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Skate park project moves ahead

The Gordon Noren Skate Park will soon be getting ramps and other equipment.

The Clintonville City Council approved the purchase of used equipment for the skate park, at a cost of $10,028, with the funds coming from the Rec Center Building fund. The funds are to be repaid as donations for the skate park are received. The measure passed by a 7-0 vote at a special meeting, Tuesday, Sept. 30. Aldermen John Wilson and Mark Doornink were excused from the meeting.

Justin Mc Auly, Park and Recreations director, told the council he bid on the equipment which was found on the Wisconsin Surplus website, and was awarded the winning bid. It was being sold by the city of Mauston. He added that the equipment was made out of weather resistant material, something the previous skate park equipment wasn’t made of.

Mc Auly said if this equipment was purchased new it would cost $25,000.

“Getting this for a couple thousand dollars under half price of new, I think it is a great deal for us to move forward,” Mc Auly said.

Alderwoman Mary Beth Kuester told the council she attended the Park and Recreation Committee meeting, held prior to the council meeting, and was under the impression the skate park was supposed to be a donation project. She expressed concern that a city employee would bid on and purchase an item without council approval.

“Technically it hasn’t been purchased yet,” Mc Auly said.

He added that he won the bid on the equipment, but winning the bid didn’t lock the city in for the purchase.

“I think it would be a mistake [not to purchase it], Mc Auly said. “The deadline is Thursday, that’s why it’s on the special council meeting [agenda], is for your approval.”

Mc Auly said he spoke with a representative from the local Lion’s Club, and the club was willing to donate $2,500 toward the equipment. That, along with the memorial donations Noren’s daughter, Polly Goodell, was donating in memory of her dad, put the total donations so far over $5,000.

“In a matter of time it will be paid for,” Mc Auly said.

Prior to the vote, Chief of Police Terry Lorge offered kind words about the skate park.

“For the most part it was a great place for a lot of kids that are into skateboarding,” Lorge said. “It keeps them off the sidewalk and off the streets where they have a chance of getting injured by getting hit by a car. It’s a good place for them to hangout.”

Lorge offered to donate a trailer and tow vehicle to pick up the equipment.

Mayor Judy Magee added that kids are constantly asking her when the skate park would be back. And that they will be happy to hear it will be back soon.

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