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Commission to discuss fire run charges

Athens Village Board member Jessica McCord said at Monday’s meeting the police and fire commission wants to discuss the possibility of requiring village residents to pay for fire runs.

McCord said longtime Athens firefi ghter Ron Lavicka told her at the village police and fire commission meeting on Sept. 21 the village is losing out on a lot of money by not charging its residents for fire runs, even though there’s been only an average of five fire runs in the village each year.

She said Lavicka suggested to her the village charge each village resident $1,000 each time there is a fire run to their their home or property. McCord said Lavicka told her all townships the Athens fire department covers charge their residents $500 per fire run, except for the town of Halsey which charges $1,000 for each fire run. McCord said the townships are putting the money they earn from fire runs into their budget’s general fund.

“Essentially, I think the village is missing out on earning a lot of money by not charging for fire runs,” McCord said.

The next village police and fire commission meeting is at 7 p.m. on Monday, Dec. 21, after the village board meeting at 6 p.m.

In other village news:

_ The village board voted 5-1 to spend $1,500 on 3x8x10-foot Wolmanized Red Pine to replace the Old Dam Bridge, as recommended by the village parks committee.

Village of Athens president Chuck Kornack voted against the motion, because he felt the current Old Dam Bridge still seems structurally sound; therefore the village shouldn’t be spending money to replace it. Village board member Chris Perkins was absent from Monday’s meeting.

_ Athens will hold trick or treating from 3-5 p.m. on Halloween, which is on Saturday, Aug. 31, in the village. The village board recommends trick or treaters follow the Centers for Disease Control guidelines for wearing masks and being socially distanced from each other during the coronavirus pandemic.

_ The village board awarded a contract bid to Complete Control for $5,953 to buy an interview camera for the village conference room, which would allow Athens Police Chief Aaron Stencil to take statements from victims of crimes. The camera will record both video and audio, and the total price also includes an indicator light to reassure the camera is recording.

_ Village board members voted for the village to rent a handicap accessible Porta Potty from Decker Sanitation for two months at the village shooting range. The village board plans to ask the Athens Archery Club to help it pay for the $550 annual rental fee.

_ The village will pay Switlick & Sons of Athens $136,266 for the first pay request on the Mueller Street project.

_ Village board members voted to allow the village streets department to spend $4,117 at Riesterer & Schnell to buy a snow blower attachment for the compact tractor.

_ The village board voted to sell the village streets department’s old Ford pickup truck for $1,500.

_ McCord said the Athens fire and police commission wants to charge Forward Bank in Marshfield for having its representatives use the Athens Fire Department’s conference room, so they could help people set up new checking and savings accounts.

She said only non-profit groups are allowed to use this conference room. Forward Bank plans to begin constructing its new branch in Athens next spring.