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Compromise on park to be proposed

Feb. 28, 2012 11:02 p.m. | Muskego residents who oppose buying property for a lakefront park because the cost of developing the park is still unknown may get some answers.

Muskego Mayor Kathy Chiaverotti announced tonightthat she intends to bring forward at the next council meeting a proposal to put off buying the properties until park development questions are answered. She will propose forming an ad hoc committee to work on park development with the help of municipal boards and bodies.

That could take until the end of summer, she estimated. Hearings would be held.

The plan that Chiaverotti said was originated by Alderwoman Tracy Snead hinges not only on Common Council approval but on the property owners agreeing to keep their properties off the market that long.

Chiaverotti will bring the proposal to the March 13 council meeting.

» Read Full Article

Growing family, not lake park issue, led to alderman's decision to resign

Feb. 28, 2012 9:08 p.m. | Muskego Alderman Noah Fiedler said increased family responsibilities with the birth of his son five weeks ago and more commitments at work are the reasons he submitted his resignation from the Muskego Common Council, effective March 31.

With his daughter only 2 years old and addition of a newborn, Fiedler said, "I don't think I can devote the time I need to."

He considered the extra time commitments of his growing family when his wife became pregnant, he said, "but I thought I would give it a shot for a few weeks."

Fiedler said the controversy over whether to establish a park on the shores of Little Muskego Lake did not play a role in his decision. He noted he has worked through other divisive issues since coming on the council in 2007, and the park controversy has been no worse.

"It really was the everyday requirements of the job" that prompted his resignation, Fiedler said.

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Benefit planned for victims of home fire

Feb. 27, 2012 12:24 p.m. | The Muskego community will pull together to help their neighbors who lost almost everything in a blaze that destroyed their home Saturday.

Danny Haskell's Pub & Grill, S7260 Lannon Drive, will host a spaghetti dinner benefit from noon to 7 p.m. this Saturday to help them get back on their feet. All proceeds will go to the fire victims.

More information is available at (262) 679-9535.

Muskego alderman announces resignation

Feb. 27, 2012 12:22 p.m. | Noah Fiedler, one of four Muskego aldermen who support creating a park on Little Muskego Lake, has resigned effective March 31.

Fiedler, who has served since 2007 and whose District 7 aldermanic term expires in April 2013, cited no reason for his resignation.

The council, meeting as a committee of the whole, will discuss on Tuesday how to fill the resulting vacancy. Normally, the council appoints replacements after interviews of citizens who apply for the post.

The timing of his resignation at first glance might seem to shift support on the lake park issue, for which a land acquistion proposal passed on a narrow 4-3 vote in late January. However, Mayor Kathy Chiaverotti, who has openly expressed support for the project, would cast a tie-breaking vote on any issue that is deadlocked.

The Common Council is slated to vote Tuesday on a direct legislation petition aimed at stopping the purchase for the proposed park until a binding referendum can be held. However, the council could approve an advisory referendum on Tuesday that has the potential of swinging a vote against going ahead with buying the properties.

Dunlap, Gruettner bring home titles

Feb. 26, 2012 3:39 p.m. |  Muskego wrestlers Roland Dunlap and Jordan Gruettner capped off their brilliant high school careers with typically dominating performances in winning their second straight WIAA Division 1 state championships on Saturday night in Madison.

Gruettner pinned Luke Belich of Mukwonago in 1 minute, 12 seconds in his title match at 220 pounds. Gruettner pinned all four of his state opponents, and none of the matches even went past the first period.

The senior finished this season at 44-0 and extended his two-season winning streak to 84 matches. He never lost a high school match after falling in the state championship as a sophomore in 2010.

Dunlap was equally as strong at 182 pounds, polishing off Wisconsin Rapids foe Ryan Cone with a 17-6 major decision. Dunlap used quick takedowns, his specialty, to gain early control and build an insurmountable lead.

Dunlap, who wound up 46-1 on the season, finished his state tournament with three major decisions and a pin of Ian Johnson of Milton, a former state champion himself.

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Morning fire destroys Muskego duplex

Feb. 25, 2012 3:50 p.m. | Tenants were not home Saturday when fire destroyed a Muskego barn that had been converted to a duplex.

