space
space
Peshtigo Times
space
space
space
Perspectives
* Country Cousin
space
space
Sports Shorts
* Peshtigo and Suring Remain in Contention for M&O Title
* Peshtigo Experience Shines Against Wausaukee
* Area Wrestlers Advance to Sectional Competition
* Lady Bucs Finish Undefeated; Win Third Straight WCC Title
* M&O Boys Basketball - Suring/Lena Keep Title Hopes Alive

space
Peshtigo Fire
space
e-Edition
Now Available
For more information
click here
dot
THE CITY REBORN FROM THE ASHES OF AMERICA'S MOST DISASTROUS FOREST FIRE
space
dot
space

City Utility Acts On Sewer Bills, Fire Fee

Winter is over, but the problems that the deep freeze this year caused for the City of Peshtigo’s Water and Sewer utilities are not. Public Works Director George Cowell reported to the Water and Sewer Committee that he lifted the keep running request on May 7 and 8, but then on May 8 they found another 200 feet of frozen storm sewer causing problems at the end of Wood Street.

Other issues aired at the meeting on Tuesday, May 13 included completion of the wastewater treatment plant test lab, cross connection inspections, and some new information on state requirements for water and sewer improvement projects.

Chair Tom Gryzwa reported the people doing cross connection inspections are doing an excellent job of dealing with property owners and advising them what to do if their systems do not have the proper back flow protection devices. Cowell noted there are two types of back flow preventers for outside faucets, but only one is designed for the climate here. It allows water to drain out completely when shut off. the other traps water inside, and then freezes and breaks when winter cold sets in.

Two property owners - Jeff Peters and Ryan Larsh - sought relief from high sewer charges on their first quarter bills resulting from water line problems. The Peters request was approved by unanimous committee vote, and the Larsh request was tabled for more information because the volume of water that apparently leaked out exceeded the capacity of the basement it was pumped from. Assistant Clerk/Treasurer Anita Morois explained how City Hall computes the volume of a leak - which involves comparing the meter read from the problem period with averages from the previous eight quarters.

Peters explained near the end of January he called a serviceman to fix a zone valve under an apartment he owns. The valve was fixed, but the worker left the it turned on, with water running into the crawl space into the ground under the apartment. No one noticed for some time.

He said he received a huge bill, and requested credit for $407.12 that was charged for water that ran into the ground and not into the sewer system. The water bill too was high, but since it actually was used he did not request credit for that.

I assume the heating guy is going to pay for the whole thing, Committee Member Fred Meintz commented at the start of the discussion. He also wondered how much insurance might pay, and said he did not want Peters collecting twice.

Gryzwa explained an owner only gets the credit once for an address. What you collect from your contractor is up to you, but the sewer wasn’t used, and we never give water bill credit.

Peters was present to explain his problem, and committee vote was unanimous in favor of that reimbursement.

The leak on the Larsh property resulted from a frozen water line break under a vacant home on Front Street that went undiscovered for two days. The sewer drain in the basement was also frozen, and eventually, after the basement filled up, a neighbor spotted water running out from under the building. It was pumped out by Matt Michalski, and probably eventually went into the storm sewer system.

Morois said the computations showed excess water use of 151,000 gallons, resulting in an excess sewer charge of $768.11.

Morois said there will be another request from a property owner in the same area, but the request was not received in time to get on the day’s agenda.

Seymour questioned the volume needed to hold 151,000 gallons of water, and Cowell said they could not get that much water in a basement. Cowell and Seymour did some math and determined that a 1,000 square foot basement with 9 foot ceilings would hold only 67,000 gallons. They wondered if part of the volume went into the floor drain before the sewer froze, but Gryzwa pointed out that in theory, the drain should not have frozen after the water was running.

Morois said the basement apparently connects to a crawl space, and wondered if part of the water had exited there. She said there was a problem last year under the other apartment in the same building, and it was discovered at that time that water was going into the crawl space and then out.

Cowell said he couldn’t support giving credit for that amount of water and proposed postponing a response until they get more information. That volume is too large! he declared.

