January 3, 2019

Department Updates

City Clerk's Office: Learn more about voter registration, dog licenses and permits for the Pet Exercise Area.

Community Development: Learn more about the City's Green initiatives.

Economic Development: Read more about the recent openings of new businesses in downtown Sun Prairie.

Police Department: See photos from Madison College's 139th Law Enforcement Academy Commencement Ceremony featuring our very own.

Public Works: Learn about next steps for Holiday Tree & Decoration Disposal in regards to the invasive insect Elongate Hemlock Scale (EHS).

Sun Prairie Historical Library and Museum: Learn about the recent remodeling that has taken place at the museum and how you can sign up to volunteer.

Sun Prairie Media Center: Read the Media Center's latest Press release about the generous donation to KIDS-4.

Sun Prairie Public Library: See upcoming calendar events including a documentary screening, State of the City Address Presentations and Family Adventure Day to meet our new Youth Services Librarian.

Wastewater Treatment & Collection: Learn more about the 2019 sewer rate increase and the proposed changes to the facilities.

City Clerk

Voter Registration

Are you a Registered Voter? Wisconsin requires 10 days to establish residency at a new address. When registering, you must present Proof of Residence, a document showing your current name at your current address. You cannot register to vote at a post office box. Time spent away from your residence still counts toward the 10 days. 


Visit My Vote Wisconsin to register online. If you have a valid, unexpired Wisconsin driver license or Wisconsin ID, and your address on file with the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) matches the address at which you are registering to vote, your registration will take effect immediately. If the DMV does not have your current address on file, either update your address on the DMV website before updating your registration, or submit Proof of Residence along with your registration form to the City Clerk's Office. 

In person

Registration can take place up until the Friday before any election in the City Clerk's Office. When registering, you must present Proof of Residence, a document showing your current name at your current address. View acceptable forms of Proof of Residence

By Mail

Registration applications need to be postmarked 20 days before an election. (Applications submitted within the 20 days must be received In person ONLY). When registering, you must submit Proof of Residence, a document showing your current name at your current address. View acceptable forms of Proof of Residence. To register to vote by mail, download and print the application and mail the form and Proof of Residence to the City. 

Mail application to:

City Clerk's Office
Attn: Elections
300 E Main Street
Sun Prairie, WI 53590

2019 Dog Licenses Available

City Ordinance and State Statues requires every dog five months of age or older to be licensed. The license year begins on January 1 and ends on December 31 of each year. The fee for unaltered dogs is $20; licenses for neutered and spayed dogs are $15. Proof of the current rabies certificate must be provided when purchasing the dog license. If the owner fails to obtain a renewal license prior to April 1 of each year, or within 30 days of acquiring ownership of the dog, a late fee of $5 is assessed. Dog licenses can be obtained from the City Clerk's Office in the Municipal Building at 300 E Main Street from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Permits for the Pet Exercise Area

The Pet Exercise Area located on South Bird Street is a great place for pets and their owners to enjoy the outdoors and to socialize their pets off-leash. Anyone using the park must have an annual permit or pay the daily user fee at the self-registration center at the park. If you purchase your permit at the City Clerk's office, the fees stay in Sun Prairie for our Pet Exercise Area maintenance and upgrades. Fees for 2019 are $35 for an annual permit and $5 for daily use. You must purchase a dog license before you can obtain a Pet Exercise Permit.

Community Development

City Hall Goes GREEN!

Thanks to a grant from WPPI, the City's recent roof replacement project at City Hall included the installation of 240 solar panels which will help offset the City's operating costs for the building. The new system installed by SunVest Solar, Inc. of Madison was put into service on December 6, 2018 and has already generated enough power to offset nearly 2,700 pounds of CO2 emissions – the equivalent of planting over 67 trees.

It is estimated that the solar installation will generate between 88,000 and 96,000 kWhs per year – about one-sixth of the average annual energy usage within the building. The $143,000 investment (50% grant funded) is estimated to pay for itself in reduced energy costs in about ten years. The solar panels have an anticipated lifespan of 25 years.

The solar panels are not the only green initiative being implemented at City Hall. In 2019:

  • A 'green roof' will be installed over a small portion of the building in the spring, helping reduce runoff and storm water impacts from the building.
  • All interior lighting within the building will be converted to LED fixtures. This will not only reduce energy use, but the long-lasting LEDs will also significantly lower material costs and staff time associated with frequent replacement of bulbs and ballasts.

