Minutes: November 14, 2012

Village of Plain
Village Board Proceedings of November 14, 2012 

The Regular Monthly meeting of the Board of Trustees of the Village of Plain was held at the MunicipalBuilding on November 14, 2012. The meeting was called to order by Village President Raymond Ring at 7:30 p.m.

Roll Call: Raymond Ring, President; Stephanie Box; John Dischler; Raymond Ellenbolt; Walter Gerber; Kevin Kraemer; and James Liegel, Trustees.

Others present: John Alt of Madison College; Merry Lynn Riek; Marion Copus of the Home News; Carolyn Forde, Library Director; Officer Chuck Schreiber; Shawn Murphy, Green TTEC Director; and, Nick Ruhland, Public Works Director.

Notice of this meeting, along with the agenda, was posted at the following locations in the Village of Plain: the MunicipalBuilding; the Plain Post Office; and The Peoples Community Bank on Monday, November 12, 2012. Notice was emailed to the Home News and the Baraboo News Republic on the same date.

Box motioned to approve minutes from the October 10, 2012 Regular Board meeting. Ellenbolt seconded. Motion carried.


Public Works Department Report

Nick Ruhland reported on the Wastewater Treatment Plant’s options to meet phosphorous limits. The interim limit, until 2017, is 3.6 mg/l. At that point the phosphorous limit would be .225 mg/l for a monthly average and a six month seasonal average of .075 mg/l. The Village could accept the limits and construct a facility to meet limits that would cost between $500,000 and $2,000,000. There is still a question if Plain could meet the strict limits without a pilot program. An effluent trade would mean meeting less stringent limits. The DNR currently has no guidance on effluent trading. The Village could use Adaptive Management as an alternative to constructing a facility to meet limits. This option offers a longer time frame. The current time frame is 7-9 years. Adaptive Management would give us 10-15 years. An Economic Variance could be given if the Village would be considered in a hardship if sewer rates would need to be raised above 2% of the median income. The Village does not meet this requirement.

In 2013, an optimization plan needs to be established. The Village needs to research the possibilities where phosphorus is coming from and look into reducing it. Nick questioned when a consultant/engineer should be hired to guide us to the most economical way to meet the standards that the DNR is mandating. Studies should be done to make sure the DNR is accurate in their assumptions. There are no grant programs established. If the limits are not met, the DNR can legally come in and dictate what the Village does. Nick stated that he will work with the Utilities Committee to determine what the next steps should be. Ring stated that Plain is one of the first communities to be faced with this, so we are essentially their guinea pigs. Kraemer suggested to get a team together and have a conference with legislatures, as Box suggested, to talk about the financial burden this will cause the Village of Plain.

Green TTEC Director Report 

Shawn Murphy report: 


10/15 Meeting with MATC to coordinate management proposal
10/25 MATCTechnologyTown Instructor Meeting at Green TTEC
11/19 Sustainable Engineering Coalition Meeting at Green TTEC

High Speed Internet Upgrade at Green TTEC
Next week Charter Communications will begin installation of the fiber optic cable to service Green TTEC. The route in which Charter needs to bring the cable out to Green TTEC will pass directly adjacent to the Municipal Building. This will give the Village an opportunity to connect with Charter in the future if they wish with very little installation cost. It is anticipated the installation will be completed within the next 2 weeks.

Recreation Trail
The permits for this project were held up at the last minute by the Army Corps of Engineers. Last month we were notified by the DNR that all three permits were approved and would be released. This was after the Village agreed to pay wetland mitigation bank credits in lieu of installing a wetland scrape or on-site mitigation. This action was necessary in response to a DNR regulatory change that went into effect July 1, 2012 in which on-site mitigation requirements changed dramatically This resulted in a host of additional responsibilities and costs to the owner, the Village, including posting a performance bond, adopting an engineer-drafted maintenance plan, as well as filing period performance and maintenance reports. The purchase of wetland bank credits resulted in an additional cost to the project that was unplanned and unbudgeted. Therefore, we negotiated with Meise Construction to install only the foundation of the picnic shelter and trails. Thereby allowing the National Guard to install the bridge and picnic shelter structure next spring. The DNR agreed to the construction plan and schedule. Unfortunately, the Army Corps of Engineers did not. The Corps indicated they would not accept purchase of wetland bank credits or the split construction schedule. This was after the Corps initially indicated the project scope was not large enough and the impact on the wetlands was not to the level that required a permit. The DNR, in particular, Jeff Schure, met extensively with the Corps of Engineers and was able to secure their approval last week. The Green TTEC Board met prior to the Village Board and voted to proceed this year with construction.

