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Thiensville makes first step toward Lake Michigan water

Feb. 23, 2012

Thiensville - The Village Board this week voted to approve a tentative pricing plan for a proposed water franchise installation, which would pipe water from Lake Michigan to property owners along and near Main Street.

Thiensville would front $100,000 of the installation costs and affected property owners would be charged a special assessment comprised of an installation fee and a charge based on average sewer usage and acreage, according to the plan approved by the board Monday. The average assessment of the 31 affected properties would be approximately $12,000.

Approving the plan is the first step toward the water franchise

"I will let the (property owners) know what their anticipated costs may be as well as the advantages," Village Administrator Dianne Robertson told the board. "Then invite them to an open house before the (upcoming) Committee of the Whole meeting."

The board wants to gauge interest from property owners in order to decide whether the project is ultimately worth pursuing.

"We really need to have some notion of whether, or thinking positively, how many would sign on," said Board President Karl Hertz.

If enough property owners show interest, the village will move forward with the project.

"If the Village Board decides to proceed, then you would have a public hearing and formal notice to the people," Robertson said. "(Approving the tentative pricing plan) is not by any chance the final step."

Before the board took its vote, Trustee Ronald Heinritz made a minor alteration to the motion's wording, suggesting that the village's $100,000 "contribution" should be regarded as an "investment."

"I think it would be a hundred thousand dollars toward business development or re-development," Heinritz said. "It's not a contribution."

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