City of Stoughton
Issue 3, Fall 2019
mayOr’S NOTE Since the last publication I would like to introduce some new members to our team. We have hired Tony King as our Recreation Director. Tony comes from Fitchburg with over 10 years of experience in recreation. Brandi Brandes has transitioned to House Manager at The Opera House. Brandi brings her music talents as well as many years of experience from a dance music venue in California. The Leadership Team and City Council worked toward presenting and approving the annual Capital Improvement Projects (CIP) Budget and consideration of the Operating Budget in November. The Redevelopment Authority (RDA) received and approved a Letter of Intent from Madison developer Curt Brink. The Blacksmith Shop has been removed and the Old Public Works building is scheduled to be demolished by mid-January. Phase 1 of Kettle Park West (KPW) continues with the opening of Kettle Park Senior Living, Century 21, and T&T Nails. The construction of the Hilton Tru Hotel is set to begin. The initial review of the TIF request for The Meadows of Kettle Park West (residential component) was reviewed by City Council on September 23rd. We have listed an 18+ acre commercial lot for sale in Business Park North, and are
reviewing an offer to purchase for a current business looking to expand their operation. Much needed road projects on Lincoln, Jackson, Patterson, S. Monroe and Lowell Ave areas are nearly completed. Ongoing plans for next year’s Main St. DOT projects have been in the works. Several new businesses have plans to open, expand, relocate or have new ownership: Main Event Resale, La Cantina, Main and Page Auto, Yahara Chocolate, Gemini Games, Weeble World, Dune Gifts + Home, Shakers, DTS Tek, Cheesers, MC Squared LLC, Primal Fitness, Grasshopper Goods and The Free Health Clinic. Other notable accomplishments include: • Social Media Policy has been implemented • Expansion of the Opera House is moving forward • Downtown Revitalization Committee completed a survey/Open House • Library Board is conducting a survey for Strategic Planning • Landmarks is beginning an Outreach Program for downtown building owners • Mandt Park Master Plan and Bjoin Park neighborhood meetings are occurring • TIF Extension/Affordable Housing program approved by City Council • TDS contract for Fiber Optic lines installation approved • Multiple job description updates • Glacier Moraine Dr. excavating in the Business Park North has begun I continue to engage with local, county and state representatives as well as our trade associations regarding issues such as: climate change, flooding, human services, emergency management, housing, transportation and Highway 51/Main St. improvements. Thank you again to everyone whom continue to provide feedback and support.
2 Fall 2019
The Tower Times
***NOTICE – City of Stoughton Tax Payers*** The City of Stoughton held a Public Hearing on November 12, 2019 to review the proposed 2020 City budget. A copy of the proposed budget will be available for review at City Hall, at the Stoughton Library, and is available on the city’s website.
The Treasurer’s Office will send out bills by December 16th. There are three ways tax payments can be made. 1) Mailed using the pre-addressed envelope provided to you with your tax bill. 2) Made in person at City Hall, Deputy Treasurer’s Office, 207 S Forrest St, Stoughton, WI. 3) Inserted into the Stoughton Utilities curbside payment box at 600 S 4th St, Stoughton, WI. • The payment box option is designed for convenient, after hours use. Payments will be collected at 8 am and will be receipted the day the payment is collected. Do not include utility bill payments on the check. Please include the bottom portion of your tax bill with your payment. First installment payments are due by January 31, 2020. Please make first installment checks payable to the City of Stoughton Treasurer. Please note, NO CASH PAYMENTS will be accepted. If you choose to pay in installments, your second installment will be paid directly to the Dane County Treasurer and is due by July 31, 2020. If a paper receipt is needed, a self-addressed, stamped envelope must accompany the payment. You may also provide an email address for an emailed receipt. Office hours for tax payments are Monday – Friday 8:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. We are closed all day on December 24th, December 25th, January 1st and January 20th. (608) 873-6677 if you have a question regarding your tax bill.
Lottery Tax Credits
Did you move into your home during 2019? If you owned your home and use it as your primary residence as of January 1, 2019, you are eligible for a Lottery Credit on your property tax bill. Each year homeowners are able to claim a lottery tax credit on the first installment of their property tax bill. You generally should have lived in this residence for more than six months of the year. Business property, rental units, land, and garages do not qualify for this credit. If you purchased your home after January 1, 2019, there are a limited number of circumstances that will allow you to receive the credit this year. The credit amount varies by year and will not be determined until the beginning of December 2019. If the lottery credit is not on your tax bill, please request a “Lottery Credit Claim Form” before you pay your taxes and your bill will be reduced if you qualify. For questions, to sign up for the credit or if the credit is not showing on your tax bill, please contact the City Treasurer’s office (608) 8736677 or the Office of the County Treasurer (608) 266-4151.
Election Day Poll Workers Needed! Voter Registration The City of Stoughton Clerk’s Office is looking for hardworking citizens that have a dedication to democracy and protecting voter rights to work at the polls. Poll workers assist with registering new voters, administering ballots to voters and ensuring that the election laws of the state are followed precisely. The requirements to be a poll worker: • Must be a qualified voter of Dane County • Must enjoy working with the public • Must be able to work for an entire election day shift (7-8 hours) • Must help with setup/reconciliation of election (depending on shift worked) The experiences at the polls are highly rewarding, challenging, interesting and personally satisfying. By serving as a poll worker you have the chance to give back to your community and to meet citizens of the City of Stoughton. We hope that you will consider contributing your time to strong and efficient elections in Stoughton. Below is a brief description for the positions available at the polls: Election Inspector and Chief Inspector.
When can I register to vote?
By mail. Up to 20 days before the election. Registration forms should be mailed to your municipal clerk. You can start your voter registration form online at http://myvote. wi.gov. Your form must be printed, signed, and mailed or delivered, to your municipal clerk. You must always provide a Proof of Residence document when registering. If you are registering by mail, you can use any of the forms of Proof of Residence except a residential lease.
Online. Up to 20 days before the election. Voters who have a valid State of Wisconsin Driver License or State of Wisconsin ID card issued by the Wisconsin Division of Motor Vehicles (DMV) can register to vote online on the MyVote Wisconsin website: http://myvote.wi.gov. To register online, the voter must enter a name, date of birth, Driver License or ID number, and an address that matches what is on file with the Wisconsin DMV. If all of the fields match, the voter will be able to register to vote completely online without Election Inspector Election Inspectors play a vital role at voting sites. They work di- needing to print, sign or mail the form and without needing to send rectly with voters and assist them in any of the following capacities: a proof of residence document. Voters who are not able to match their information with the information in the DMV database will be • Check-in registered voters and provide the voters with a ballot given the option to register by mail (see instructions above). and voter number. • Register qualified individuals to vote who are new voters or have In the municipal clerk’s office. You may register in-person in your municipal clerk’s office up until the Friday before the election at an address or name change. 5:00 p.m. or close of business, whichever is later. You must always • Handle the voting machine to verify ballots are accepted and give provide a Proof of Residence document when registering to vote. out “I Voted” stickers. At the polling place on Election Day. You may register at the polls Election Inspectors are paid $10/hour for a shift and are required on Election Day. You must always provide a Proof of Residence to attend training classes as presented by the Clerk’s office. Please document when registering to vote. complete an application at cityofstoughton.com/vote or stop by the Clerk’s Office, 207 S. Forrest St., Stoughton. What do I need to bring to register to vote? If you have been issued a State of Wisconsin Driver License or ID Chief Inspector Chief Inspectors manage the voting site and ensure all operating card that is current and valid, you must provide the number and procedures are followed. Chiefs are also responsible for completing expiration date. If your WI driver license is cancelled or expired; Election Day documentation, reconciling voter numbers and bal- or your WI DOT-issued ID is expired, provide the number and the last four digits of your Social Security number. If you have not been lots, and resolving voter concerns. issued a WI driver license or WI DOT-issued ID, you must provide Chief Inspectors are paid $11/hour for a shift and are required to the last four digits of your Social Security number. If you have none attend training classes as presented by the Clerk’s office. Please of these documents, you will be able to indicate that fact. complete an application at cityofstoughton.com/vote or stop by You must provide a Proof of Residence document when registhe Clerk’s Office, 207 S. Forrest St., Stoughton. tering to vote in Wisconsin. A Proof of Residence document is Current Election Workers a document that proves where you live in Wisconsin. Please see Please update the Clerk’s office whenever your information changes, the Proof of Residence handout for a list of acceptable documents. e.g., name and/or address and/or contact preference. Please email at firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions or concerns you Is there anything else I need to know about may have or stop by the Clerk’s office, 207 S. Forrest St., Stoughton. registration? Photo ID is never required when registering to vote. However, a Proof of Residence document is always needed when registering to lection ay oting n isconsin vote in Wisconsin.
Taxpayers who traditionally come to City Hall in December to pur- What Should I Expect at the Polls on Election Day? chase dog licenses will still be able to do so, although licenses 1. Remember to bring an acceptable photo ID to the polling place. may also be conveniently purchased through the mail by sending You should also bring along proo f of residence, if you need to a separate check payable to the City of Stoughton, to the attention register at the polls. of Dog License, City Hall, 207 S Forrest St., Stoughton, WI 53589, 2. Voters should have their photo ID ready when they enter the along with proof of rabies vaccination (which will be returned to polling place. you) and a self-addressed stamped envelope. Licenses obtained in person can be purchased in the Receptionist’s Office. 3. Check in with the greeter, if your polling place has one. Greeters will usually be able to verify if you are already registered or need to fill out a new registration form. If the polling place ity of toughton ood antry covers multiple wards, the greeter will be able to direct you to the correct line. Stoughton is a wonderful caring community. You, the citizens of Stoughton, have generously donated to the Food Panty and helped 4. Fill out a new registration form if you are a new Wisconsin voter many of your neighbors in this community. On behalf of the Panty or if you have changed your name or address since you last votBoard and Pantry Volunteers we wish to thank for this generous ed. You will have to provide proof of residence when registering. ongoing support of the pantry through your monetary donations, You do not have to show your photo ID when registering, but food drives and in many cases hard work. During the past year the you will have to show photo ID before being issued a ballot. food pantry has distributed about 135,000 pounds of food to those 5. Poll workers will ask you to state your name and address. This in need. Each month approximately 140 families receive food from is not a new requirement of the voter photo ID law. It has always the pantry. been a requirement. We have about 25 dedicated volunteers that enable us to keep the 6. Poll workers will ask you to show your photo ID. pantry open Monday thru Thursday from 10am-2pm, Thursday evenings from 4pm- 6pm and the first Saturday of each month from • The voter’s photo ID must be one of the acceptable documents specified by law. 9am -11am. These volunteers assist clients, stock the pantry, pick • The voter’s photo ID must be current. For State of Wisconsin up food from vendors etc. We are in need of a few more volunteers Driver License or State ID cards, Military IDs, and Passports, to assist us. If you have some time, then volunteering can bring you they can be expired, if they expired since the last General Eleca great deal of satisfaction knowing that your efforts are going to tion (currently November 6, 2018). assist your neighbors in Stoughton. To become a volunteer you can go to the web site https://www.ci.stoughton.wi.us/volunteer and • The photo on the voter’s photo ID must reasonably resemble click on the link to Food Pantry Volunteers. the voter. Again thank you for your past generosity and for considering the • The voter’s photo ID must have the voter’s name on it. opportunity to become a volunteer. 7. The name on the photo ID must conform to the voter’s name on the poll list. An exact match is not necessary. For example, Bob conforms to Robert, Sue conforms to Susan, and Smith-Jones isconsin lection ates conforms to Smith. Spring Primary - February 18, 2020 8. Poll workers will ask you to sign the poll list. If you are unable Spring Election and Presidential Preference Primary - April 7, 2020 to sign because of a physical disability, you are exempt from this requirement. You should inform a poll worker that you are Partisan Primary - August 11, 2020 unable to sign. General and Presidential Election - November 3, 2020 9. Poll workers write the Election Day voter number in the poll list, and issue you a ballot. MyVote Wisconsin Website At myvote.wi.gov you can register to vote, 10. If you do not have a photo ID, you are allowed to vote by procheck your voter registration status, find visional ballot. If you vote provisionally, you can bring your your polling place, see what’s on your balphoto ID to the polling place by 8:00 p.m. You may also present lot, request an absentee ballot. your photo ID to the municipal clerk in person by 4:00 p.m. the Friday after the Election. If you provide photo ID by the deadVisit the Voter Information Center for Answers line, your ballot will be counted. If you do not provide photo ID to questions about how to register, where to by the deadline, your ballot will not be counted. vote, when to vote absentee, and much more Please Be Understanding and Kind to the Poll Workers! at https://elections.wi.gov/voters.
