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News & Notes: April 27

April 27, 2010

Police Department gets go-ahead for promotion

Glendale - A police sergeant position left vacant since May 2009 when a 15-year-employee left the Police Department will be filled. Although not funded for 2010, Police Chief Tom Czarnyszka told the Common Council on Monday that the department needs a sergeant on its third shift.

By filling the position at this time of the year, the cost to the department would be $2,500 more than the cost of a patrol officer. Czarnyszka said he could find that money in the department budget.

The department will promote a patrol officer and the patrol position will remain vacant to help fund the sergeant's position for the remainder of the year, according to the plan approved by the council.

Sidewalk replacement to start June 21

Whitefish Bay - Replacement of sidewalk slabs in the village will begin the week of June 21 and be completed by Aug. 14. The village has notified property owners abutting the slabs who will be assessed $111 for each 5'x5'x5" slab. Bills and a payment schedule are sent after the work is completed. A&M Concrete Construction was the low bidder at $111,356.

The Village Board also awarded a $1,287,384 contract for the reconstruction of Fairmount Avenue between Diversey Boulevard and Marlborough Drive. The contract for Fairmount Avenue is being awarded in three phases. Depending on the bids for the other phases, the village may elect to build a concrete street instead of an asphalt one.

Policy on investing district funds being considered

Brown Deer - A formal policy on what steps should be taken when investing the school district's funds could be implemented next month.

The policy includes a series of provisions, including one limiting investments to the safest types of securities and diversifying where funds are invested. The document, as proposed, also calls for a quarterly update to the School Board on the status of all investments.

A first reading of the policy was reviewed by members of the Personnel and Policy Committee on April 19. It will go on to the full School Board for discussion and possible action Monday. If approved, a second reading will take place next month and could be in place by the end of May.

District looking to adopt policy on fund balance for budget

Brown Deer - A specific set of guidelines related to the school district's reserves in the general operating budget fund balance is being proposed.

The new policy, which was reviewed by members of the Personnel and Policy Committee on April 19, calls for maintaining a fund balance of 12 to 17 percent of the district's total general fund budget. Based on estimates, the figure would represent between 45 and 60 days of the district's operations.

This is a first reading of the policy. It will go on to the full School Board for discussion and possible action Monday. If approved, a second reading will take place next month and could be in place by the end of May.

East Capitol Drive streetscaping to wait for 2011

Shorewood - Based on a review of the final plans for the reconstruction of Capitol Drive, the Village Board decided not to award a landscaping contract for the 2010 streetscaping. Contractors will put in soil, level and mulch it as the project winds down in late fall.

The village will seek bids for the streetscaping in 2011, with all the work scheduled for that spring.

Sewer utility rates likely to increase

Shorewood - Sewer utility rates in the village have not increased since 1998 but will likely go up later this year. The sewer utility ended up with a loss of $478,277 in 2009 and Finance Director Stephanie Walker projects a loss of $740,313 for 2010.

The village's Finance Committee reviewed the losses and asked Walker to bring back a plan for increased rates that would cover the cost of operating and maintaining the sewers.

Village creates ordinance for Class C wine licenses

Brown Deer - The Village Board on Monday enacted a new ordinance that will allow restaurants that want to serve wine by the glass to apply for a Class C wine license.

Up until last month, the village had never received a request for the license. After Sammy's Express asked for one, the board decided to create the ordinance. Sammy's Express, however, will not get a license until back taxes on the restaurant are paid.

Board approves sales of bonds

Shorewood - M&I Bank was the low bidder for $3.885 million in Build America general obligation community development bonds and $4.725 million taxable general obligation corporate purpose bonds. The Build America bonds carry a true interest rate of 2.872 percent with the second bond issue having a 4.496 percent rate.

The bonds will be used for expenses in tax-incremental finance districts 1 and 3 and to refinance a State Trust Fund Loan. The Village Board approved the sale on Monday.

Board passes rule regulating multi-family ownership

Fox Point - In an effort to maintain the community's residential character, the Village Board passed an ordinance regulating how long it is permissible to have people other than property owners living at homes for short periods of time.

The so-called multi-family ownership ordinance applies to such scenarios as leasing, contracting and time-sharing homes. Short-term arrangements are permissible for up to 120 days, as outlined in the document.

Pavilion facility fee waived for market, baseball team

Fox Point - The Village Board permitted organizers of the Fox Point Farmers' Market and Nicolet High School's baseball program to use restrooms at the village-owned Longacre Pavilion facility, 7343 N. Longacre Road, this summer without paying a rental fee.

But organizations will be holding outdoor events throughout the summer at nearby Stormonth Elementary School, 7301 N. Longacre Road.

The village traditionally charges outside organizations a rental fee to use Longacre Pavilion, but decided to waive the fee in these two instances because the events benefit the community.

