Split Fairgrounds + Race Track Agreement For Superior Advances
As the 2022 edition of the Head of the Lakes Fair gets underway, the management agreement that oversees the campus is looking towards a new, three year arrangement. And, similar to what's been in place for a while now, the oversight of the Head of the Lakes Fairgrounds and the race track will be split between two entities.
According to details shared in an article in the Superior Telegram [paywall], the Douglas County Land and Development Committee granted a preliminary approval to extending the agreement that has the Head of the Lakes Management Group overseeing the race track and DHL Management in charge of the race track. The new agreement is "contingent on a walk through by county officials".
One caveat to the agreement - at least for the race track - is payment of delinquent sewer fees. The City of Superior is still looking for rectification for delinquent sewer fees that date back to 2016.
That article in the Telegram outlines the cause and the reasoning for the impasse:
"The sewer fees were inordinately high because of a water leak that caused ponds on the property to go up and leakage onto the track... Joe Stariha of the Head of the Lakes Management Group....said he went to the finance committee on July 12 to seek a credit, which was rejected because the city's policy required them to apply for the credit within a year of the billing. [This particular issue was caused because] the Head of the Lakes Management Group wasn't aware of the bill, because it was sent to the county in 2017 and wasn't forwarded to them."
It was only "six months ago" when the group became aware of the problem, when "the delinquent sewage fees had been applied as an assessment to the county-owned property". Their intent is to just pay for the delinquent sewer fee - mainly to be done with the issue.
But just because the group is paying off the fee doesn't mean that there are no hard feelings. According to Joe Stariha - from the Head of the Lakes Management Group, it's not entirely fair that the group offers assistance to the city (presumably free of charge) but the city isn't willing to work with them over an issue that wasn't entirely their fault to begin with. Stariha offered:
"We'll write a check for it in full and just be done with it. My one thought on it is the next time the city comes to us looking for some help on some buildings, we should really press harder on this. I'd like to call this a comedy of errors, but it's not a comedy, There's nothing funny about it. We commonly give them properties so they can better the city of Superior, and they can't look back at this and see simply, forgive this issue and move along."
Stariha pressed committee members to "remember this issue the next time city officials come looking for help".
After deliberation, Douglas County Board Chairman Mark Liebaert pressed his fellow board members to intervene. They did - sending a letter to the city; however, the decision ultimately rests in their court.