The fire began about 9:30 a.m. in the bedroom of one of the units of the building near the corner of Martin and Southern drives, said Tess Corners Asst. Fire Chief Mike Wojnowski. Neither of the single occupants of each unit were home at the time. He said the fire was not put under control until 2:30 p.m. because of numerous voids resulting from the barn conversion, and the use of rolled up newspapers and saw dust as insulation.

Wojnowski said four engines and two ladder trucks from Tess Corners responded, as well as tankers and other equipment from four other departments. He said there were no hydrants near the scene. He said the cause of the fire was listed as undetermined.

Pay raises for Waukesha County officials stumble

Feb. 23, 2012 11:24 a.m. | Waukesha - A day after the Personnel Committee recommended higher pay for the next elected Waukesha County clerk, treasurer and register of deeds, the Finance Committee Wednesday failed to endorse the measure on a tie vote.

The County Board will take up the pay ordinance at its meeting 7 p.m. Tuesday at the courthouse.

The proposal would increase the pay for each of the three constitutional officers by 1.5% each year of the next four-year term beginning in 2013. If the pay is to be changed, the County Board must do so before April 15, when candidates for those offices can begin circulating nomination papers for the November election.

The ordinance calls for pay starting at $70,180 a year for the clerk and treasurer, increasing to $71,232 in 2014, $72,300 in 2015 and $73,384 in 2016.

For the register of deeds, pay next year would be $71,125 and increase to $72,191 in 2014, $73,273 in 2015 and $74,372 in 2016.

Vote on peoples' legislation delayed

Feb. 23, 2012 11:10 a.m. | The showdown over a citizen effort to use direct legislation to stop Muskego from going forward with plans to create a lakefront park didn't happen Wednesday night as the Common Council deferred action on their direct legislation resolution until next week.

The city attorney had already advised against approving the direct legislation, saying its subject was improper for direct legislation mainly because it's administrative not legislative.

The direct legislation resolution would require the city to hold a binding referendum before it buys two homes for $3.6 million for the lakefront park.

But along with deferring action on the direct legislation, aldermen decided also to talk next week about holding an advisory referendum on going ahead with the park plan.

The council will meet at 7 p.m. Feb. 28 tentatively at the Muskego City Hall.

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Muskego library gets new director

Feb. 22, 2012 12:20 p.m. | The Muskego Public Library Board on Tuesday night appointed Pete Loeffel as the new library director for the Muskego Public Library.

For the past 2½ years, he has served as director of the St. Francis Public Library. Before that he was a librarian and the technology manager for the Shorewood Public Library.

When Loeffel starts March 26, he will bring nearly 20 years of experience from working in public libraries at all levels.

He earned a bachelor's degree in history and a master's in library and information studies from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.

His wife, Jennifer, is the assistant director of the Franklin Public Library. They have two children.

Muskego incumbent advances in aldermanic race

Feb. 21, 2012 9:34 p.m. | Muskego - Incumbent Ald. Tracy Snead and Robert J. Wolfe outpolled Randall Hojnacki in Tuesday's primary race for the District 1 Common Council seat and advance to the April 3 election.

Wolfe was the top vote-getter on Tuesday, pulling in 225 more votes than Snead received, unofficial totals show.

Snead, who is seeking a fourth two-year term to represent District 1, may face a tough re-election bid over her vote in favor of spending $3.55 million to purchase of two Little Muskego Lake parcels along Janesville Road. The Common Council voted 4-3 on Jan. 24 to buy the 4.6 acres, which the city plans to turn into a park.

A citizen group objected to the purchase and filed a petition for direct legislation that seeks a referendum on the purchase.

The group has said it would oppose Snead's re-election.

» Read Full Article

Recreation path moves slightly in Pioneer project

Feb. 21, 2012 6:14 p.m. | Based on public input, two changes will be made in the plans for a Pioneer Drive road project this summer, the Muskego Public Works Committee decided Monday.

An eight-foot-wide recreation path, which will be created along the stretch of Pioneer from Racine Avenue north almost to Janesville Road, will be moved to the road side, instead of the home side, of the drainage ditch. The path will be separated from the road by the shoulder and a five-foot grassy area.

At a public information meeting held earlier, residents had asked if that path could be farther from their homes, said Alderman Noah Fiedler, committee chairman. It will cost $3,300 to redesign the path.

As long as the cost is reasonable and the relocated path is still within acceptable design standards, it makes sense for the path to be moved, Fiedler said.

