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Whitefish Bay officials looking at 10-year capital improvement plan

June 04, 2012 11:14 p.m. | Whitefish Bay officials are reviewing a 10-year capital improvement plan - an important lynchpin toward the road to addressing upgrades in the sanitary sewer system that resulted in flooding nearly two years ago during torrential rainfall.

Tentatively, the village is planning to borrow about $100 million in the years ahead to fund improvements to the sanitary sewer system, as well as water utility infrastructure and streets.

The village has contracted with financial advisory firm Ehlers and Associates to hash over financial options for the impending work. Company representative Mike Harrigan reviewed some of the details at a Village Board meeting Monday night.

One of the most scrutinized aspects of this week's discussion focused on funding options. Village officials are grappling with implementing a storm water utility fee - a figure that would be determined based on a variety of factors, including the square footage of a property.

Over time, Herrigan said property tax payers could incur an increase of $1.42 per $1,000 of assessed value to fund the improvements without a storm water utility. With a current rate of 81 cents per $1,000 of assessed value, this would increase the amount to $2.23 per $1,000 of assessed value. The figure only represents the municipal portion of a village taxpayer's bill and only takes into account the money earmarked for funding improvements.

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Crews battle house fire in Brown Deer; 2 cats killed

Nov. 23, 2015 12:20 p.m. | North Shore Fire/Rescue said crews responded to a basement fire Sunday night at 8100 N. 53rd St. in Brown Deer.

The agency posted a photo of the scene on Facebook and on Monday said that a preliminary estimate showed the fire caused around $80,000 in damage.

Three occupants safely escaped from the burning home before police and fire units arrived. One person was evaluated for minor injuries.

The family's two cats and one guinea pig died in the blaze.

The exact cause of the fire remains under investigation, but authorities said the fire does not appear to be suspicious.

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Two cats, guinea pig killed in Brown Deer house fire

Nov. 23, 2015 12:16 p.m. | Brown Deer —Two cats and a guinea pig were killed in a house fire in Brown Deer on Sunday, Nov. 22.

The fire at 8100 N. 53rd St. was reported at 7:06 p.m. The three occupants of the home said they smelled smoke in the house, and upon entering the kitchen, they saw heavy black smoke coming up the stairs from the basement. All three occupants evacuated prior to police and fire crews arriving on the scene.

One occupant of the home was evaluated for minor injuries but declined transportation to the hospital.

The basement of the home is heavily damaged from the fire. The first floor also sustained excessive heat and smoke damage. The North Shore Fire Department estimates the fire caused $80,000 in damage to the home and its contents.

The exact cause of the fire remains under investigation, but it appears the fire started in a corner of the basement. North Shore fire officials do not believe foul play is involved.

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Mequon woman reported missing

Nov. 23, 2015 11:13 a.m. | Mequon — The Mequon Police Department is attempting to locate Jacquelyn Ranallo, who was reported missing on Saturday, Nov. 21.

Ranallo, 53, is 5 feet 3 inches tall and weighs about 150 pounds. She has brown hair and brown eyes. She was reported missing on Saturday, Nov. 21 after she did not show up for a dinner appointment. She was last heard from on Wednesday, Nov. 18.

Mequon police have checked Ranallo's house and found her personal items, wallet, identification and vehicle. Police also searched an area around her residence. Police did not find signs of foul play or of self-harm.

Those who have seen Ranallo since Nov. 18 are urged to contact the Mequon Police Department at (262) 242-3500, referencing case #15-24109.

Homestead wins fifth state football title, 28-12, over Waukesha West

Nov. 20, 2015 6:58 p.m. | It was going to be "hell or high water" but Homestead all-state football star Jack Popp was going to play in the WIAA State D2 title football game on Nov. 20 against Waukesha West, fractured arm or no fractured arm.

He had suffered the injury in the level 3 win over Brookfield East two weeks ago and missed the state semifinal victory over Chippewa Falls on Nov. 13.

But he simply had to close the door on his storied career, one that included a touchdown reception as a skinny freshman in Homestead's 14-0 state D2 title win over Waunakee in 2012, the way he had opened it.

By leading Homestead to a fifth WIAA state title.

He got his clearance to play on Nov. 16 and then all his wishes came true today.

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Build-your-own pizza place coming to Shorewood next year

Nov. 20, 2015 5:01 p.m. | Shorewood — MOD Pizza, a build-your-own pizza restaurant, will come to Shorewood in fall 2016.

The Seattle-based pizza chain will be on the ground floor of the Mosaic, a six-story, mixed-use building now under construction on the west side of Oakland Avenue between Kenmore Place and Olive Street.

MOD Pizza is the first retailer announced at the Mosaic. The building will feature 90 upscale apartments and 15,000 square feet of retail space, according to Michael Weiss, president of General Capital Group, the project developer.

Founded by the creators of Seattle's Best Coffee, MOD Pizza is a counter-serve franchise featuring industrial-chic décor along with build-your-own pizza in wood-burning ovens. MOD also serves salad, garlic strips, milkshakes, draft beer and wine.

