Citizens in Black River Falls can download a free app, HeyGov, on iOS and Android to report issues in the city, sign up for updates, get news and notices, and vote in straw polls about issues in the community.

City residents can now vote in a straw poll and share their opinions on proposals to authorize ATV/UTV traffic in the City of Black River Falls.  The Black River Falls Downtown Association has submitted a written proposal to allow ATV/UTV traffic to access downtown Black River Falls.  Several city residents have also submitted written requests to allow ATV/UTV traffic on all city streets.  This topic has been discussed at recent Common Council meetings and will be discussed again at upcoming Council meetings until a decision can be made.  Other local municipalities such as the Town of Brockway, the City of Sparta, the City of Tomah, and the City of Neillsville allow ATVs/UTVs to operate on all streets/roads in their municipalities.  The Black River Falls Common Council would like to hear from city residents!  The straw poll is intended for city residents only and can be completed by downloading the “HeyGov” app, accessing it on-line at, or completing it in person at City Hall located at 101 S Second Street in Black River Falls.  Be sure to cast your vote by midnight, May 15th in the app.

City Administrator Brad Chown collaborated on the app with HeyGov, a government technology firm in Madison, Wis., with a goal to make citizens happier. The HeyGov widget was added to the municipal website in March. Now, the HeyGov app is available for free download from the Apple App Store and Google Play Store.

You can download the app to:

  • Report Issues in the city and sign up for status updates on your issues.
  • Participate in Straw Polls, including this week’s ATV/UTV poll.
  • View the latest News and Notices within the app whenever they are posted on the city website.

The newly added Straw Poll feature perfectly represents the goals set by the city of Black River Falls in its collaboration with HeyGov. It’s a way for citizens to interact and communicate easily with city leaders and departments. The Straw Poll on ATV/UTV use in the city ends at midnight on Monday, April 19th.

To download the free app:


The Tomah VA Medical Center announced today it will be providing COVID-19 vaccinations to Veterans, their spouses, and their caregivers through a special one-time outreach event in Black River Falls. The event will take place Saturday, April 17, 2021 from 8:00 am to 3:30 pm within the Jackson County Fairgrounds at the Milt Lunda Memorial Arena at 388 Melrose Street in Black River Falls, Wisconsin.

This special outreach event supplements continuing COVID-19 vaccination clinics at the Tomah Medical Center as well as at four community-based clinics in Clark County (Owen), La Crosse, Wausau, and Wisconsin Rapids. The Black River Falls outreach event provides greater accessibility for Veterans in Jackson County and the surrounding area.

With respect to the SAVE LIVES Act, the VA defines caregivers to include any family member or friend who provides care to the Veteran. Caregivers may help the Veteran with personal needs like feeding, bathing, or dressing. They may also help the Veteran with tasks like shopping or transportation.

Anyone who served in the military, their spouses, and their caregivers should visit or call 800-872-8662 extension 66274 to register for vaccination and receive vaccine updates. Eligible individuals unable to attend the Black River Falls clinic may schedule to receive a vaccination at any of the Tomah VAMC clinics.


March 26, 2021

Outstanding Safety Practices Earn Local Utilities National Recognition

Local utilities are being recognized for earning a Safety Award of Excellence for safe operating practices. Presented by the American Public Power Association (APPA), 19 of WPPI Energy’s member-owners received the award for their 2020 safety performance.

“This award demonstrates the strong commitment these utilities have to keeping their lineworkers safe,” said Chris Chartier, director of distribution services for WPPI Energy. “This work can be dangerous, and the number one goal for utilities is making sure staff get home safely to their family at the end of the day.”

Congratulations to the following utilities:

  • Black River Falls Municipal Electric & Water Utilities
  • Brodhead Water & Light
  • Columbus Water & Light
  • Evansville Water & Light Dept.
  • Independence Light & Power
  • Lodi Municipal Light & Water Utility
  • Menasha Utilities
  • Muscoda Utilities
  • New Richmond City Utilities
  • Oconomowoc Utilities
  • Plymouth Utilities
  • Prairie du Sac Electric Department
  • Reedsburg Utility Commission
  • City Utilities of Richland Center
  • Sturgeon Bay Utilities
  • Sun Prairie Utilities
  • Waunakee Utilities
  • Waupun Utilities
  • Whitehall Municipal Electric Utility

Across the nation, there were 329 utilities who entered the Safety Awards, which have been held annually for 65 years. Entrants were judged by their incidence rate, which is based on the number of work-related reportable injuries or illnesses and the number of worker-hours during 2020, as defined by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).