Residents asked for the northern portion of Pioneer will be reconstructed a little narrower than its current configuration.

Muskego council might nullify lake-park petition

Feb. 21, 2012 6:06 p.m. | The direct-legislation effort to stop Muskego from going forward with plans to establish a lake park could be challenged Wednesday by the Muskego Common Council on the grounds that the direct-legislation petition is improper.

The petition, signed by far more than the required 1,802 people, calls for the city to not acquire two lake properties for the proposed park without first putting the purchase to a referendum.

But the resolution the council will vote on Wednesday would set aside the direct-legislation petition and block a referendum on the property purchase.

The council is within its rights to do nullify the petition, the proposed resolution says, for two reasons: The direct-legislation is administrative in nature and not a proper subject for direct legislation, and the direct legislation would conflict with two city ordinances and two resolutions, also making it out of bounds for direct legislation.

One of those ordinances two gives the Common Council exclusive right to decide spending questions. The other says that no referendum is needed if a project costs less than $10 million. The property purchase is $3.6 million, but park development would bring up the tab.

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Waukesha County panel endorses pay raises

Feb. 21, 2012 3:38 p.m. | Waukesha - The Waukesha County Board's Personnel Committee unanimously endorsed pay raises Tuesday ranging from 1.5% to 2% for two former union groups and three elected officials.

The County Board will meet at 7 p.m. Tuesday to consider the measures.

Pay raises of 1.5% in each of the next four years, beginning in 2013, were recommended for the county clerk, register of deeds and treasurer. Beginning April 15, when prospective candidates for those offices can begin circulating nomination papers for the fall election, no action on pay raises can be taken during the course of their four-year terms.

If approved, the pay in 2013 would start at $70,180 for the county clerk and treasurer and $71,125 for the register of deeds and would increase to $73,384 and $74,372, respectively, by 2016.

The committee also recommended pay raises in 2012 of 2% for about 425 clerical, paraprofessional, maintenance and sanitarian workers previously represented by the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees. In addition, raises of 1.6% retroactive for 2011 and 2% for 2012 were recommended for about 160 corrections officers and dispatch center employees. The unions have been decertified in the wake of last year's state law changes that eliminated most collective bargaining for most public employees.

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Developer asks school district to release land

Feb. 21, 2012 12:38 p.m. | A developer is asking the West Allis-West Milwaukee School Board if it will release about 4.5 acres of vacant land to the New Berlin School District so that all of the apartment buildings it wants to construct can be in the same school district.

The Thomson Corp. plans to build four apartment buildings on the land located on the south side of National Avenue approximately between 132nd and 136th streets in the city of New Berlin.

One building would be in the New Berlin School District and the other three in the WA-WM district. Thomson officials want all four to be in the New Berlin district, as are the other 14 apartment buildings in the Stonegate Apartments complex.

Dean Frederick, Thomson vice president, told the West Allis School Board Business Services Committee on Monday night, said children living in those apartments there could study together and go to the library together if they are all in one school district. Families also could move within the complex without worrying about their children having to change schools, he said.

Taxes are the same for both school districts, Frederick said, and the only taxes West Allis would lose would be on vacant land.

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Meeting seeks public input on next superintendent

Feb. 20, 2012 6:26 p.m. | An open forum facilitated by the consulting firm helping the Muskego-Norway School Board find a successor to Superintendent Joe Schroeder will be held at 7 p.m. Feb. 27 at Muskego High School, S8750 Racine Ave., in Room 243.

Public input as to the characteristics people want in a new superintendent is a key step in the search process, according to the consulting firm. Schroeder will leave at the end of the school year.

Muskego parks budget is never in red, director says

Feb. 20, 2012 6:24 p.m. | Muskego's Parks and Recreation director refuted claims that his department ended 2011 in the red.

In fact, Craig Anderson said his department actually closed the books a little under budget. "We've never been overbudget, departmentally," he said.

The claim was made by speakers at last week's Common Council meeting who argued against the establishment of a park along Little Muskego Lake. The speakers claimed the city couldn't afford to maintain a new park because the department was already overbudget.

Anderson said those speakers might simply misunderstand the department's roughly $1 million budget, which brings in about $500,000 in fees, Anderson said. Those fees were never intended to make the department self-sufficient, he explained.

"We are not set up to be self-sustaining," Anderson said.

