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Ellsworth Village Board urges county to locate jail on Hwy. 65 North

The Ellsworth Village Board unanimously agreed Monday to recommend Pierce County put its new jail on county-owned property located on Hwy. 65 north.

The action followed a recommendation from the board’s Finance, Purchasing and Building Committee. Committee members made this recommendation after County Jail Ad-Hoc Committee Chair Jim Ross presented different jail site options to the committee at a meeting on Jan. 8.

The entire village board meeting for this month consisted of committee reports and recommendations.

The board unanimously approved Salary and Labor Committee recommendations to hire Chase McKahan and Cory Van Effen as part-time officers, accept the resignation of Karen Meyer as police administrative assistant and got the board’s approval for the committee to hire a new administrative assistant.

Trustees also approved a Solid Waste, Cable and Special Committee recommendation to allow PIG to issue a 1.5 percent increase on carts, stickers and recycling effective in the second quarter.

A Health, License and Welfare Committee recommendation to grant a temporary Class B license to the Ellsworth Fire Department for its annual chicken feed on March 22 was also unanimously adopted, as a was Finance Committee recommendation to allow village employees to use purchasing or P-Cards issued by BMO Harris Bank. Village Clerk/Treasurer Peggy Nelson reported to the board several communities and school districts in the region are using such cards in lieu of credit cards and the village would cancel its credit cards altogether.

After a lengthy discussion, the board decided to gather more information before deciding on an ordinance governing the use of low-speed, motorized personal vehicles for the disabled within the village.

The Water and Sewer Committee reported to the board it had met with officials from the Ellsworth Co-op Creamery to review plans for the creamery’s proposed new wastewater treatment plant to be located west of the biosolids facility in the East End Industrial Park. The result of the meeting was a consensus it’s cost prohibitive to combine the sludge of both the village and the creamery in trying to meet discharge limits.

In reports given to the village board, the Ellsworth Public Library Board agreed to a 2.5 percent wage increase for library personnel. The Ellsworth Fire Services Association approved the purchase of property next to the fire hall in Ellsworth at a cost of $118,000, coming out of closed session. The association also approved their officers for 2014, with Brent Langer the fire chief and Randy Brickner the first assistant chief. The Ellsworth Area Ambulance Service discussed the possibility of purchasing a new fly vehicle as part of an eight-year capital plan, along with the need for roof repair and replacement. There was also discussion of the EMS and fire being moved into the new Pierce County Jail facility.