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THE CITY REBORN FROM THE ASHES OF AMERICA'S MOST DISASTROUS FOREST FIRE
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Wausaukee Names Engelmann As Town Rep At Rescue Squad Meets

Issue Date: November 18, 2020

After a sparsely attended public hearing on the 2021 budget and the Annual Town Budget Meeting that followed on Tuesday, Nov. 10, Wausaukee Town Board accepted the 2021 property tax levy of $603,700 to support a total budget of $917,243. Both figures are up sharply from last year, when the levy was $459,615 and the budgeted expenditures totaled $798,158.

Major reason for the increase was a more than five-fold hike in the annual contract with Wausaukee Rescue Squad which is switching from volunteer to paid staff effective Jan. 1, and a change in the allocation of the contract share to be based on improved parcels in the service area rather than population. These changes increased the Town of Wausaukee share from $30,158 toward a total contract price of approximately $72,000 for 2020 to roughly $151,000 toward a total contract price of $362,095 for all municipalities involved for 2021.

In addition to the Town of Wausaukee, municipalities served by Wausaukee Rescue Squad include the Village of Wausaukee, towns of Wagner and Amberg, and a small part of Middle Inlet. Need to either switch to paid staff and increase the contract price to cover the cost was explained by Rescue Squad officials to municipal officials at a joint meeting on October 9.

The Wausaukee Town Board subsequently convened a Special Town Meeting on October 20, at which electors adopted resolutions endorsing a Town Board recommendation to exceed the 2021 levy limit by $140,000, and allowing the town to form a district Ambulance Commission with other municipalities. The levy limit also allowed the town to cover increased Sanitation Collection costs.

Following that meeting the Town Board held a budget workshop at which the proposed 2021 budget was finalized. Of the total $917,243 budget, $75,633 is allocated for general government, $295,200 for safety, sanitation and culture, and $546,410 for highway expenses. The budget for 2020 allocated $74,573 for general government, $170,675 for safety, sanitation and culture, and $552,910 for highway expenses.

The meetings on Tuesday, Nov. 10 began with the monthly Town Board meeting at 6:30 p.m. Among other items at that meeting, Town Chair Jeff Chairman Engelmann gave a brief report, which included expression of some concerns on the Rescue Squad meeting he attended on Tuesday, Nov. 3. Supervisor Bob Jicha made a motion to appoint Engelmann as representative for the Town of Wausaukee in regard to the Rescue Squad. That motion was seconded by Supervisor Dennis Taylor and carried.

The Town Board meeting was recessed at 7 p.m. for the Budget hearing and special town electors' meeting, at which motions to set the Town levy at $603,700 and authorizing the Town Board to set the salaries of the elected clerk and treasurer in accord with state statutes were approved without dissent.

At 7:23 p.m. the regular board meeting was reconvened and motion to accept the 2021 Budget of $603,700 was approved without dissent.

Present for the set of meetings in addition to Engelmann, Jicha and Taylor were Supervisors Dave Tomasino and Matt Jicha; Clerk Cheryl Stumbris, Treasurer Celeste Hultquist, and Jeff Schwaller on behalf of Ranger City Riders.

In other business at the regular board meeting financial report showing on Oct. 31 the town had balances of $45,572.39 in its checking account and $ 213,758.23 in the Money Market General account. Vouchers were reviewed by all board members and approved.

Jeff Schwaller introduced himself to the Town Board. He is representative for the Ranger City Riders Snowmobile Club and will be the contact person for any issues that may arise concerning the trails in the Town of Wausaukee.

He also wanted to talk with the board about snowmobile crossing signs at town road Intersections, which he feels are serious safety factors. He said the signs are here and there and also in very poor condition. He asked who is responsible to replace the signs and assist with rules, regulations and placement for signage. He was advised that in the past and currently, in regard to Snowmobile and ATV Trails, the property owners and clubs pay for both signs and posts and the town will install them. Schwaller will meet with Bob Wesolowski to work out the details.

Motion to retain Jerry Pillath as Assessor for the Town of Wausaukee and accept his 2021-2023 contract was approved.

Wausaukee Fire District Third Quarter report was reviewed. Any concerns will be on December Agenda.

Clerk Stumbris thanked Supervisor Jicha for all of his help at both April and November Elections.


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