"It's fresh, fast pizza with homemade and healthy ingredients and the company is also committed to giving back to its local communities," said Shorewood Village Manager Chris Swartz. "We are excited that MOD is coming to Shorewood and look forward to announcing more retailers in the near future."

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Shorewood families want to host Syrian refugees

Nov. 20, 2015 4:46 p.m. | Shorewood — As politicians look to prevent Syrian refugees from entering the United States, several Shorewood families have expressed interest in welcoming refugees into their homes.

Like the rest of the world, Shorewood resident Gretchen Mead has been closely following news of the Syrian refugee crisis, and she was particularly moved by the image of 3-year-old Aylan Kurdi, whose dead body was found washed ashore the Mediterranean Sea on a beach in Turkey.

Syrian refugees have been more closely scrutinized after the terrorist attacks in Paris on Nov. 13. While Congress has tried to temporarily block refugees from entering the country, Mead took to Facebook on Nov. 18 to express her interest in hosting a Syrian family in her Shorewood home.

Mead, who has three children, already provides rooms to travelers through AirBnB, and her children enjoy having visitors in their house.

"I am considered lower middle income, but I have two extra bedrooms, more clothes than I can shove in my drawers, a pantry stashed full of...amazing food, and enough expendable income that I bought tickets for my entire family to fly to the Grand Canyon for Thanksgiving," Mead wrote on Facebook. "I have enough. My kids have enough. If they don't attend summer camp this year, they still have enough. Everyone in my community has enough. If Im honest with my deepest soul, I can't find a compelling reason why I shouldn't bring a family in need to live with my family."

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Updated state championship game rankings of area prep football teams and players

Homestead football team faces uphill title fight against West

Nov. 18, 2015 1:40 p.m. | It's a championship round of empires colliding in the WIAA State Football finals at Camp Randall in Madison, Nov. 19-20.

Especially on the upper tiers. In the Division 1 final at 4:05 p.m. Friday, Nov. 20, you have a rematch of last year where Kimberly, which has won four state crowns since 2007, looks for a repeat knockout against the team it beat last year, six-time champ Arrowhead.

And in Division 2 at 1:05 p.m. Friday, Nov. 20, coming out of the friendly confines of the North Shore, you will have four-time champ Homestead (11-2) challenging two-time titlist Waukesha West (11-2), which has has been to three finals, including a loss to Menasha last year, the same team that had beaten the Highlanders in the state semifinals the week before.

Let the mutual admiration society begin.

"They are just really well coached," said West coach Steve Rux of the Highlanders. "(Dave) Keel does a great job. Fritz (Rauch) went over to Grafton but they haven't missed a beat. They're very multiple on both offense and defense. On defense they can get a little exotic.

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Wolf and Zortman fill in each other's gaps well

Nov. 18, 2015 1:40 p.m. | The roommate/bachelor year stories of Homestead football offensive coordinator Drake Zortman and his long-time pal and defensive coordinator Matt Wolf are forever sworn to secrecy. Not even their families want to know what went on during that time.

Some things, as it is said, are best left unknown for these two men who were entrusted to new high-wire positions this fall.

Now respectable family men and highly respected linchpins for the WIAA Division 2 state finalist Highlanders, their alone time together is largely reduced to about 45 minutes a week, between 4:45 p.m. and 5:30 p.m. on standard 7 p.m. game-time Fridays.

"The guys are getting taped up and so we go out on the field, talk and relax a little," said Wolf, the first-year defensive coordinator. "We have a few laughs, we check and see how the other is doing. We're really never that far apart."

Because before coming back together this season for this surprising run to the WIAA state finals at Camp Randall Stadium in Madison on Nov. 20, the pair had a trial run at their respective positions more than a decade ago co-coaching successful Homestead junior varsity teams.

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Apartments, assisted living pitched in Mequon development

Nov. 18, 2015 1:11 p.m. | Mequon — A developer is proposing to build an assisted living center, apartment building and commercial building next to the recently-completed Aster Memory Care facility at 6729 W. Mequon Road.

Lakeside Development Company is proposing to build a 60-unit resident care apartment complex south of Aster Memory Care Facility, an 86-unit apartment building southwest of Aster and a two-story, 26,200-square-foot mixed retail and office building west of Aster on Mequon Road. The four buildings will be worth an estimated $30 million.

Each of the four buildings will be located on separate parcels and owned by separate entities, but their parking lots will be connected through driveways.

The Mequon Plan Commission rezoned the property on Monday, Nov. 10, to allow for the redevelopment of the property. Known as Weston Center, several different layouts of the development have been approved over the past decade.

The proposed assisted living facility includes 60 residential units and is three stories tall. The facility will include a community dining room, spa and beauty salon, a country store and indoor parking. Roughly 40 employees will be employed at the facility. The development will have an estimated value of $9.7 million.

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Mequon-Thiensville's Demond Means says MPS role won't interfere with his day job

Nov. 18, 2015 12:56 p.m. | Mequon — Demond Means has the high-profile responsibility of reforming Milwaukee Public Schools, but he doesn't expect the work to interfere with his role as superintendent of the Mequon-Thiensville School District.

