W10919 County Road V; P.O. Box 310; Lodi, WI 53555-0310 | (608) 592-4868 | email@example.com
2015 ANNUAL TOWN MEETING MINUTES
TUESDAY, APRIL 21, 2015
1.(a) Town Chairman Thomas J. Marx sworn in by Clerk-Treasurer April D. Goeske
(b) Supervisor 1 James P. Brooks sworn in by Clerk-Treasurer April D. Goeske
(c) Supervisor 2 James L. Bechen sworn in by Clerk-Treasurer April D. Goeske
2. 2015 Annual Town Meeting called to order at 6:15 PM by Town Chairman Tom Marx.
59 Town of Lodi Legal Residents/Eligible Voters present: James Bechen, Kathy Marx, Tom Marx, Joe Zeimet, Rita Zeimet, Cliff Roberts, Jim Tooley, John Pickle, Jr., Jacqueline Disch, Michael Cox, Tim Eagan, Donna Wayne, John Wayne, Jim Seaton, Ingrid Fleming, Gene Fleming, Beverly Baerwolf, Allison Seaton, Don Knuteson, Don Lasee, Kendra Lasee, James Dominick, Fred Chelcun, Beverly Chelcun, Jim Schommer, Shirley Schommer, William Elsing, Amber Elsing, Jean Bruhn, Gene Edwards, Gretchen Edwards, Jim Riphon, Robert Benson, Sharon Benson, Jack Pfister, Beverly Pfister, George Skinner, Mindy Skinner, Mark Mathwig, Donna Wetzel, Roger Wetzel, Eric Scharfe, Cindy Scharfe, Marvin Kolste, Rodney Nellen, Rodney Byers, Melissa Little, Cheryl Nellen, Reginald Rand, Tom Pederson, Rick Weigle, Bob Hunt, Neil McIntyre, Chris Goodwin, Dennis Jones, Lorn Zander, Robert Schmiedlin, Connie Sears.
5 Non-Residents (some may own property in the Town of Lodi) & Visitors present: April Goeske, Roberta Arnold, Jeff Simon, Kersten Simon, and Rick Waugh
3. Welcome residents & visitors: Tom Marx – first I’d like to than Bob Collins, Mike Plumer and Karl Hugo for their service to the community. Anyone who performs the duties required for their positions is to be applauded.
4. Tom Marx - the purpose and the conducting of the Annual Meeting: (a) At the Annual Town Meeting town board members are residents just as most of you are. The only purpose the Town Chairman serves is to conduct the meeting and maintain order. (b) Unique to towns - form of government closest to the people. (c) Direct powers of the Annual Meeting: (i) There are sheets available (at the sign-in table) that tell you the powers that residents have that are binding on the board. These powers are limited. (d) Motions on all other subjects are advisory only. (e) It is not necessary that motions be made. Subjects of concern can simply be discussed.
5. Tom Marx - one thing we have in common is what is in the best interest of the Town. I would only ask the following: (a) Any discussion should be limited to issues that concern the town and not be directed at or about individuals. (b) We should all remember that people can disagree on issues and both sides of any issue can have merit, so respecting others opinions is important.
6. Tom Marx - with that being said does anyone have any issues:
Bob Benson – it’s apparent that we need to push up on our agenda enlarging the parking lot.
Allison Seaton – I would like to comment of STH 113 north of Lodi between Lodi and Okee which is falling apart. I make a motion that the Town of Lodi work with the Town of West Point and petition the State Highway Transportation Department to fix that section of road before it falls apart; Don Lasee seconded the motion; Jim Bechen – we have the head of the State Transportation Committee Keith Ripp here. Keith Ripp – I believe that section of STH 113 is on the state’s schedule within the next 2 years to be repaired. The DOT does project analyses to determine which roads need are a public safety issue. Bechen – we could still send a letter asking for consideration? Keith Ripp – yes, we’re trying to move some road projects up faster, but we’re hitting roadblocks. Fortunately revenues are up in the Transportation Dept. John Pickle – STH 113 coming across the ferry is a relative safe way for bicyclists. I ask that the DOT consider widening the road to allow for bicyclists. Keith Ripp – I prefer to have a totally separate bike path, off the road. Pickle – there was money in the budget for a bike trail (insert). MC unanimously.
Don Lasee motion to reinstate the Transfer Site Committee and to rehire Don Knuteson as Lead Operator; second by Reg Rand. Bechen – I think we should not pass this motion. I think the Transfer Site Committee duties should be given back to the Town Board. Jim Seaton – I was on the T-Site Committee for many years and it was a very active committee until action began on removing the rummage tables, that’s when the members of the committee began to resign one by one. I do believe that with the change in government here I expect to see a change in attitudes of the committee and the citizens, and I think you’d have no problem having a working committee reporting to the board. I think that several town commissions and committees have not been functioning properly for years, but that should change now. Robert Benson – as the only current town board member who voted against the resolution to not allow the table at the Transfer Site, I see you have 3 considerations here: (1) re-establish the t-site committee; (2) rehire Don Knuteson; (3) bring back the donation table. But the motion is ambiguous. Jack Pfister – is this a direct power of the annual meeting? Tom Marx – no, this motion would be advisory to the town board only. Reg Rand removes his second to the motion. Jim Seaton seconds Don Lasee's motion. Hand vote 24 yes, 20 no; Motion Carried 24-20.
Michael Cox motion to have a tornado siren in the Harmony Grove area; second by Connie Sears. James Brooks – can we add Okee siren? Motion modified to include Harmony Grove & Okee sirens; MC unanimously.