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Ike cheerleaders earn themselves some cheers

Feb. 20, 2012 1:34 p.m. | The New Berlin Eisenhower varsity cheerleaders are on their way to the state competition after presenting a perfect routine to win the southern regionals of the Wisconsin Association of Cheer/Pom Coaches on Saturday at South Milwaukee High School.

The state championship will be at the Alliant Center Memorial Coliseum in Madison this Saturday.

The competition team consists captains Danielle Green, Cindy Love and Rachel Laseke, and members Taylor Belongia, Riley Brisk, Taylor Browne, Courtney Brucker, Courtney Crubaugh, Gina Gatto, Sarah Hall, Kaci Imig, Mia Jennaro, Kaitlin Slonac, Lindsay Stubenrauch, Maggie Teipner and Paige Wisniewski.

Whitnall beats Ike boys, wins Woodland Black Division

Feb. 17, 2012 10:37 p.m. | Whitnall's boys used a big third quarter to defeat New Berlin Eisenhower, 57-46, and win the Woodland Conference Black Division title and snapped the Lions streak of six in a row.

The win left Whitnall at 14-2, while the Lions are 12-4 with one game left to play.

The Falcons led 25-21 at half, but then took a 39-28 lead going into the fourth period.

Reed Timmer led the Lions with 19 points. Ian Ray had 13 for Whitnall.

EISENHOWER GIRLS

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Audit cites weaknesses in Waukesha County clerk operations

Feb. 16, 2012 4:42 p.m. | Waukesha - A number of weaknesses were found in Waukesha County Clerk Kathy Nickolaus' office operations, according to a newly released audit report, including the failure to return about $27,000 in dog license fees owed municipalities that has accumulated over several years.

In response to the audit, Nickolaus said she's already instituted a number of recommended changes.

The county's internal audit manager, Lori Schubert, and Nickolaus will discuss the findings at the County Board's Executive Committee meeting at 9 a.m. Monday.

None of the nine recommendations contained in the audit report was ranked as most critical in importance, but nearly all were described as having a significant impact on efficiency and effectiveness.

The audit did not examine most of Nickolaus' election systems and duties, which were audited in the fall of 2010. In April, Nickolaus' failure to count 14,000 votes from Brookfield in unofficial election night returns - or to tell the public about it for nearly two days - temporarily tipped the apparent Supreme Court election outcome and led to a costly and time-consuming statewide recount.

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District makes push for healthier foods at events

Feb. 15, 2012 3:30 p.m. | Healthier foods and snacks may soon start popping up at New Berlin football games or other school events.

The New Berlin School Board on Monday approved a new food policy that encourages nutritious food choices.

Booster clubs will be contacted about considering the addition of healthy choices at school events. The board noted that some other schools are already starting to offer fruit and vegetable dip along with cookies, candy and other treats.

The new policy puts the New Berlin schools in line with federal law.

The district itself will abide by its healthy-choices policy, to "promote foods and beverages available on school campuses and at school events that contribute to making nutritious food choices which are consistent with the Dietary Guidelines for Americans."

District preps new boundaries for Glen Park students

Feb. 15, 2012 3:22 p.m. | Students of Glen Park Elementary School, which will close in June, will know at least by April 23 what schools they will attend this fall.

New boundaries are being drawn for New Berlin's remaining four elementary schools due to the closing. A few children not attending Glen Park might also be affected by its closing. They could be shifted to other schools, also.

Superintendent of Schools Joe Garza said he planned to present a preliminary school boundary plan to the School Board on March 26, with board approval likely by April 23.

Those dates could be moved up if Garza gets the information he needs from the city of New Berlin regarding the impending development of a large tract of farmland known as section 35 east of Moorland Road. The farmland will receive sewer service so it will be ready for development in the near future.

Majority firm, park still going ahead

Feb. 14, 2012 10:46 p.m. | Any hopes that the Muskego Common Council would slow down on plans to create a park on Little Muskego Lake were dashed tonight as the slim pro-park majority held firm.

On Jan. 24, the council voted 4 to 3 to go ahead with buying 4.5 acres for $3.6 million for a park on Janesville Road. Opponents of moving forward with the park had been pushing for one of the four voting in favor last month to ask for a reconsideration of that vote tonight. But no one did.

Just like the council, the community is divided on the park idea. Now opponents are pinning their last hopes their direct legislation drive to stop the sale. They turned in a petition with many more signatures than needed for a direct legislation petition, the Muskego city clerk's office has now confirmed. The clerk's office has finished verifying the signatures and addresses.

