By DAVID KRIER
The Boscobel Common Council approved a new lease for the management of the Blaine Theater when it met Monday night. In exchange for the city taking over payment of the theater’s heating bill, State Theatres, LLC has agreed to increase its annual rental payment from $2,800 to $8,000.
“They were paying the heating bill for both the theater and the Blaine Gym, and didn’t feel that was right since they have no say on what goes on at the gym,” City Administrator Arlie Harris said. “He did say he saw no reason to have to raise ticket prices.”
“He did say that with the low ticket prices they stay very busy,” added Ald. Nancy Sanger, speaking of State Theatres’ owner Duane DeYoung.
Heating costs for both the theater and the Blaine Gym have averaged $5,851 annually over the past two years. In addition to the increased rent, State Theatres also agrees to pay the city $1,000 annually into a maintenance account to be used for future equipment purchases.
The new lease takes effect Nov. 1 and expires on Oct. 31, 2019.
The Council also approved a new Residential Antidisplacement and Relocation Plan as requested by the federal department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).
“From what I can discern, we get money from HUD for low income housing and if we tear down or demolish one of those low income housing units we have to find these people another place to live,” said City Attorney John McNamee.
“We don’t have anything planed that would pertain to that,” added Harris.
River to Road
The Council approved several requests from Robin Baumeister of Wisconsin River Outings for their Sept. 27 River to Road triathlon, including restricting parking on Wisconsin Avenue from 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. for the bicycling portion of the race.
“We’re talking safety here and that should take precedence,” said Mayor Steve Wetter over potential conflicts with downtown merchants.
Chamber of Commerce President Tom Richter was also in attendance with regard to the second annual River to Road event. He pointed out that most downtown merchants have alley access to their businesses, access that should alleviate any parking concerns.
Richter also updated the Council on the Oct. 4 Boscobel Brew Ha Ha-Downtown Beer Tasting Walk.
“Right now we have 11 businesses that are going to partake in that,” Richter said. “It should be a lot of fun and bring people into the community.”
Richter said the Brew Ha Ha will be similar to last October’s Wine Walk, with participants sampling different craft beers at nearly a dozen downtown businesses.
“It was pretty successful last time and there were no issues,” Wetter said. “They had 200 and some people at the Wine Walk, which was a very nice turnout.”
The Council also approved the following mayoral re-appointments: John DuCharme and Pat Roseliep to the Planning Commission, Peter James and Ken Schweiger to the Airport Commission, and Steve Pendleton to the Park Board.