Thomas Pederson – do we have a disaster plan? Tom Marx – yes we do, and Supervisor 1 James Brooks is looking at updating it. James Brooks – I am going to be in contact with Lodi LAFD, EMS, and Columbia County Emergency Management to update the town’s outdated plan. Tom Marx - and I also have past experience working on Emergency Management Plans.
William Elsing regarding animal control and leashing dogs: a lot of dogs are not being kept on their property and not restrained. Recently my small dog was attacked by a Husky. James Bechen – when something like that happens you should call our animal control officer or the sheriff department.
Gene Edwards - we have several people moving into the area each year, so sending out information on important ordinances, etc… would be helpful. Tom Marx – I’m hoping to improve the town’s website, and reinstating the annual town newsletter. I will also be recommending that the Town have a liaison to the sheriff dept.
Reg Rand – we need more protection from the sheriff dept. in the town, other than just Memorial Day to Labor Day.
Rick Weigle – we have a real problem with people not picking up after their dogs.
Jim Seaton – the past few weeks we’ve had a lot of problems with people burning without permits, and burning during hours they’re not supposed to and when there are bans. April Goeske – I have been updating the burning restrictions daily on the town's website home page and emailing updates to the people I have on the Town of Lodi Public Information email list. Beverly Pfister – we have a lot of seasonal people who may not be getting the emails regarding burning restrictions. Connie Sears – you can have campfires even when there is a ban. April Goeske – not when there is the most severe “red flag” DNR warning, then there is no burning of any kind, they even suggest you don't stand outside and smoke. Dennis Jones – if you have a burning permit it tells you that you’re required to check the WI DNR website or call their # to check burning restrictions every day.
Joe Zeimet – April sends out the email about burning restrictions, could she also send out the agenda and minutes via that same method? April Goeske - I can easily do that.
Jean Bruhn – I’ve lived in HG for 20+ years and I think people just don’t know, they don’t hear of people being caught violating ordinances and the repercussions.
Gene Edwards – I think distribution is a problem when mailed. I think something should be put on every door in the town.
Allison Seaton – we used to have a newsletter that came out quarterly. Tom Marx – we have to look at costs and determine what can be done. Gene Edwards – distributing them at the t-site would get to a lot of people.
Bob Benson – maybe a sign at the t-site that states burning restrictions. Joe Zeimet – just north of N. Lake Point Dr. there is a sign that posts the DNR warnings (the sign is in the Town of Dekorra). James Bechen – Richards Road is the busiest road in the town, so why not have a sign like that on that road. James Brooks – we need to contact the DNR regarding DNR signs posting this. Joe Zeimet – find out who updates the one in the Town of Dekorra. Connie Sears – you can subscribe on the DNR website to get the notices by email. Maybe the town can put that link on their website.
Jean Bruhn – I’ve requested to be on the Park Commission. How often do they meet and when will they be meeting. April Goeske – Peg Ford will be calling a meeting soon if the current Park Commission Chairman doesn’t call one by the end of the month. And your name is on the list of people interested in being on the Park Commission, but there currently isn't an opening. Connie Sears – if the park funds aren’t used in a calendar year then they don’t roll over to the next year. Maybe that’s something that should be considered by the board, rolling over the money into a fund.
Gene Fleming – since we’re on the subject of things going south in Harmony Grove we need to look at what the area is starting to look like – with junk cars, boats, etc… sitting not running and rusting. We need to look into enforcement of our ordinances.
Jack Pfister – we’ve had a running battle with the Columbia County Zoning Dept. not enforcing zoning ordinance violations relating to buildings. I’m not saying we need to have ordinances, we need to find out why the county isn’t enforcing.
Mindy Skinner – what about a town constable. Couldn’t that person enforce the ordinances? Tom Marx – a town can have a constable who can enforce our ordinances. They cost money. April Goeske – the Town of Dekorra has had a Town Constable for many years. They can either be an elected or an appointed position. I can talk to Dekorra about what this costs them, and possibly get their current Constable, who is a long-time friend of mine, to come to one of our Town Board meetings to discuss what he does. William Elsing – I think it comes down to common sense and being courteous to your neighbors, following ordinances and laws. Joe Zeimet – I was on the town board in the 1990’s and we had the same problems then, and it’s a very long tedious process to get people to clean up their property. April Goeske – I can get information on the Town of Dekorra’s constable costs and maybe have him come talk to our board. Gene Fleming – we may need to look into our ordinances and updating them.
Tom Marx – I want to encourage people to come to town board meetings, watch what’s on the agendas.
Connie Sears – and we have to consider that something that bothers one person doesn’t bother another.
Gene Edwards – we have the structure in place having the sheriff dept. enforce our ordinances, so maybe if we have a talk with them about this maybe we can get more cooperation. Jim Bechen – when I was last on the town board we had a sheriff officer come to each of our meetings with a report. We need to get that cooperation again. April Goeske - there hasn't been much cooperation for the past couple of years. Bob Benson – a new person at the sheriff’s dept. came here and seemed to be willing to get back to sharing information with us, but that seemed to be dropped. I think we need to increase our budget towards the sheriff dept. instead of decreasing it. Reg Rand – about 7 or 8 months ago I asked why we weren’t getting reports on police activity like the Lodi Enterprise reports on the City of Lodi Police Dept. each week.
Connie Sears – we have this beautiful town hall and lots of seniors in the area it’d be nice to open the town hall once a month for something like cards. Chris Goodwin – Reach Out Lodi is working on something like that. Jim Seaton – the Okee Association meets the 2nd Monday of each month at the Okee School for a potluck, we try to have a speaker there.
James Brooks – I came to a town board meeting and there was only about 10 people in the audience. I encourage more people to continue coming to meetings.
Bob Benson/Jim Bechen motion to adjourn at 7:10 PM; MC unanimously.