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Fifty Lakes adopts $474,540 levy for 2014

Draft minutes from the Dec. 10 Fifty Lakes City Council meeting show the council adopted the city’s 2014 tax levy at $474,540, a 2.8 percent decrease from 2013.

That levy will be spread among several funds: $221,870 to the general fund, $200,170 to the road and bridge fund, $50,000 to fire and rescue and $2,500 to parks.

Mayor Ken Hersey and council members Jodie Schrupp and Greg Buchite voted in favor of the levy; council member Jay Weinmann voted against the levy. Council member Les Degner was absent.

In other business Dec. 10, draft minutes show the council:

• Made planning commission appointments: Tim Anick, Judy Hansen and Andy Levesque were appointed to regular member positions, with terms expiring Dec. 31, 2017, and Bruce Bissonette was appointed to an alternate position expiring Dec. 31, 2015.

The council also increased pay for planning commission members from $25 per meeting to $40 per meeting for regular members and from $35 to $50 per meeting for the chair.

• Approved purchase of a 2004 Ford 550 4x4 flatbed truck for the fire department for $11,500. Total costs including delivery and accessories are not to exceed $20,000. The council also approved purchase of a compressor and fill station for the department’s air bottles for $14,000.

• Adopted a new city mascot: Nifty the bear. The council approved $300 for purchase of a mascot costume.

• Agreed to allow the fire department to create a skating rink in the parking lot south of the community center.

• Discussed a potential warning siren system, deciding take the time to research other warning system technology because of concerns over cost.

• Approved a 3 percent cost-of-living increase for all city employees.

• Heard there is a group researching the potential to build a new post office. The current post office is scheduled for demolition to make way for County Road 3 improvements. A public hearing will be held at the council’s Jan. 14 meeting to discuss the possibility.

City Clerk Karen Stern said by phone that the city had planned to start a village post office in city hall, and a bank of post office boxes has been installed in the city hall parking lot. The current post office is scheduled to close Jan. 17.

The U.S. Postal Service has decided that if Fifty Lakes has a building, services will be reduced to four hours, not its full-time schedule.