Information provided by the Wisconsin Elections Commission
Voters must reside at their address for at least 10 days by Election Day in order to register to vote. Voters who have moved within Wisconsin less than 10 days before the election must vote from their previous address, either by absentee ballot or at the polling place. Voters who have moved to Wisconsin from another state less than 10 days before an election are only eligible to vote in Presidential elections. Wisconsin law no longer allows a “corroborating witness” to provide Proof of Residence. See the “Proof of Residence” documents for a list of Proof of Residence documents. You cannot register the Saturday, Sunday, or Monday before an election, but you can register at the polling place on Election Day. Find more information on the Photo ID law at www.BringIt.wi.gov. Register to vote or check your registration status at: www.MyVote.wi.gov. Contact the Wisconsin Elections Commission at 1-866-Vote-Wis or at email@example.com
Tree & Shrubbery Trimming on Private Property Fall is a good time to trim any low hanging tree branches or overgrowth of shrubs that are in the public sidewalk or street right-of-way. • Trees and shrubs may become a safety hazard if allowed to grow into the public sidewalk or street areas. • Trees and shrubs can cause vision issues between pedestrians and traffic. By City Ordinance, tree limbs are not allowed to grow below 9 feet above a public sidewalk, and shrubbery/plantings are not allowed to encroach into the sidewalk area. Additionally, tree limbs are not allowed to grow below 14 feet above a public street. If you are planning on doing some trimming, check with the Stoughton Public Works department for the best time to trim trees and shrubs. Some species require trimming at certain times of the year, and the Public Works department has a schedule for brush collection throughout the year. Check their website for more information at: www.ci.stoughton.wi.us/publicworks and look under services or call 608-873-6303. Notify the Public Works Department for issues with plantings within the terrace, parkrow or any City owned properties. IF YOU HAVE ANY QUESTIONS CONTACT THE ZONING ADMINISTRATOR AT 608-646-0421.
The Tower Times Private Property Parking Standards for Recreational Vehicles
Fall 2019 3
Private Property Snow and Ice Removal Requirements Sec. 64-13. Snow and ice removal.
(a) The occupant or owner of any lot or parcel abutting on a public sidewalk, other than the parcels located in the downtown corridor specified in section 64-13(c), shall remove therefrom by 9:00 a.m. on the second day following a snowfall, all snow, dirt, rubbish or refuse matter, and sprinkle ice with a material to prevent slipping. (For example: a snowfall occurs on Monday, the occupant or owner would have until 9:00 a.m. Wednesday). If the occupant or owner does not comply with this section, the A RECREATIONAL VEHICLE IS ANY OF THE FOLLOWING: MOTOR director of public works or their designee may issue a citation and HOME, JETSKI, BOAT, ALL TRAILERS, CAMPERS, SNOWMOBILES, may cause the work to be done and the expense reported to the OFF-ROAD MOTORCYCLES, ATV’S AND SIMILAR VEHICLES. city finance director, who shall annually enter such expense on the tax roll as a special tax against the lot or parcel of land. The owner PARKING AND STORAGE OF RECREATIONAL VEHICLES AND or occupant shall also be subject to a forfeiture for each violation TRAILERS IN RESIDENTIAL, OFFICE, AND BUSINESS DISTRICTS of this section, with penalties as set forth in section 1-3. Each day ARE PERMITTED IN THE FOLLOWING MANNER: a violation continues shall constitute a separate violation. Recreational vehicles and trailers: (b) N o snow or ice removed from private property, other than the parcels located in the downtown corridor specified in section (a) Parked or stored within the front yard or side yard must be on 64-13(c), shall be deposited in the public ways in areas exa driveway that is made of a dust free, continual hard surface pected to be cleared by the city. This would include, but would such as concrete or asphalt pavement and shall be a minimum not be limited to, pushing snow or ice across a public roadway of five feet from any private property line or right-of-way line. or sidewalk; pushing or carrying and depositing snow or ice on a Permeable pavement including turfstone is also allowable. The public way expected to be maintained for pedestrian or vehicular side yard shall end at the rear of the home. traffic; and the blowing or throwing of snow or ice onto a pedes(b) May be parked in the rear yard, beyond the rear of the home trian or vehicular area. Violation of any of these provisions may without the need for a hard surface, subject to all other condiresult in penalties as set forth in section 1-3. Each day a violation tions. Note: Corner lots have two fronts. continues shall constitute a separate violation. If the occupant or owner does not comply with this section, the director of public (c) Shall be owned by the resident who is occupying the property works may cause the work to be done and the expense reported on which the vehicle or trailer is parked or stored. to the city finance director who shall annually enter such expense (d) Are permitted only for storage purposes except mobile homes on the tax roll as a special tax against the lot or parcel of land. and campers may be used for overnight sleeping for a maxi(c) T he occupant or owner of any lot or parcel abutting a public mum of 14 days in one calendar year. sidewalk in the downtown corridor, specified below, shall remove (e) May not be connected to wastewater or sanitary sewer lines, or therefrom all snow, dirt, rubbish or refuse matter to the curb line electricity except for charging of batteries. and sprinkle ice with a material to prevent slipping within 24 hours after the conclusion of a snowfall. Violation of any of these (f) May not be used for storage of goods, materials or equipment provisions may result in penalties as set forth in section 1-3. Each other than those items considered to be part of the unit or esday a violation continues shall constitute a separate violation. If the sential for its use. occupant or owner does not comply with this section, the director (g) Shall be placed a minimum of five feet from all property lines of public works may cause the work to be done and the expense reand shall not be parked within any easement. ported to the city finance director who shall annually enter such expense on the tax roll as a special tax against the lot or parcel of land. (h) Maximum number allowed outside of a building per property is three unless the property is zoned and approved for such “Downtown corridor” defined: outdoor storage. Main Street-Railroad Track to S. Page Street (i) A trailer with multiple recreational vehicles on it shall be consid- Water Street-Jefferson Street to Washington Street ered one recreational vehicle, but all recreational vehicles on the trailer shall be owned by the resident occupying the property on Division Street-Jefferson Street to Washington Street which the trailer is parked. Forrest Street-Jefferson Street to Washington Street NOTE: THESE STANDARDS ARE ONLY FOR PRIVATE PROPERTY, NOT FOR PARKING ON PUBLIC LANDS OR ANYWHERE IN THE STREET RIGHT-OF-WAY.
(j) Individual canoes, kayaks and similar vehicles not on a trailer Fourth Street-Jefferson Street to Washington Street are exempt from these requirements. IF YOU HAVE ANY QUESTIONS REGARDING SNOW AND ICE REIF YOU HAVE ANY QUESTIONS REGARDING THIS REGULATION MOVAL REQUIREMENTS PLEASE CONTACT THE PLANNING DEPLEASE CONTACT THE ZONING ADMINISTRATOR AT 608-646-0421. PARTMENT AT 608-646-0421.
Traffic Visibility at Intersections IF YOU OWN A CORNER LOT WITHIN THE CITY OF STOUGHTON, THE FOLLOWING ORDINANCE SECTION LIKELY APPLIES TO YOU: Sec. 78-703. Visibility standards. (1) Purpose. The purpose of this section is to alleviate or prevent congestion of public rights-of-way so as to promote the safety and general welfare of the public by establishing minimum requirements for the provision of vehicular visibility.
Outdoor Firewood Storage Requirements
Outdoor Storage of Unsightly Items and Unlicensed Vehicles on Private Property SEC. 10-318 OUTDOOR STORAGE OF UNSIGHTLY ITEMS. NO PERSON SHALL STORE OR ACCUMULATE OUTDOORS ON PRIVATE PROPERTY ANY OF THE FOLLOWING UNSIGHTLY ITEMS UNLESS SUCH LAND IS ZONED TO PERMIT SUCH STORAGE OR ACCUMULATION: • MOTOR VEHICLES, BOATS, OR AIRCRAFT NOT IN OPERATING CONDITION. • JUNK, SALVAGE, OLD MACHINERY OR FENCING MATERIALS. • COMMERCIAL TRUCKS, TRACTORS OR TRAILERS. • BUILDING MATERIALS, CONSTRUCTION OR EARTH MOVING EQUIPMENT NOT BEING USED ON A BUILDING PROJECT CURRENTLY IN PROGRESS. SEC. 70-102 OPEN STORAGE OR OUTDOOR PARKING OF WRECKED, DISABLED OR UNLICENSED MOTOR VEHICLES. ANY OPEN STORAGE OR OUTDOOR PARKING OF WRECKED, DISABLED OR UNLICENSED MOTOR VEHICLES ON PRIVATE PROPERTY SHALL CONSTITUE A NUISANCE. IF YOU HAVE ANY QUESTIONS REGARDING THIS ISSUE PLEASE CONTACT THE PLANNING DEPARTMENT AT 608-646-0421.
Take Action to Protect our Waters this Fall and Winter! As the weather cools and the days of splashing around on the lake fade away it’s easy to forget about the health of our waters. Take action to protect our waters by:
1. Keeping streets leaf-free this fall
In the fall, keeping leaf litter off of streets before it rains can reduce the amount of phosphorus in urban stormwater by 80% compared to no leaf removal! Before the rain… • Safely remove leaves from the street in front of your home. • Mulch or Compost leaves on your property. • Sign up to receive Leaf-free Streets Rain Alerts this fall (Oct. 1Nov. 30). Alerts will be issued (via text or email) 1-2 days before a significant rain event reminding you that it’s time to remove street leaves. To learn more or to sign up for Leaf-free Streets Rain Alerts visit: www.ripple-effects.com.
2. Cleaning up pet waste
It is very important to continue to pick up after your pet all year long, especially during winter. Pet waste can become encased in snow and ice, and carried away with melt water when it warms up. The bacteria and nutrients found in the waste make their way to the nearest storm drain, and then flow into the nearest lake or stream.
3. Reducing salt usage
As snow season draws near, consider this: sodium chloride (NaCl) is the most common form of salt used for de-icing roads and walkways. It is used so much that it has become a water pollutant. It is (1) No person shall store firewood in the front yard on residentially very difficult and costly to remove once it is in the water, so prezoned property, except that firewood may be temporarily stored in vention is very important. the front yard for a period of 30 days from the date of its delivery. This winter… (2) Firewood should be neatly stacked and may not be stacked closer than two feet to any lot line and not higher than six feet • Remove snow as soon as possible so that it is less likely to turn to ice. from grade, except adjacent to a fence where firewood can be stacked against the fence as high as the fence. Fences as used • Treat before a storm to help prevent ice buildup so less de-icer in this section shall not include hedges and other vegetation. is needed. Sec. 78-723. Outdoor storage of firewood standards.