EDA Grant Amendment & Closeout
The EDA finally responded to our request for an amendment to the EDA grant, filed in July, 2012. They will only recognize and reimburse additional legal costs incurred by the Village to purchase the business park property. Murphy also received a response on some reimbursement withholding by EDA on submitted costs. He has begun the closeout process for the EDA grant. Murphy believes we have responded to all WEDC requests for additional documentation related to the CDBG funds as well. Murphy reviewed the business park cost which totaled $1,682,159. Of that, the EDA reimbursed $504,107 leaving a Village cost of $1,178,052. The Green TTEC building cost total was $2,973,356. The EDA reimbursed $1,472,133 and CDBG reimbursed $1,010,000 for Green TTEC. The Village total was $496,203. A grand total for both projects was $4,655,515 with reimbursements of $2,986,240. The Village’s total cost was $1,674,255. The EDA has held funds until the final documents are received. Final payout is unknown.

Police Department Report 

Officer Schreiber informed the board that some officers attended a seat belt enforcement program. The Plain Police Department won a state of the art laser speed gun with an estimated value of $1,800-$2,000. The department recently did a search warrant on Nachreiner Avenue that is still under investigation. Liegel questioned hours of community service available. Plain offenders have 120 hours that need to be used.


Committee Reports 

Building Committee & Fire District –Dischler 

No Building Committee or Fire District reports. 


Green TTEC, Parks, SCDC & Cable TV – Ellenbolt 

SCDC held a Leadership Forum. The speakers were very interesting. 

No Green TTEC Board, Parks or Cable report. 


Library, Police & RV Court – Gerber 

Merry Lynn Riek addressed the board on behalf of the Library Board. The library is faced with not being able to get to a balanced budget. There is a $6,180 shortfall. Trusts are already giving to the budget to pick-up some of the shortfall. Computer usage is up and a workstation costs $1,000. The library did a $4,000 upgrade this year. The library’s biggest asset is the new Library Director and the Library Board would like to bring her up to par with other Village employees and offer her health insurance. Friday Night Foodies was added this year costing about $300 per event, which occurred three times. The senior community requested a yoga program also which is projected to cost $300. The Friends’ finances are completely separate. The Library Board does not feel they should ask them for additional funding. The Library Board is asking the Village to increase their appropriation to an additional $6,180. The county cut $10,000 this year and the Village has not increased their appropriation for many years. Liegel questioned the maintenance budget line item since the Village may now cover that expense. Ring questioned if the county was approached like they are approaching the Village tonight. There is no deviation on the county appropriation. Sauk County’s library payment is good compared to other counties. Action cannot be taken tonight. The Budget Hearing is scheduled for December 5, 2012. 

Jeni will do a fiscal report for RV Court for the next meeting. 

No Police report. 


Streets & Utilities – Kraemer 

Water Pumpage for October, 2012: 

            Well No. 1:   524,000
            Well No. 2:   1,695,000 

            Total for October: 2,219,000 gallons, which was 216,000 gallons less than last year. 

            Two bacteria were sent to the State Lab. Both samples tested safe. 

            Monthly fluoride average: 1.22 p.p.m.  Monthly chlorine average: 0.16 p.p.m. 

Wastewater Report for October, 2012:

            Influent Monthly Average B.O.D.:    268 mg/l
            Effluent Monthly Average B.O.D.:    10        Limit: 15 mg/l

            Influent Monthly Average T.S.S.:      314 mg/l
            Effluent Monthly Average T.S.S.:      8          Limit: 20 mg/l

            Monthly Average Nitrogen Ammonia: .768 p.p.m.   
            Limit:     20.0 mg/l Monthly, 29.0 mg/l Daily

            Total gallons treated: 2,144,500

The Streets Committee met with Westbrook Associates regarding engineering for Parkview Avenue. They submitted a not to exceed proposal of $12,800. The proposal has to be on the next agenda for approval.

Once the budget is known for the street project, the Main Street wall project will be considered if there are still funds available in the budget.


Finance & Ordinance – Liegel

The Finance Committee has the preliminary final budget set. There are other agenda items this evening that may change that.

No Ordinance report.


Pool & Golf – Box

The Golf Course Committee attempted to meet but there was no quorum.

The Friends of the Pool & Park purchased a thermometer sign. Nick is waiting for direction on where to install it. The sign was purchased to start fundraising again for the Park Master Plan.


Development/Planning – Ring

No Development & Planning Commission report.

