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Library board presents last check to Village of Roberts

Willard Moeri, Roberts village president, accepts the check that represents the last construction payment for the new Hazel Mackin Library. Pictured are Moeri, Suzanne Strack, library board treasurer, and fellow library board members Pat Caponi, Barb Rohl, Dora Rohl, Katy Kapaun and librarian Brenda Miller.

What group can pay off a $1 million facility within a year of construction?

Answer: the Hazel Mackin Library Board in Roberts.

Suzanne Strack, treasurer of the library board, presented Willard Moeri, village president, with a final check of $24,444.59 at the Village of Roberts Board meeting on Monday, Oct. 10. The check was the last one in paying off the $1.5 million new library building that opened last September.

"The actual construction did not cost the community members anything," commented Dora Rohl, former library board chairwoman. "That is what people can't believe."

The library building had been paid for by grants and fundraisers over the past few years.

"We've all been proud of what took place," said Moeri. "The realization of what we got and what it means to the community around us - that is the real paycheck."

Mike Bowman, a resident of Roberts, approached the board about the recent Division Street project.

They live off Division Street and he said that his wife had bottomed out her car getting out of their area.

"The whole replacement of the muffler is $2,500," said Bowman. "I'm blaming the village and the construction; I'm requesting the village to pay for the damage."

Bowman said that the village did not give them proper notification of the project, referring to a note stuck on his door days before the project started.

Moeri acknowledged that the seven inches of rain caused delays in the project, but he argued that no other residents reported any damage.

"You said your wife went down the full length of the street and got stuck," said Moeri. "Two weeks later she went down the full length again and got stuck.

"If there is a pothole in a county road and you hit it, you will get zilch if you have damage. Sometimes you just have to avoid them."

Don Krueger, board member, agreed.

"It just takes common sense," he said.

John Bond, public works director, said that the construction company would not be liable because they are required to properly sign the area under construction. If the construction is blocking vehicle access, then the people "will have to walk."

Peter Tharp, board member, said this would be setting a precedent if the village paid the bill.

"Yes, you open up a can of worms to anything out there," Moeri agreed. "I don't want to create the issue of being a bad neighbor, but there was no proven negligence on the contractor or anyone else that provided the issue."

The board declined paying for the Bowman vehicle damage.

In other news:

When a resident complained about the park building not having a handicapped-accessible ramp to the door, the board said they would use a temporary ramp until next year when the Park Board has it in their budget to add a permanent one.

Bond said that the lift station #1 in Rolling Meadows had to be repaired twice in the last month. The controls were not working correctly resulting in a total repair bill of $6,000. He said the insurance company should be paying for it.

The board approved DSZ Survey Group's certified survey map with the changes from last month, pending the village engineer's approval.

The board tabled the St. Croix Valley Bible Church's request to rent the park building from 9:30 a.m. -3:30 p.m. each Sunday until a representative could attend the board meeting to address concerns.

The board approved blocking off Main Street from 5-7 p.m. on Monday, Oct. 31, for "Halloween on Main" event. They suggested asking the school if people could use their parking lot for their cars during the event.

The board approved advertising for building inspector services for the village.

The Village of Roberts meets the first Monday of each month at the Village Hall at 7 p.m. The public is welcome to attend.