(2) Requirement. In order to provide a clear view of intersecting streets to motorists there shall be a triangular area of clear vision formed by the two intersecting streets and a chord connecting said centerlines, as determined by the director of plan- (3) All brush, debris and refuse from processing of firewood shall • Use sand for traction, it is safe and effective, but be sure to sweep ning and development. Generally, the following standards shall be promptly and properly disposed of and shall not be allowed up excess apply: to remain on the premises. Consider using the following alternatives: Liquid magnesium Table 78-703: Vision Clearance Triangle Standards (4) Woodpiles that contain diseased wood that is capable of transmitting • chloride, calcium chloride, potassium chloride (all 3 work better disease to healthy trees and woodpiles that harbor or are infested or than regular salt in colder temps), calcium magnesium acetate Right-of-Way Distance from inhabited by rats or other vermin are public nuisances and may be and potassium acetate. Width Right-of-Way Intersection abated pursuant to the provisions of this Code of Ordinances. • Read the label- know which ice melt product you are using, in 66 feet or less 10 feet (5) Not more than 20 percent of the side and rear yard may be used what temperatures it will be effective, and how much to use. for storage of firewood at any one time. more than 66 feet 20 feet To learn more about the City of Stoughton’s stormwater manageWithin said triangular area, no signs, parking spaces, structures, IF YOU HAVE ANY QUESTIONS REGARDING OUTDOOR FIRE- ment strategies, and what you can do to help, visit www.ci.stoughor earthwork in excess of 30 inches, and no vegetation, fencing, WOOD STORAGE PLEASE CONTACT THE PLANNING DEPART- ton.wi.us/stormwater nor other such obstructions between 30 inches and eight feet in MENT AT 608-646-0421. height shall be permitted which exceeds 30 inches in height above either of the centerline elevations of said two streets.
DROP OFF YOUR DRY CLEANING AT
Celebrate the Holidays with Friends and Family
Vision May Be Restored By:
• TRIMMING SHRUBS OR HEDGES TO A MAXIMUM HEIGHT OF 30 INCHES.
Take the stress out of the holidays by enjoying an evening out
• TRIMMING LOW HANGING TREE BRANCHES TO A MINIMUM HEIGHT OF 8 FEET. THERE ARE ALSO REQUIREMENTS ALONG DRIVEWAYS ADJACENT TO PUBLIC SIDEWALKS. IF YOU HAVE ANY QUESTIONS REGARDING THIS ISSUE PLEASE CONTACT THE CITY PLANNING DEPARTMENT AT 608-646-0421.
Lake Mills Cleaners offers FREE Pick-up & Delivery through our Pharmacy!
100 E. Main Street, Downtown Stoughton
873-3244 Hours: Mon-Fri 8 am-6 pm; Sat 8 am-5 pm; Sun 8 am-12 noon
• REMOVAL OF OBSTRUCTION.
3097 Sunnyside St., Stoughton
*THIS REQUIREMENT ALSO APPLIES TO SNOW.
The Tower Times
4 Fall 2019
arT WENdT, WE WIll mISS yOu by Alan Hedstrom I can’t quite remember the first time I met Art Wendt, who passed away in early September. It must have been over 30 years ago, some time after I first started serving on the Landmarks Commission. As many longtime residents undoubtedly know, Art and his wife Eileen ran a photography studio on Main Street for over forty years. I’m sure many remember him for his skills as an award winning photographer, his portrait photography, as well as the many years of photographing high school seniors.
ton resident around the beginning of the 20th century. They presented him with dozens of glass slides he had taken of houses, people and downtown buildings in Stoughton of the time. I still One of our projects was the creation of photo montage boards remember the day he presented this opportunity to the commisthat depicted the downtown at a point in time (ca. 1992). Art had sion – and he had an idea -- he wanted to get a grant to make the to photograph each building in the Main Street Historic District slides into prints for display so that everyone could enjoy seeing straight on, then compile a montage of all the buildings in a city these scenes from over 100 years ago. block by cutting out the individual building shots and pasting them on a white board, side by side, to create the effect of viewing a And that’s what he did – he secured a grant and spent countless hours transforming the glass slides into prints that now make up a miniaturized version of that downtown block from revolving display at the public library. You can now also see many across the street. The photo montage boards were eventually of these prints online at StoughtonHistory.org. framed, and can still be viewed in one of the downstairs meeting Art and Eileen moved to Minneapolis about 4 years ago to be nearrooms of the former city hall. er to family. Sometime before that, however, the commission deI still also remember the time Art and Eileen came up with the cided to honor Art for all his contributions by creating a new award idea for the national award winning “Celebrate Your Heritage” in his name. We had awards for building restoration, but not an poster that still hangs in City Hall. “Celebrate Your Heritage” was award for the type of contributions Art has made over many years. the theme to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the creation We came up with the Art Wendt Historic Preservation Service of the National Register of Historic Places. To honor the occasion, Award, which seeks to honor anyone who has served the commuwe procured a CYH banner, got scores of people to pose in front of nity through their work to further the goals of historic preservation. or in the windows of City Hall, and Art got on top of the building We miss you, Art. A lot! May you rest in peace. across the street to take the photo that became the poster. buildings, often in the early morning or evening hours, when the light was just right.
But Art was also keenly interested in local history, and he started attending our Landmarks Commission meetings as a guest. Eventually he was appointed to the commission and continued his many contributions to the commission as a member. Art may have been small in stature, but in terms of his contributions to the commission and the community, I regarded him as a giant. Every landmarks commission should be lucky enough to have someone as talented and generous as Art was to the commission. Over a number of years beginning in the 90’s the commission was fortunate to win numerous Certified Local Government (CLG) grants for projects that created historic districts or walking tour brochures or design guidelines. We were even more fortunate to have Art’s expertise and talents, because all of these projects required more Perhaps the project Art is most fondly remembered for, though, (Alan Hedstrom chaired the Stoughton Landmarks Commission and photographs than I care to count. And for almost all of them, Art is the Linderud project. One day Art was contacted by relatives of served alongside Art Wendt for many years. He is currently the vicewas the one taking expertly composed photos of our many historic Wilhelm Linderud, a talented amateur photographer and Stough- chair)
WhaT’S bEhINd ThE CurTaIN? by Victoria Flynn
It was January 1904 when the controversy began in Stoughton. The question—to purchase an asbestos or a galvanized iron curtain? An asbestos curtain would cost the City between $112-$220 while the iron curtain would be a much more affordable $50-$75. The safety and design of the asbestos curtain won out and was installed later in 1904.
In life there are moments of entry where a person feels a kind of crossing from the every-day world into a particular space outside of time. When this happens there are often many elements involved—a piece of music, a grand visual display, perhaps a certain food being prepared. Entry into the Opera House can feel this way. Often before a large tour, the stage is lit; the proscenium glows an iridescent blue and gold; the grand piano waits, fully open; and the dramatic fire curtain is lowered.
In October 1997, Quinn Evans Architects compiled a comprehensive Restoration Report on what was now being called the Stoughton Opera House which had been sitting unused since 1954. The report states, “The original asbestos curtain still hangs above the stage and flies vertically into the loft. There are no other stage curtains suspended from the loft. The bottom of the curtain has been painted to obscure the words ‘ASBESTOS CURTAIN’, which are clearly visible in historic photographs.”
There is something special about being in the room with the fire curtain down. People are often reminiscent of classic films they’ve seen or even old cartoons where the curtain is opened and the show begins. The Opera House curtain is no less dramatic. Though it is no longer lowered before every performance to show its ease of use in case of emergency as once was required by law, it is breathtaking. The huge asbestos canvas still sports original advertisements for local businesses situated around a bucolic landscape. Students are often asked to find misspellings in print while local families are happy to point out businesses once owned by relatives still on view.
As the restoration process evolved, no detail was overlooked, least of all, the curtain. A woman who worked on restoring many pieces of artwork for the State Capitol took on the arduous task of cleaning, repairing, and restoring the old canvas. A photography instructor from Madison College took infrared photographs of the bottom of the curtain that had been coated over with a wide swath of brown paint and was able to discover all but three advertisements hidden underneath. John Vorndran, Restoration Committee Chair, researched and recreated the remaining ads from historical documents. The recreated ads are for The Hellickson, Stokstad’s Restaurant, and the Stoughton News. Once the painting was completed, the entire curtain was encapsulated to protect against inhalation of asbestos.
The Opera House, then called the City Auditorium, did not have a fire curtain in place when it first opened its doors in 1901. It was the devastating Iroquois Theater fire in Chicago, 1903, that was responsible for the mandatory installation of fire curtains across the country. The Iroquois Theater had only just opened its palatial doors earlier that year and was deemed “fireproof beyond all doubt” by both the building commissioner and fire inspector. However, when a spotlight operator saw a fire had started backstage, they found they were ill prepared with blocked exits, no fire alarm, and no sprinkler system installed near the stage. The Iroquois Theater fire took the lives of more than 600 people.
Although still intended to be dropped at the moment of fire, current theater lighting has become much safer. The grand asbestos curtain enjoys a much more whimsical existence as a backdrop to stories and music. As a means to entertain the notion of yesterday in the comfort of today.
PolicE bEat CrImE alErT
areas whenever possible. Don’t look like a victim and you are less likely to become one.
The City of Stoughton is not immune to the crimes occurring in our neighboring communities. The recent rash of burglaries and stolen vehicles that have been occurring in the Madison Area has now been felt in Stoughton. These random burglaries are targeting unlocked vehicles and open garage doors. Often the burglars get access to residences by entering unlocked vehicles and using the garage openers to enter the garage and even the homes. Many times these entries have been to occupied homes.
ment and to the same Madison news outlets that the Stoughton Area School District uses for school closings. Notice will also be posted on the street department web site and local cable TV.
