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                   VILLAGE OF LA FARGE

                 Regular Board Meeting          Monday, May 8, 2023


1). Village President Pro-Tem Aaron Nemec called the regular meeting of the La Farge Village Board to order at 6:30 p.m. at the Emergency Services building. Roll Call. Board members Aaron Nemec, Barb Melvin, Karen Leis, Terry Jensen, Aaron Appleman, and newly appointed Trustee Dave Fish were present. Absent was Village President Frank Quinn.            

Also present: News reporter’s Lonnie Muller and Bonnie Sherman, Public Works Manager Wayne Haugrud, Utility Clerk Greg Lawton, Police Chief Steve Palmer, Samantha Laskowski, Eileen Karpfinger, Dale Klemme, Mark Digman, and Clerk Kimberly Walker.     


*On behalf of Frank Quinn, Aaron Nemec congratulated and welcomed Dave Fish to the Village Board. 


2). Verification was given of meeting publishing in the La Farge Episcope, and of posting at the Bank, Post Office, and Village Office on May 4, 2023.    


3). Melvin moved, Jensen seconded to approve the previous meetings minutes: (4-10-2023/Regular Village board meeting; and 4-20-2023/Special Village board meeting). (Carried).    


4). Correspondence: The La Farge Lions Club is celebrating their 50th Anniversary on June 17th at the ESB. The Board is invited to attend. Please RSVP by June 4th. The cost is $25 and includes dinner.


5). Public Comment: Samantha Laskowski, S4794 Lieurance Road, La Farge, was present representing the Vernon County Energy District. She introduced their newly hired Program Director, Eileen Karpfinger and shared info on Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) benefits for La Farge. She passed out a sheet showing tax credits, rebates, and incentives and encouraged people of the community to take advantage of this.   


6). Utility business: Mark Digman, Professional engineer with Delta 3, was present. He passed out the plans for the proposed 2024 infrastructure improvements of East Main Street, from Maple to Cherry, and Mill Street, from Highland to Seelyburg Road (about 600’ in). He went over the water main, sanitary sewer, and storm sewer replacements and street repaving areas. Wayne and Mark reviewed these plans last week and added a couple of areas, one being North Street, as the Well is in that section, 200’ East on Highland, and just North of Adams Street, extending the sanitary sewer from the West side to the East to pick up more developable lots. As part of the CDBG grant application that CDA is filing, going through these plans is part of the requirement.


*Mark reviewed the costs. They changed slightly with the addition of a couple areas. The Ease side is $688,000 and the North side is $1,212,000. Total cost estimate is $1.9 million. Jensen moved, Melvin seconded to approve the plan specs and estimates for the proposed 2024 infrastructure improvements for the La Farge project. (Carried).    


*Mark passed out a budget sheet for the safe drinking water application. The total cost is 1.99 million. This is to cover anything additional or unexpected (closing costs, change orders, etc.). This application is due in June. There is another DNR program we can apply for in September, the Clean Water Fund, if we choose. Melvin moved, Leis seconded to approve the SDWLP application and allow Delta 3 to submit it to the DNR. (Carried).


*Need a resolution to allow the Village President to sign documents on behalf of the village. Jensen moved, Appleman seconded to approve resolution #5-108-23 titled “Authorized Representative Resolution Environmental Improvement Fund”. (Carried).   


*The next resolution authorizes the village to pay for work out of their own accounts, then get reimbursed with DNR funds later. Leis moved, Jensen seconded to approve resolution #5-208-23 titled “A Resolution Declaring Official Intent to Reimburse Expenditures”. (Carried).    


*A requirement of the SDWLP is to have a signed engineering contract. Unlike the CDBG grants, engineering is a reimbursable expense from the DNR. The contract dates back to September 1, 2022, to get reimbursed for previous expenses. Discussed the village procurement policy, under #3-1-13 of the village ordinances, to waive the bid procedure, which is needed to approve the contract. Delta 3’s cost is $228,000, and this includes costs from the beginning. Melvin moved, Jensen seconded that the village approves the engineering contract, by waiving the procedures of section 3-1-13 of the village ordinance procurement policy. (Carried).


*Dale Klemme was present and reviewed the grant the village will be applying for. In April, we held the public hearing for the CDBG-PF grant for the Main & Mill project. The grant will pay 2/3 of the project costs, up to $1,000,000. The application is to be submitted by May 18th. In the application, we need to show the match of $732,000, on the $1,732,000 cost CDA is submitting. The village has this covered from the TID account. But our intention is to use funds from the DNR, as part of this may be a forgivable loan, but we don’t have it yet. Dale has 2 resolutions, one authorizing the Village President to sign the documents to submit the CDBG application and one to commit match funds and certification the funds are available.


*Jensen moved, Leis seconded to approve an “Authorizing Resolution to Submit a Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) Application”. (Carried).


*Melvin moved, Appleman seconded to approve an “Authorizing Resolution to Commit Match Funds & Certification of Match Funds Secured”. (Carried).             


**The CMAR (Compliance Maintenance Annual report) for the wastewater treatment plant needs approval for submission to the DNR. Jensen moved, Appleman seconded to approve the (2022) report. (Carried).


**Utility business: PWM Wayne Haugrud reported a couple months ago, Greg had applied for funding through Congressman Van Orden’s office to help with the substation project. He got a call today, that it’s been selected to go forward to congress. Maybe in August, may have another update.

**The piers were started today for the substation.  


7). Old Business: Karen gave an update on the Turner/Olson dispute. She had gotten an arbitrator and a signed agreement from both to put in the culverts and gravel and split the costs. The village offered them some pipe we had leftover. Last week, Mr. Olson informed Karen he wasn’t going through with it. His attorney told him if he did any cost sharing on this, then he’d be responsible, too. So he backed out, and Karen told him the board was done with this. He backed out, so it’s all on him.  


8). The streets and utilities committee met tonight and are proposing to the board, that rent for the apartment above the utility office be $650 a month, with a $650 security deposit, a one-year lease, utilities not included, no pets, and it will be available June 1st for rent. It will be advertised. Background checks will be done on potential renters. Updates have been made to the apartment, with painting, new ceiling tiles, and cleaning. Fish moved, Appleman seconded to approve the recommendation (as listed above). (Carried).      


9). Board of Review committee: Frank Quinn, Terry Jensen, Karen Leis, Barb Melvin, and Clerk Walker were appointed. The meeting is May 30th, at 4:30 p.m. at the village office. Aaron Appleman is the alternate.   


10). Police Report/Update: Police Chief Palmer reported on the following:

**He attended an Interview and Interrogation course in Sparta on April 11-13th. Excellent course.  

**Completed an Infant Death Investigation course in Richland Center on May 4th. He learned a lot.

**Still awaiting the installation of the mobile router and the signal device for his body camera.

**In the last couple of months, we’ve had some damage to village property, and he’s been working with the people involved to fix the damage or pay restitution to the village.  


11). Committee Reports and Updates: None.


12). Appleman moved, Melvin seconded to approve payment of the bills. (Carried).


13). Jensen moved, Leis seconded to adjourn. (Carried). Adjourned at 7:21 p.m.



                                                           Kimberly Walker, Village Clerk/Treasurer

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