One new regional sewer board member chosen

A man with a background as a soil scientist is a new member of the Brown County Regional Sewer District Board.

The Brown County Commissioner chose Phil LeBlanc to replace Terri Schultz, who resigned along with two other members of the board in early May. With only two members remaining, the board didn’t have a quorum and couldn’t meet.

LeBlanc has been volunteering to do septic tank permitting and inspection for the Brown County Health Department, his letter of interest states. He had a 40-plus-year career in agricultural irrigation and has “a good grasp of the physical limitations that are present in our county in selecting suitable septic sites and our need for alternate disposal methods,” his letter said. He and his wife retired to Brown County about three years ago.

A total of three seats are open on the board — one appointed by the commissioners and two by the county council. Judy Swift, the Brown County recorder and former health department office manager, and Jim Schultz, Terri Schultz’s husband and a member of the Brown County Redevelopment Commission, also applied to be considered by the council and commissioners.

On June 5, the council declined to make any nominations, opting instead to readvertise for a broader pool. The commissioners appointed LeBlanc on June 7.

Commissioners Diana Biddle and Jerry Pittman cited LeBlanc’s professional background and outside perspective as positives. From the audience, Keith Baker, a fellow TRIAD volunteer with LeBlanc, said LeBlanc “plays well with others” and has a “levelheaded, calm approach to things.”

“Above all, we need people who can work together to get this project done,” Pittman said.

For more than a decade, various sewer board members have been trying to get sewer service in Bean Blossom. So far, the project has not progressed to the point of seeking funding.

Before a majority of the former board resigned, Helmsburg sewer district leaders expressed interest in possibly joining the Brown County Regional Sewer District. The size of the board could be altered if Helmsburg does join, Biddle said.

“It is a very big deal for Brown County,” commissioner Dave Anderson said. “That whole northwest side of the county can benefit with an active sewer board.”

The June 6 sewer board meeting had to be canceled for lack of a quorum. The board usually meets on first Tuesdays in the County Office Building, but for July, the meeting will be at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, July 5 because of the July 4 holiday.

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Sara Clifford has been raising a family in Brown County since 2005 and leading the Brown County Democrat since late 2009. In addition to editor, she is the beat reporter for town government and writes columns, features and general news stories.