Lock your car doors and keep them locked even when you are in a vehicle. Keep your windows partially closed so that it would (b) During a snow emergency declaration, no vehicle shall be parked on any street between 12:00 midnight and 8:00 a.m., be more difficult for someone to reach in. Above all trust your inexcept in accordance with the terms of this section. stincts. If something doesn’t feel right, it probably isn’t! Make sure you lock your vehicle at night, even in your garage. (c) During a snow emergency declaration, vehicles shall park only on the even side of the street on even-numbered days, and on Lock your house doors especially at night. Consider keeping them the odd side of the street on odd-numbered days. Parking belocked even when you are home. Keep an interior light on when tween 12:00 midnight and 8:00 a.m. shall be prohibited on the possible. Consider motion-detecting lights for the outside of your opposite (other) side. home. Please be considerate of your neighbors by being aware of brightness and angles that the light covers. Burglars hate lights. (d) The last digit of the house numbers for that street shall determine the even or odd side of a particular street. Get to know your neighbors. One of the best crime reduction tools These crimes have been increasingly dangerous to all involved. The is neighbors watching out for neighbors. Knowing your neighbors (e) Where a street block, or a portion of that block, has a “No home entries can be very dangerous if the subjects are confronted also strengthens our community and makes all of us a little safer. Parking At Any Time” or “No Parking 3:00 a.m. to 5:00 a.m.” in the home. Many of the stolen vehicles have been involved in high Above all, “See Something, Say Something” if you see suspicious restriction on one side, that restriction shall supersede the limactivity. Report it to the police department. speed pursuits, which endangers everyone. itations of this section. The even/odd number restriction shall still apply to the opposite side of these streets. Please immediately report any and all thefts and suspected home INTEr arkINg entries, regardless of whether anything is stolen or not. The only (f) The parking restrictions of this section shall begin at 12:00 midway we will be able to stop this activity is with the help of citizens night after the most recent snow emergency has been declared We are fast approaching the winter season and Winter Parking in reporting these incidents. Your information will help of solve and remains in effect until three consecutive 12:00 midnight to regulations. Our Snow Emergency Ordinance is designed to facilthese offenses and identify those involved. 8:00 a.m. periods have elapsed or the emergency is canceled or itate getting vehicles moved during snow events in order to mainextended. tain open streets and the removal of snow and ice. Below is a copy of the ordinance. (g) forfeiture for a violation of this section shall be $25.00 or as set EEPINg OurSElf aNd by the common council by ordinance or resolution from time Also, this time of year the Police Department steps up enforcement OSSESSION afE aNd ECurE to time. In addition, any vehicle, which remains unmoved 24 of the 48 Hour Parking Ordinance in order to help prevent street hours after issuance of a citation, shall be towed at the owner’s storage of vehicles that can impede snow removal. Residents are Keeping yourself and possessions safe and secure really starts with expense. The police department will provide vehicle informareminded to cognizant of both Ordinances and help us maintain you. Statistically, a large percentage of crimes are tion to the towing company. clear streets and municipal parking lots during the winter season. crimes of opportunity. Most criminals will attempt to pick easy targets for their crimes. Easy targets (Code 1986, § 7.07; Ord. No. 0-39-03, § 1, 10-14-2003; Ord. No. Sec. 70-14. - Parking during snow emergencies mean less work and less chance of apprehension 0-20-08, § 1, 9-10-2008) regulated. for those bent on committing them. Hardening (a) The decision to declare a snow emergency shall be the respon- Sec. 70-7. - Street storage prohibited. the Target does significantly reduce the chances sibility of the street superintendent or his designee. The dec- No vehicle shall be parked on any street or public parking lot for of you becoming a victim of a crime. Being safe laration of a snow emergency will occur when three inches or more than 48 hours, unless otherwise posted. starts with being a harder target. When you are more of snow is forecasted or three inches have fallen, or as out and about, be aware of your surroundings. (Code 1986, § 7.04) conditions warrant. Notice will be given to the police departWalk confidently, stay with people and in lighted
Fall 2019 - The Tower Times - 5
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6 Fall 2019
The Tower Times
Stoughton Public Library: Educate, Enrich, Empower, Engage! Page Turners Adult Book Discussions (note date change due to Thanksgiving holiday)
Food for Fines this Holiday Season Library Book Discussion Groups The library will once again be accepting (see events listing below) donations of personal hygiene products
Tuesday, November 19, 6:30 pm at the library Wednesday, November 20, 1:00 pm at the Senior Center
Page Turners – This group reads a variety of titles both nonfiction and fiction. It meets the 4th Tuesday of the month at 6:30 p.m. at the Library, and the 4th Wednesday of the month at 1:00 p.m. at the Stoughton Senior Center.
and non-perishable food items in lieu of overdue fines. For one week in December, library patrons can receive $1 in credit towards their overdue fines for each item donated, up to $20. Some restrictions apply. Donations will benefit the Personal Essentials Pantry and Stoughton Food Pantry. Check the library’s website in December for more information.
No need to register; please join us for either session! This month we’ll be talking about The Poison Squad by Deborah Blum, the 2019 UW-Madison Go Big Read book. Copies are available on the second floor of the library.
The Foundation – This is Library’s science fiction / fantasy book group, named in honor of science fiction grand master Isaac Asimov’s famous Foundation Trilogy. The Foundation explores themes, authors, short stories, and novels. The group meets the first Wednesday of the month at 6:30 p.m.
Stoughton Public Library: The Basics
The Foundation (Science Fiction & Fantasy book discussion group) Wednesday, December 4, 6:30 pm - Eragon
Join us as we discuss Christopher Paolini’s first book in the Inheritance Cycle written while the author was still in his teens. Copies will be available on the second floor of the library near the elevator.
Thursdays With Murder is the Library’s mystery and crime fiction Craft Club: Shibori-Dyed Scarf book discussion group. Now in its eighth year, the group reads Thursday, December 5, 6:30 pm mostly crime and murder mystery novels, but also dabbles in short stories and true crime. Meetings are the second Thursday of the Shibori dyeing is back at the library! Join us and learn about different folding methods and create your own wearable art with a month at 6:30 at the Library, with no meeting in December. silk scarf. Registration is required, as supplies are limited, and we ask that you call (608-873-6281) or email (firstname.lastname@example.org) the library to reserve a spot. Registration opens two weeks before the oin the program.
The Stoughton Public Library is located at 304 S. Fourth St., at the corner of 4th & Main, just west of the clock tower in downtown Stoughton. Hours are Monday-Thursday 9-9, Friday & Saturday 9-5. Open Sundays now through May 17.
J Friends of the Library
There is no charge for a library card – just bring in picture ID with proof of current address. If your ID does not list your current address, please bring another proof of address such as a piece of mail, personal check, utility bill, etc. Parents must sign the regis- The Friends of the Stoughton Public Library is a tration form for children under age 16. non-profit organization In addition to offering books, eBooks, DVDs, audio books, maga- devoted to promoting and zines, newspapers, and programs for people of all ages, the Library improving library services, also has meeting rooms, a copy machine and scanner, and can materials, and facilities for the Stoughton community; encouraging offer you one-on-one help with your eBook reader. gifts and bequests to the library; and promoting the broadest posFor more information, visit us online at www.stoughtonpublicli- sible use of Library facilities, materials and services. brary.org, on Facebook, or call our information desk at 873-6281. Please note that the library will be closed on the following dates: November 28, December 24, 25, and 31 and January 1 and 20.
Adopt-A-Magazine at the Library Looking for a way to honor an important person in your life, or memorialize a loved one who has passed on? Sponsor a yearly subscription to a magazine enjoyed by Stoughton Public Library patrons. We will acknowledge your kind donation with a personalized nameplate displayed on the magazine’s cover for a year. Please contact Jane Groshan at (608) 873-6281 or email email@example.com to ask about magazine adoption availability and subscription cost.
Family Music Time
Wednesday, Thursday, or Friday, December 11-13, 9:30am
Special guest Eliza Tyksinski, a Music Together™ trained instructor, will visit us for three sessions of special music times. She’ll play the guitar while families enjoy playing with musical toys and singing along. Ages 2-5 (younger and older siblings welcome). No registration required. The sessions will be very similar to each other, but you are The Library relies on money raised by various Friends events to welcome to come more than once. supplement the its budget. Without these funds, the Children’s Summer Library Program would not be able to afford many of the January program presenters or purchase supplies and reading incentive Baby Morning Story Times prizes. The Adult Summer Reading Program and the Adult Craft Mondays at 9:30 am, January 6-March 23 (No story time January 20) Club also receive their funding from the annual Friends donation. The Friends donation is used to purchase high-demand DVDs and Join us for rhymes, fingerplays, songs, and board books. Ages 0-23 books for the Lucky Day collections, replace worn or lost copies months. Older siblings welcome. If Stoughton public schools are of books and DVDs, and provide more magazine subscriptions for closed due to weather, story time will also be canceled that day. the collection. These are just a few of the ways the Friends assist The Foundation (Science Fiction & Fantasy book the Library.
Membership levels range from $10 to $100 a year. In addition to be- Wednesday, January 8, 6:30 pm – Book title TBD! coming a member, you can help out with book sales, fundraisers, and more. More information at the Library! Winter Morning Story Times Wednesdays, Thursdays, or Fridays, 9:30 am, January 8-March 27 (No story time January 22-24)
Friends of the Library 2019 Winter Book Sale
Join us for stories, songs, crafts, and early literacy activities! Ages 0-5. No pre-registration required. These sessions are very similar to each other, as well as the Tuesday evening story time session Thursday, December 5 – Open to Friends members only, 4-6 pm within the same week. If Stoughton public schools are closed due (You can join at the door!) to weather, story time will also be canceled that day. Thursday, December 5 – Open to the public, 6-9 pm
Local History Resources at the Library… and beyond Genealogists and researchers exploring Stoughton’s early years should check out our extensive collection of local history materials on our Mezzanine level, including the Kvamme Local History Collection, vertical files, vital records index, and microfilm copies of Stoughton newspapers going back to 1876.
Thursdays with Murder (Mystery book discussion group)
Friday, December 6 – Open to the public, 9 am to 5 pm
Thursday, January 9, 6:30 pm – Book title TBD!
Saturday, December 7 – Open to the public, 9 am to 3 pm (Bag sale Library Play Date starts at noon!) Saturdays at 10 am, January 11, February 8, and March 21
For the last year or more, we’ve been working to digitize some of our local history materials through a project called Recollection Wisconsin. These include telephone directories, vertical files on a variety of subjects, and the two-volume “Stoughton in WWII” scrapbook. You can find these materials and more online at https://content.mpl.org/digital/collection/SPL
Visit stolib.org and click on Calendar for more information
Thursdays With Murder (Mystery book discussion group)
Do you always wish our story time playtime lasted longer? Come spend a whole hour playing with the library’s collection of educational toys! This is also a great opportunity for parents and caregivers to chat while the children are having fun. Ages 18 mos. through 5 years, but younger and older siblings are also welcome. No registration required.
❄❄ ❅ ❄ ❅ ❄❅ ❄ ❅ ❄ ❅❄❅ ❅❄ ❅ ❄ ❅ ❄❅❄ ❄❅❄ ❄ ❅ ❄ ❅❄❅ ❄ ❅ ❅ ❅ ❄ ❄ ❄ ❅ ❅ ❅❄ ❅ ❄ ❄ ❄ ❄ ❅ ❅ ❅ ❅ ❄ ❄ ❄ Wishes! ❄ ❄ ❅ ❅ ❅ ❄ ❅❄❅❅❄❅❄❅Merry ❄ ❄ ❅ ❅ ❅ ❄ ❄ ❄ ❄ ❅ ❅ ❅ ❅ ❄ ❄ ❄❅ ❄❅❄❅❄ ❅❄❅❄ ❅❄❅❄ ❄❅❄❅ ❄❅❄ ❄❅ ❅❄❅❄ ❅❄❅❄ ❄❅❄❅ ❄❅❄❅ ❄ ❄❅❄ ❅❄❅ ❅❄❅ ❄ ❅ ❅ ❄ ❄ ❅ ❄❅ ❄❅❄ ❄❅❄ ❅ ❄ ❅ ❅ ❄ ❅ ❅❄ ❅❄❅❄❅ ❅❄❅❄❅ STOUGHTON ❄ FLORAL ❅ ❄ ❅ ❄ ❅❄ ❅❄❅❄ ❅ ❄ ❅ ❄ ❄ ❅ ❅ ❄ ❄ ❅ ❄ ❅ Thursday, November 14, 6:30 pm - B is for Burglar
The second book in the Kinsey Millhone Alphabet Series by Sue Grafton was awarded the first ever Anthony Award for best mystery novel. If you’ve already read B is for Burglar, choose another book from the series! Copies of the books are available on the second floor of the library. We’ll also be choosing our 2020 book selections at this meeting!