Tree analysis proposal scrapped following split vote

Fox Point - A split 3-3 vote by the Village Board means a proposal to take aerial photos of trees in the community will not move forward. Had the work taken place, the images would have been used to determine the number of ash and elm species in Fox Point and prepare for a possible infestation of Emerald Ash Borer and Dutch Elm Disease.

Scott Brandmeier, village engineer and director of public works, came before the board with the proposal, which carried a price tag of $57,000. An $18,000 grant from the state Department of Natural Resources would have gone toward the proposal, had it been approved.

Portions of aging municipal pool will be patched

Fox Point - The concrete deck at the village's municipal pool facility, 7100 N. Santa Monica Blvd., will be replaced this summer. The Village Board awarded a $10,822 to Glendale-based Munson to perform the service.

The deck area has been deteriorating in recent years, and the work is a short-term solution to a long-term issue village officials have been grappling with. The pool, a popular amenity in the village each summer, will likely need more maintenance in upcoming years to remain viable in the community.

Police chief to honor three officers for valor

Fox Point - Three Fox Point police officers will be presented with Commendations for Valor for their apprehension of an armed robbery suspect Feb. 15.

Chief Thomas Czaja will present the awards to Officers John Adamaitis, Benjamin Brouwer and James Hanna at 4 p.m. May 17 in Padway Hall, 7300 N. Santa Monica Blvd.

City to deliver Community News via e-mail

Mequon - The spring edition of Community News, the city newsletter, will be delivered via e-mail this year. The Common Council eliminated the printing and mailing costs from the 2010 budget.

In order to receive it electronically, go to the city's Web site, mequon.govoffice.com, and click on the E-Notify Me link in the column on the left side of the page.

For residents without Web access, printed copies of the newsletter are available at City Hall or the Frank C. Weyenberg Library.

Community foundation helps to fund nature preserve signs

Mequon - Newly installed signs now help visitors find their way to the Mequon Nature Preserve. The largest sign, installed at 9801 N. Wauwatosa Road, will identify the Nature Preserve location for more than 25,000 people who drive by each day. The Mequon Community Foundation also funded a kiosk at the a trailhead parking lot, 8275 W. Donges Bay Road and two "You Are Here" signs that will assist visitors as they walk the five-mile trail system.

"Without the Mequon Community Foundation's help, we could not have put up this important signage," former Mayor Christine Nuernberg said. "People continue to ask me where the Nature Preserve is. With the foundation's great support, they will now more easily find it. For this I am truly grateful."

City awards paving, crack-sealing contracts

Mequon - The city has a budget of $2.3 million for 2010 road repairs and crack sealing but will hold $416,000 in reserve for its share of the cost of Port Washington Road reconstruction. The city's share of the $7 million project, scheduled to start in May, is $700,000. The city has additional money for the work set aside in a special fund and is determining how much of its share has already been spent on preliminary costs, such as design work.

The Common Council awarded Stark Asphalt Division of Northwest Asphalt Products a $1.8 million contract for road rehabilitation work, including pulverizing and paving on both local and arterial streets. The contract does not cover Port Washington Road construction, which is a county project.

The council also awarded a $32,000 contract to American Pavement Solutions for crack sealing.

Mequon set to adopt sex offender residency ordinance

Mequon - The Common Council will consider a sex offender residency restriction ordinance in May. It was recommended by the Public Safety Committee in March and had its first reading at the council in April.

The ordinance prohibits sex offenders from residing within 2,000 feet of certain public areas, such as schools, day care centers, parks and playgrounds. Sex offenders would be allowed to attend religious services or programs but could not participate in religious eduction programs for those under the age of 18. There would also be certain allowances for their presence in areas where they would normally be banned if their own children are present and require the offender's participation.

The ordinance allows offenders who previously lived in the city to return to it.

Currently both the state Senate and the Assembly have pending bills that prohibit sex offender ordinances from being enacted, but no action has been taken on either.

All abutting communities - Bayside, Cedarburg, Grafton, Germantown, Menomonee Falls, Thiensville, and Brown Deer - have enacted similar ordinances.

Phase 1 of Majestic Meadows subdivision approved

Mequon- The final plat for the first phase of Majestic Meadows subdivision on West Bonniwell and North Wasaukee roads was approved. The first phase includes three lots and an out lot with a stormwater management pond. The council previously approved the plan in 2007 but the final plat was not recorded within the required time frame.

City wants to go to the birds

Mequon - The Common Council declared May 1 International Migratory Bird Day and will submit an application to become a "Bird City Wisconsin."

The Milwaukee Audubon Society has established the new Bird City Wisconsin program modeled on the Tree City program. Mequon will be the first North Shore community to apply for the designation.

One of the requirements for the program is the development of a program to celebrate the International Migratory Bird Day. The annual Go Green program that will be held May 1 at the Nature Preserve will fill that requirement as there will be several workshops about birds.

If the city earns the Bird City designation, it would receive two street signs with the Bird City Wisconsin emblem and a Bird City flag.

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