The town board may provide for financial audits under s. 66.0605
(2) Audit of combined clerk and treasurer office.
If the offices of town clerk and town treasurer are combined under s. 60.305 (1) (a)
, the town board shall arrange for an audit of the town financial records at least once every year. The audit may be conducted either by a certified public accountant, appointed by the town board and not otherwise employed by the town, or by the department of revenue if the department provides such a service.
History: 1983 a. 532
; 1999 a. 150
Claims against town. 60.44(1)(a)(a)
Claims for money against a town or against officers, officials, agents or employees of the town arising out of acts done in their official capacity shall be filed with the town clerk as provided under s. 893.80 (1d) (b)
. This paragraph does not apply to actions commenced under s. 19.37
The town board shall allow or disallow the claim. Notice of disallowance shall be made as provided under s. 893.80 (1g)
The town board, by ordinance, may provide a procedure for approving financial claims against the town which are in the nature of bills and vouchers. The ordinance shall provide that payment may be made from the town treasury under s. 66.0607
after the town clerk reviews and approves in writing each bill or voucher as a proper charge against the treasury, after having determined that:
Funds are available under the town budget to pay the bill or voucher.
The item or service covered by the bill or voucher has been duly authorized.
The item or service covered by the bill or voucher has been supplied or rendered in conformity with the authorization.
The claim appears to be a valid claim against the town.
The town clerk may require submission of proof to determine compliance with the conditions under par. (a) 1.
The ordinance shall require that the clerk file with the town board at least monthly a list of the claims approved, showing the date paid, name of claimant, purpose and amount.
(3) Court actions to recover claims.
, or an ordinance adopted under that subsection, does not affect the applicability of s. 893.80
. No action may be brought or maintained against a town upon a claim unless the claimant complies with s. 893.80
. This subsection does not apply to actions commenced under s. 19.37
Disbursements from town treasury.
Disbursements from the town treasury shall be made under s. 66.0607
History: 1983 a. 532
; 1999 a. 150
The town board shall designate one or more public depositories for depositing funds of the town. The treasurer and the treasurer's surety are not liable for loss, as defined under s. 34.01 (2)
, of money deposited in the name of the town in a designated public depository. Interest accruing from town money in a public depository shall be credited to the town.
History: 1983 a. 532
; 1985 a. 25
Public contracts and competitive bidding. 60.47(1)(1)
In this section:
“Public contract" means a contract for the construction, execution, repair, remodeling or improvement of any public work or building or for the furnishing of materials or supplies, with an estimated cost greater than $5,000.
“Responsible bidder" means a person who, in the judgment of the town board, is financially responsible and has the capacity and competence to faithfully and responsibly comply with the terms of the public contract.
(2) Notice; advertisement for bids.
Except as provided in subs. (4)
No town may enter into a public contract with an estimated cost of more than $5,000 but not more than $25,000 unless the town board, or a town official or employee designated by the town board, gives a class 1 notice under ch. 985
before execution of that public contract.
No town may enter into a public contract with a value of more than $25,000 unless the town board, or a town official or employee designated by the town board, advertises for proposals to perform the terms of the public contract by publishing a class 2 notice under ch. 985
. The town board may provide for additional means of advertising for bids.
(3) Contracts to lowest responsible bidder.
The town board shall let a public contract for which advertising for proposals is required under sub. (2) (b)
to the lowest responsible bidder. Section 66.0901
applies to public contracts let under sub. (2) (b)
(4) Contracts with governmental entities.
This section does not apply to public contracts entered into by a town with a municipality, as defined under s. 66.0301 (1) (a)
(5) Exception for emergencies and donated materials and labor.
This section is optional with respect to public contracts for the repair and construction of public facilities when damage or threatened damage to the facility creates an emergency, as declared by resolution of the town board, that endangers the public health or welfare of the town. This subsection no longer applies when the town board declares that the emergency no longer exists. This section is optional with respect to a public contract if the materials related to the contract are donated or if the labor that is necessary to execute the public contract is provided by volunteers.
(6) Application to work by town.
This section does not apply to any public work performed directly by the town.
