Keeping up rural roads

Above: While going over 2021 budget drafts, Village of Windsor trustees expressed concerns over the upkeep of rural roads within the village’s borders. A photo of Highway DM cutting through Morrisonville shows the current state of a road reconstruction project involving that road, as well as Clinton Road and Willow Street. Below: Windsor is also considering a satellite site for the DeForest Area Community and Senior Center.

The idea of establishing a satellite Community and Senior Center site in the Village of Windsor has been broached.

It was brought up on the second day of discussions regarding the 2021 budget on Thursday, Sept. 10, as trustees went over the village’s capital improvement fund and pored over the road improvement plan specifically.

Other areas of consideration included the police budget, the general fund and the DeForest Area Community and Senior Center. Some trustees would like Windsor’s name added to the name.

“I pushed hard for a name change a couple of years and ran into a brick wall,” said Trustee Bruce Stravinski.

At the time, Stravinski said, the center was working on a new logo. He thought it was a good time to see about incorporating Windsor into the name, but he said he didn’t get much support.

Windsor does contribute funding to the center, which serves DeForest, Windsor and the Town of Vienna.

Village President Bob Wipperfurth talked about Windsor getting more usage out of the Community and Senior Center, with the possibility of a satellite center emerging in talks about downtown Windsor development.

Stravinski said he talked to DeForest Area Community and Senior Center Executive Director Barb Cooper about it, and he said Cooper thought it was a good idea worth exploring.

In the village’s proposed budget drafts, $247,832.70 is earmarked for the center.

Windsor’s road improvement plan was also given much attention. Trustee Don Madelung wondered if more borrowing was needed while interest rates were low to fund more road projects.

“This is just patch work. I know it. Everybody knows it,” said Madelung.

Village Administrator Tina Butteris said, “When you look at the capital plan, we’ll need to spread out $1 million a year to keep up.”

Butteris also said that any additional borrowing would affect the village’s debt service, saying that increased borrowing would lead to increased taxes.

Windsor’s road improvement plan identifies projects totaling $593,255, of which $486,454 will go from pulverizing and overlay work and $85,474 of chip sealing.

There are 75 to 80 miles of village roads in Windsor. While Stravinski talked about the effects of heavy dump truck traffic in the Morrisonville area, Madelung mentioned how big agricultural tractors were “chewing up the edges” of rural roads in the village. He wondered if the village could determine the paths for those vehicles to use.

Wipperfurth said that refers to rules on the “implements of husbandry,” where farmers were supposed to get permits to drive on certain roads. Wipperfurth also said that stipulation has gone by the wayside, before also noting that more road improvements will have to be under the direction of the state because he said if it’s left to towns and villages “there’s not enough money to go around.”

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