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Buda gathers snowbound travelers

BUDA — Weather conditions for the Buda Village Board meeting Monday were less than ideal. The temperature was below zero, and villagers were advised to refrain from travel unless absolutely necessary.

Though less than ideal Monday night, the weather was even more dangerous Sunday night. That night, extreme cold combined with gale force winds in the 40 miles per hour range caused snow to drift as high as pick-up trucks on Route 40.

Buda Mayor Jeff Bitting reported to the board the drifting snow forced the closure of Route 40 heading south from Buda. Unfortunately, the closing didn’t come soon enough for a good number of unsuspecting drivers who got stuck in the drifts. The mayor said the village’s emergency rescue unit, along with Wally Stodghill of Walt’s Garage in Buda, helped extract the drivers from the drifts. Because about 30 travelers had no place to go, the village opened the community center for the night to give the travelers a place to stay until morning.

Village Board member Sara Cook said she was aided in helping the travelers by Andrea Bauer of the rescue unit. The two helped comfort the travelers at the community hall by providing food and water. Cook said she was grateful that Buda’s Casey’s convenience store kindly provided free doughnuts to the weary travelers Monday morning.

As a result of the emergency, Bitting also said he would be interested in acquiring donated cots to have them available in case another similar situation arises.

In an update on the village’s plans to purchase two new automated external defibrillators, Bitting told the board he had received a call from a vendor who priced the AEDs for $800 less than the nearest competitor. Bitting added the vendor offered to sell the devices after seeing an article about the village’s plans for new AEDs in the Bureau County Republican.

In other business:

• Village Treasurer Virginia Bollinger informed the board certification of the village’s 2012 audit had been published in the Bureau County Republican. The certification means the village can now receive its share of county tax receipts. Bollinger added the 2013 audit is due to the village board for review very soon.

• Bollinger additionally reported the village received $2,942 from Mediacom.

• Bitting noted truck noise issue has been resolved for now.

• The Buda Rescue Unit pancake and sausage breakfast is scheduled for 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. Feb. 9 at the Buda Community Hall.

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