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Geese becoming a problem at Mill Yard Park

Cornell City Council

The number of Canadian geese that frequent Mill Yard Park in Cornell, has risen steadily over the last few years. While many drive to the park to view the wild fowl, excessive droppings and feathers are also becoming a nuisance.

The matter was discussed at a regular Cornell City Council meeting Aug. 20, where council member Ashley Carothers reported what is in the works to take care of the problem humanely.

“I know this has come up several times,” said Carothers.

Carothers said she does not want to carry out a plan such as was done in a neighboring town, where the geese in a park were rounded up, slaughtered and donated as meat to the town’s food pantry.

“I don’t want to euthanize any animals, I certainly don’t want to do any of that,” said Carothers. “It’s going to become a health issue before too long.”

In researching alternative options, Carothers discovered that there is a coyote decoy at the beach in Brunet Island State Park – and no geese. After speaking with a park employee, who said they have no problems with geese at the park, Carothers received permission from city administrator Dave DeJongh to make a purchase on behalf of the city.

Carothers shopped around, then went to Hey Everything, the local hardware store. The store matched the better price that Carothers had found and the decoy was ordered.

Council member Aimee Korger asked why coyotes howling all around town, don’t keep the geese away, but Carothers said it is not helping and that she thinks the decoy is at least a good starting place.

“I don’t know what the answer is, but there definitely needs to be something done,” agreed mayor Mark Larson. “You can’t even walk down there.”

During the business portion of the meeting, Resolution 20-3 was acted on, declaring official intent to reimburse expenditures from proceeds of borrowing. DeJongh says this is part of moving ahead with financing the wastewater treatment plant facility plan.

“When you seek or get borrowings,” he said, “and you’ve already spent money, then you can use those borrowings to reimburse the city for engineering or other costs that we’ve had, leading up to the borrowing.”

Resolution 20-4 was also passed, authorizing a city representative to file an application for financial assistance from the Wisconsin Environmental Improvement Fund.

“Same scenario,” said DeJongh.

Members also acted on Resolution 20-5, to apply for tax exemption from the county library levy.

“This is something that we act on every year,” said De-Jongh. “Because we offer library services out of our own budget, we can ask for exemption out of the county’s levy.”

The council also agreed on advertising for sealed bids for a 10-acre parcel of city-owned land on North 11th Street, that is now offered for sale.

Korger also had a request of her fellow members, as well as the public, as grass clippings on streets pose not only a hazard to motorcyclists, but also clog up city sewers. Korger asked that anyone who spies clippings on the streets, should contact the police department or city office.

“There’s been a lot of grass on the roadways, from grass being mowed out into the street,” she said.