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Maus resigns as Village of Star Prairie clerk/treasurer

The Village of Star Prairie Board found itself short-handed at their meeting last Wednesday, July 11, with only three trustees in attendance.

Trustees Christine Boardman, Dan Scheeringa and Craig Matthys addressed two letters of resignation, one anticipated and one unexpected.

Recently hired Clerk/Treasurer Tricia Maus surprised trustees when she reluctantly tendered her resignation following her short but valued tenure serving the village.

"Please accept this letter as notice of my resignation from my position as Village of Star Prairie Clerk/Treasurer. My last day of employment will be Friday, Aug. 3. Thank you for the opportunity to work with the Village. You've all been a pleasure to work with," read Maus' letter.

"It is with sincere regret that we are accepting this. Our Clerk/Treasurer has been excellent, has done a phenomenal job taking over. One of the issues has been problems with a former employee that has continuously caused a lot of grief. It has not been a healthy situation. So our current Clerk/Treasurer has decided that she does not want to continue to deal with this. We will be posting for the position effective tomorrow," explained Boardman.

Trustees also accepted Boardman's resignation after serving the community of Star Prairie for the past 10 years. Boardman is moving outside the village limits making her ineligible to continue serving on the board.

"I'm proud and honored to have been able to serve this community for the past 10 years as a trustee. I appreciate all the support of the residents of this community and I especially want to thank the current board and the employees that we now have who have been a pleasure to work with. As a group we have accomplished many things from street maintenance and repairs to establishing policies and procedures for our employees. Budgeting has been a challenge and everyone has worked hard to keep this in line so as not to create a hardship for our community. I wish all of you well as you continue to serve our wonderful community. Thank you all, it's been a privilege," said Boardman.

Boardman intends to remain involved in community affairs including as a member of the Lion's Club. Boardman's resignation was effective July 12, 2018.

Boardman's term expires in April. The board is not required to fill the vacancy prior to the April election. They can however, elect to give public notice that they are interested in interviewing potential candidates to fill the position and then vote to fill the position prior to April. Whoever fills that seat would be subject to the original term ending in April.

Minus the required quorum to vote on budgetary matters, the trustees tabled three budget resolutions all dealing with pending projects including the North Main Street reconstruction project and hail damage from last spring's storm.

Trustees spent a considerable portion of their evening receiving a lesson in recycling from Dick Waterman, owner of Waterman Sanitation, who appeared before the board to renew his company's three-year contract with the Village for waste removal and recycling collection.

"I think recycling is going to change in the next two years. Everybody wants to go single stream. All you're doing is giving customers another garbage can and it's so expensive to sort it. We're hearing inklings that Polk County's going to be getting out of the recycling business. We're probably going to have to do our own recycling. You're probably going to pay as much for recycling as you do for your trash in three to four years," said Waterman.

Waterman also attempted to make a case for eventually switching all residents to 60 or 90-pound containers due to the trouble trucks have with handling the smaller 35-pound containers.

The last issue with the new contract was raised by Village Attorney Tim Scott when he requested specific documentation insuring the village as additionally insured on Waterman's insurance and asking that Waterman also increase the general liability limit on the specific policy to $3 million.

Trustees approved the contract contingent on the addition of the terms as presented by Attorney Scott.

Other business

• Police Chief Josh Hecht is working with members of the local ATV/UTV club to resolve damage being done to corn crops by careless dirt bikers along the Highway 65 portion of the new trail leading into the gas station.

• The Police Department is in the process of hiring Trevor Germain to replace Deputy Craig Lau who has accepted another position.

• All Star Construction is expected to begin repairs to village buildings this month and complete work by the end of August.

• In response to an issue with the village's emergency siren not working properly, the trustees have asked Scott to author a letter to the company responsible for maintaining and repairing the siren in an effort to obtain their cooperation in the matter.

Trustees approved the Village of Star Prairie 2017 Financial Statement prepared by Wipfli LLC.

• Trustees approved the Lion's Club sponsorship of the Farmers Market held in the Community Center parking lot.