Monona Council, PD discuss curfew

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By Audrey Posten, Times-Register

The city of Monona is looking to stiffen the penalty for first-time offenders of its curfew rules for minors.

“When you issue a first offense, it’s nothing,” police chief Jo Amsden told the city council at its July 20 meeting. “It would be nice to have the ability to charge them with something.”

Currently, minors 17 and under are not allowed to be out past 11 p.m. Sunday through Thursday, or past midnight on Friday and Saturday nights, unless involved with a school function.

Amsden said many youth—and their parents—remain unaware of the restrictions. 

For first-time offenses, Amsden said officers have simply been issuing verbal warnings. After a second offense, a minor can be cited with a simple misdemeanor.

She wants the city ordinance to allow the police to get tougher after the first time.

“We don’t even have a written warning to go off,” she remarked.

City administrator Barb Collins said she would look at what other cities do in similar situations and bring some ideas to the council.

In other police news, Amsden said the department had a high number of calls in June and is on record pace in July.

“It doesn’t appear crime is decreasing,” she mentioned, “so stay vigilant and watch each others’ backs.”

City will plan to “close” trails in off season

The city will plan to “close” its trails to the public in the off season, November to April, to protect itself from liability if someone uses them and falls. The issue came about after a resident fell on an icy spot in March. 

The public will still be able to use trails when they are closed for the season, but they will do so at their own risk because the stretches will not be regularly maintained.

Fundraising go-ahead for trail kiosks

The council gave Monona Chamber and Economic Development, Inc. Executive Director Rogeta Halvorson the go-ahead to fundraise for two trail kiosks for the community. The city will contribute $2,000 from a donation toward the project.

Garbage not allowed at compost site

The city plans to improve signage at its compost site—and even threatened fines—because garbage is being dumped there against the rules. City staff will also clean up the site, in an effort to make it less inviting to perpetrators.

“If we keep it looking nice, hopefully people will respect it,” Collins said.

Intersection will be repaired

The council approved a bid from Bacon Concrete, for the amount of $50,280, to repair the Main Street intersection at the co-op. The work should be completed in early- to mid-September, before corn season is in full swing. The street will remain open to one-way traffic during construction.

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