Resident addresses Wautoma Common Council on snow removal ordinance

A 20 year resident of Wautoma, Ben Castner, addressed the Wautoma Common Council on Monday, Feb. 11 concerning a bill he received from the city after they received a complaint on his sidewalk not being plowed.  The city had the sidewalk cleared and sent Castner a bill for $47.  He requested documentation on when the plowing was done as in his 20 years as a resident of the city he has never had a problem and does clear his sidewalk.

Tommy Bohler, Wautoma City Administrator, said that there when there is a complaint the public works checks out the area and then Pete’s Lawn Care is contacted to clear it.  The city has an administrative fee of $10 they add to the plowing fee. He added that the process usually takes up to 48 hours and in January they invoiced 20 residents and in December 36 were invoices were issued for clearing of sidewalks in the city.

Castner said he is asking for documentation as to when the sidewalk was cleared and if that was not possible he requested the council  rescind the cost.  After considerable discussion, the council decided they needed additional information from the staff and will address the situation at the next regular meeting.   Bohler said that seldom does he receive any complaints on the policy.

Alderman Ed Hernandez said that if there is a lack of record and history, they need to address the process and have a written record including snowfall, photos and dates.

The council addressed the Wautoma  Library funding and what the city is responsible for as the city owns the library building.  Bohler said the city is a landlord and is responsible for the roof, heating and air conditioning, etc. He added that if repair is needed it is transferred our of the general fund.  He is asking the librarian, Hannah Klusmeyer, for a capital wish list so the city can have a plan in place for building needs in the future.

Alderman Pat King added that the Wautoma Library and Friends of the Library continue to raise funds through Taste of Wautoma to pay the city back for the remodeling that was done a few years ago. After discussion it was decided that Bohler should draft a Memorandum of Understanding and have it checked by the city attorney.

MSA’s Todd Trader gave an update on city projects involving W. River Street Improvements, and 2019 street improvements including Green Meadow, Valley View, and Sandcrest. He said the biggest addition to the W. River Street was to replace the existing culvert at the interserction of W. River Street and Cambridge.  MSA has completed a wetland permit application and will submit to WDNR on behalf of the city once approved.

For the Green Meadow, Valley View and Sandcrest project the appraisals have been completed for the parcels requiring a permanent easement and are currently under review by MSA. MSA will review them and put together an offering price report which will need to be approved by the city before an offer is made to property owners.

In other business the council approved the following liquor license applications:

*Operators License for Zach S. Dee (OM Wautoma Oil), Shawna M. Hughes (Grimm’s), and Colleen M. McEwan (Grimm’s).

*Class “B” beer license for Two20 Main (previously Living Stone Bistro) – Rusty Grimm – Rusty’s Two Oaks, LLC.

*“Class” C wine license for Two20 Main (previously Living Stone Bistro) – Rusty Grimm – Rusty’s Two Oaks, LLC.


The next regular meeting of the Wautoma Common Council will be held at 7:30 pm. On March 11 at Wautoma City Hall.