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Street repairs and new pump top village agenda

Trustees opened the Roberts village wallet Monday night approving several street maintenance projects and the purchase of a new variable frequency drive (VFD) for well #2.

With the weather improving, Public Works Director John Bond informed the board that asphalt required to repair Tower Street at the sight of the recent water main break and the nearby cave-in just to the south, will cost $5,000 to $6,000. To spray patch the balance of streets as required throughout the village including the troublesome stretch in Rolling Meadows as a temporary fix, Bond estimated will cost another $5,000 to $6,000. The money would come out of the annual street maintenance budget.

"If we have the money set aside, I don't know how the rest of the board feels, I think you just go ahead and do it," said Board President Willard Moeri.

The board agreed with Moeri and approved both projects.

Bond expects to have both projects finished before Good Neighbor Days.

Bond also made a case for converting well #2 to a VFD. As it stands, well #1, the larger of the two village wells, already has a VFD drive installed. The advantage of a VFD drive is that it matches pump performance to demand maintaining a consistent water pressure preventing the waste of any water. Without a VFD drive, the pump runs at full capacity all the time ejecting any excess water through a pressure relief valve on a hydrant into the ground wasting millions of gallons of water. Installing a VFD drive on well #2 would give the village an efficient backup solution if well #1 went down for some reason.

Although bids are still coming in, Bond said worst case scenario, the new pump would cost $3,500 less a $740 grant the village is eligible to receive, would bring the total cost to roughly $2,760 and possibly less if any of the other bids come in at less than $3,500.

Trustees approved the purchase of a new VFD drive for well #2.

Police Chief Aaron McWilliams presented reasons for the board to consider implementing an employee assistance program. The program would provide counseling, coaching, legal resources, conflict resolution, crisis support, financial resources and other services geared toward managing an employee's well being. Real Living a division of Aurora Community Services out of Eau Claire could provide such services for all village employees for an annual fee of $2,000. The impetus for McWilliams suggestion was the death of an infant in the community.

"At times, that's hard to swallow especially when the employees I have working for me, their children are the same age," said McWilliams.

The trustees asked McWilliams to arrange a meeting with a representative from Real Living so they could ask questions and further explore the possibilities.

Other business

• Trustees approved the new St. Croix Central Elementary School sign despite its non-conformance with village ordinances.

• Trustees approved a recommendation from the Plan Commission to remove the outdated ghost platting for a Roberts bypass initially established in conjunction with the DOT as part of the community plan back in 2000. Removing the platting opens up the land to potential development which had previously been deterred by a potential bypass. The village and township will still undertake conceptual transportation planning from the south end of the village to the interstate to anticipate a common sense approach to a bypass should the need arise in the future.

• Trustees set Monday, May 22 as the date for the Board of Review at the Village Hall. Open book will run from 5 p.m. — 7 p.m. with the Board of Review set to start at 7 p.m.