Beaver Dam Could Charge For Opening Storm Drains

5/30/17 – City officials in Beaver Dam want to start charging people who call the Department of Public Works to fish out cell phones, keys and other items that get dropped down storm sewer grates. City Engineering Coordinator Ritchie Piltz says the city should invoice for the service to recoup costs. Piltz says if two DPW workers are called in, depending on the trucks that are used, it could affect the public works budget by $200 or more. If DPW crews are called out after hours, responding workers get paid for a minimum of two hours of work. Current policy does not allow for invoicing and Piltz recommended a $50 fee for the service which he notes is similar to service costs in the private sector for someone who locks keys in a car. DPW Supervisor Kris Quandt said his department gets called out to remove items from storm sewer grates about once a month. Up until a few years ago, DPW crews would not rescue baby ducklings that fall down sewer grates but city officials say that policy has changed so that now crews respond during working hours. The resolution passed through committee earlier this month and the council is expected to vote on the new charge at their meeting on Monday.