Friday - September 29, 2017 1:35 am

Sprinkler fee on the outs if up to one city council member

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Measure has been in books since 2010 but not enforced until now 

The $50 fee for boulevard sprinkler systems in La Crosse appears to be on the way out.

Next month, the city council will consider a measure that will zero out the controversial fee. It's been on the books since 2010 but the city just this year started billing for it.

City council member Gary Padesky is among those who want the fee gone, as he'd heard plenty of grumbling from constituents about it.

"I don't blame them," Padesky said. "If I was expected to pay $50 a year to have a sprinkler system in the ground to keep my lawn looking nice, I would be upset too."

Padesky, however, still wants to know where the boulevard sprinklers are. Know that will limit city liability in construction projects.

"Some of the companies get permits so the city knows where they are when they go out and do boulevard digging projects," Padesky said. "Some of the companies don't. And a few of these have been dug up accidentally and then they're going after the city.

"Obviously we don't want to be sued by people, thinking, 'What the heck are they doing digging up my sprinkler system?'"

It's unclear why the city waited so many years to actually bill for the sprinkler system permits but the move led to some property owners apparently removing their systems rather than paying the fee.

There are approximately 1,500 properties in the city that have irrigation systems installed in the boulevards.

Last modified on Friday - September 29, 2017 1:48 am
Mitch Reynolds

Mitch Reynolds is the News Director at Midwest Family Broadcasting. He covers the internecine agonies of La Crosse city hall. He really likes basketball.

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