“Utilities that receive an APPA Safety Award have demonstrated that they have made the health and safety of their employees a core value,” said Brandon Wylie, Chair of APPA’s Safety Committee and Director of Training & Safety at Electric Cities of Georgia. “Designing and maintaining a top-notch utility safety program takes a lot of hard work and commitment. These utilities and their communities should be very proud.”


On March 20, 2021, the Hiring Committee for the City of Black River Falls selected Chad Duerkop as the new Parks & Recreation Director for the City of Black River Falls.  Duerkop has been employed with Eau Claire Parks, Recreation, & Forestry since 2005 as the Program and Facility Supervisor.  He has 22 years of parks & recreation experience previously serving 5 years as Recreation Supervisor for the City of Bloomington, MN and 2 years as Parks & Recreation Director for the City of Waukon, IA.  Duerkop earned his Bachelor’s Degree in Public Administration – Parks & Recreation Emphasis from Winona State University.  The City’s Hiring Committee received 52 applications and interviewed eight (8) candidates for the position.  Duerkop is expected to begin his tenure as Parks & Recreation Director for the City of Black River Falls on April 19, 2021 pending standard pre-employment screenings and exams.


The Carnegie Museum  will be opening for the 2021 season!   The museum will be open beginning Friday April 30, 2021 through October 23, 2021. Regular hours will be Fridays & Saturdays from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm.

2020 George Wilson Service Award – Steve “Petey” Peterson

Parks & Recreation Director, Steven Peterson, received the 2020 George Wilson Service Award from the Wisconsin Parks & Recreation Association (WPRA)! You may recall “Petey” also received the Parks Section Outstanding Professional of the Year Award from the WPRA back in 2018! Congratulations Petey on an award winning career – you will be missed !!!!

Click here to watch the award presentation!


Black River Falls Municipal Utilities will be hosting a ground breaking ceremony for their new facility on Friday, March 12, 2021 at 2:00PM at 349 South McKinley Street (behind D&S Manufacturing).


In case of inclement weather, the event’s rain date is Monday, March 15, 2021 at 2:00pm.


The City of Black River Falls, Wisconsin, is accepting applications to fill the position of Parks & Recreation Director.  The Parks & Recreation Director is responsible for the administration, direction and coordination of the Black River Falls Parks & Recreation Department which includes an aquatic center.  The City of Black River Falls has a population of 3,622.

The Department

The Parks & Recreation Department has one full-time employee (the Director), 6 part-time parks & recreation employees, and a minimum of 30 part-time, seasonal aquatic center employees.

The Parks & Recreation Department’s portion of the 2021 City Operating Budget is set at $216,465.00.  The 2021 Capital Budget for the department is set at $39,000.00 which includes $20,000 allocated to replenish the capital reserve fund.

The Position

The Parks & Recreation Director has administrative responsibility for effectively and efficiently planning, organizing, coordinating, directing, and managing operations, vehicle maintenance, equipment maintenance, facility maintenance, and all other activities of the Parks & Recreation Department.

The Parks & Recreation Director is under the immediate supervision of the City Administrator, and subject to general direction from the Mayor and the Common Council.

The Parks & Recreation Director is an exempt, non-represented employee. The normal work week is Monday through Friday 7:00am – 3:30pm.  The Parks & Recreation Director is also expected to attend the Committee of the Whole meeting held the third Wednesday of each month and other meetings as needed.  The position requires working varying hours as needed for Parks & Recreation Department related business and activities which will include some evenings and weekends.

The position’s annual salary is initially established by the City of Black River Falls Hiring Committee and then annually established by the Common Council.  The starting annual salary for the position will be $50,000 – $57,500 depending on qualifications.

An excellent benefit package including health insurance coverage and retirement benefits under the Wisconsin Retirement System accompanies this position. Additional benefits and optional insurances are available.

