asked if a permit is required to divide their garage with a wall, and letters were sent to residents about code violations that need to be addressed.

There were four building permits issued during March. They were for a $15,000 addition to a home owned by Jason Maye at 213 Linda Lane; remodeling and a new roof at a property owned by Robert Schroeder at 122 Zelia Street for about $10,000; new windows in a building owned by Don Krejcarek at 142 N. Louis Ave., for about $1,600, and an upgrade to the electric service at a property owned by Joel Lavarda at 201 N. Franklin Ave.

Trustee Dave Podoski, chair of the Public Safety and Personnel Committee, reported the police department received 24 complaints in March and issued seven adult citations for penalties totaling $905.80.

Podoski, who is also fire chief, reported the department responded to two calls in March, one a grass fire and the other a traffic accident for a total of 14 man hours. There were 10 calls for the year to date. Training, put on by DNR personnel, was on handling grass fires.

During March in Coleman Municipal Court there were 42 adult appearances, 34 juveniles, three Just Cause hearings and one case review. Police Chief Ida Soletske had 184.75 hours for the month, and Katie Torres had 110.74 hours, including 34.25 for municipal court and one for police department.

Woulf read a letter from Marinette/Menominee Crime Stoppers thanking the village for its $200 contribution "to help make Marinette and Menominee counties a safer place to live."

One of the trustees asked about an environmental cleanup project on the grounds of a former service station on old Hwy. 141.

Woulf said he checked with the property owner last week and was told whoever plans the cleanup for the state ran out of money, so Coleman Engineering is not going to do any more work until they get paid.

"We're not any closer than we were 10 years ago," Woulf commented.

Trustee Nancy Stank, who chairs the Finance Committee, distributed copies of the 2016 Village Audit. Clerk/Treasurer Julie Nosgovitz said the auditor would come to a meeting for an in-person explanation if they wished, but no one felt that was necessary.

Woulf reported very briefly on a Zoning and Planning Committee meeting at which a consultant explained possible housing projects and grant the village might qualify for.

"She had some good ideas and suggestions, we just need to put it into motion," commented Trustee Timothy Gould.

"Housing is one of the main things we need in Coleman," Woulf commented. He had contacted three contractors and one of them is willing to meet with the Plan Commission.

Woulf was impressed with the good manners displayed by Coleman students who attended the meeting.

Treasurer's report showed disbursements for March totaled $37,727.07. Cash on hand at the end of the month was $563,087, down slightly from last month's balance of $592,890.


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