People who travel on the stretch of Dalman Road from Highway I to Torpy Road in the Town of Portland will need to reduce their speed after a decision by the town board. During the regular Jan. 16 Portland Town Board meeting, the group decided to reduce the speed limit of the town road from 55 to 45 mph. According to town Chairman Jeff Spoke, all town road speed limits are 55 mph unless otherwise posted.

“I’m not in favor of hammering out the whole township, but I’m totally fine with any area that seems dangerous or an area where we don’t need to go 55,” Spoke said. “I’m fine with taking it down to 45.”

Supervisor Kurt Keach looked at the speed limit regulations of surrounding towns, including the Town of Waterloo, and found the municipalities were in line with Portland’s speed limit determination.

The change is effective immediately and once the ground thaws, signs posting the reduced speed limit will be posted.

Supervisor Tom Crave said the town could try this change and revisit it to decide if the board wishes to leave it in place.

Additionally, the board continued its discussion, but took no action, on contracting with General Engineering Company (GEC) for state-required permitting, commercial electrical work inspection and additional services for the town.

Spoke had been in contact with GEC municipal inspector Dion Okeson to find out what the cost of the services. The chairman said GEC could offer guidance to the town on issues related to permitting it does not deal with on a regular basis.

Crave said while residents may be concerned about losing local control on zoning issues, the board plans to keep current zoning; GEC would just offer insight when it comes to any curveballs related to necessary permits mandated by the state. Additionally, the cost of GEC’s services would fall on the property owner.

Spoke and Clerk Nancy Thompson will also need to determine if there is money in the 2020 budget to pay for GEC’s possible services to Portland.

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