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Kinnickinnic: Resident asks town to reconsider East Quarry's private road status

At last week's town of Kinnickinnic board meeting, resident George Williams, 129 E. Quarry Road, asked about his private road's non-compliant status.

Williams expressed interest in making the road compliant. He said, "We have paid taxes, in some cases for 20 years, and we have not enjoyed the benefits up to our driveway."

There are now five residents located on East Quarry Road. Williams has a road maintenance agreement with four of the five residents.

After reviewing town laws, Williams felt that because the road had five residences using the road the town should require East Quarry Road to become a public road.

Deputy Zoning Administrator Ed Flanum looked at the laws that Williams referred to and felt that East Quarry Road was in compliance.

Current laws require private roads to become public when a certain number of lots are accessing the road, not the number of residences.

There was much confusion over how the local law was written in reference to lots vs. residences. More confusion was added when the law used the word parcels and lots interchangeably.

Even with all the confusion Town Board Chairman Roger VanBeek said, "We need to go with the intent of the ordinance and the precedence."

Williams implored the board to use this situation to "...correct a problem that was grandfathered in." VanBeek noted other situations in which the town did not interfere, and therefore precedence was set.

Town Board Supervisor Dave Nelson suggested that Williams get all five residents into agreement and make the road compliant on their own.

Added VanBeek: "Because there is not an additional lot being created, precedence should determine what we decide."

Supervisor Bill Gnatzig felt that this was a gray area. The town Road Committee had met and recommended to the board that because there was not an additional lot created, the road did not need to be brought to compliance.

The Town Board agreed and the issue is resolved as far as it's concerned.

Members of the Fighting Fish baseball team asked the Town Board to consider allowing them to use the town hall field as their home turf.

Nelson was concerned because the field was designed as a softball field, not a baseball field.

Nelson was further concerned with balls being hit onto County Road J.

The Fighting Fish players said didn't think that balls being hit onto the county road would be a big concern, even though they would love to hit more home runs.

Concerns expressed by Nelson also included moving the newly erected fence to accommodate baseball. The Fighting Fish could use the current fence, but would need to move it and add onto it.

VanBeek would like to see the field used but was concerned with the amount of traffic it would bring to the area and how the local residents would feel.

Another issue would be the Fighting Fish's desire to sell alcohol. Since the Town Hall is dry, VanBeek would need to speak with the insurance company to see what the cost to the town would be.

Gnatzig thought it was an interesting proposal, but would like more discussion on the topic.

VanBeek postponed the issue until he could speak to the insurance company.

If the Town Board decides to move forward with considering making the Town Hall field the Fighting Fish's home field, a public hearing will be held to get the residents' opinions.

Paul Hanson, 26 Saddle Club Road, spoke to the board about his concern with making Saddle Club a Class B Highway, which restricts weight on the road.

Said Hanson: "If you change it over, we won't be able to get trucks down there."

VanBeek understood his concern and assured him that the intent was not to stop trucks from serving residents but to stop cut-across traffic.

Hanson said it wasn't necessary to make the road a Class B Highway since there... "are not many semis coming down our road, mainly just high school kids and I doubt you can stop them."

VanBeek expressed concern that trucks with legitimate business may get stopped and ticketed. It is a concern because the only way to prove that they had a right to be on the road will be to go to court.

Gnatzig said it was important to look into, since limiting truck weights will minimize road upkeep. The goal is to keep truck to county and state roads, according to Gnatzig.

Nelson suggested that the Town Board vote on each of the four roads: Saddle Club, Liberty, Cottonwood and Quarry individually.

Nelson said he rarely sees trucks on Liberty or Saddle Club. VanBeek pointed out that the cement trucks often use Quarry Road.

More discussion is needed on this topic. It will return again as a future agenda item.

The Town Board OK'd a setback waiver for Bryce and Holly Ness, 1034 Town Hall Road. They were asking for a 50-foot setback, which is the current St. Croix County requirement.

Six local bridges will be repaired this year by St. Croix County for $5,250: Pleasant Avenue, Steeple Drive, Quarry Road, Oak Drive, and two bridges on River Road.