Winter Evening Story Times
Tuesdays at 6:30 pm, January 14, February 4 & 18, March 3 & 17 Join us for stories, songs, crafts, and early literacy activities! Ages 0-5. No pre-registration required. Children may wear their pajamas if they like! These sessions are very similar to the morning story times within the same week. If Stoughton public schools were closed that day due to weather, story time will also be canceled that evening.
Saturdays, January 18, February 15, March 14, April 11, & May 9, 10-11 am
Feast with Unity
Join us for a casual, fun time playing with the library’s collection of LEGO and DUPLO blocks. What will you build today? All ages. No registration required.
Monday-Friday 7:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Saturday 7:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.
Page Turners Adult Book Discussions
Tuesday, January 28, 6:30 pm at the library Wednesday, January 29, 1:00 pm at the Senior Center
1621 E. Main St., Stoughton • 873-8112
Everyone is welcome to join us at either the Library or the Senior Center as we discuss Salt to the Sea, Ruta Sepetys’s historical novel about refugees fleeing Europe at the end of WWII. Winner of the 2017 Carnegie Medal from the British Library Association!
Mon.-Fri. 9am to 5pm; Sat. 8am to 3pm
168 E Main, Downtown Stoughton
• Custom Made Arrangements and Wreaths • Accent Pieces • Poinsettias • Unique Gift Ideas • Gourmet Fruit Baskets • Christmas Ornaments
Check our online calendar at stolib.org for the latest news about events at the Stoughton Public Library!
The Tower Times
Fall 2019 7
nEwS From thE Stoughton arEa SEnior cEntEr ENTEr TO WIN $25 STOughTON ChambEr dOllarS! The Stoughton Area Senior Center needs your feedback to better serve the Stoughton area community. Please go to: survey.stoughtonseniorcenter.com and take a 3-minute survey to be entered for the prize drawing. You may also call (608) 873-8585 to request a paper copy.
dEmENTIa frIENdly TrEE aT ThE gOVErNOr’S maNSION
Thursday, November 21, 3 PM 2nd floor Mandt Room
Thursdays, 9:00 - 11:30 AM or by appointment. Come with your technology questions. We have 4 computers, 3 iPads & WiFi.
Bring your technology questions about phones, tablets, laptops, and smart speakers. We’ll cover topics from buttons and basics to apps and advanced features.
3rd Thursday, 3:00PM. See newsletter for topics
Creative Writing Class
Last Tues. of month at 1:00 PM
CulTurES aNd TradITIONS Of mExICO
Tuesday, December 3, 1:00PM
Norwegian Language Class
It is with great honor that the Dementia Friendly Stoughton Coali- Join us for this month’s cultural presentation where Cummins Filtion has been invited to join in this year’s Holiday Festivities at the tration employee, Adan Campos will speak with us about Mexico’s Governor’s Mansion. We hope to have those affected by dementia culture and traditions. and their care partners join dementia friendly champions in the decorating. If you enjoy touring the mansion during the holidays, look for our Dementia Friendly Tree, adorned with fond memories luE OTES of days past. Thursday, December 5, 12:30 PM
Wed. 8:00AM. Register with Madison College Wed., 9:00 - 11:00 AM. No registration needed $10/class. New students welcome!
Wed., 9:15 AM (no instruction; bring own projects and supplies)
Wood Carving Class
Thursdays 8:00 AM-12:00 PM. Register with Madison College Enjoy tapping your toes and listening to a variety of jazz and Wood Shop Daily EmOry afÉ holiday songs, plus a Christmas Sing-a-long if there’s time! The Must take a safety course to use the shop. Blue Notes is an auditioned group of 7th and 8th graders from J.C. 1st Tuesday of the Month, 9:30-11:30 AM McKenna Middle School in Evansville. They sing challenging music Social & Recreation Stoughton Hospital, Bryant Education Center from a variety of genres and consistently earn first ratings at Solo Bridge, Free A Memory Café is a social gathering for individuals with memory & Ensemble each year Mondays, 9:30 AM & Thursdays, 9 AM loss to meet in a relaxed environment and to share common interests. Questions? Call 873-8585.
WEllNESS WEdNESday: gETTINg ThrOugh ThE hOlIdayS Wednesday, November 13, 2:00 PM
COffEE WITh ThE mayOr
Friday, December 13, 9:30AM
Every 1st Tuesday, 1:00 PM
Join us for discussion with Mayor Tim Swadley as he answers questions and reviews issues for the City of Stoughton.
Fridays, 10:00 AM
Community Bingo, $1
When a friend or loved one dies, grief can leave you feeling overwhelmed especially at the holidays. It affects both your work and ESSICa IChNa aS rS harlES home life. You may find your-self needing to support another person through grief without the tools to do so. This presentation covICkENS hE OmEN Of ers the basics of grief and the grieving process, as well as common ICkENS reactions to grief and appropriate expectations for people who are grieving. Learn words and phrases that are helpful—and some that Wednesday, December 18, 3:00 PM are hurtful—to grieving people, as well as ways to promote healthy survivorship. Charles Dickens, author, playwright, actor and social activist, was indeed a master of characters. Many of his characters were drawn from his surroundings and life experiences. Meet Catherine DickrEE EmOry CrEENINg ens, as recreated by Jessica Michna, his long-suffering wife and mother of ten children. In this first-person monologue, Mrs. DickFriday, November 15, 9:00AM- 12:00PM ens will give the audience an unflinching look into the lives of this Stoughton Public Library, 304 S. Fourth Street couple and introduce the audience to such women as; Nancy from Keep losing your keys? Forget why you walked into a room? For “Oliver Twist”, Miss Havisham from “Great Expectations”, Betsey anyone who might be thinking their memory isn’t quite what it Trotwood from “David Copperfield and others. used to be, the Aging and Disability Resource Center is offering a free memory screening. This free, confidential memory screening Ms. Michna appears in a period appropriate costume and will take is aimed at promoting early detection of memory problems and questions from the audience following the presentation. appropriate intervention.
J d d
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NTErNaTIONal Our Of OdE aNd The memory screen consists of questions and tasks designed to screen for memory, language skills and thinking abilities. The perEChNOlOgy EWS fOr son who administers the screening will review the results with the person being screened, and suggest whether the person should fol- Thursday, December 19, 3 PM, 2nd floor Mandt Room low up with a physician or other qualified healthcare professional The Hour of Code is a global movefor more extensive testing. ment reaching tens of millions of Contact the Stoughton Library (608) 873-6281 to schedule your students in 180+ countries. AcFree Memory Screen. cording to the Hour of Code website, anyone, anywhere, ages 4 to 104 can participate. Here at SASC, ChOlarly COOP EETINg we’ll cover a short overview of computer technology and practical ThE ENTal EalTh EEdS examples of computer code for practical solutions and fun. More at hourofcode.com. We’ll talk briefly about advances in popular deOf OuTh IN ChOOlS vices and applications in 2020. Optional: Bring along your favorite Friday, November 15 10:00-11:00 AM device. No prior experience is needed. Students’ unmet mental health needs are a substantial concern. Each year, approximately 1 in 5 youth are diagnosed with menNgOINg rOuPS laSSES aT ThE tal, emotional, or behavioral mental health disorders. Dr. Jennifer Betters-Bubon will discuss the strategies for meeting the increased TOughTON rEa ENIOr ENTEr mental health needs of youth today, with a focus on how schools can coordinate prevention and intervention efforts. Fitness & Wellness
arT SPaCE Tuesday, November 19 & December 10, 2-5PM This fun workspace is great for artists who want to paint with acrylics or watercolors, draw, work on art projects away from home, and collaborate with other artists. No registration, no fee. Bring your own supplies. We have extras to share. Due to special ventilation requirements, we are unable to accommodate oil paints.
yahara STrummErS Wednesday, November 20, 3PM
Every 3rd Wednesday, 1:00 PM
Every Monday 1:00 PM
Every 2nd Wednesday, 1:00 PM
Tuesdays, 1:00PM, Every 4th Saturday, 7:00 PM
Monday, 1:00 PM. Bring your own project and join us.
Mondays, 12:30 PM
Wednesdays, 1:00 PM
Pool Tables Free/Daily Sheepshead
Thurs. 1:30 PM- 4:15 PM
Train Dominoes, Free Thursday 1:00 PM
Ukulele Group Thursday 1:00
Support Groups Held at the Senior Center Grief Support Group
3rd Wednesday of the Month, 2:00-3:30 PM Stoughton Area Senior Center, Mandt Room
Low Vision Support Group
3rd Thursday of the Month, 1:00-2:30 PM Stoughton Area Senior Center, Stoughton Room
Memory Loss Caregivers Support Group 2nd Thursday of the Month, 2:00-3:30 PM Stoughton Area Senior Center, Stoughton Room
Multiple Sclerosis Caregivers Support Group 2nd Tuesday of the Month, 10:00-11:30 AM Stoughton Area Senior Center, Mandt Room
Parkinson’s Disease Support Group
Chair Stretch $2/class
No meetings in Nov. or Dec. Call 873-8585 to get on mailing list.
Chair Qi Gong Free
1st Tuesday of the Month, 9:30-11:30 AM Stoughton Hospital, Bryant Education Center
A Memory Café is a social gathering for individuals with memory loss to meet in a relaxed environment and to share common interests. Questions? Call 873-8585.
Mon. Wed. Fri. 8:00 AM Mondays 9:00 AM Tuesdays 2:30 PM
Mon. & Wed. 3PM, Friday 10:30 AM
Mondays & Thursdays 9:30 AM
Reflexology Check Calendar
Appts. 1:00 PM to 4:00 PM. $25/30 Mins. $45/60 Mins.
Tai Chi $7/class
Mondays 10:30 AM
Join in listening to the gentle sounds of the ukulele and sing-along Tai Chi Advanced $10/class Mondays 1:00 PM as they play some oldies but goodies!
Wii Bowling & League
Mondays & Fridays 10 AM, 2nd Fri.-10:30 AM
For more information on these and other activities please contact the Stoughton Area Senior Center at 248 W. Main Street, Stoughton WI, 53589 (608) 873-8585 www.ci.stoughton.wi.us/senior
The Tower Times
8 Fall 2019 Spring Miniball Soccer
Computer Use – Excel 101
Start your little Pelé on his or her way to a lifelong love of recreation activities. Nothing compares to soccer for an introduction to structured team sports. The emphasis on this program is having fun, getting your child to like sports, and developing their physical literacy. This program isn’t intended on teaching high level soccer skills to your child because of the ages of the participants. Volunteer coaches needed! Days: Sundays Dates: April 19 – May 31, No Class May 24 Location: Racetrack Park
Fee: $40 – Resident, $45 – Non-Resident
Date: January 13, 20, 27
Registration Deadline: March 29
Coaches: Volunteers are needed. Ages
Do you have Microsoft Excel on your computer and you’re not using it? Or…maybe you’ve dabbled but want to know more? If so, this class is for YOU! Come learn the “must-knows” of this program and walk away with a better understanding of Excel. Once you learn how it works, you’ll find yourself using it for so many things and will wonder how you ever managed without it! This 3-week session will allow you to watch and DO. Each participant will have access to a computer—and don’t worry about forgetting what you did, because you will leave with a handout summarizing what was presented! Try it…you’ll like it! NOTE: Concepts learned can be applied to any version of Excel.
