Serving Gogebic, Iron and Ontonagon Counties

Forestry Committee approves Schomberg paving improvements

HURLEY — The Iron County Forestry and Parks Committee decided improvements to Schomberg Park were the best way to honor the memory of Thomas E. Popko, voting Monday to send a bid to pave the park’s gravel areas to the full county board.

A former member of the Iron County Board of Supervisors and Forestry and Parks Committee member, Popko died Jan. 7. According to information presented at Monday’s meeting, he left the county a total of $56,150 when he died.

“His request, when he came in and made these changes to his policies last summer was he grew up around Schomberg Park, he was on the forestry committee and the board for a long time and he would like to see that money utilized for improvements at Schomberg Park,” Iron County Forestry and Parks Administrator Eric Peterson said.

As the park wasn’t that old, Peterson said the blacktopping project is one of the improvements that could fulfill Popko’s request.

The committee received three bids for the paving work, with Angelo Luppino Inc.’s low bid of $42,240 being recommended to the full board.

The county will likely save the remaining money for any future needs at the park, although there may be some exploration of the purchase of playground equipment for the park.

“Let’s not spend it to spend it,” committee member Scott Erickson said.

In other action, the committee:

—Authorized advertising the county’s spring timber sale.

—Elected Tom Thompson as chairman for another term and selected John Sendra as vice chairman.

—Approved the Saxon Harbor Marina Emergency Response Plan, which is a requirement for the marina to receive a clean marina designation.

—Heard Peterson say the Lake of the Falls and Weber Lake campgrounds are going to open Friday, with Schomberg Park opening next week, after Gov. Tony Evers’ Safer at Home order in response to the coronavirus pandemic delayed the openings. Although the campgrounds will be opening, the public showers at all county facilities will remain closed as a precaution. He said the department is continuing to follow health guidelines from the Iron County Health Department and the Centers for Disease Control.