An unsuccessful bidder was not entitled to maintain a suit for damages, but was instead required to seek an injunction. Only if the bidder successfully obtained an injunction would it be entitled to limited damages, not including lost profits, as, if successful, the bidder could force the town to award it the contracts, or alternatively, to relet them. D.M.K., Inc. v. Town of Pittsfield, 2006 WI App 40
, 290 Wis. 2d 474
, 711 N.W.2d 672
A disappointed bidder may recover bid preparation expenses for a violation of the competitive bidding statute regardless of whether it has sought injunctive relief. North Twin Builders, LLC v. Town of Phelps, 2011 WI App 77
, 334 Wis. 2d 148
, 800 N.W.2d 1
PUBLIC WORKS AND PUBLIC SAFETY
Without limitation because of enumeration, the town board may:
(1) Acquire lands.
Notwithstanding s. 60.10 (2) (e)
, acquire lands to lay, construct, alter, extend or repair any highway, street or alley in the town.
(2) Streets, sewers and service mains.
Provide for laying, constructing, altering, extending, replacing, removing or repairing any highway, street, alley, sanitary sewer, storm sewer, water main or any other service pipes, under s. 62.16 (2) (d)
, in the town.
Provide for construction, removal, replacement or repair of sidewalks under s. 66.0907
(4) Lighting highways.
Provide for lighting for highways, as defined under s. 340.01 (22)
, located in the town.
(5) Lake improvements.
Provide for making improvements in any lake or waterway located in the town.
Gather at the site of a public works project or a highway, street or alley project that has been approved by the town board for the sole purpose of inspecting the work that has been completed or that is in progress if, before gathering at the site, the chairperson of the board or the chairperson's designee notifies by telephone or facsimile transmission those news media who have filed a written request for notice of such inspections in relation to that project and if the chairperson of the board or the chairperson's designee submits at the next board meeting a report that describes the inspection. The board may not take any official action at the inspection site.
Sewer and water systems of adjoining municipality. 60.52(1)(1)
With the approval of the town board, any city or village adjoining a town may construct and maintain extensions of its sewer or water system in the town. An extension of a sewer or water system under this subsection is subject to s. 62.175 (1)
and the rights of abutting property owners.
An abutting property owner who is permitted to connect with and use a sewer or water system constructed under sub. (1)
may not be deprived of the use of the sewer or water system, except for nonpayment of water or sewer charges, without the approval of the town board.
History: 1983 a. 532
A city or village sewer extension through town lands that does not provide service for town residents does not require approval of the town board under sub. (1). Danielson v. City of Sun Prairie, 2000 WI App 227
, 239 Wis. 2d 178
, 619 N.W.2d 108
In determining under Danielson
whether the extension through a town serves the town and thus requires the town's approval, the extension project must be looked at as a whole, and not in its component parts. Town of Union v. City of Eau Claire, 2003 WI App 161
, 265 Wis. 2d 879
, 667 N.W.2d 810
Service pipes and laterals.
Sections 62.16 (2)
, relating to service pipes and laterals, are applicable to towns.
History: 1983 a. 532
; 1999 a. 150
Solid waste transportation. 60.54(1)(1)
The town board may designate any town highway which provides reasonable access to a solid waste disposal site or facility licensed under s. 289.31
as appropriate for the transportation of solid waste into, within or through the town for the purpose of disposing of the waste at the site or facility and may prohibit the use of other town highways for that purpose.
Any person violating a prohibition enacted under sub. (1)
shall forfeit not more than $1,000.
History: 1983 a. 532
; 1995 a. 227
Fire protection. 60.55(1)(a)(a)
The town board shall provide for fire protection for the town. Fire protection for the town, or any portion of the town, may be provided in any manner, including:
Joining with another town, village or city to establish a joint fire department. If the town board establishes a joint fire department with a village under s. 61.65 (2) (a) 3.
, the town board shall create a joint board of fire commissioners with the village under s. 61.65 (2) (b) 2.
The town board may provide for the equipping, staffing, housing and maintenance of fire protection services.
The town board may:
Appropriate money to pay for fire protection in the town.
Charge property owners a fee for the cost of fire protection provided to their property under sub. (1) (a)
according to a written schedule established by the town board.
