Lake dredging cost over $1 million

Common Council


Whitewater Emergency Medical Technicians discuss a proposal for a paramedic upgrade instead of an advanced emergency medical technician at the March 1 Common Council meeting.

The city of Whitewater held its Common Council meeting March 1, 2022 to discuss the many happenings in the community such as an update on the Community Space, the Bird scooters being brought back for use this spring, implementation of the Ordinance Chapter 5.56 Enforcement, a lake drawdown update and a proposal for a paramedic upgrade. Citizens brought up some concerns they had about the Bird scooters and Ordinance Chapter 5.56 Enforcement in the community.

The Whitewater Community Space gave an update on how they have been doing with support and donations in regard to the goals and accomplishments they had in 2021. They had a total number of approximately 25,438 visitors. People that had partaken in food services was 17,271 with the number of people fed at 43,469, and clothes were given out to 107,950 people. The amount of food distributed to people was 223,799 pounds and the total amount of food given to Feeding America was 270,662 pounds. Visitors were up by 41 percent, 80 percent of which took food. Clothing given out increased by three times as much as the prior year from 35,766 to 107,950 items. The organization has been getting support from Kwik Trip, Walmart and Pick N Save, as well as donations from individuals, businesses, organizations and churches. Donations were managed by the Whitewater Community Foundation. Volunteers contributed 16,352 hours of service. But they also still have challenges ahead of them with donations barely covering expenses, as well as with providing hauling and pick-up options. The organization hopes to figure this out down the line through a solution.

Next on the agenda was the Bird Scooters that appeared on campus and around town last year. Bird, a dockless electric micro-mobility vehicle sharing company, is bringing the scooters back to Whitewater, explaining how they work and how they will be better than last year. The company hopes this will solve last mile options, get communities closer, reduce over reliance on cars, improve air quality, reduce the GHG emissions and improve overall quality of life on campus and community. In order to use one of the scooters, riders first  have to use the Bird smartphone app to find the closest Bird Scooter on the map, unlock it, complete the safety tutorial and pay a $1 fee to start with so many cents per minute. There will be two types of scooters which are the BirdZero and BirdThree. They will both require helmets now and also can be tracked to locate them. 

“You guys abandoned the scooters onto my property for six weeks,” said concerned citizen Chuck Mills. “You guys finally picked them up after six weeks. Now don’t worry I support the idea of the Bird Scooters in the community and what it will do for everybody. But you need to work on the communications more with your group, there are still some bugs to work out, and it is the communication.” 

Next, the Council discussed the Ordinance Chapter 5.56 Enforcement which is the removal of junk cars on public and private property to eliminate clutter and pollution in the area. The city plans on sending out letters to citizens, charging them a penalty if they do not follow the ordinance, start landscaping and paving the bricks for vehicle storage. 

Updates on the Lake Drawdown were brought to the table, revealing that 68,000 cubic yards of sediments was removed and the dredging process has cost $1,045,029.00. Most of Cravath Lake has been dredged, but crews are still working on Trippe Lake.

The Whitewater Emergency Medical Technicians came up to discuss a proposal for a paramedic upgrade instead of an advanced emergency medical technician. Representatives said will be helpful for answering high call volume, high acuity calls and waiting for Janesville to respond from other jurisdictions with time being the biggest issue. The city will be discussing a solution and approval toward this plan for a paramedic upgrade with Whitewater Emergency Medical Services.