Wausaukee awarded $1.6 Million Grant for Wausaukee Housing Project

By: 
Shirley Prudhomme

WAUSAUKEE – Wausaukee Village Board was officially informed at its regular monthly meeting on Monday, March 18 that the village has been awarded a $1.6 million federal grant to be used toward residential and workforce housing development in the Village.

Administrator/Clerk/Treasurer Sara Pullen reported U.S. Senator Tammy Baldwin (D-WI) had announced on Friday, March 8 that a $211 million government funding package that had just passed the Senate included $1.6 million for the Village of Wausaukee to develop infrastructure needed to convert the old Wausaukee School site, which the village already owns, into a residential neighborhood with space for 21 homes. The site is popularly known to some as “Ranger Mountain.” 

Infrastructure to be financed by the grant includes construction of streets, sidewalks, curb, gutter and storm drains, as well as installation of street lights and utilities, including water, sewer, gas and electric lines. Efforts by the village to have this property developed for housing have continued intermittently for years.

The successful application, prepared by Pullen with professional assistance from Art Bahr of MSA Professional Services, was submitted over a year ago. It states there is a shortage of housing for workforce in the area, and said development of a residential neighborhood would provide an economic boost to the area, increase the local tax base, provide housing for more workers in the village and the county, and strengthen the school population.

A Marinette County housing study done in 2018 documented the need for additional housing and a Tax Increment District (TID) was created in 2021 to provide incentives for developers.

Speaking on behalf of the Wausaukee Business Association (WBA) during public comment time at the start of the meeting, Trustee Emily Milquet asked permission to use the municipal parking lot and community center to host a community picnic this summer. Milquet said the event is still in the planning stages, but they would like to have music, food and a variety of activities for all ages. Use of the community center would be needed for inclement weather. She said the Wausaukee Rescue Squad has agreed to partner with the WBA to increase the number of volunteer workers. It was mentioned that the Village’s centennial is this year and it could be celebrated in conjunction with the picnic. 

Village officials on hand for the 5 p.m. meeting were Interim President Steve Stumbris; Trustees Darryll Schmidt, Emily Milquet, Mack McKim and Keith Frank; Pullen, Deputy Clerk/Treasurer Emily Tadisch, Public Works Supervisor Dennis Whitton, Wastewater Treatment Plant Operator In Charge Tylor Stumbris and WWTP Operator Assistant Lee Bartels. Trustee JoAnn Polomis attended the meeting virtually. Village President Pat Tracy was excused.

Stumbris announced that brush pick-up will be Monday, May 13 through Friday, May 17 and Spring Clean-Up Day is scheduled for May 18.

After considering a price quote to fabricate and install a second battery in the F-550 the board approved a motion to purchase a second battery from Witt Auto Sales for $1,548.03.

By unanimous vote the board approved appointment of incumbent Rose Figas to another 5-year term as village representative on the Wausaukee Housing Authority Board of Directors.

The Board reviewed and approved the Treasurer’s report as presented by Pullen, tStreet Report as presented by Whitton, and tUtility Report as presented by Tylor Stumbris, who also informed the Board that the Wisconsin Department of Transportation had upgraded the existing internet at the WWTP, resulting in a speed increase from 1.5 Mbps to 10 Mbps at no cost to the Village.

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