Update with Stevens Point Common Council President Meleesa Johnson
Presentations to council
Sara Brish, Executive Director of the Stevens Point Area Convention and Visitor Bureau, said that their recent study of directional signs – wayfinding” signs that point people to local attractions, such as Downtown, Point Brewery, etc. – found that the city has too many signs in too many designs.
Brish advised hiring a consultant to help Stevens Point design a consistently-styled wayfinding system and putting this in the 2022 budget. She showed signage from Appleton and Fond du Lac as examples.
Kevin McAdam of the Village to Village Network explained this growing nationwide practice to connect seniors and enable them to stay in their homes. Some residents are developing a local group. For information, call 715-630-9079.
Event street closings
The following event street closings, retail parklets, and extension of alcohol service were approved: Ruby Coffee parklet from now until Oct. 31; Stevens Point Brewery Block Party and extended premises for alcohol on June 12; Street closing for UWSP graduation May 21-22; Street closing for ArtsWalk on May 14, July 14, & Sept. 1; Jefferson Elementary School Track Meet on May 17 will close Oak Street.
Dredging in McDill Pond
Dredging will take place in the north section of McDill Pond, after submission of safety and site plans. In places the channel is only three feet deep. The dredging will provide a safe route for boats.
ATV/UTV use on city streets
A proposal to allow ATV/UTV use on certain city streets was defeated. Proponents said it was more in line with smaller area municipalities that allow such traffic on village/town streets. They also said it would bring more business to local establishments.
The majority found the proposal unsafe, since under state law the city can neither require age restrictions, insurance or a driver license for operators. ATV/UTV fatality rates are higher on pavement; these vehicles are built for off-road use.
Homes and Neighborhoods
No-Mow May was approved. Residents are excused from mowing their yards from now through May in order to protect pollinators’ lives in this critical development period. All lawns must be back in compliance on June 1, or they will be subject to regular penalties. Participants must register and display the sign. Click on link above for registration.
Council approved a rewritten Chapter 30 Building Code to bring city ordinance up to date with state statute and agency changes. As well, it incorporates both the electrical and plumbing code into one uniform section of the ordinance. This reduced redundant references to keep the code aligned with state regulations. The process of reviewing, rewriting and legal review of new code took over 3 years.
Council approved a resolution to be sent to the Wisconsin Legislature asking for an increase in shared revenue funding, a state aid program that provides funding to local governmental units. The original intention in 1911 was for income tax revenues to not stay just in Madison, but to come back to local communities to support vital local services.
According to City Treasurer Corey Ladick, “Over the last 20 years, the percentage of the general fund budget that comes from shared revenue has decreased from 23 percent to 13 percent. Over the same period of time, the percentage that comes from property taxes has increased from 42 percent to 50 percent.”