There is a hitch, however, in the petition's wording. But organizers are ironing that out and don't have to gather any additional signatures. They have until Feb. 20 to put the wording in proper form.

The petition will likely go to the Common Council Feb. 28. The petition calls for progress to stop on the sale and for a referendum to be held on the park.

Muskego petition drive returned as flawed

Feb. 14, 2012 1:42 p.m. | Muskego - A petition for direct legislation that seeks a referendum on the $3.55 million purchase of two Little Muskego Lake parcels along Janesville Road is flawed, but the group that filed it can correct the deficiency, the city said.

The city's clerk, Sharon Mueller, determined the petition was "insufficient and not in proper form" because a proposed resolution or ordinance was not attached to it as required by state statutes.

"If the paragraph appearing at the top of the Petition is intended to be a resolution, the words, 'BE IT RESOLVED that' must be added to the beginning of the paragraph," Mueller wrote in a certificate of insufficiency.

The group that filed the petition, Muskego for Ethical Government, said it will correct the petition and return it to the city by Friday, ahead of the 10-day deadline to fix the error.

The group's organizer, Lorie Oliver, said Tuesday she believed the petition was fine as originally submitted. But Oliver said the group would attach a proposed resolution or ordinance to the pages that were filed Jan. 30.

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Medical condition may have led to New Berlin crash, police say

Feb. 13, 2012 9:58 p.m. | A medical condition may have caused the crash that killed three people and injured two Sunday in New Berlin, police said Monday.

Police said neither alcohol nor drugs is expected to have played a role in the crash. They also released the identities of the three people killed.

Thomas Wagner and his wife, Catherine Wagner, both 49 and from New Berlin, and Thomas' sister, Patricia White, 54, of Milwaukee, were killed at 9:43 a.m. in a two-car crash at the intersection of S. Sunny Slope Road and W. Glencove Parkway, police said in a news release. Thomas' brother, William Wagner, 52, of New Berlin, who was a passenger in the car, was transported by Flight for Life to Froedtert Hospital in Wauwatosa.

"Sunday, my son, daughter and daughter-in-law were killed in a terrible car accident," Marilyn Mueller Erdman said on her Facebook page Monday afternoon. "My other son is currently in ICU but is expected to make a full recovery. Please lift up our family in prayer during this horrific time."

Since April 2010, William Wagner has worked as an outreach therapist and counselor at Family Service of Racine, where he conducts therapy with individuals, couples and families, and facilitates anger management groups. He also conducts outreach therapy at two Racine County veteran's facilities, according to his Facebook page.

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Three die, three injured in New Berlin crash

Feb. 12, 2012 9:32 p.m. | New Berlin - Three people were killed and three others were injured Sunday morning in a two-car crash at the intersection of S. Sunny Slope Road and W. Glencove Parkway, police said.

Of the survivors, one had to be transported to Froedtert Hospital in Wauwatosa by Flight for Life, according to police. Two others were taken to other hospitals.

Police did not release the names, ages or hometowns of the crash victims pending notification of relatives.

The accident happened at 9:43 a.m. when a Chrysler 300 driving north on S. Sunny Slope Road left the roadway to the right and struck a Ford Focus that was stopped at the stop sign at Glencove Parkway, according to police. The Chrysler continued over a dip on the north side of Glencove Parkway and Sunny Slope and careened between two pine trees 30 to 40 feet into a yard on the northeast side.

The three who died were among four people who were in the stopped vehicle, police said. The two people in the vehicle that struck the Focus were injured and taken to the hospital.

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West girls nip Cudahy, boys win walk-away

Feb. 10, 2012 10:15 p.m. | The New Berlin West girls nipped Cudahy, 40-38, at home and improved to 12-3 in the Woodland Conference Blue Division, while the Packers fell to 11-3.

First-place Pewaukee is now 12-2, one game ahead.

The Vikings led by four at halftime (21-17) and after three periods (30-26) and then held on for the win.

All-Star Taylor Gradinjan had 12 points for the Packers while Beth Ver Haagh had a game-high 16 for the Vikes.

BOYS

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Ike boys, girls beat South Milwaukee

Feb. 10, 2012 10:05 p.m. | The New Berlin Eisenhower boys defeated South Milwaukee, 63-52, at home and the girls won 47-22 on the road Friday night.

