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City Council discusses a variety of topics
The City of Fennimore
Discussions continued regarding the police officer shortage during the Fennimore City Council meeting on Aug. 26.
Chief of Police Chris French reported that officers have handled complaints related to traffic, custody disputes, family disturbances, impaired driving, drugs, theft and sexual assault.  The department also completed firearms and tactical response refresher training.  The report also noted that two businesses have requested Active Shooter presentations and arrangements are being made to accommodate them later this fall.
The department reported that a large freezer has been purchased for the evidence room. The freezer typically holds DNA related evidence such as S.A.N.E. kits or other bodily fluids. Shelving has also been installed in the new storage room by volunteers and items are being moved to better organize the space.
“In discussions with Chris on issues on personal there was mention that they would work directly with the tech to see of they can scoop some officers right out of the graduating class,” Mayor Ryan Boebel said.
“Did you see in his report where he said several larger forces were picking up the officers right out of graduation?” questioned Alder Greg Ashmore.
One of the major concerns French had noted in his report regarded the lack of available officers.
“We posted a part time police position on WILENET and received one response,” the report noted. “Conversations with SWTC academy instructors indicate larger departments are recruiting/hiring cadets from the academy for full time employment before they graduate.”
“It’s a big need with the larger departments sucking them up for full time,”Boebel said. “Everyone seems to be in the same boat.”
Alder David Streiff also brought up the possibility of co-oping officers with surrounding departments. Boebel noted that French had mentioned discussing that in the past, but would bring it up again.
Linda Parrish reported that the Fennimore Beautification committee met for the first time. They discussed interest in improving the appearance of Lincoln Avenue with a focus on the planters, light poles, and business storefronts and windows. They agreed that focusing on the seasons would be a good start. The next meeting will be held on Sept. 11 at 6 p.m.
Alder Strieff elaborated on Parrish’s report to the board.
“Today was Grace’s last day, she might see if she can work some hours during the holidays,” Strieff said. “She did a wonderful job. It was kind of a God-send to have her on this summer during the vacancies. It eliminated a question of what a part time person could do. She took on a lot of projects.”
There was an update given to the council regarding the items the city had up for auction.
“The garbage truck sold for $110,000 which was way over what we had hoped for,” Boebel said. “The three older trucks sold also for a total of $116,000 in truck sales. The bailer did not sell. We were told it was worth $40,000 we got a couple of question calls and dropped it to $20,000 at the end of the auction. We did receive a bid for $13,000 and the auction people were going to see if the bidders still wanted it at $13,000 price if the council will be willing to get rid of it for that.”
“It’s only worth what people will give us for it,” said Alder Jeff Hagen.
The council agreed to sell it for the reduced price if the bidder was still interested.
In other council news:
•The city approved an ordinance annexing territory to the city of Fennimore.
•An operator’s license application was approved for Cheyenne Sigman
•The Gridor Pay application waas approved
•PTO carryover for the Chief of Police was approved for up to 40 hours to be used by Dec. 21, 2019.

•Approval of closing the City Hall office on September 12 and 13 for staff to attend a conference.