A detailed job description is available on our website at:

Required Education and Certifications

The Parks & Recreation Director must have a high school diploma or equivalent, possess a valid Wisconsin driver’s license, Commercial Driver License (CDL) endorsement preferred, hold current certification as an Aquatic Facility Operator (AFO) or be able to obtain certification within 6 months of hire, certification in playground safety preferred, and have extensive knowledge of the principles and practices of Parks & Recreation Department administration.  Preference will be given to an individual with an Associate’s Degree or higher in Parks & Recreation Management or related field, and/or additional training or certifications in parks & recreation services and management/supervisory skills.

The ideal candidate for this position should also have a track record focused on strong public service, human relations, leadership, managerial, and supervisory skills. This professional, supervisory position must be able to lead the department to full performance capability and achieve high morale. Qualified candidates should possess the skills for writing grant application submissions & organizing people, projects and schedules on an ongoing basis.

The Recruitment Process

Interested applicants MUST submit the following items to the address noted below:

  • A cover letter
  • A current resume, detailing qualifications for this position
  • Copies of all relevant certifications
  • At least 3 professional references

The application deadline is 4:30 P.M. on Friday, March 5, 2021.    The application review process will begin on March 9, 2021 and will remain open until the position is filled.

Application materials should be placed in a sealed envelope, addressed as follows, and either mailed or hand-delivered by the deadline noted above to:

City of Black River Falls
Attention: Hiring Committee
101 South SecoNd Street
Black River Falls, WI 54615

Electronic submissions are acceptable and may be forwarded to

Applicant names are subject to release pursuant to Wisconsin Statutes, unless confidentiality is requested in writing. Confidentiality cannot be guaranteed for finalists.

The selected candidate will be subject to a background investigation, a physical examination, and drug screen.

Additional questions on this position or on application procedures may be directed to City Administrator via email at or by phone at (715) 284-2315.

Alternate Side Parking

Alternate side parking is in effect. Please remember this becomes very important after a significant snow fall. Between the hours of 10:00P.M. and 6:00a.m. the following day, vehicles shall be parked only on even numbered sides of the street on those nights having an even calendar date, except where parking is normally permitted only on one side of the street, vehicles may be parked on that permitted side every night. These regulations will be in effect beginning 12:01 a.m. on December 1, 2020 through 12:01 a.m. on April 1, 2021.

Whether a date is even or odd shall be determined by the calendar date at 10:00p.m.

As always, there is no parking on the streets in the downtown area after 2:00am, and parking in public parking lots is limited to 24 hours.  If your vehicle is in a parking lot at the time it is plowed, you will need to move your vehicle to a different parking lot that has already been plowed to allow City Street personnel to clear snow in all parking lots.

If you have any questions please call:

Black River Falls Police Department at (715) 284-9155


City Hall at (715) 284-5514


The City of Black River Falls still has funds available for the COVID-19 Recovery Microloan (CRM) Program to provide immediate financial assistance to businesses in the City of Black River Falls that have been financially affected by the COVID-19 outbreak.


Individual businesses may apply for loans up to $10,000.  The City of Black River Falls will utilize up to $650,000 from the Economic Development Revolving Loan Fund.  The microloans will be 0% Interest with no application fee and no penalty for early payment.  Payments will be deferred for 6 months or more with repayment terms of up to 5 Years (60 months).

Eligible businesses must:

  • Be located in the City of Black River Falls or within 2 miles of the city limits.
  • Have suffered measurable financial losses.
  • Intend and have the ability to resume business operations in the City of Black River Falls as soon as possible.

The following businesses are NOT eligible for microloans: businesses with more than 50 employees, residential rental/lease companies, non-profits, financial institutions, liquor stores, home based businesses with less than $50,000 in gross revenue, payday loan and title companies, and telemarketing businesses other than inbound call centers.

CRM funds may be used for the following activities:

  • Payroll – including FFCRA mandated paid emergency leave
  • Rent / Mortgage payments
  • Operating supplies and expenses
  • Other Debt Payments
  • Inventory
  • Utilities

The CRM is considered a short-term source of funding to assist impacted businesses with immediate and short-term needs during and following the COVID-19 outbreak.  Additional local, state, and federal financial assistance programs available through local lenders, the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC), the Small Business Administration (SBA), and others will play an important role in the business recovery process.  Business owners should contact their lender and visit the WEDC website for more information on these resources.

CRM funds will be administered by the City of Black River Falls.  Applications are available on the City’s website at: or by emailing the City Administrator at .