The boys were trailing by two going into the fourth quarter and then blew out the Rockets, 17-4. Reed Timmer (19), Sandro Pesquiera (16), Mitch Arman (11) and Keith Kahlfeldt (10) all scored in double figures for the Lions, who were tied at 33-33 at intermission.

Ike (12-3) remains one game behind Whitnall (13-2) and the two teams are scheduled to meet at Whitnall next Friday.

GIRLS

Ike won its fourth straight Woodland Division title (14-0) and improved to 17-0 with a 36-game league win streak, beating South Milwaukee (9-5), 47-22.

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MHS dance team steps into second in state competition

Feb. 08, 2012 12:10 a.m. | The Muskego High School Dance Team took second place in the state for its jazz performance at the Wisconsin Association of Cheer/Pom Coaches State Championships on Saturdayin La Crosse.

The team dedicated its jazz performance titled "Just a Dream" to America's service men, women and their families.

The last time the dance team was a state champion or runner up was in 1999.

The team also performed a pom on routine that took seventh place.

Muskego will use same firm that found current superintendent

Feb. 08, 2012 12:08 a.m. | The same firm that found Joe Schroeder to be superintendent for the Muskego-Norway School District will be hired now to find his replacement, the School Board has decided.The Rosemont, Ill., search firm of Hazard, Young, Attea & Associates will be hired for $16,500 plus expenses to find a replacement.

The district received proposals from four search firms and interviewed three before going with HYA, said School Board President Jim Schaefer.

All the firms probably would have found quality candidates, he said, but with all things being equal the board was happy with HYA's previous service.

Schroeder will leave at the end of the school year to become associate executive director of the Association of Wisconsin School Administrators. He has been with Muskego-Norway for five years.

District will consider factors other than seniority in teacher layoffs

Feb. 08, 2012 12:06 a.m. | No longer having to negotiate with unions about the process of laying employees off, the Muskego-Norway School Board on Monday threw out seniority as the single factor ruling layoffs in favor of a more flexible approach.

Seniority will play a part, but administrators can now also look at other factors such as skill sets and performance, according to the addition to the employee handbook the board approved.

In a related discussion, the board is working toward establishing rules about job sharing.

The district already allows job sharing -in fact, two teachers currently share one third-grade classroom. The proposed language would establish job-sharing rules such as formally giving the district the power to stop a job-share if it doesn't seem to be in the best interests of students. The job-sharing option also would only be available to existing staff, not anyone just being hired.

The proposed job-sharing rules will come up for a vote at the board's Feb. 20 meeting.

Board opts for similar school calendar

Feb. 08, 2012 12:00 a.m. | With a parent survey showing general support for the current Muskego-Norway School calendar, the School Board on Monday night gave a favorable reception to a similar calendar for next year.

The proposed calendar for the 2012-13 school year that will come up for a vote Feb. 20 has school starting Sept. 4, the day after Labor Day, and ending June 13, 2013.

Winter break is pegged as the week of Dec. 24 and spring break the week of April 1. Easter will be March 31 in 2013.

Like this year, teacher professional days will either be on Fridays or the days before holiday breaks, in accordance with parental preferences expressed in the survey. But the administration suggested the board may consider putting the professional days on Mondays instead of Fridays.

The board may also consider adjusting the parent-teacher conferences at the secondary level to give additional hours. Having more conference time was one of the themes in the parent survey. As of now, the proposed calendar still sets conference hours at 3:30 to 8 p.m., as they are this year.

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Unbeaten Ike girls beat Pewaukee in double OT

Feb. 04, 2012 9:58 p.m. | The New Berlin Eisenhower girls basketball team defeated Pewaukee, 75-68, Saturday night in a double overtime thriller before a large crowd at Pewaukee.

The win left the Lions with a 13-0 record in the Woodland Conference Black Division with four league games to play. Since South Milwaukee (9-4) is in second, the Lions clinched a title tie, their fourth in a row.

They have won 35 straight conference games, last losing on Jan. 30, 2010 to Pewaukee, 59-52.

The loss dropped the Pirates (11-2, 14-2) into a first-place tie with Cudahy in the Blue Division.

The Pirates had the Lions on the ropes twice. The first time leading 53-50 when Eisenhower called time out with 9.9 seconds left in regulation.

