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Pound Village Board Hears School Referendum Report

Issue Date: February 7, 2018

At the Pound Village Board meeting on Monday, Feb. 5 Coleman School District Superintendent Doug Polomis distributed informational handouts and gave a presentation on the school building improvement referendum coming up on Tuesday, April 3.

According to a report by Village Clerk/Treasurer Patricia Schutte, there were some questions and answers regarding costs of the project and costs to the taxpayers.

Some highlights discussed included that the last referendum was in 1999 and that debt will be paid off this year, 2018, which would reduce property tax by $1.16 per $1,000. "Impact of this reduction would be a $116 less tax on a house valued at $100,000," the report states.

The referendum is laid out in two questions.

Question 1: Referendum Amount of $10,850,000: To pay for improvements & upgrades to the District's existing school facility including building infrastructure, safety and energy efficiency upgrades, secure entrance reconfiguration, elementary classroom, gymnasium, kitchen, and cafeteria upgrades; expansion of high school cafeteria; and equipment acquisition for these projects.

Question 2: Referendum Amount of $2,980,000: Upgrades to the high school science, technology, engineering, agriculture, art, math (STEAM) areas, computer-aided design, and miscellaneous core classroom areas; plus equipment acquisition for these projects.

Both questions, if approved, would add to the property taxes. The current tax rate of $1.16 per $1000 of value from the old referendum levy would stay, and an additional $0.47 cents per $1,000 would be added for Question 1 projects, which would bring the referendum levy tax rate to $1.63 per $1,000 of value, which would be $163.00 on house valued at $100,000. Financing for Question 2 would add $0.50, to the levy, which would bring the total tax rate for the referendum to $2.13 per $1000 of value, which would be $213 per year on a house valued at $100,000.

There was discussion on the possibility of keeping the current $1.16 improvement levy and using that money for improvements and maintenance including roof and window replacement.

There was also discussion on enrollment. Schutte's report noted that years ago the number graduating from Coleman was around 90 per class. Since 2000 there has been a decline in the number graduating from Coleman with a class of 46 in 2018 one of the lowest.

Polomis encouraged everyone to attend one of the open houses to be held at the school on Wednesday, March 7 from 5 to 7 p.m., and Tuesday, March 27 from 4 to 6 p.m.

Board members thanked Polomis for the presentation, explanation, and information that he provided.

Fire Chief Jarred Edgecombe reported by e-mail that the ladder truck needs some small repairs and two hydrants are frozen. During January the department had two calls to motor vehicle accidents, one call to a structure fire and one to a car fire.

January activities reported by Public Works Director Kevin Schutte including taking down and storing Christmas lights; repairing the pickup alternator and replacing the battery; plus fixing the salt deflector and hydraulic hose on the plow truck and getting all new hoses for replacement.

Preparations are in place for the Walker Street LRIP Project. Jackie Foster Inc. came in as low bidder. After some discussion the board unanimously voted to approve the Jackie Foster Inc. bid of $131,763.00 for the Walker Street Construction.

Schutte asked the board if they wanted to put up brick monuments on this project. After some discussion board members decided not to do brick monuments. Trustee David Navis asked about putting up street lights with street signs on them. Schutte is to get prices for this.  Lighting the street would be $12,400 but then wiring would need to be run to Business 141 for power, which Schutte said would cost approximately $4,000 for materials and about $2,000 more for equipment cost.  Motion to install lights on Walker St and run wiring down Alma St to hook up the electric was made by Trustee John Homontowski and seconded by Trustee Mary Meyer. It carried on a three to two split vote, with trustee Jerry Rogge also voting in favor and Village president Terry Earley and Trustee David Navis opposed.

Kevin Schutte said when Business 141 was constructed conduit was installed for security cameras on the Village Hall and/or the main intersection. Cost would be about $1,000. After some explanation and discussion the board agreed to table this item for the future.

In regard to Garbage Collection and Recycling, Homontowski stated he had been taking his garbage to the Beaver Recycling facility and is not supposed to do this. Beaver residents each pay for their own garbage disposal, and Village of Pound residents have theirs picked up at the curb. This led to some discussion, during which Navis asked why the poundage was dropped from 25 pounds to 15 pounds per tag. It was stated this was due to people putting too much in their bags, causing them to rip open.

In regard to Tax Increment District (TID) agreements, Clerk/Treasurer Patricia Schutte said she will be sending out several copies of the Developers Agreement to Dairyland for Mr. Tachick to sign, and then he will return a couple of copies for village files and she will forward one to Vande Castle.

Clerk/Treasurer Schutte stated an invitation was received for the annual Cougar Country Business Association dinner. Those interested in attending may do so at their own expense.

During time for public comment, Navis said he would like to see Utility meetings changed to a different day because he is unable to attend. He also said he hates his utility bill. Earley suggested that Navis should put his comments in writing and bring the letter to the clerk's office.


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