Subscribe | E-Editions | River News 75˘ | Super Shopper - FREE | About Us | Contact Us | FREE Classified – Items Under $50
The Northwoods River News | Rhinelander, Wisconsin

Flanders Realty Group

home : news : county/state news
September 20, 2017

Jamie Taylor/Northwoods River nEWS

The tanks at the Kemp Street station are out of date and pose a safety concern, according to highway commissioner Bruce Stefonek.
Jamie Taylor/Northwoods River nEWS

The tanks at the Kemp Street station are out of date and pose a safety concern, according to highway commissioner Bruce Stefonek.
What to do with the shop?
The La Crosse-based convienence store chain Kwik Trip made an offer of $2.3 million for the site a couple of years ago. It was rejected by the Oneida County Board in July 2015 by a vote of 10-9.
9/12/2017 7:28:00 AM
Stefonek seeks fuel tank upgrades
Existing system is dangerous, commissioner says
By Evan J. Pretzer
of the lakeland times

When safety risks at a government facility are so commonplace every worker knows about them, it's time to spend money on upgrades.

That was the message Oneida County Highway commissioner Bruce Stefonek presented to the Capital Improvement Program Subcommittee at a meeting Thursday.

As previously reported, the highway department's shop on Kemp Street in Rhinelander was assessed by Milwaukee-based Barrientos Design and Consulting to have various flaws in dire need of maintenance.

These include problems with electricity, heating, plumbing and the structural integrity of the 1950s era building.

According to Stefonek, fuel tanks at the facility also have serious issues.

"We have to bring the fuel system up to specifications. If there were to be a spill by our pumps, there's no way to contain it. Gasoline is obviously very flammable so there could be a problem there," Stefonek said.

On the site's current gasoline storage tanks, there is supposed to be a valve which - in the event of an emergency - can be used to instantly stop the disbursement of fuel.

This valve is not present.

A document Stefonek distributed during the meeting warned costs associated with fixing the issue could increase if not dealt with by 2020. When this year hits, the department will be in violation of newly revised state codes for motor vehicle fueling facilities.

Due to the department being uniquely funded through a mix of federal and state sources and having more than $400,000 on hand to handle any surprise expenses, subcommittee member Billy Fried was puzzled about why Stefonek was even running the matter by the group.

"If there's something currently that's a code violation and you have $400,000 in an account for buildings, is there a reason it's not adressed immediately?" he asked. "Doesn't the highway department have the ability to go into those funds and use them to address these issues?"

In response, Stefonek noted his department was obligated to bring any projects costing over $25,000 through committee for review under the capital improvement program.

Subcommittee member Jack Sorensen reacted to this news, stating that committees were becoming a part of the bureaucracy which hinders people from getting things done and voiced concerns about liabilities.

"These safety issues bother me.," he said. "It's additional exposure if something goes wrong. I was surprised our insurance carriers aren't looking at some of this stuff and asking why it hasn't been taken care of."

As Stefonek's presentation concluded, subcommittee chairman Robb Jensen expressed support for the upgrades, but questioned whether they'd be worth it in the long run, likening it to replacing parts on an automobile.

"If nothing happens to the building in five years we've got to do these things," he said. "But its like a car, if the transmission goes, is it worth it to replace it or just get a new car?"

Evan J. Pretzer may be reached via email at evan@lakelandtimes.com.





Article Comment Submission Form
Please feel free to submit your comments.

Article comments are not posted immediately to the Web site. Each submission must be approved by the Web site editor, and meet the comment guidelines (see "Comment Guidelines" at right). There may be a delay of 24-48 hours for any submission while the web site editor reviews and approves it.

Note: All information on this form is required. Your telephone number and email address is for our use only, and will not be attached to your comment.
Submit an Article Comment
First Name:
Required
Last Name:
Required
Telephone:
Required
Email:
Required
Comment:
Required
Passcode:
Required
Anti-SPAM Passcode Click here to see a new mix of characters.
This is an anti-SPAM device. It is not case sensitive.
   


Advanced Search
search sponsored by



Subscription Login
LOGIN | SUBSCRIBE


Today's Circulars
Print-N-Save Coupons
Order photo reprints

Classifieds
Advertising Information

Community Connections
Submit to Newspaper...

Ced Vig's books for sale
Kris Gilbertson's 'I Recall...'

Marshfield Clinic - 1
Twitter

Reader Poll

How should the city of Rhinelander use this year’s premiere resort area tax (PRAT) revenue?

Please select one:
Use some of the money to complete at least one road improvement project.
Save this year’s revenue and combine it with next year’s to fund a larger project next year.
I don’t know enough about how the PRAT works to offer an opinion.
I have no opinion.

View Results










Facebook | All Things | Wisconsin Lottery | The Lakeland Times - affiliate | Winter Road Conditions | Snow/Trail Conditions


The Northwoods River News | Walker Communications, LLC
232 S. Courtney Street, Rhinelander, WI 54501 | Office (715) 365-6397 | Fax (715) 365-6361

Corporate billing office: The Lakeland Times / Lakeland Printing Inc. | P.O. Box 790, Minocqua, WI 54548 | (715) 356-5236 | Fax (715) 358-2121
Members of the Wisconsin Newspaper Association, Wisconsin Community Papers, Rhinelander Area Chamber of Commerce, Minocqua Area Chamber of Commerce

Site Design and Content | Copyright 2017 1up!

Software © 1998-2017 1up! Software, All Rights Reserved