Boats Near Capacity On High Falls FlowageIssue Date: July 19, 2017
"In my opinion, the number of boats is exceeding the capacity of the flowage," Supervisor Kevin Solway declared during his report on the town's Water Patrol at the monthly Town of Stephenson board meeting on Wednesday, July 12.
He was referring to heavy boat traffic on the Peshtigo River, particularly High Falls Flowage near Twin Bridge.
He said later that the crowded conditions on the flowage may be due partly to frequent rains and stormy weather limiting the hours boats can be on the water, so more are out at the same time, and partly due to the ever growing number of boaters in the area.
Whatever the reason, water patrol has been busy. They issued six warnings and two tickets, replaced some buoys, answered several calls regarding boats blocking the swimming beach at the water ski area, and rescued one stranded pontoon boat, in addition to other issues, including a stolen warning light.
During time for public comment there was discussion on boats passing too closely to other boaters, for instance on one case going at a relatively high speed between two boats so closely that passengers could reach out and touch the other vessel.
Darrell Pentico suggested the Water Patrol should take a boat just down river from the bridge on County X, where a large deadhead creates a hazard for boaters.
After an explanation by Surveyor Hugh Guy, the board approved a certified survey map for Jamie Nolan and Douglas Wagner land division creating three lots with ingress and egress off Moonshine Hill Road. Supervisor Jeff Lieuwen abstained and the rest of the board voted in favor. The Plan Commission had previously approved the land division, which Guy described as, "Pretty straightforward."
The board also approved a transaction in which K-C Stock will receive two 30-foot "fingers" of land on Pheasant Drive leading in to the old Sandstone Lodge property in return for building a 90-foot paved cul de sac within two years on a portion of Pheasant Drive which he is donating to the town for road purposes. Town snowplows will then be able to turn around easily. Town Attorney Kim Coggins is preparing the legal documents, which will include a reversionary clause in case the cul de sac does not get built and asphalted within the two-year time period. Lieuwen had prepared a map for the town board. The trade had been approved at the Annual Meeting, and Coggins asked for a copy of the resolution. The board approved a picnic license for Settlers Day on the grounds of the Crivitz Museum on Saturday, Aug. 5.
Bartender licenses were approved for Lori Frye and Eileen Schmid, and renewal licenses were approved for Jamie Dudek and Patricia Lawrence. Clerk Elaine Olson said she already has all the needed fees and documents.
Three bids were opened for propane for town purposes for the coming year, and the board voted unanimously to accept the low bid, for 98 cents per gallon with no added charges, from Northwoods Propane. Other bids were from CHS Larsen Co-Op for $1.15 per gallon, also with no add ons, and from Lakes Gas of Crivitz for $1.219 per gallon, with an additional $3 fee per delivery.
The board also unanimously approved purchase of 21 new 8-foot folding tables from Office Depot for the town hall for $85 each, delivered. Olson said the original price was $109 per table, but Office Depot had given the town a good deal. The tables, made of molded plastic, have a 500 pound capacity and come with 5-year warranty.
The fire department had one meeting, one drill and responded to 11 calls during the past month.
Public works Superintendent Craig Baeten reported the crew is still cleaning up damage from the June 11 storm, and East Butler Rock Road is still closed. Other than that, they have ben busy patching roads.
Olson, reporting for the Animal Control Officer Mark Schlei, said six animals were picked up. Three were dropped off at the kennel and three were claimed promptly by their owners.
Building Inspector Jane Meisner reported issuing 14 building permits since the last board meeting, including one for a new dwelling, two for new fire numbers, and two for tent cabins at Wheel Inn. To questions from board members, she said the tent cabins are wooden structures that have canvas roofs and walls.
Code Enforcer Gerald Ronowski said he has been working with the owners of properties on Newton LakeRoad, Hwy. X and Parkway Road next to a bar, where there will either need to be a fence or get rid of some stuff. As to another property, one in a subdivision, he declared, "We will have to do something with her, but I'm not going there alone!"
The board spent a bit of time discussing whether or not they could extend an existing contract for crack filling for two years, or if they will need to re-bid. Chair Mike Kudick said he would like to extend the agreement, since they have a good contract with a good price that he would like to lock in, but he felt they should not do business that way. The initial RFP had not allowed for an extended contract. Kudick declared several times during the discussion that he wants to do the right thing, but also wants to do it the right way.
Coggins agreed it would not be a good idea to just extend the contract for two years without giving others a chance to compete on equal terms.
There was a comment that the price paid to the current contractor is 50 cents per pound cheaper than anybody else. Kudick asked if they could get prices now for 2018 and 2019. Coggins said they can do that. The board agreed the town will seek RFPs for a two year contract starting in 2018, but took no formal action. The current price is good through 2017.
As the meeting drew to a close, Lieuwen extended wishes for a quick recovery to Jim Kanikula who has had some medical issues and is now at home recovering. Other board members concurred. Kanikula is a former town chair and supervisor, and also a former Marinette County Sheriff.
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