Together, these projects will yield positive environmental benefits and significant cost-savings at City Hall for years to come.

Snippets of the monitoring tool

Chart of Power & Energy from Solar Panels

Economic Development News

Right Bauer Brewing (239 E. Main Street) opened October 20th, and Full Mile Beer Company & Kitchen (132 Market Street) opened on December 18th. They have been featured on NBC 15, Isthmus, Madison Magazine, the Wisconsin State Journal and other media.

The combination of great craft beer, quality food, and unique spaces are proving to be popular additions to Sun Prairie - attracting both long-time residents and new visitors to the area. Both are great examples of reuse and redevelopment of Downtown properties, and the City of Sun Prairie is excited to have them up and running.

Full Mile TeamFull Mile Beer Co. and Kitchen Team

Police Department

Madison College Law Enforcement Academy Graduation

Chief Pat Anhalt had the opportunity to be the guest speaker at the commencement ceremony of Madison College's 139th Law Enforcement Academy on December 21, 2018. Our Honor Guard presented the colors. Sun Prairie Police Department's very own Nate Hoffmann was a member of the graduating class and will begin our field training program in the near future. Congratulations, Officer Hoffmann!

Chief Anhalt speaking at Ceremony

Public Works

Holiday Trees & Decoration Disposal Update

Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade, and Consumer Protection (DATCP) Agriculture officials are working to stop the spread of an invasive evergreen tree-feeding insect, after it was discovered in holiday decorations sold at big box storesA microscopic view of EHS.

The warning comes after state inspectors found Elongate Hemlock Scale (EHS) — invasive insects native to Asia that steal nutrients from conifers when they feed on the underside of their needles — on many decorations like wreaths, swags, boughs, evergreen bough arrangements, hanging baskets, porch pots, mugs and sleighs. Inspectors did not find them on trees.

Several local news outlets have suggested to put the holiday tree in plastic bags and place in the refuse for collection. The City of Sun Prairie does not have a contract with a refuse company to pick up the trees curbside or have a good method to dispose of Christmas trees in plastic bags.

To minimize the handling and possible spread of this invasive species, the City of Sun Prairie Public Works and Forestry is asking residents to dispose of Holiday decorations by following these steps:

  • Place evergreen wreaths, swags, boughs, and arrangements of evergreens in plastic garbage bags in the refuse cart.
  • Do not bag the tree. The tree can be placed curbside for collection. The trees will be brought to the recycle center and burned to eradicate the elongated hemlock scale.
  • Trees will be collected curbside starting on January 7 and January 22.

Residents may bring their tree to the recycle center. It will be disposed of with the trees collected.

Recycle Center Winter Hours:
Monday: 3pm to 5pm
Saturday: 9am to Noon 

If trees are not placed out for collection by the 2nd collection date (January 22), residents are responsible for disposal. We will not collect late set outs.

Please follow these simple rules for holiday tree collection:

  • Set out by 7 a.m.
  • Trees should be placed curbside with the cut end facing the street for collection.
  • Everything should be removed from the tree (ornaments, lights, wires, garland, tinsel, etc.).
  • Wreaths and rope materials, due to their wire content should be placed in your refuse cart for collection
  • Please keep tree(s) clear of snow. Residents are reminded to remove trees from the snow if they become buried.

The crews collect city-wide beginning on those days. Depending on the number of trees out and size of crew we have collecting, it can take several days to complete. If weather conditions require, crews will be diverted from tree collection to clear snow or rain as it is a potential safety concern. Please be patient and we will get out to you.

View more information about Elongate Hemlock Scale

Some of the information in this bulletin was obtained from the following resources:

State of Wisconsin, Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection

USDA Forest Service, Northeastern Area, Forest Health Protection

Wisconsin State Journal, December 27, 2018

Channel 3000. Com, WISC TV, New 3, Madison

Please Keep Carts out of Street During Snow Season

Winter is here! This is a reminder that it is a violation of City Ordinance to put collection carts in the street or block the gutter. Proper cart placement is especially critical during the winter months. Keeping the street and gutters free of carts helps us plow close to the curb, helps eliminate damage, helps water run through the gutters as snow melts, and lessens the amount of shoveling necessary by the resident. In the winter you may need to shovel a portion of your terrace to appropriately place your carts. If you place your carts at the end of your driveway, make sure they are far enough back so they are not blocking the curb line or gutter. The collection truck can reach 4 to 5 feet behind the curb to collect your cart. Proper placement is the first step in ensuring your cart is collected.

