Supervisors approve Red Ribbon Week Proclamation and land donation to County Conservation Board

Proclamation observes Red Ribbon Week ... With National Red Ribbon Week being observed October 23-31 to raise awareness of drug and alcohol abuse prevention, the Allamakee County Board of Supervisors signed its own proclamation at its Monday, October 28 regular meeting. Pictured above at the proclamation are: Left to right - Front row: Allamakee County Board of Supervisors Chairperson Larry Schellhammer, Waukon Police Chief Paul Wagner, Waukon Middle School eighth grader Dylan Hogan, Waukon High School sophomore Kennedee Pearson and Waukon Middle School eighth grader Natalie Byrnes of the Allamakee Substance Abuse Prevention (ASAP) Coalition, and Allamakee Substance Abuse Prevention (ASAP) Director of Prevention Services Jean Bossom. Back row: Allamakee County Board of Supervisors members Dennis Koenig and Dan Byrnes, County Social Services (CSS) Justice Coordinator Jason Howes, Allamakee County Sheriff Clark Mellick and ASAP Coalition member Julie Rotach. Standard photo by Joe Moses.

by Joe Moses

The Allamakee County Board of Supervisors met in regular session Monday, October 28 to address a full agenda of items including the Red Ribbon Week Proclamation, a land donation for the Conservation Board and quotes for a new pick-up truck for the Secondary Roads Department.

During Public Comment, Dennis Blocker with the Allamakee County ATV/UTV Club asked for an update on the proposed changes to the County’s ATV Ordinance allowing ATV use within Yellow River State Forest. Supervisors Chairperson Larry Schellhammer indicated that County Attorney Anthony Gericke had responded by email and provided an overview of the process necessary to change the existing ordinance with public hearings being necessary. Schellhammer indicated that he has received a lot of feedback on the matter and that he would not be in support of changing the ordinance with the risks outweighing the rewards.

Coordinator Jean Bossom with Allamakee Substance Abuse Prevention (ASAP) discussed the Red Ribbon Week Proclamation, which is a national effort promoting a commitment to healthy, drug-free lifestyles by encouraging individuals, businesses and organizations to display and wear red ribbons in honor of this event. Bossom and a group of youth ASAP Coalition members including Dylan Hogan, Natalie Byrnes and Kennedee Pearson read aloud the Red Ribbon Week Proclamation with the Supervisors approving October 23-31 as Red Ribbon Week in Allamakee County.

Allamakee County Conservation Director Jim Janett addressed the next agenda item relating to a land donation to the Conservation Board. Janett indicated that the Francis Garrett family has proposed to donate approximately 25 acres of land near Lansing. Janett discussed the history of the property, which includes a wetland area, stream and trail. The Supervisors approved the Conservation Board’s acceptance of land from the Francis Garrett family.

The Quarterly Report from Veterans Affairs was accepted and placed on file. The Quarterly Report from Environmental Health was also reviewed with the Supervisors choosing to postpone acceptance until they receive clarification on totals contained within the report. The Manure Management Plan for Distant View Farms was accepted and placed on file.

Allamakee County Zoning Administrator Tom Blake presented information relating to a series of plat requests. Blake indicated that the Planning and Zoning Commission and Plat Review Board have recommended approval of the ATMS, LLP Mark Heck Partner plat request with concerns having been raised relating to the Samanator Trust Mark Heck Trustee plat request, with each of those two requests having some association with one another. The Supervisors approved the ATMS, LLP Mark Heck Partner plat request and then discussed the associated plat request.

Blake indicated that concerns have been raised by the Planning and Zoning Commission in regard to the Samanator Trust Mark Heck Trustee plat request due to the change from agriculture use to recreation and lodging use to allow for the construction of a hunting lodge. Blake advised that the Planning and Zoning Commission voted three to two against recommending approval. Supervisor Dan Byrnes discussed that the concerns raised relate to the loss of farmland but are not a basis to deny the request. Supervisor Dennis Koenig was in agreement with Byrnes and further stated that the concerns being discussed represent personal opinions and are not legal opinions. The Supervisors approved the Samanator Trust Mark Heck Trustee plat request.

The Roger E. and Susan M., Stanley A. and Sheila L., and David A. and Lori J. Schlitter plat request and the Joseph C. Jr. and Jennie Lynn Stammeyer plat request were also reviewed and approved by the Supervisors.

Allamakee County Engineer Brian Ridenour addressed the next agenda item relating to the consideration of quotes for a new pickup truck for the Secondary Roads Department. Ridenour indicated that pick-up truck will be used by the Secondary Roads Department Superintendent with a 2007 Ford 4X4 1/2-ton pick-up truck with 255,000 miles to be traded in.

Ridenour advised that prices were received from RW Pladsen Inc. and Torkelson Motors. He further indicated that Torkelson Motors provided two options for a Dodge Ram Tradesman 1500 Crew Cab 4X4, with the 2020 model year and the 2019 model year still being in production with a discount available.

Ridenour indicated that RW Pladsen did not have a 2019 model available and that there would be a delay on the 2020 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 Crew Cab 4X4 due to the current auto workers strike. The Supervisors approved the low bid from Torkelson Motors for a 2019 Dodge Ram at $27,150 with $500 trade-in factored in, with optional RAM Box for tool storage at $1,178 for a net cost of $28,328.

Under Department Head Updates, Allamakee County Emergency Management Coordinator Corey Snitker discussed the weather forecast with snow accumulation being a possibility. Snitker indicated that he will be attending the Emergency Management Conference to be held in Ankeny and will be gone from Tuesday evening through Friday of this week. Snitker also discussed plans to work with the Waterville Fire Department relating to a tabletop and full-scale exercise.

Allamakee County Sheriff Clark Mellick indicated that the K-9 fundraiser golf outing was a success with over $13,000 raised. Mellick provided an overview of the process and costs associated in acquiring a dog with training for narcotics, search and patrol work.

Janett discussed weather-related damage and repair work with high water being a current issue. Janett also talked about a scheduled Conservation Board meeting and provided an update on work completed at the Village Creek Boat Landing.

Ridenour indicated that equipment is being prepared for snow and that due to a retirement an equipment operator/maintenance position is being advertised. Ridenour discussed a petition relating to a speed limit reduction on Elon Drive over to Jeglum Road and that Dorchester Hill is ready for asphalt application but this has been delayed a week due to contractor availability and wet weather.

Allamakee County Auditor Denise Beyer indicated that preparations are ongoing relating to the combined city and school elections with poll worker training having taken place last week and a mass mailing relating to poll locations being completed as well. Beyer indicated that equipment testing will be completed soon with supply boxes being prepared.

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