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Village board honors service of former village president
in Soldiers Grove
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The Soldiers Grove Village Board honored former village president Laurel Hestetune prior to the regular meeting held on June 5.

Hestetune was presented with a plaque and gift in recognition of his service to the community and the accomplishments of his tenure.

“I couldn’t have done all the work I did without the board,” Hestetune replied after being thanked by current Soldiers Grove Village President Jerry Moran on behalf of the village residents and board members.

Hestetune was quick to depart, noting a rescue squad had come in as he was leaving home to come to the meeting.

Village president Jerry Moran gave the police report, informing the board that the Crawford County Sheriff’s Department would supply two officers for Friday and Saturday night during Dairy Days. The officers will be present between 7 p.m. and 3 a.m.

Addressing future policing needs, Moran asked the board how much policing they saw a need for and if they wanted to guarantee hours if the village hired a new part-time officer.

“Do we need one?” asked village trustee Vicki Campbell. “Have we had any issues?”

Moran said that there had been none that he knew of.

“I have spoken to kids down at the park and that worked,” trustee Bob Froiseth added.

“If we haven’t had any problems, I don’t see any reason to have one (a police officer),” Campbell said.

Moran suggested that the village hold onto the police car and reevaluate the issue in the fall. Campbell made the motion and the board approved the suggestion.

Campbell delivered the Soldiers Grove Community Development Corporation report.

The CDC paid $235 for flowers in the planters along the highway, which leaves them with $78,822.95 in the money market account and $559.40 in checking.

There are two outstanding loans: one newly made loan to Driftless Brewing Company, which is initially paying on interest only according to the terms of the loan; and an older loan to E.B. Tool Company, which is in arrears.

Ben Eby, the owner of E.B. Tool Company, had been contacted previously and had made some payments of $100 per month, but had stopped again. Campbell said she would contact him again asking that he resume making some monthly payment, but that the loan had the force of a third-mortgage. Everyone else came before the CDC legally, when it came to payment, leaving the organization with little leverage for repayment, according to Campbell.

In other business, the Soldiers Grove Village Board:

• approved changes to the Soldiers Grove Fire Department bylaws with trustee Shayne Chapman abstaining;

• approved having Campbell research and purchase a more efficient printer for the fire department;

• approved having the fire department build new lockers from lumber;

• approved refinancing $19,396.66 of the note for the library expansion project for another year;

• received an advertising report from the Driftless Area Arts Festival;

• received a report on bids for redesigning the village website by Liz Quebe;

• approved a bid of $6,418.68 with Jim’s Siding & Roofing for roof replacement and wall repairs at the wastewater treatment plant;

• approved self-financing the $32,374 public works truck loan from the general fund and paying the money back to save on interest costs of $728 per year;

• approved a proposal to remove the sidewalk along the highway in front of the Old Oak Inn if the owners would cover the cost of fill and reseeding;

• tabled tree clean-up on New Well Road and in the cemetery until fall;

• tabled a request to put in additional steps at the cemetery until fall;

• noted that the trail needed some repairs from gravel washouts;

• approved a donation of $300 to the Gays Mills Fire Department for Fourth of July Fireworks;

• approved Jim Helgerson as the new agent for the American Legion Post 220;

• approved en masse all the cigarette license applications and annual alcohol beverage applications