Levy taxes on the entire town to pay for fire protection.
Levy taxes on property served by a particular source of fire protection, to support the source of protection.
Any fire department created under this section, whether formed under ch. 181 or 213, is a government subdivision or agency entitled to immunity under s. 893.80 (4). Mellenthin v. Berger, 2003 WI App 126
, 265 Wis. 2d 575
, 663 N.W.2d 817
This section does not create an exception to the grant of power to the town meeting to authorize land purchases or construction by the town board. If a town board chooses to meet the requirements of this section to provide fire protection by providing housing for fire protection services and also chooses to purchase land and construct that housing, then the town board must proceed with the authorization of the town meeting under s. 60.10 (2) (e) and (f) to purchase the land and construct the building. Town of Clayton v. Cardinal Construction Co., 2009 WI App 54
, 317 Wis. 2d 424
, 767 N.W.2d 605
The presence of a fire district standing by ready to extinguish fires constitutes a fire protection service for which a fee may be assessed. Unlike in the pre-1988 version of this statute, fire protection services for which a fee may be assessed are not limited to “fire calls made." Here, the town demonstrated that the primary purpose of a charge was to cover the expense of providing the service of fire protection to the properties within its geographic boundaries and, therefore, the charge was a fee rather than a tax and assessable against county property. Town of Hoard v. Clark County, 2015 WI App 100
, 366 Wis. 2d 239
, 873 N.W.2d 241
A town may assess a fire protection special charge under sub. (2) (b) for making fire protection services generally available, and not based on the incidence of fire calls at a property. The special charge is a fee, not a tax, and, therefore, may be assessed against the county. OAG 1-15
Combined protective services. 60.553(1)(1)
Any town may provide police and fire protection services by any of the following:
A combined protective services department which is neither a police department under s. 60.56 (1) (a)
nor a fire department under s. 60.55 (1) (a)
, and in which the same person may be required to perform police protection and fire protection duties without being required to perform police protection duties for more than 8 hours in each 24 hours except in emergency situations, as described under s. 62.13 (7n)
Persons in a police department or fire department who, alone or in combination with persons designated as police officers or fire fighters, may be required to perform police protection and fire protection duties without being required to perform police protection duties for more than 8 hours in each 24 hours except in emergency situations, as described under s. 62.13 (7n)
The governing body of a town acting under sub. (1)
may designate any person required to perform police protection and fire protection duties under sub. (1)
as primarily a police officer or fire fighter for purposes described in ss. 62.13 (7m)
, and (11)
, and 891.455
History: 2011 a. 32
; 2013 a. 165
Fire safety regulations.
Except as provided in s. 101.14 (4) (de)
, the town board, by ordinance, may adopt regulations to prevent, detect and suppress fire and related fire hazards. The regulations may include provision for the inspection, at reasonable times, of property in the town for compliance with regulations adopted under this section.
History: 1983 a. 532
; 2015 a. 240
Reimbursement for fire calls on highways. 60.557(1)(1)
If a town incurs costs for a fire call by responding to a vehicle fire on a county trunk highway, the county maintaining that portion of the highway where the vehicle was located at the time of the fire shall reimburse the town up to $200 for the costs if the town submits written proof that the town has made a reasonable effort to collect the cost from the insurer of the person to whom the fire call was provided or from the person to whom the fire call was provided, except that the town may attempt to collect the cost from the person only if the town is unsuccessful in its efforts to collect from the person's insurer or if the person has no insurer. If the town collects the cost from an insurer or such person after the county reimburses the town, the town shall return the amount collected to the county.
If a town incurs costs for a fire call on a state trunk highway or any highway that is a part of the national system of interstate highways and maintained by the department of transportation, the department of transportation shall reimburse the town up to $500 for the costs, even if the fire equipment is not actually used, if the town submits written proof that the town has made a reasonable effort to collect the cost from the insurer of the person to whom the fire call was provided or from the person to whom the fire call was provided, except that the town may attempt to collect the cost from the person only if the town is unsuccessful in its efforts to collect from the person's insurer or if the person has no insurer. If the town collects the cost from an insurer or such person after the department reimburses the town, the town shall return the amount collected to the department.