The committee asked Cowell to check with Larsh and Michalski to determine how much water was actually pumped out, and where other excess water could have gone. Cowell wondered how that much water even ran through the meter. At 50 gallons a minute through a one inch pipe you couldn’t get that much water in two days, he declared.

Since they had no other option, the committee agreed to write off an unpaid $3,239.74 water and sewer bill for the old Peshtigo Motel building. The property was sold at sheriff’s auction after going through foreclosure and the city was notified by Marinette County that there wasn’t enough money generated to pay the back taxes and the bills.

Seymour wondered how a water and sewer bill was ever allowed to get that high without being shut off.

Morois explained the water has been shut off for a long time, but charges keep accumulating because of the Public Fire Protection fee that is assessed against each property with a water meter. The charges are based on meter size and this building has a 2 meter. The charge was for the meter, but there was no water use, she explained.

Meintz said property owners should be notified when the water is shut off that they will continue running up bills unless the meter is taken off. That huge a bill when water is not being used...There’s something wrong there!

Gryzwa said the person who bought the property now also isn’t paying. He suggested he should be notified that charges are accruing even though the water is shut off. Morois said he was told,but Meintz felt that information should always be put in writing, to leave a paper trail for the protection of everyone.

Gryzwa suggested he should be sent a letter advising that the account is already in arrears, and the only way to stop or reduce the charges is to remove or change the meter. Cowell said he cannot educe the meter size without changing the plumbing. What he should do would apparently depend on whether he intends to use the property for a motel or apartment building in future, or perhaps there is some other use in mind.

That led to a brief discussion on when and how the Public Fire Protection charge began appearing on water and sewer bills instead of being paid through the city’s property tax levy.

Morois said the amount to be collected is set by Wisconsin Public Service Commission, but it can be paid through property tax levy, special assessments, or water/sewer fees.

Meintz said the change was made about eight years ago, and at that time the city picked up an additional $260,000 a year in revenue and never reduced the property taxes.

Morois noted Public Fire Protection fee, to be paid to the water utility, formerly was a line item on the fire department’s annual budget. It pays for hydrants and water used for fighting fires, and the meter volume charged for has nothing to do with actual protection of the individual property.

Morois said several property owners in the city refuse to pay the fee, and eventually it gets put on their property tax bill as a special assessment.

Mayor Cathi Malke agreed. She knows of about 55 properties in the city that do not have city water service but get assessed the fee.

Meintz repeated they need to have a policy that requires notifying property owners with water shut off that the Fire Protection Fee will continue to be assessed.

Gryzwa suggested that the city building inspector should also get involved with the old motel property. He said the building is rapidly deteriorating, and if the new owner has no plans to improve it he should tear it down.

Payments are coming in now on the $1,788 due for sewer work done on the Dumke Forest Products property.

Cowell reported water main flushing has begun for the season, and will be done every Thursday night for several weeks from 9 p.m. to the early morning hours on Friday from the west side of French Street to Railroad Street and the river to the west city limits. In fall the north quarter of the city on the west side of the river will be done.

Because of the large amounts of overtime worked due to winter freezeups, Cowell said 2-man crews are doing the flushing instead of the three people that did it last year, but it is going well.

We know we’re going to get some red water, Cowell said, adding that will be particularly true in areas of Brown and Peck avenues. Residents in the flushing areas should let their water run a bit on Friday mornings before doing anything like laundry.

Cowell reported work is nearly done on the new lab at the wastewater treatment plant. Tests have been done, and on Tuesday, June 3, the state is coming in to the certification audit. A lot of work has gone into getting us to this point, but now we’re there! Cowell declared. He said once the lab is certified they will be able to do all the tests in-house except a seasonal one that will be done weekly throughout the summer by an outside firm.

The sink faucets and restrooms are functional, and the eye wash station will be operating before the inspection. Problems remain. They need a wall-the air condition to maintain the required 70 degree temperature, and the entire roof of the building may need to be replaced in the near future.

Some major issues were found when they tested the generator at the main lift station at full power, Cowell reported. But there was a bright side. He found maintenance manuals and parts, and he believes they can fix it in-house. They also found prints and manuals for all the machines dating from about 1971. Cowell said. he will see if Fabco has a backup generator the city can rent to use as backup while the existing generator is being repaired. Should there be a power outage at the main lift station it wouldn’t be long before sewers started backing up, he said. However, they need two pumps only when BPM, Inc. is running its big machine, Cowell said, so if there’s a problem they could be asked to shut that down.