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Muskego petitioners may target mayor, alderman for recall

Feb. 03, 2012 9:41 p.m. | Muskego - A citizen group that wants the city to seek voter approval of a $3.55 million lake property purchase said it may launch an effort to recall Mayor Kathy Chiaverotti and Ald. Keith Werner if a referendum is not held.

The group, Muskego for Ethical Government, on Monday filed a petition for direct legislation that seeks a referendum on the purchase of two Little Muskego Lake parcels along Janesville Road.

The petition was filed six days after the Common Council voted 4-3 on Jan. 24 to purchase the 4.6 acres, which the city plans to turn into a park. Before the vote, a measure proposed by an alderman that called for a referendum to be held to allow voters to decide on the purchase failed.

Werner voted in favor of the purchase along with aldermen Noah Fiedler, Neome Schaumberg and Tracy Snead.

Chiaverotti, who is completing her first year in office in April, said she hasn't done anything to merit being recalled.

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Muskego players sign with colleges

Feb. 03, 2012 1:49 p.m. | The Muskego football program is being well-represented on the collegiate level.

Linebacker/punter Jordan Gruettner, last season's NOW Newspapers All-Suburban Player of the Year, will walk on at an NCAA Division 1 college. He is currently deciding between the University of Wisconsin-Madison, Northern Illinois or the University of Minnesota.

Three other seniors from the 2011 squad have signed national letters of intent with Division 2 schools: linebacker Tommy Stark with the University of Sioux Falls, offensive lineman Connor McIntosh with St. Cloud State University; and offensive lineman/long snapper Collin Smith with Winona State University.

They will join seven others who are currently playing on college teams. Playing on Division 1 squads are defensive lineman Kyle Costigan at Wisconsin, quarterback Adam Schulz at the University of Utah and long snapper Mike Famigletti at Western Illinois.

Costigan was a redshirt freshman and last year received between 15-20 snaps per game, while Famigletti is the starting long snapper for Western Illinois.

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Bellafini's in the works on National in New Berlin

Feb. 02, 2012 9:00 p.m. | After closing in Fond du Lac, Bellafini’s Trattoria is expected to be open for dinners in New Berlin by March 1.

Chef Chris Giaimo, who owns the restaurant with his wife, Jennifer, said he had considered Appleton and Brookfield but decided on New Berlin. He’s originally from the Milwaukee area.

The restaurant will open in the City Center development at 15175 W. National Ave., previously the site of Baker’s ice cream.

Bellafini’s — named for the owners’ daughters, Isabella and Sophia — will serve pastas and other entrees and some traditional Sicilian dishes from family recipes, Giaimo said.

It also will serve pizza made with a sourdough crust, like the Bellafini’s in Fond du Lac.

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Competency exam ordered for driver in double fatal New Year's crash

Feb. 02, 2012 10:39 a.m. | A judge on Thursday ordered a mental competency examination for the man charged with killing a New Berlin couple in a New Year's Day drunken driving crash.

Ed and Jean Thaves were sitting at a stoplight when prosecutors say Kelly Duke, 17, lost control of the speeding, stolen car he was driving and crashed through the roof of the couple's car, before running away from the scene.

At a hearing Thursday, Duke's attorney Andrew Frankin said he there are reasons to suspect Duke is not competent to proceed in his case, and Circuit Judge David Borowski granted a motion for a mental examination. A doctor's report is due back to the court next month.

Last week, Franklin had indicated he would probably seek a reduction in Duke's $200,000 cash bail at the Thursday hearing, but the victims' family mounted an instant public appeal to oppose any bail reduction. By Thursday, 660 people had signed an online petition, said Edwin Thaves, the victim's son.

He also called Duke's request for a competency exam merely a stall tactic.

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New Berlin-based McKey Perforating sold

Feb. 01, 2012 3:10 p.m. | A multibillion-dollar metals-service conglomerate has acquired New Berlin's McKey Perforating Co.

Reliance Steel & Aluminum Co. said Wednesday it has purchased McKey for an undisclosed price.

McKey generated about $18 million in sales last year.

The New Berlin company, which punches holes in metal for such products as laundry drums, mine screens and store fixtures, has been in the McKey family for nearly 60 years.

Douglas E. McKey bought the firm, which dates to the mid-19th century, in 1953. His daughter, Jean, took over after his death in 1983.

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