Snow Emergencies

Snow emergencies are generally declared when 3 or more inches of snow fall. Snow emergencies will be posted on the city website, Facebook, Twitter as well as forwarded to local media outlets. Snow emergencies mean there is no parking on any city streets while the emergency is in effect.

Sun Prairie Historic Library and MuseumJimmy in the sun at the museum

The Sun Prairie Historical Library and Museum will be reopening this year with a fresh look and new exhibits. The explosion in July caused damage to the ceiling and walls, and blew out several windows. Thankfully, no one was injured and the collection was safe from harm. Windows were replaced before the weather grew cold. This past fall and winter, the museum has undergone some remodeling work and progress was made on the plaster repairs. New flooring will be installed before the museum reopens. Museum Director, Helen Wirka, has been working with Assistant Curator, Samantha Gartner, on developing satellite exhibits at the Westside Community Building, City Hall and Bank of Sun Prairie. A list of upcoming exhibits and programs will be available soon. For more information or to make a donation to the museum, please call 608-837-2915.

The museum is also actively recruiting interested volunteers to start training later this spring and summer. If interested, please email Helen at hwirka@cityofsunprairie.com.

Pictured left: When de-installing the exhibits this past fall, Jimmy the Groundhog "stood guard" and was found in a sunny spot in the museum.

Sun Prairie Media Center

KIDS-4 Students Show Off Their New Tees

SPMC students in new t-shirts

All 62 students enrolled in the Sun Prairie Media Center's unique KIDS-4 program are sporting brand new KIDS-4 shirts thanks to a $250 donation from the Sun Prairie Optimist Club and a matching $250 donation from Titley and Associates, an Allstate Agency!

"This gift is tremendously generous," said Sun Prairie Media Center director Jeff Robbins. "In years past, the shirts were an additional cost for families enrolled in KIDS-4. Therefore, not all kids received a shirt. This year, thanks to the Optimists and Titley and Associates, every child in the program gets a shirt. I think having the shirt helps cement in each child a feeling of belonging to a unique club, which is definitely what KIDS-4 is."

The design of the shirt is also unique; each year students enrolled in KIDS-4 submit their ideas for a t-shirt design, with the winning design picked by other kids in the program. The shirts were printed at Ameriprint Apparel, located right here in Sun Prairie.

"I think the partnership between KIDS-4 and the Sun Prairie Optimist Club is a natural one," said Robbins. "The Optimist Club's motto is to be a friend of youth and to bring out the best in youth. Our KIDS-4 program, by encouraging children to be more creative, more media literate, and to be better communicators, certainly brings out the best in the kids enrolled."

KIDS-4 is available on Charter cable channel 984, TDS channels 14 and 1014, and streaming at kids4.tv, on Roku devices, and on Apple TV.

Sun Prairie Public LibrarySun Prairie Public Library Logo

Lego Family Time

Drop in and create with Legos® as a family! Our Lego® and Duplo® collections will be open for free play and creativity in the Community Room. All children under the age of 8 must be actively supervised by an adult. 

Saturday, January 5 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. or 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. 
Library Conference Room

Documentary Screening Featuring - Finding the Gold Within

The story of six young black men from Akron, Ohio as they enter college determined to redefine society's preconceptions and expectations. Light refreshments served. (Not Rated) 

Monday, January 7 5:30 p.m. (Run Time 92 minutes)
Library Conference Room

State of the City Address with Mayor Paul Esser

City of Sun Prairie Mayor Paul Esser reflects on city accomplishments from the past year and reviews plans for the future. Monday, January 7 6:30 p.m.
Tuesday, January 8 10 a.m.

Library Community Room

Family Adventure Day

On January 10, come and meet Sammy, our new Youth Services Librarian! No registration necessary. 

Thursday, January 10 2:30 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Library Community Room

Milwaukee Road Beer Line

Join us for a presentation by John Kelly, author of the book Railroads of Milwaukee. This program is held in conjunction with the photographic exhibit Milwaukee's Beer Line, presented by the Center for Railroad Photography & Art and on display at the Sun Prairie Library through January 31, 2019. 

Saturday, January 12 10 a.m.
Library Community Room

Wastewater Treatment & Collection

2019 Sewer Rate Increase

City Council approved an 8.07% increase that will go into effect on January 1, 2019. The new rate will increase the average residential customer bill by $1.81 per month. For more information, please refer to the Sewer Rate Increase Infographic (PNG) or visit the Wastewater Treatment and Collection web page.