Boyd board hits ‘pause’ button on direct fire charge as levy limit vote looms this November

by Joseph Back

Residents in Boyd Wisconsin can breathe a sigh of relief just now, after the Boyd Village Board moved to hit pause on direct billing for fire costs at its regular board meeting September 12 at 705 East Murray Street. Trustee Sarah McQuillan laid out the rationale for the pause in charges. “There are a lot of people in Boyd who don’t have a high median income and then we’re hitting them with this,” McQuilllan said of the direct charge for fire. "Garbage, wa ter—we need to wait,” she concluded.

The village board previously approved a resolution which in part authorized Village of Boyd staff to work with the Wisconsin Public Service Commission (PSC) on looking into Direct Charge for fire, but with no ordinance, as of the present. The PSC did look into the matter briefly, but without result.

Although paused for the moment, the fire protection charge would be based on meter size.

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Pending the outcome of the November referendum on raising the levy limit, the board will then revisit the issue of direct charge for fire calls, if necessary.

As to the referendum on the levy limit prompting the current pause, residents will be asked this November if they approve of increasing the levy past its state imposed limit in 2023 to $256.300 along with an extra 63.965 percent or $100,000 each fiscal year, "for the purpose of criti cal street maintenance projects, painting public safety services, update maintenance equipment and fire department equipment," per the official referendum language. The levy limit referendum vote is scheduled to take place with the fall primary on Tuesday November 8 of this year.

In other news from the September 12 regular board meeting, the village board passed Resolution 2022-05, recognizing Curt Wytzinski and Gail Sumi from the League of Municipalities for their work with the village, also passing an ordinance to update Section 7-2-35 of the village ordinances with regard to Operator’s License Training and Standards Training Course. Motion was made by Casey Dorn and seconded by Mc-Quillan to approve the update to the ordinances.

Closing out the board meeting update with Lotz Park on East Patten Street, Village of Boyd Streets and Utilities head Tom Grunewald shared in his report that the park will be closing for the season as of October, leaving just a few more days to enjoy the outside, before the cold begins and snow flies. Come winter, the shared jurisdiction of Center and Mur ray Streets will make the county responsible for plowing 22 feet, or 11 feet each side of the center line, the balance being with the village. Lotz Park will reopen in the spring—pending the weather forecast.

Village President Bob Geist smiled for the camera at the Septemebr board meeting, flanked on the left by clerk Sandi Isaacs and the right by village trustee Dale Isaacs, Sandi’s husband. Photo by Joseph Back.

September 21, 2022