Janesville48°

Darien fills spots on police committee

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ANN MARIE AMES
November 17, 2009
— A current board member will take charge of the village's Police and Public Safety Committee, and a former board member will fill an empty position on the committee.

During a regular board meeting Monday, village board President Evelyn Etten appointed board member Debi Olmstead as committee chairwoman. Olmstead has served on the board since being elected in April.


Olmstead replaces former Chairman John Evans, who resigned from the post Friday. Etten appointed Evans to the position in April.


On Monday, Etten also appointed Shane Spoo as a citizen member of the committee. Spoo served on the village board from 2006-08 when he lost a bid for re-election. Spoo also ran but was not elected to the board in 2005.


The sudden changes to the committee follow months of high-profile police discussions in the village. Evans sent in his letter of resignation the day after the village announced details of a settlement with former police Chief Steve DeVoy.


DeVoy had been suspended with pay for 11 months. Last week, he agreed to be re-instated and resign after six more months of not working in the village.


DeVoy will get $30,000 in severance plus six months' paid leave and about $35,000 for accrued holiday, vacation and sick time.


Etten and Olmstead were the only board members to vote against the settlement.


The two serve on the police committee as do board member Craig McCue and citizen member Kenny Blanke.


No schedule to replace DeVoy

The village has not yet set a timeline to replace DeVoy, Administrator Marc Dennison told the Gazette on Monday night.


The village likely will work with its new law firm, Seymour, Kremer, Koch & Lochowicz of Elkhorn. Attorneys so far have recommended the village write a request for proposals before posting the position, Dennison said.


No one has yet submitted an application, he said.


No replacement for McCue

The board on Monday night decided to stop talking about finding a replacement for McCue until the board hears from McCue about his desire to return.


McCue has been absent from the board since he suffered a stroke in August. In October, the board tabled a discussion about temporarily replacing him.


In a phone interview with the Gazette on Monday night, McCue said it was too soon to know whether he would be able to return to the board. He is scheduled to undergo two surgeries in upcoming months, McCue said.


McCue was elected to the board in 2007 and was re-elected in 2009.


Comprehensive plan adopted

The board Monday night unanimously adopted an ordinance updating its comprehensive plan. Planner Mark Roffers of Vandewalle & Associates talked to the board about opportunities for economic development in the village.


The plan re-focuses on downtown revitalization and takes into consideration a pending upgrade to Highway 14 through the village. It also looks at a long-planned re-routing of County C around the west side of the village.


Roffers said the village has one thing going for it that would make other communities jealous: the interchange at Highway 14 and Interstate 43.


It could be in the village's best interest to create something that can't be found at other interchanges in southern Wisconsin, he said.



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