Cowell, Tom Termatt of the public works crew and Richard Sparks of the wastewater treatment plant recently attended a day-long confined space training put on by Rural Water at Oconto Falls. They learned that some of the city’s equipment is improper, out of date or nonexistent. He said among things needed are guard rails to put around manholes when they are open, covers to go over them so nothing falls on the had of the person working inside, and a new tripod and hoist.

We cannot go into manholes until we get these things, Cowell declared. He said some of the present equipment that no longer meets confined space requirements can be put to reuse by the fire department.

Cowell mentioned other problems with equipment in the water and sewer departments, and Gryzwa suggested they should put together a cleaning and maintenance plan so they don’t lose track of things that need to be done.


Recent stories, opinions and photos

Issue Date Department Headline
02-15-2017Front Page
Organize Citizens Building Committee for School Options

02-15-2017Front Page
Town of Peshtigo Has Feb. 21 Primaries for Chair, Supervisor

02-15-2017Front Page
Two Week Trial For Menominee Murder Suspect Is Underway

02-15-2017Front Page
Wausaukee Rescue Squad Has Annual Meeting Feb. 12

02-15-2017Front Page
Primaries Feb. 21 For State School Superintendent, Peshtigo Town Offices

02-15-2017Community - Coleman
CCBA To Meet at Barnstormers

02-15-2017Community - Coleman
Coleman Accepts Open Enrollment

02-15-2017Community - Coleman
Coleman K.C. Plans March 3rd Fish Fry

02-15-2017Community - Coleman
Youth Baseball Signup Dates

02-15-2017Community - Crivitz
Country Gospel Jam Feb. 17

02-15-2017Community - Crivitz
Middle Inlet Eligible For T.R.I.D, T.R.I.P In 2018

02-15-2017Community - Crivitz
Stephenson Board Approves Rescue Squad Contracts

02-15-2017Community - Crivitz
Clip-Clop Trail Riders Receive $4100 Donation

02-15-2017Community - Wausaukee
Lions Bowling Tourney Mar. 11, 18

02-15-2017Community - Wausaukee
Winners in Silver Cliff Card Party

02-15-2017Community - Wausaukee
Youth Rally at Wausaukee Feb. 28

02-15-2017Community - Wausaukee
Guest Speakers at Presbyterian Churches

02-15-2017Obituaries
Raymond Younger

02-15-2017Obituaries
William J. Wazniak 

02-15-2017Obituaries
Gordon VanLaanen

02-15-2017Obituaries
Willard S. Paugh, Jr.

02-15-2017Obituaries
Dennis L. Nicklaus

02-15-2017Obituaries
Shelby J. Mcbride

02-15-2017Obituaries
Eleanor LaLiberte 

02-15-2017Obituaries
Lon M. LeFebre

02-15-2017Obituaries
Ella Just

02-15-2017Obituaries
May A. (Bates) Jandt

02-15-2017Obituaries
Richard Gibbs 

02-15-2017Obituaries
Warren J. Faust 

02-15-2017Obituaries
Betty Lou Erdman

02-15-2017Obituaries
Robert J. Dyer

02-15-2017Obituaries
H. Bielinski Sr.

02-15-2017Obituaries
Lodavine I. Thorne

02-15-2017Obituaries
Thomas A. Rost

02-15-2017Obituaries
Marcia J. Ottmar

02-15-2017Obituaries
Robert E. Mays

02-15-2017Obituaries
James Mastejko

02-15-2017Obituaries
Lorraine V. Marrs

02-15-2017Obituaries
Lavina M. Hofer

02-15-2017Obituaries
Gregory F. Gritt

02-15-2017Obituaries
Jeffrey M. Forgette

02-15-2017Obituaries
Guy Jordan Erb, Jr.

