New Bremen Resident Concerned With Village Parks

Staff Writer

At a special meeting Thursday night held at Crown Pavilion, New Bremen Village Council gathered to hear from the public regarding the state of the parks and recreation department.

Resident Kimberly Prueter, who voiced concerns at the June 8th council meeting about the status of the parks in the village, was given time to speak and express her concerns.

Prueter, who worked for the village for 10 years and left her position as parks superintendent in 2010, said that the parks superintendent position has been vacant since September when Mike Hibner left the position. 

She provided photographs of various places around New Bremen that she felt have been improperly handled including mulching around trees, issues with the maintenance on ball diamonds, dead trees that haven’t been removed and cracks and improper repairs on the tennis courts.

“There’s a lot of cracks in the tennis courts,” Prueter said. “Those courts are used often. There is proper material available to fill in cracks.” 

She also had a photo taken at the swimming pool where she said a fence was missing that had enclosed electrical components.

“There used to be a fence here and I don’t know why but there’s no fence there and that, to me, is a huge safety hazard for our community,” Prueter said. “I wanted to draw attention to that.” 

Prueter said she wants to see a supervisor hired in the parks department, someone that is certified in turf and ornament management and industrial vegetation. 

“We have to find someone with the right credentials,” she said. “We can’t just hire anybody. We need to find the right candidate, not just jump in and find somebody.”

She urged council members to do their own due diligence when deciding on how to move forward.

“I encourage you to do your own homework,” Prueter said. “I look at it as were all on the same team. It’s so easy to point out things that are not right which it appears what I’m trying to do here, which is not what I’m trying to do because there’s so much they’re doing well.

“I can tell you that I really do care. It’s really gotten to me and I think it’s time I spoke up and shame on me that I hadn’t spoken sooner.”

Councilwoman Jessica Lomakin, who serves as the village’s recreation committee chair, said there’s going to be some changes when deciding on what the park supervisor’s position will look like moving forward.

“We’re very actively and critically evaluating what that position is going to look like with those changes in mind,” said Lomakin. “It’s important to make sure that every tax dollar is wisely and efficiently spent and when the role might change a little bit we want to make sure we fully understand what we’re hiring.”

Mayor Bob Parker said the the council will take this to committee at the next meeting and make it an agenda item in July.