Other Business

The Board discussed the MATC proposal for Green TTEC/HCBP Management. Murphy worked with MATC to put the proposal together. The annual contract is for $38,500. With this contract, the Village would have the resources and networking services of MATC and a Director at the Green TTEC facility. John Alt stated that MATC has a vested interest in the partnership. There would be a trial period for half a year. The contract would then need to be renegotiated for MATC’s fiscal year starting on July 1, 2013. The funds are in the Village’s working budget for this contract. Box suggested that Finance and Green TTEC should meet to tailor a contract to fit. Ellenbolt motioned to sign a six month contract with MATC. Alt discussed the need for a business plan to make sure Green TTEC works. There is a need to have a presence at the facility. Murphy pointed out the wealth of knowledge and resources that John Alt brings with this contract. Ring questioned this contract not including sales and marketing of the business park land. Murphy stated that there would be some assistance with marketing of the business park, but Driftless Area is the real estate agent for the property. Ring does not feel like this is accomplishing what the Village’s major issues are. Ring does not see this getting the Village any further ahead in dealing with the challenges of the budget shortfalls. Ring feels the business plan should have been done in the past two years. Ring has a hard time putting that burden on the taxpayers when it should have already been done. Ring does not feel he can vote in favor of this unless he knows what is going to come out of being able to get businesses in the park which is our main goal. Ring stated that we need to generate interest, get people in the door to look at the place, get activities like things beyond the meeting contacts listed, we have to get more involved than spending money on a recreation trail and things that are not going to generate income or put people in that business park. Kraemer pointed out that we are looking at MATC being a partner and fully utilizing the Green TTEC building. Through that relationship, there may be some additional contacts for some lot purchases because of the wide spectrum of MATC’s operations. Kraemer agreed with Murphy’s comment that there is not a lot of building currently happening. It is very difficult when people are not expanding. Alt stated that MATC’s major interest is in Green TTEC and understands the correlation with the business park. Usage of Green TTEC should draw interest to the park. Once the economy gets better, it will be easier. Gerber seconded Ellenbolt’s motion to sign a six month contract with MATC. Motion carried with Ring voting no because he is not certain he has enough information to make a decision that is going to be in the benefit of the taxpayers.

A library maintenance schedule was presented to the Board in regards to expectations of what the Village would pay for and what the library would pay for. This was not an issue until now because the building has been new. Gerber motioned to approve the schedule as presented. Ellenbolt seconded. Motion carried.

The future of the Plain Rec Program was discussed by the Board. Nick had recommended to the Parks Committee to at least do away with the afternoon because of the lack of use. Golf and crafts are the most utilized. The entire program is currently not in the 2013 budget. The board was in agreement to leave it out completely.

The Public Works Summer Helper position was discussed by the Board. Officer Schreiber recommended not relying on community service as it is not guaranteed. Plus a community service individual needs to be watched carefully. Kraemer believes that position is being replaced with someone that costs the Village almost four times the money. This position gets paid minimum wage. Box stated that the ball diamonds could have the ball teams be responsible for scheduling someone to prepare the field for games. Kraemer pointed out that the Village could charge ball teams a fee per game for ball diamond maintenance. The full-time golf course maintenance person is retiring and may be replaced with multiple part-time employees that could assist Public Works in other areas. Box said this position could be revisited next year if needed. Liegel mentioned MATC students helping out. Box cited that St. Luke’s confirmation students need community service hours. Nick said the golf course will be hurt the worst. Not everything is going to get done. Prioritization will be necessary. Public Works is busiest in the fall and spring. Help will be needed for flagging traffic when painting crosswalks. Nick feels that having two part-timers on the golf course will help. Box felt changes could be made where there are things that are not needed to be done. Liegel felt it is worth a try with the golf course hiring two part-timers. There was no motion to reinstate this position.

Kraemer read the first reading of Ordinance 183-12, which is an increase to sewer rates for 2013.

Ring motioned to approve the Johnson & Block quote for 2013. Kraemer seconded. Motion carried with Liegel voting no.

Box motioned to place special assessments on the 2012 tax roll for curb/gutter in the amount of $278.80 on parcel # 171-0168-00000 and water/sewer in the amount of $2,111.92 on parcel # 171-0072-00000. Liegel seconded. Motion carried.



The assessment files have been scanned by a community service individual and are back to Assessor.


Review and Audit of Invoices:

Kraemer motioned to pay Check #18917 payable to Prairie Plumbing & Heating, Inc. in the amount of $122.29 from the Sewer Replacement Fund. Dischler seconded. Motion carried.

A motion to pay the monthly invoices was made by Dischler. Gerber seconded. Motion carried.



General Fund 



Capital Improvements



Library Fund      



Water Utility



Green TTEC



Sewer Department



TIF #2



Golf Course



Wage Reimbursements:




Ellenbolt motioned to adjourn to Closed Session at 9:48 p.m. Gerber seconded. Roll call vote: Ring – Yes; Box – Yes; Dischler – Yes; Ellenbolt – Yes; Gerber – Yes; Kraemer – Yes; Liegel - Yes. Motion carried.

Sheila Tafs