02-15-2017Obituaries
Clarence E. Engel

02-15-2017Obituaries
Scott A. Baumler

02-15-2017Perspectives
Country Cousin

02-15-2017Perspectives
From our readers

02-15-2017Perspectives
From My Window

02-15-2017Sports
Peshtigo and Suring Remain in Contention for M&O Title

02-15-2017Sports
Peshtigo Experience Shines Against Wausaukee

02-15-2017Sports
Area Wrestlers Advance to Sectional Competition

02-15-2017Sports
Lady Bucs Finish Undefeated; Win Third Straight WCC Title

02-08-2017Obituaries
Peter R. Zimmer

02-08-2017Obituaries
Clutch Zeske 

02-08-2017Obituaries
David W. Wickstrom

02-08-2017Obituaries
Marilyn S. VanBeek

02-08-2017Obituaries
Virgil C. Thomson

02-08-2017Obituaries
Mary L. Olson

02-08-2017Obituaries
Joseph M. Massie

02-08-2017Obituaries
Terry J. Nelson

02-08-2017Obituaries
Carmelita S. Lloyd

02-08-2017Obituaries
Alfred C. Lindstrom, Jr.

02-08-2017Obituaries
Robert Leafe

02-08-2017Obituaries
Shirley A. Konop

02-08-2017Obituaries
Marie J. Konell

02-08-2017Obituaries
Leslie L. Kehl

02-08-2017Obituaries
Bernard L. Jashinsky

02-08-2017Obituaries
Father Norman A. Clisch

02-08-2017Obituaries
Andre M. Christenson

02-08-2017Obituaries
Sister Jacqueline Capelle, OSF

02-08-2017Obituaries
Beatrice Bushey

02-08-2017Obituaries
Helen Stec

02-08-2017Obituaries
Gustav J. Schenkoske

02-08-2017Obituaries
Ivan W. Lusardi, Sr

02-08-2017Obituaries
Ronald J. Laundree

02-08-2017Obituaries
Rudolph J. Kristoff

02-08-2017Obituaries
Gaylord H. King

02-08-2017Obituaries
Tracy J. Heinz

02-08-2017Obituaries
George W. Felch

02-08-2017Obituaries
Joseph DeGroot

02-08-2017Obituaries
Duane Braham

02-08-2017Obituaries
Blanche B. Bolen

02-08-2017Obituaries
Leona Berg

02-08-2017Perspectives
Country Cousin

02-08-2017Obituaries
Lillian M. Belongia

02-08-2017Community - Wausaukee
Sweet Sale for Wausaukee Church

02-08-2017Perspectives
From our readers

02-08-2017Perspectives
From My Window

02-08-2017Community - Wausaukee
Wausaukee Wine, Beer Tasting Event

02-08-2017Community - Wausaukee
Wausaukee Lions Bowl Tourney

02-08-2017Community - Wausaukee
Collect 56 Units in Blood Drive

02-08-2017Sports
M&O Boys Basketball - Suring/Lena Keep Title Hopes Alive

02-08-2017Community - Crivitz
Crivitz Area Woman's Club Offers Scholarships

02-08-2017Community - Crivitz
Parkinson Meeting at Menominee on Feb. 16

02-08-2017Community - Crivitz
State Park Plans Candlelight Hike

02-08-2017Community - Crivitz
High Falls Fish-O-Rama, Radar Run, and Winterfest

02-08-2017Sports
M&O Girls Basketball - Peshtigo Maintains Lead Going Into Final Stretch