Location: EMS Building Hanson Room
3 – 4 year olds
Program Code: 1200.002
3 – 4 year olds
Min/Max Registrations: 5/10
Little Viking Basketball – Kindergarten
5 year olds
This program will cover six classes where players will be introduced to basic fundamentals and work on developing movement skills that are necessary to play basketball. A certified coach will be teaching the class. Parents are welcome to volunteer and assist with coaching activities if they would like to be involved and learn about basketball coaching. Participants will receive a 25 inch basketball. The classes are for this age group is for both girls and boys.
Days: Saturdays Times: 9:00-9:45 am Gym: Yahara School Registration Deadline: 12/28 for Session Session Session 2
1/11 - 2/15
Little Viking Basketball – 1st Grade FUNdamentals
Little Gridders Flag Football (Pre-K)
Computer Use – Word 101
Program Code: 1152.100
Date: February 10, 17, 24
High School Recreational Basketball League
Yes…it’s true. You have been using Microsoft Word for quite some time…BUT…there are too many times when you’ve felt frustrated This program will introduce four and five year olds to the sport of footor unsure and thought “What’s happening?” or “Why am I getting ball. A head coach and high school players will run parent/child pairs that extra space?” AND…it’s likely that you could be saving so through a variety of fun games and activities that teach movement skills much time! For example, did you know that you can bold a word or (dodging, running, throwing) to future gridiron stars. Each week will center a paragraph without having to select it first? Whether you’re consist of a practice and a fun scrimmage. Soft footballs will be used. a new user or an everyday user, this class is for YOU!! Come learn Days: Tuesdays the “secrets” of this program and walk away feeling powerful! This 3-week session will allow you to watch and DO. Each participant Dates: April 14 - May 19 will have access to a computer—and don’t worry about forgetting Times: 5:30-6:30 pm what you did, because you will leave with a handout summarizing Location: Racetrack Park (green space near barn and playground) what was presented! Try it…you’ll like it! NOTE: Concepts learned can be applied to any version of Word. Ages: Pre-K, Ages 4+ Who: Adults Fee: $30 – Residents. $38 – Non-Residents (Shirts are included)
Active for Life
Location: EMS Building Hanson Room
Each session will cover six weeks where players will learn the basic fundamentals and work on developing movement skills that are necessary to play basketball. Parents are welcome to volunteer and assist with coaching activities if they would like to be involved and learn about basketball coaching. Participants will receive a 25-inch basketball. The classes are for this age group is for both girls and boys. Sign up for both sessions and save $10.
We are once again offering a basketball league open to all high school Program Code: 1200.003 students except players involved on high school teams. Players will Min/Max Registrations: 5/10 sign up individually and teams will be created through a draft process. Fee: $68 Days: Tuesdays
Times: 6:00-9:00 pm, game times will vary
Times: 10:00-10:45 am
Location: Sandhill Gym
Gym: Yahara School
Program Code: 1122.400
Registration Deadline: 12/28 for Session 2
Fee: $50 – Residents, $60 – Non-Residents
Session Session 2
Big 10 Volleyball League (Grades 5-8)
The Stoughton Recreation Department is teaming up with other Dane County area recreation departments to bring a travel volleyball league for children in grades 5-8. The program will focus on the FUNdamentals of volleyball and emphasize good sportsmanship and teamwork. There will be three practice days leading up to five tournament days. Volunteer coaches are needed! Practice Days & Dates: Fridays and Sundays 1/19-1/26 Practice Times: 12:45-2:00 pm Practice Location: Yahara School Gym Tournament Days & Dates: Sundays, 2/9-3/8 Tournament Times: Typically, 12:00-3:00pm Who: Girls in Grades 5-8 Fee: $60 – Residents, $70 – Non-Residents Deadline: 1/3 Grade
Active Start, FUNdamentals SNAG® stands for “Starting New at Golf”. It is a FUN game that is EASY to learn and can be played ANYWHERE. SNAG® contains all the elements of golf but in a modified form. Falling somewhere between miniature golf and regulation golf, SNAG® allows for full shots, pitching, chipping, and putting. It is a proven learning & training tool for entry level golfers. For more information go to www.snaggolf.com. Max of 16 participants in a class. Dates: 2/26-3/18 Days: Wednesdays Times: 6:30-7:15 pm Program Code: 1163.400 Grades: K-2 Place: Yahara Gym Fees: Resident - $30, Non-Resident - $38
Team Practice Day & Time: 12/3, 6:00-7:30 pm Game Dates: 12/10, 12/17, 1/7, 1/14, 1/21, 1/28, 2/4, 2/11, 2/18
Draft: 11/28 at 5:00 pm at the Youth Center
Stoughton Recreation Ski Club Trips
The Kids Chef Lily Kilfoy is back in this hands-on cooking class for kids ages 5-12 years old. Lily gets kids in the kitchen at a young age and introduces them to delicious dishes and thoughtful themes. Savory and sweet snack mixes, jars of jam, popcorn and date balls, cookies galore, quick breads and cheese spreads. There is nothing quite as nice as a homemade gift, especially one that can be eaten. In this class, kids will have a blast as they work together to create edible gifts. Vegetarian and nut-free. Ages: Children Ages 5-12
Go on a ski trip with the Recreation Department! We have multiple trips to Devil’s Head, Tyrol Basin, and Cascade Mountain. Trips take place on Friday nights in January and February. Trips are for middle and high school age children. Sign up the week of the trip at River Bluff or at the Recreation Department. Look for more information at the schools in late December or on our online registration page https://apm.activecommunities.com/stoughtonrec/Home.
Times: 12:00-1:15 pm
Chicago Holiday Shopping Trip
Program Code: 1311.401
Join us on a trip to Chicago on our holiday shopping trip! Avoid the hassle of driving and parking in Chicago and enjoy a stress free coach bus ride. Michigan Avenue will have everything on your holiday shopping list. For more information on the stores and restaurants on Michigan Avenue visit http://www.themagnificentmile.com/.
Location: Stoughton Youth Center Date: 12/7 Min/Max Participants: 6/15 Fee: $20
For this class the children will be doing a painting of a darling snowman. They will be using acrylic paint on a 16 x 20 canvas. Throughout this painting we will be working on shading and blending. I will walk the kids through the painting step by step. Who: Adults (children may go, but must be accompanied by an adult) These painting turn out beautiful and will look great hanging in your home for the cold winter months. Date: December 7 Day & Date: Friday, January 24th (Half School Day) Day: Saturday Time: 12:30-2:00 pm Pick-up/Drop-off Time: 9:00 am – 8:00 pm Ages: 5 to 12 year olds Pick-up/Drop-off Location: City Hall Location: Stoughton Youth Center Program Code: 3260.400 Fee: $40 Min. Registrations: 25 Program Code: 1383.303 Fee: $40 Min/Max Participants: 10/20
Computer Use – Everyday Efficiency with Windows
Sure, you know how to get around on the computer and manage to “get by.” BUT…are you using Windows in the most easy and efficient ways? Have a handful of Websites that you frequently visit? Access them through your “Links” toolbar without having to open your browser first! Still taking notes from the screen? Learn how easy screen prints are and when to use the best tool (Print Screen vs Snipping Tool vs Screenshot). These tips—and many more—will leave you wondering how you ever managed Windows before! This 2-hour session will allow you to watch and DO. Each participant will have access to a computer—and don’t worry about forgetting what you did, because you will leave with a handout summarizing what was presented! Try it…you’ll like it! Who: Adults
Writing Class – Mapping Your Way to Story
Writing is always a challenge, especially when we’re unsure where to start or where we’ll head next. The good news? There’s a map to guide you and your characters to the story you seek! In these sessions, writers will shed their fear of the blank page by developing their novels from scratch, journeying from concept to creation to plot modeling and scene-by-scene outlining. After completing this course, attendees will be equipped with a map to confidently lead their characters from their ordinary worlds to the treasures they so long for. This is a great class for beginners and/or any other level Ages: Adults
Date: January 6
Times: 6:00-8:30 pm
Location: Fire Dept. Training Room
Location: EMS Building Hanson Room
Date: Thursdays, November 7-28
Program Code: 1200.001
Min/Max Participants: 5/20
Min/Max Registrations: 5/10
Program Code: 1100.000
The Tower Times
Fall 2019 9
dEPartmEnt oF Public worKS You may not know we were there, but you would know if we weren’t.
WINTEr PrEParEdNESS Love it or hate it, winter is on our doorstep. Here are some tips to help you prepare for the impending snow season:
Driving on Snow Covered or Icy Roads
NEW bulk-ON-Call COllECTION PrOgram TO OffEr mOrE flExIbIlITy
Curbside Leaf Collection
Spring leaf collection starts March 30th thru April 17th Fall leaf collection starts October 12th thru November25th (Weather Depending)
Effective January 1, 2020, Stoughton residents will need to call John’s Disposal at 262-473-4700 to schedule the collection of Please help by doing the following: • Place all leaves on the terrace (park row) bulk items. • Do not place leaves in the street
• Do not mix brush or trash in with your leaf pile • Do not park cars in front of your leaf pile • Remove leaves from the storm inlet grates and place on the terrace
Under this new ‘bulk-on-call’ program, you will now have more flexibility to choose when you want your bulk items collected. Whenever you have bulk items to disposed of, simply call Johns When ice and snow are present on roadways, follow these safety Disposal to schedule a pick up. You are still allowed one bulky item tips to ensure your safety: collection per month, which is the same as the original program. The only difference is that you now have the flexibility to call any• When travel is not necessary, Stay Home! time during the month to schedule your collection. • If travel is necessary, give yourself extra time as traffic will be moving slower than normal when there is snow and icy road Currently, the bulk item truck drives the entire city each month looking for bulk items to collect. This practice is incredibly inefficonditions. cient, wastes fuel, which increases our carbon footprint, and puts • Stay back a safe distance from plow trucks and do not pass them. unnecessary wear and tear on city streets. By routing collection • Clean off windows and scrape windows and mirrors to make sure trucks directly to each home, John’s can collect your items in a more efficient and environmentally conscious manner, while offeryou can see. Use the defroster to keep windows clean. ing you more flexibility. • Turn your lights on. Be visible. Please call John’s Disposal at 262-473-4700 during regular busi• Take extra care when driving on bridges and overpasses, which ness hours to schedule your bulk item collection. can freeze before other road surfaces. Office hours: Monday – Friday 8:00 am to 4:30 pm, • Brake with care. Avoid jamming on the breaks. Use a “light touch” Saturday 8:00 am to Noon on the brakes to have a controlled deceleration and stop. Even if your vehicle has anti-lock braking, you should brake lightly to Bulk items will be collected within 7-days of the call for collection. Items collected with the bulk item pick up include: avoid skidding. • SLOW DOWN!
• Appliances (including microwaves and items containing CFC’s Shoveling Snow such as refrigerators) Snow shoveling and heavy lifting can cause strains and sprains to the back, shoulders and wrists. Follow a few simple rules to be safe • Automotive tires, truck tires and tractor tires provided that tires while shoveling snow: over 42” in diameter are quartered (2 per week, 8 per year) • Stretch and warm up your muscles and joints before shoveling. • Drain oil in one (1) gallon or larger containers with secure lids that are labeled as ‘drain oil’ • Use a good shovel that is the right size. A shovel that is too short or too long may cause overextension. • Automotive batteries • Push snow instead of lifting. If you must lift a loaded shovel, use • Earth, rocks, concrete, loose construction and demolition mateyour legs. Consider taking smaller scoops to avoid heavy lifting. rials are included with the bulk items collection if contained in 32-gallon cans that weigh less than 60 pounds (no limit on the • Take breaks to avoid overexertion. number of cans). • Be especially cautious if you are at risk due to heart disease. If you have any questions regarding this change in service, please • Do not push snow into the street. call John’s Disposal at 262-473-4700. • Clear snow around fire hydrants and sidewalk ramps. • Salt sidewalks and driveways as needed. A little goes a long way.