Milwaukee County Executive Chris Abele announced on Nov. 12 that Means would be the commissioner of the Opportunity Schools and Partnership Program, a new governance model created in the 2015-17 state budget designed to develop wrap-around services and restructure failing Milwaukee schools. Abele was required to name a commissioner for the new program.

Growing up in Milwaukee's Sherman Park neighborhood and attending Riverside High School, Means is no stranger to Milwaukee Public Schools. He said he was humbled when Abele and Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett called him asking him to improve MPS.

"I'm looking to forward to serving in any way I can," he said. "I am looking forward to improving opportunities for children in the city of Milwaukee."

Means said he doesn't know how much time his new position will take up, how long it will last or if he will receive a paycheck. He said his new role will be done on his personal time outside of his day job, which he doesn't plan to leave any time soon.

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Hayes helps Brown Deer/USM swimming team set two program records

Nov. 18, 2015 12:27 p.m. | It was a great first step forward for Brown Deer/University School freshman swimmer Katie Hayes as she took third in the 100-yard breaststroke with a new program record, earned fourth in the 200 individual medley and also helped the 200 medley relay team set a new program record in the WIAA State D2 meet on Nov. 13 in Madison.

"The girls had an awesome meet," said co-coach Mark Thompson, "even with the three girls who had already been rested. Every good swimmer can turn in a good 50 (yard split) even when not in shape. They really provided some great help for Katie who had very strong meet and hit some nice benchmarks."

Hayes dropped over a second from previous best breaststroke time with a 1:05.04 clocking as McFarland senior Sara Hagen won in 1:03.43.

Prior to that, Hayes dropped more than a second off her 200 IM time with a fourth-place 2:09.45 clocking.

In the 200 medley relay, senior Lily Wilson, Hayes, freshman Kalli Noll and senior Paige Sprink took a bit off their program record set the previous week in the sectional and claimed 11th in 1:54.42.

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Oak Leaf Trail extension links Milwaukee to Ozaukee County

Nov. 18, 2015 12:13 p.m. | Glendale — A 6.6-mile extension of the Oak Leaf Trail allows bicyclists and runners to travel from Milwaukee's lakefront to Sheboygan County.

The result of more than 10 years of planning, the new trail extension connects the Milwaukee portion of the trail to the Ozaukee Interurban Trail, which runs through Ozaukee County and part of Sheboygan County. Previously, the Milwaukee portion of the trail spit northbound riders out onto Wilson Drive just south of Hampton Avenue.

The completion of the trail was celebrated Monday, Nov. 16, with a bike-chain-cutting ceremony attended by bicycle advocates, parks associations and Milwaukee County officials.

The extension of the trail will be a game-changer for bike commuters like Shorewood resident Mara Kuhlmann, whose ride to Johnson Controls in Glendale just got 10 minutes shorter. The trail provides a more direct route without the safety concerns and time delays that may come with riding in traffic.

"I ride at 6 in the morning, and I ride at 6 at night when it's dark," she said. "Getting away from the traffic is a great benefit to me."

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Jorn finishes swimming career well, leads Shorewood to 11th at state

Nov. 18, 2015 12:10 p.m. | Shorewood senior swimmer Eva Jorn knows she is not in the "Olympic Trials" class of competitor that graduated Greyhound superstars Rachel Munson and Kristin Malone were.

But she has still earned her spot among the best ever in the storied history at Shorewood.

After her efforts on Friday, Nov. 13, where she earned top-six places in both the 200-yard freestyle and 100-butterfly at the WIAA D2 state meet in Madison, Jorn closes out her career with an impressive nine top-six state meet medals.

She has also been part of four Woodland Conference championship teams, was part of a state-record 200 medley relay and played a key role in the 2012 D2 state team championship won by the Greyhounds.

Jorn also finished a season where she accepted a mantle of leadership from those NCAA D1 powerhouse performers Munson and Malone; worked with a new coach; and was able to finish off a fine career on an upbeat note.

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Bayshore Town Center hires new general manager

Nov. 18, 2015 11:55 a.m. | Glendale – After 11 months without a general manager, the Bayshore Town Center has come under new leadership.

Darcy Kennelly Rutzen comes to Bayshore Town Center with more than 15 years of retail property management experience. Rutzen replaces David Moss, who left Bayshore in December to manage a shopping center in Chandler, Arizona.

Rutzen, 37, grew up in Minneapolis and attended the University of Wisconsin, where she graduated with a bachelor's degree in journalism. She earned a master's degree in Business Administration from Northwestern University's Kellogg School of Management.

She most recently worked for M&J Wilkow, Ltd., a Chicago-based real estate company, where she was responsible for the management and marketing of retail stores throughout the country.

Prior to joining M&J Wilkow, Rutzen worked as area general manager for Simon Property Group, where she oversaw the expansion and renovationof Chicago Premium Outlets, a $110-million project that added 350,000 square feet and more than 50 stores.

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