02-08-2017Community - Coleman
Local Winners in Free Throw Contest

02-08-2017Community - Coleman
Coleman KC Free Throw Contest

02-08-2017Sports
Area Grapplers Start Post-Season Tournaments

02-08-2017Community - Coleman
Living Waters Church Holds Annual Meeting

02-08-2017Community - Coleman
CCBA Meet February 16

02-08-2017Front Page
RECEIVE DEFIBRILLATOR

02-08-2017Sports
Marinette Girls Bowling Team Heads To State, Boys Qualify 2

02-08-2017Front Page
Council Takes No Action On Property Detachment

02-08-2017Front Page
Hope Menekaunee Harbor Can Be Done For Walleye Tournament

02-08-2017Front Page
Coleman Board Declines Reduced Speed Petition

02-08-2017Front Page
Rep. Gallagher Feels Urgency During First Month In Office

02-01-2017Front Page
Fire Destroys Home In Town of Peshtigo

02-01-2017Front Page
Vilas Schroeder Elected County Board Vice Chair

02-01-2017Front Page
Oconto County LEC Still On Budget, Nearly On Schedule

02-01-2017Front Page
Sign Dog Park Lease With Possible Construction In Spring

02-01-2017Front Page
Marinette Forms City Tourism Commission

02-01-2017Community - Coleman
Coleman Village Board Feb. 6

02-01-2017Community - Coleman
Coleman Students Reach 50 Million Words Reading

02-01-2017Community - Coleman
Beaver Church Food Drive

02-01-2017Community - Coleman
Revival Tribute Band At Equity Feb. 17-18

02-01-2017Community - Crivitz
Benefit Craft Show For Rescue Squad

02-01-2017Community - Crivitz
Valentine Dance at Crivitz Feb. 11

02-01-2017Community - Crivitz
Crivitz Church Unity Dinner

02-01-2017Community - Crivitz
11 at Monday Card Club

02-01-2017Community - Wausaukee
Presbyterian Churches List Guest Speakers

02-01-2017Community - Wausaukee
Wausaukee Blood Drive Goal on Feb. 6 is 50 Units

02-01-2017Community - Wausaukee
Wausaukee Open Enrollment Starts

02-01-2017Community - Wausaukee
Winners at Silver Cliff Card Party

02-01-2017Obituaries
Oliver P. Shallow

02-01-2017Obituaries
Russell J. Seguin, Jr.

02-01-2017Obituaries
Emma F. Schramm

02-01-2017Obituaries
Lloyd E. Perry

02-01-2017Obituaries
Rev. Fr. Edward S. Nowakowski

02-01-2017Obituaries
Emory R. Niven

02-01-2017Obituaries
Curtis P. Lentz

02-01-2017Obituaries
Cassandra L. Larmay

02-01-2017Obituaries
Ricki L. Geller

02-01-2017Obituaries
Nancy J. French

02-01-2017Obituaries
Louis J. Deldin

02-01-2017Obituaries
Edna A. Baker

02-01-2017Obituaries
Rose Marie Watson

02-01-2017Obituaries
John A. Long

02-01-2017Obituaries
Lorraine Lipinski

02-01-2017Obituaries
Dale G. Krause

02-01-2017Obituaries
Michael A. Hryshkanych

02-01-2017Obituaries
Robert C. Herman

02-01-2017Obituaries
Corey A. Heim

02-01-2017Obituaries
Larry G. Deau

02-01-2017Obituaries
Jeffrey L. Clark

02-01-2017Obituaries
Elizabeth Allen

02-01-2017Perspectives
Country Cousin

02-01-2017Perspectives
From our readers

02-01-2017Perspectives
From My Window

02-01-2017Sports
M&O BOYS BASKETBALL - Bulldogs Collar Wildcats for First Place in M&O


space
Peshtigo Times
WEB Poll!
Do You Support President Trumps Executive Order on Immigration?
space Yes
No
Undecided
space
TO VOTE CLICK
YES, NO or UNDECIDED

Suggest a Question
space .
space
FRONT
space
.
space
CLASSIFIEDS
space
.
space
COMMUNITY
space
.
space
GUEST BOOK
space
.
space
NEWS
space
.
space
OBITS
space
.
space
PERSPECTIVES
space
.
space
SPORTS
space
.
space
SUBSCRIBE
space
.
space
.
space
PESHTIGO FIRE
space
.
space
CUSTOM PRINTING
space
.
space
TIMES' SAVER
space
.
space
Click for Peshtigo, Wisconsin Forecast
FORECAST
space
Quick...
News or Ad Search
Enter News key words.
Enter Ad key words.



Peshtigo Times
841 Maple St
PO Box 187
Peshtigo, WI 54157
Phone: 715-582-4541
Email:
News@
PeshtigoTimes.com

space
Fax: 715-582-4662
© 2000-2017
All right reserved
space
Powered by
WEB Media
Interactive
COMMUNITY
WEB sites