Garbage and Recycling Cart Placement
To avoid broken carts and to aid in the clearing of snow from the entire roadway, please place your garbage and recycling carts in your driveway apron or on the terrace. When carts are placed in the roadway, they may get damaged and would be the responsibility of the homeowner to replace.
The declaration of a snow emergency will occur when three inches or more of snow is forecasted or three inches have fallen, or as conditions warrant. Notice will be given to the police department and to the same Madison news outlets that the Stoughton Area School District uses for school closings. Notice will also be posted on the street department web site and the local cable TV station. During a snow emergency declaration, vehicles shall park only on the even side of the street on even-numbered days, and on the odd side of the street on odd-numbered days from midnight to 8:00 am. Remember that the date changes after midnight. You can sign up to get an email notification when snow emergencies are declared. Type “Snow Emergency Notification” in the search box on the main page of the city website. Enter your email address and click “Submit”.
2020 bruSh aNd lEaf COllECTION PrOgram Brush Collection Brush Collection
Christmas Tree Collection
Please keep in mind, it may take crews several days to make it through the entire community. We will continue to loop through the entire city at least one per week. To make sure your leaves are collected, try to have them out each Monday. Once crews go by, they may not be back around until the next week.
yard WaSTE SITE Site Guidelines
• The site is open to residents and non-residents. There is an annual fee for the use of the site. There is a $20.00 fee for residents of Stoughton and a $25.00 fee for all non-residents. Bring a driver’s license or utility bill with a current address for proof of residency. • A 2nd sticker is available for $5.00 for multiple vehicles. If your sticker is lost there will be a $5.00 charge for replacement. • No commercial haulers or landscapers. • Materials must be separated, debagged and unloaded by the resident. ACCEPTABLE MATERIALS
Leaves, grass clippings, garden waste, etc. (bags/ containers must be removed)
Solid Waste- garbage, recyclables, food waste.
Brush – any length
Construction debris, rocks, dirt
Logs – up to 14 inches Stumps, root balls, etc. in diameter (we would encourage repurposing logs for firewood, furniture, milled planks, etc.) The yard waste hours of operation are as follows: Open: April 2nd to November 24th Tuesday’s 1 pm – 7 pm Thursday’s 1 pm – 7 pm Saturday’s 8 am – 3 pm (New Saturday Hours in 2020) Annual Fee: City Resident $20.00, Non-Resident $25.00 Note: To protect the safety of the staff and public, the yard waste site may close early during inclement weather.
• Branch Diameter – No greater than 6 inches • Branch Length – No greater than 8 feet in length • Pile Size – The pile must fit within the terrace area (back of curb to either the sidewalk or property line if there is no sidewalk) and shall not be greater than 20 feet in length. Piles must not impede the vision triangle for motorists. • Branches shall be stacked neatly parallel to the roadway. • Any trees/brush that have been cut by a paid contractor will not be collected. Note: Brush and Christmas trees must be put out on the terrace by 7:00 am on Monday of the collection week. Please DO NOT set brush out more than 10 days prior to the scheduled collection date. Violators will be subject to a municipal citation.
For more information, please visit the city webpage at www.cityofstoughton.com
10 Fall 2019
The Tower Times Mercury – Do You Have it in Your Home?
Go Ahead, Deck the Halls!
• Check all tree lights-even if you’ve just purchased them-before This holiday season, Stoughton Utilities is reminding homeowners hanging them on your tree. Make sure all the bulbs work and that and businesses about the benefits and advantages of energy effithere are no frayed wires, broken sockets or loose connections. cient lighting options to help customers stretch their holiday dollar • Never use electric lights on a metallic tree. The tree can become and trim their holiday energy bill. Compared to standard incancharged with electricity from faulty lights, and a person touching descent holiday lights, LED holiday lights use up to 90 percent less a branch could be electrocuted. energy to produce the same amount of light, cost significantly less to operate, and last longer than standard lights. • Inside your home route cords so they won’t trip anyone. Additionally, don’t place them under rugs, appliances or other objects, as To help you start saving, we are giving customers one strand of LED they may overheat if covered or become worn and cause a fire. holiday lights and one holiday light timer, while supplies last!
Stoughton Utilities customers can receive one strand of LED Trimming the Tree holiday lights and one light timer when they donate 4 non-per- • Whether artificial or freshly cut, a tree should be kept a safe distance away from all sources of heat, including fireplaces, radiishable food items for the Stoughton Food Pantry. ators or portable heaters. Not only are LED holiday lights energy efficient, but they greatly reduce the risk of fire because they emit much less heat than tra- • When purchasing an artificial tree, look for the label “Fire Resistant.” ditional lights. Since they do not have the same components that • Cut a few inches off the trunk of your tree to expose the fresh wood. cause traditional lights to burn out or combust, they also last for This allows for better water absorption and will help to keep your tree many holiday seasons. from drying out and becoming a fire hazard. Be sure to keep the stand
Mercury is a toxic compound that is extremely hazardous to our environment. We need everyone’s help to keep mercury out of the wastewater and landfills. Wastewater treatment plants are capable of removing over 90% of the mercury entering the plant, however, the ultra-low limit of 1.3 nanograms per liter (ng/L) is now required. The only cost-effective way to manage the level of mercury in Stoughton’s wastewater is to reduce mercury discharge into the treatment plant from users of the sanitary sewer system. Listed below are some of the most commonly used mercury products: • Barometers • Amalgam dental fillings • Fluorescent light bulbs • Lab thermometers • Medical fever thermometers • Latex paints made before 1990 • Blood pressure cuffs • Thermostats
How to dispose of mercury products
Do not put any mercury compounds down the drain or in the trash. Hazardous household wastes can be safely disposed of through Dane County Clean Sweep, located at 7102 US Highway 12, Madison. More information about Clean Sweep can be found on their website at danecountycleansweep.com.
filled with water, because heated rooms can dry live trees out rapidly. More information about mercury can be found at dnr.wi.gov/topic/ Stoughton Utilities also wants customers to be aware of safe opermercury. ating practices for all types of holiday lighting. • Never use lighted candles on a tree or near other evergreens. Always use non-flammable holders, and place candles where they • Always remember to turn off tree and decorative lights, both ininter tility ills will not be knocked down. doors and outdoors, before leaving home or going to bed. Use a holiday light timer to make this easier. • It is important to turn off all electrical light strings and decora- With winter rapidly approaching, Stoughton Utilities would like to remind our customers of the importance of paying their monthly tions before leaving home or going to bed. • Always check last year’s leftover lights for cracked or broken sockets, frayed insulation or bare wires, or loose connections. • For both inside and outside lighting projects, follow the rule of utility bills during the winter months. Each month, Stoughton Utilities has to pay our wholesale power provider for the electricity that Throw away damaged cords. using no more than three sets of lights on a single extension cord we distribute to Stoughton homes and businesses, even if those to prevent overheating and reduce the chance of fire. • Before you buy lights for use outdoors, read the packaging and customers don’t pay us. Unpaid bills contribute to increased utility the tag on the cord to make sure they’re approved for outdoor • Follow the use and care instructions that accompany your elec- rates for all customers. use. Never use indoor lighting outside! trical decorations. Making an effort to keep your account balance under control • Follow the use and care instructions that accompany your elec- Stoughton Utilities wishes you and your family a healthy, happy, during the winter months is very important. Here are some tips to trical decorations. help keep your winter electric costs manageable: and safe holiday season! For more holiday energy-saving ideas, visit us online at stough• If you are finding it difficult to make the monthly payment, please tonutilities.com. Stoughton Utilities wishes you and your family a keep in mind that even partial payments will help keep your balree ranches vs lectric ires healthy, happy, and safe holiday season! ance from growing out of control. Try to pay as much of your bill Tree limbs that come in contact with power lines are a major cause as you can each month. You can also make weekly payments to of electrical outages, and limbs that touch electric power lines can keep the payment amounts manageable. Paying online is quick toughton tilities ound p become energized or even break and fall, bringing the lines down and easy using My Account. with them. This risk is increased over the winter months due to the rogram onates to t • We can work with you to establish a deferred payment agreeheavy weight of snow and ice accumulation, as well as the high ment to address your balance. These agreements require a down winds that frequently accompany winter storms. incent de aul t nn payment, and then regular installment payments until the balTo reduce outages caused by tree contact, Stoughton Utilities ance is paid. Stoughton Utilities recently donated prunes trees away from its power lines on a planned five-year $1,000 to St. Vincent de Paul – St. cycle. Our line clearance program is one of many efforts we em- • Please continue reading below to obtain contact information for Ann. This donation is part of Stoughwinter Energy Assistance. Eligible customers will receive a oneploy to help ensure the reliability of your electrical service, and ton Utilities’ RoundUP program, time benefit to help cover their winter electrical expenses. for many years, our program has been honored with the Tree Line a voluntary program that ‘rounds USA award. • Contact us to enroll in our Budget Billing program to avoid bill up’ customers’ utility bills to the fluctuations and have a predictable monthly bill. With this pronext whole dollar. All proceeds are Like the majority of utilities nationwide, Stoughton Utilities does gram, your utility bill is a fixed amount each month, with a paydistributed to local non-profit comnot routinely trim around service drops. The service drop is the ment amount equal to the average of your monthly charges. The munity organizations. St. Vincent wire that runs from the pole to your home or business. This line amount will be reviewed and adjusted twice a year to be sure de Paul – St. Ann helps Stoughton serves only you, and each individual property owner is responsible that the monthly payment stays similar to your monthly usage. residents who are having a difficult for keeping it clear of trees and branches. These overhead service You can find out what your Budget Billing amount would be, and time paying rent and are in danger of lines have insulation on them to protect the wires from incidental easily enroll or cancel by logging in to My Account online, or by eviction. They also assist with utility bills, medical needs, and help contact with energized lines so individuals who are comfortable giving us a call. some homeless people find warm places to sleep. and responsible around electric wires can easily and safely remove Stoughton Utilities began its RoundUP program in 2006 as a way the branches with appropriate tools and equipment for the job. • Consider enrolling in AutoPay and having your monthly bill automatically deducted each month. Enrollment is simple, and can to further assist local non-profit organizations in our communi- Individuals that don’t feel safe or comfortable around electric wires be done online by logging in to My Account. ty. Over five percent of Stoughton Utilities customers have volun- should always hire a professional tree trimming contractor. tarily chosen to participate in the program and are continuing the When lights flicker during storms and on windy days, it can usually Failing to keep up with your account during the winter months can “neighbor helping neighbor” concept that founded Stoughton Util- be explained by trees making contacts with overhead power lines have serious repercussions, potentially including one or more of ities over a century ago. Customers wishing to participate in the located throughout our service territory. This may be happening on the following: RoundUP program, or non-profit organizations requesting to be the wires between poles located along streets, alleys, or back and considered for future donations, may sign up online at stoughto- side yards, and may not necessarily be happening in front of your • By not paying during the winter, you will inevitably find yourself with a very large balance due in the spring. If the average cusnutilities.com/roundup, or by calling Stoughton Utilities customer homes or on your service drop wire. tomer with a $150 monthly bill goes all winter without paying, service at (608) 873-3379. Please alert us to any line issue that requires immediate attention, they will owe over $1,000 in April, and that balance may be resuch as broken or dead limbs hanging on or over power lines. Also, quired to be paid in full or result in a disconnection of service. elebrate the olidays afely remember to take a look up while planning to plant a tree on pri• Failure to pay your winter bills may cause Stoughton Utilities vate property. If you see power lines where the tree will eventually Keep your family safe during the holidays by keeping electrical to require a mandatory security deposit to be posted on your grow, please plant a type of tree that is appropriate for the location safety in mind and by following these simple safety tips... account. The deposit required for customers who do not pay and has a limited maximum height. For more information on our during the winter will be the total of the four highest consecutive line clearance program or information on maintaining your service Outdoor Lighting month’s bills during the last 12 months of service. Using the avdrop, please contact us. • If your outdoor decorating requires a ladder, always look up first erage $150 monthly bill, you may be required to pay a security before raising it. Don’t raise ladders or other extended objects deposit of $600 in April, and that’s in addition to your full pastinto or near power lines. due balance. • Planning to string lights in outdoor trees? Make sure tree limbs • Stoughton Utilities may choose to take you to small claims court haven’t grown into or near electric lines. Branches and even enfor any delinquent balance, where we may seek damages of up to tire trees can become energized if they contact the line. three times the unpaid balance. • Before using lights outdoors, check labels to be sure they have • Stoughton Utilities may submit your account to the Wisconsin been certified for outdoor use. To hold lights in place, string them Department of Revenue (DOR) for collections through the State through hooks or insulated staples, not nails or tacks. Never pull Debt Collection Initiative. The DOR will attempt to deduct payor tug lights to remove them. ment from your state tax refund, garnish your wages, or place a bank levy on the funds in your checking or savings account. • Plug all outdoor electric decorations into circuits with ground In addition, the DOR will charge an additional fee of 15% of the fault circuit interrupters to avoid potential shocks. unpaid balance. • Don’t overload extension cords or allow them to run through If you have questions about your bill, would like to sign up for our water or snow on the ground. Budget Billing program, or need to establish a deferred payment • Don’t staple or nail through light strings or electrical/extension arrangement for your delinquent balance, please give us a call at cords-you could damage the wire or insulation, which could lead (608) 873-3379. to an electrical shock or fire.
