Chippewa fire district move to new building delayed

Lake Hallie, Wi (WEAU) -- About a month after the Chippewa fire district was set to move into their updated facility, they're still waiting for the green light.

The old Public Safety building had numerous issues, from a leaky roof to broken air conditioning which is why voters in Lake Hallie approved building a new facility.

The district was supposed to move into the new building about a month ago. Kaylene Brummon from Lake Hallie says, “I'm actually okay with it right now, knowing that it's going to be up."

But others feel that since their tax payer dollars helped construct the $4.5 million building, they feel it should be put to good use.

"I think that because we've already paid for it, and since it's been such a long time, they were supposed to in, I think they should probably make it happen,” says Mariah Vandriska from Lake Hallie.

Village President John Neihart says the delay is due to moisture within the concrete.

"The concrete hasn't cured sufficiently to install the floor. The contractor and the flooring company needs to have the percentage of moisture in the concrete below 85% and it's sitting at the 90% level."

Neihart says using dehumidifiers is helping to bring the moisture below the 85% mark but says it's hard to say when that will be. He says, "There is no estimate for dates, they check the moisture content of the concrete every week."

While the fire district is hoping to move in, the police department is still trying to get settled.

Lake Hallie Police Chief, Cal Smokowicz says, "While, we want to get it done, we're not rushing to get things done. We're trying to do it right the first time."

Smokowicz says the department is still waiting for necessary work to be done, such as having functional locks on the inside of the building before they can fully move in.

"There's equipment that we're acquiring, and we only have so much money to acquire the equipment so we want to make sure we're acquiring the right stuff that's going to work for us well into the future," says Smokowicz.

And, while there's no set date for when the district will be able to move in, Neihart says he's willing to wait, as long as things are done correctly.

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