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The Tomah City Council approved an amendment to the Parks and Recreation Commission that allows for two non-city residents to be members.

The council approved the amendment unanimously.

Composition of the commission will now be three council members, at least four city residents and not more than two non-city residents.

Council member Richard Yarrington said the change allows two long-time members to remain and serve on the commission after both have moved outside the city limits. The members are commission president Dustin Powell and secretary Oak Moser.

Council member Donna Evans said a couple of her constituents contacted her and are against allowing non-city residents to be on the commission.

"They feel that people outside of our city should not be allowed on the committees," she said. "They feel that they would make decisions that are not in favor of our city and expenditures. That is a concern, if you do leave you shouldn't be allowed on the committees."

City administrator Roger Gorius said the city council gets the final say on how money is spent within the city. Committees can give recommendations, can have input, but it's up to the city council how those funds are spent.

In other business the council approved resolutions to:

  • Request that city of Tomah residents be exempted from the Monroe County library tax. The resolution states that city of Tomah residents are already paying a city library tax and should be exempt from “paying again through the county tax.”
  • Write off $6,800 in delinquent personal property taxes from 2014 to 2017.
  • Amend the city ordinance that restricts square footage of 1,200 square feet for accessory structures. It increases the limit to 2,400 square for lots greater than one acre.
  • Restricting Tomah Police Chief Mark Nicholson's salary at $88,852 except for cost-of-living increases until he obtains a four-year criminal justice degree "as contemplated" by his letter of acceptance when he was promoted to chief in January 2014.
  • Change the job description of police department personnel. It replaces language saying that a bachelor’s degree for the police chief is “preferred” with “required” and added that a master’s degree is “preferred.”

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Meghan Flynn can be reached at meghan.flynn@lee.net.

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