Citing ‘not a whole lot going on,’ board decides to promote deputy marshal and not fill position
The Village of Belgium has found a solution to its revolving village marshal position.
It promoted from within and eliminated the deputy marshal position.
The Village Board on Monday agreed to hire Deputy Village Marshal Leon Anzia, who in the past has only been interested in serving as deputy marshal.
Anzia said he didn’t want to do the paperwork the marshal position required, but said he now realizes it’s not a big deal.
Cory Birchbauer recently resigned, saying he couldn’t fulfill the job requirements of five hours on patrol per week and doing administrative work.
Trustee Pete Anzia made the case for one marshal at last week’s Public Safety meeting and again Monday, noting the village has had three marshals in the past 16 months.
The board last February increased the salary for the marshal’s position after candidates for the job expressed disappointment at the pay rate. Birchbauer was hired in summer and paid $4,000 per year. Anzia is paid $2,750. Both are also paid for attending meetings.
Trustee Rose Sauers said she likes having someone in the village car patrol in the afternoon since Anzia patrols in the morning. She suggested advertising the position to see who would apply.
But others said the village has had trouble finding a dependable marshal, aside from Leon Anzia, who has been doing the deputy job the past three years.
Marshals may only enforce village ordinances, not serious crimes. Anzia said parking tickets and barking dogs are two of his most popular complaints. He said he hasn’t received a call on the village marshal phone in the past six months.
“There’s not a whole lot going on,” he said.
Trustee Gail Kowalkowski said she doesn’t like that there would be fewer eyes and ears to look for crime in the village, especially given the Sheriff’s Department can’t be patrolling all the time.
“I think we are doing a disservice to the community,” Kowalkowski said.
“I disagree that our marshal should be looking for criminal activity,” Boehnlein said.
“Theoretically, any concerned citizen could do that as well,” Trustee Rose Sauers said.
The board on Monday approved hiring Leon Anzia as the marshal for $5,000 per year by a 5-0 vote. Kowalkowski abstained and Dale Pfeifer did not attend.
The Public Safety Committee last week recommended, 2-1, to replace the marshal. Pete Anzia voted against the motion.