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Mayor won't seek re-election in 2012
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After three terms, Mayor Larry Fowler has announced he will not seek re-election in 2012.
Fowler made the announcement at the close of the Richland Center City Council meeting Tuesday night at the Municipal Building.
After the meeting, he said, “It has been a bad year.” He did not elaborate further.
Four aldermanic seats will also be up for election next spring along with the mayor. Using new ward boundaries, the terms of alderpersons Susan Fruit, Jay Mueller, Judy Shireman and Lorna Dilley will be expiring. The period for circulating nomination papers for the city positions starts in December and runs through Tuesday, Jan. 3.
The announcement came after officials said the city is expected to consider a 2012 budget which will mean city property taxpayers can expect a 12.24 percent reduction.
As a result, a property owner with a house valued at $100,000 can expect to see property taxes decrease by about $266 – from $2,174 to $1,908.
The proposed 2012 budget and 2011 tax levy are expected to be considered at the next council meeting on Dec. 6. Officials pointed out that the final figures could change based on the state credit and the state’s share of the tax levy.
Officials noted that the school district’s levy reduction will account for much of the decrease. The city rate has been reduced very slightly.
City taxpayers will have a net levy of  about $5.5 million.
In other action during a short meeting, the council approved a Class A liquor license for Jax Enterprises IV, dba Richland Mobil Mart on Hwy 14 West. Alderpersons voted, 5-2, in support of awarding the license which will allow the sale of liquor by package goods. Clerk-treasurer Jude Elliott said Mobil Mart was seeking the fourth Class A liquor license, which is all that is currently allowed by the city. Alderpersons Lester Parker, Jay Mueller, Steve Deets, Judy Shireman and Bill Kloehn supported the plan while Marie Rakow and Lorna Dilley dissented.
The council voted to purchase a new John Deere rotary broom for snow removal from Hillsboro Equipment at a cost of $1,924.
It voted to contract with J C Customs for mowing grass and snow removal at the Richland Center Airport for $6,016 per year.
The council also voted to prohibit carrying firearms or other weapons in Brewer Library.
Mayor Fowler reported the city’s footbridge over the Pine River has been repaired and that paving was completed on portions of Church and Ira streets which have been undergoing reconstruction.
Alderperson Kloehn said a public hearing on the proposed height limitation zoning ordinance for the airport will be held Tuesday, Nov. 29.