S P V
U D P
R U $1,000 S . –S .A
The Tower Times
Fall 2019 11
Wisconsin Home Energy Assistance Program As a customer of Stoughton Utilities, you may be eligible for the State of Wisconsin’s Home Energy Assistance Program (WHEAP). This program was established to help members of our state with limited financial resources to cover their winter energy costs, including both electricity and natural gas or other heating fuels.
frames, wall-mounted air conditioners, exhaust vents and more. To find the cracks and holes too small to see, close all your windows and doors, turn on your kitchen and bathroom exhaust fans, and then hold a smoke stick or lit incense stick near each door, window, and exterior wall outlet. If the smoke rises undisturbed, then you are leak free, but if the rising smoke is noticeably disturbed, then you have a small hole or crack to fill.
Lead is not a naturally occurring groundwater contaminant in the City of Stoughton, and is not sourced by the utility’s groundwater wells or water towers. Rather, lead finds its way into homes’ drinking water from the lead service lines that were installed to specific properties, as well as internal plumbing solder and older plumbing fixtures. 85% of properties in Stoughton do not have lead service lines.
Once you find the locations where cold air is leaking in, seal them with caulk or weather stripping to keep your warm air indoors where it belongs.
Although no level of lead is considered completely safe, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) set a level of 0.015 mg/L, or 15 parts per billion.
Keep your Fire Hydrants Clear
WHEAP electric (non-heating) assistance is a one-time benefit payment during the heating season of October 1-May 15. The funding pays a portion of the household’s costs, but the payment is not intended to cover the entire cost of the non-heating costs, and will not cover any part of your water or wastewater charges. The amount of the non-heating assistance benefit varies depending on a variety of factors, including the household’s size, income, and non-heating costs. In most cases, the non-heating assistance benefit is paid directly to Stoughton Utilities, and is applied to future bills to reduce the required monthly payment.
Residents interested in having their home’s water tested can contact a state approved laboratory to receive a testing kit, including Help protect your home and neighborhood by clearing around fire the Wisconsin State Laboratory of Hygiene in Madison Wisconsin. hydrants after every snowfall. Residents can also reduce their exposure by considering the folSnow accumulation is the result of plowing and snow clearing, and lowing: can completely cover or restrict access to fire hydrants. Although • Identify if their service line or interior plumbing fixtures contain we haven’t yet had much snow, it’ll come eventually -- after all, it lead. Stoughton Utilities can assist residents in doing so. is Wisconsin. When the snow does start to fall, cold temperatures can limit melting, which may result in snow-covered hydrants • Replace any service lines or plumbing fixtures found to contain lead. throughout the city. Hydrants covered in snow means a slower response time when responding to and extinguishing fires. This can • Run your water faucets for a minute or two before use to flush out result in catastrophic consequences if firefighters have to spend any accumulated lead particles. time locating a buried hydrant and/or clearing snow away from it, especially if the snow is heavily compacted from snow plowing and • Periodically remove and rinse the aerators on your kitchen and bathroom faucets to remove any accumulated particles. frigid temperatures. Keep in mind that firefighters need to access the sides of the hydrant, not just the top. • Use only cold water for drinking, cooking, and preparing baby formula. A hydrant covered in snow like the one pictured is not usable and will require the firefighters to dig it out, which wastes valuable time • There is no benefit to boiling water to remove lead, as this has no when responding to a fire. effect. Use a water filter certified to remove lead particles.
If you live in a dwelling that is heated using electricity instead of So what should you do? gas or oil, then you are may also be eligible for WHEAP heating as- If you have a fire hydrant in front of or adjacent to your home or sistance. This is an additional one-time payment during the heat- business, please clear all the snow at least three feet around it on ing season that pays a portion of your heating costs. all sides after every snowfall. Make sure that the hydrant is easily Under the eligibility requirements, customers at or below 60 per- visible from the road, and that there is enough room for firefighters cent of the state’s median income may qualify for WHEAP assis- to maneuver around it to easily connect fire hoses to it. The more often the snow is cleared, and the sooner it is cleared after a fresh tance, including: snow, the easier it is. • A single person with an annual income below $28,673 per year;
Adopt A Hydrant
• A couple without children with an annual income below $37,496; Remember, it’s the entire neighborhood’s responsibility to keep their hydrants clear, since all properties benefit from the protection • A family of three with an annual income below $46,318; they provide. If there is a hydrant in your neighborhood that isn’t • A family of four with an income of up to $55,141; being cleared by the homeowner, or if you know of an elderly or • Guidelines for additional household sizes can be found online at disabled homeowner that struggles to clear snow, then “adopt a hydrant” and make it part of your shoveling and snow clearing www.stoughtonutilities.com. routine. It will only take a few extra minutes, and is a quick and If you are approved for energy assistance through WHEAP, you will easy way to help the Stoughton Fire Department help you and your receive bill payment assistance for both your Alliant Energy natu- neighbors should a fire ever occur. ral gas bill (or other heating provider), as well as your Stoughton Utilities electric bill.
ublic rinking ater otice To apply for energy assistance, please contact Energy Services Inc. at (866) 432-8947 to schedule an appointment. You may apply Recent drinking water anytime from October 1 through May 15. quality monitoring conducted by Stoughton Utilities found elevated levels ive hem a rake of lead in the drinking water of some Stoughton Working outdoors in Wisconsin’s homes. We have no reaharsh winters is hard enough, son to believe at this time but when utility crews have to that these levels are indicdeal with dangerous drivers in ative of the water quality work zones, it only makes it that at other lead service locamuch more difficult. Whether it’s tions, or at the 85% of loaround electric linemen restoring cations not served by lead a power outage or a water crew service lines. We would repairing a water main break, like to take this opporwork zones are no place for imtunity to further educate patience or aggressive driving. the community about the The added seconds you may save danger of lead and what while speeding through a work they can do to determine if their home is affected, as well as develzone are not worth placing your utility’s worker’s lives at risk. op ways for the utility and municipality to eliminate lead from the Tragically, over 1,000 people die across the nation every year in drinking water system. road work zones. Please follow these important tips for safely driving in road work zones. Your life – and ours- depend on it!
UTILITY WORK AHEAD
• Keep a safe distance from traffic barriers, construction equipment, utility workers, and other traffic. • Always slow to work zone speed limits, or slower. • Pay attention. Normal speed limits may be reduced, traffic lanes may be changed and people and vehicles may be working near the road. • Minimize distractions, such as cell phone use. • Watch for and follow all warning, lane closure, and construction detour signs. • Plan ahead and give yourself time to reach your destination. • Always buckle up.
Look for Air Leaks, and Stay Warm You tell your kids they’re heating the Great Outdoors when they don’t keep the windows shut or close the door behind them. You could be doing the same thing without even knowing it. Your heated indoor air could be leaking out of your house through the tiny cracks and holes around phone lines, electrical outlets, plumbing pipes, and around windows and doors. Now that the warm weather of summer and autumn is giving way to the cooler temperatures and harsh winds of winter, it’s important to prepare your home for the change in seasons. Finding and sealing the air leaks that create drafty cold spots in your home is a simple home maintenance chore that can potentially save you 5% to 30% in heating costs over the winter. Take a walk around the outside of your house and you may see little gaps where the inside light shines through around window
For more information, please call Stoughton Utilities at (608) 8733379 or visit our website at stoughtonutilities.com/lead.
Stoughton Utilities Celebrates Public Power Week Each year, Stoughton Utilities holds an annual Public Power Week event that highlights the benefits that “public power” brings to the utility, its customers, and the City of Stoughton. This year, staff at Stoughton Utilities celebrated Public Power Week with a scavenger hunt. Customers were given a daily clue to help them find the “secret location,” and asked to send us a picture of themselves or a family member at the location to enter to win a daily grand prize. The daily grand prize included an electric scooter, series 3 Apple watch, Nest smart thermostat, Ring Video Doorbell and more. In addition to the grand prizes, all participants were given a “Public Power Prize Pack” that contained a variety of “Smart” household devices that you can control using a smart phone to help customers conserve electricity. A total of 84 photos were submitted throughout the week by Stoughton Utilities customers. Public power refers to the fact that the City of Stoughton owns and operates the not-for-profit utility to provide reliable electricity to homes and businesses. Local employees provide quick responses when issues arise and assistance with identifying energy-saving improvements. Public power utilities like Stoughton Utilities are supported by customer revenues, not taxes, and provide substantial payments in lieu of taxes to local governments to help keep local economies strong. “Because we are owned by our customers rather than shareholders, we can focus on local priorities such as helping to sponsor economic development efforts, support high school scholarships, and participate in local events,” said Stoughton Utilities Director Jill Weiss. “In honor of Public Power Week, we like to give back to all of our customers with a special event.” Public Power Week is celebrated across the country every year during the first full week of October. The event honors the over 2,000 communities served by a locally owned not-for-profit public power utility.
12 - The Tower Times - Fall 2019
Wishing You Many
Thanksgiving Blessings This Holiday Season!
As we take this time to give thanks and count our blessings, we hope you will do the same. Because we believe in the strength of family, we will be closed November 28-29, and will re-open Monday, December 2.
Hours: M-F 7:00am-6:00pm; Sat. Closed
Friend us on Facebook â€˘ Home of the 3 year, 100,000 mile warranty
1324 Hwy. 51-138, Stoughton â€˘ conantauto.com
2019 Tower Times Fall