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News & Notes: Aug. 21

Aug. 21, 2013

Parking restrictions added

near elementary school

Brown Deer — In order to better control traffic and ensure pedestrian safety, the village will restrict parking along the north side of Dean Road between 54th and 60th streets, near Brown Deer Elementary School.

At the recommendation of the Traffic and Public Safety Committee, the Village Board on Monday authorized village staff to proceed with the change.

Police Chief Steven Rinzel said the safety of children crossing Dean Road to get to vehicles parked on the north side has been a concern for a while. The remodeling project at Brown Deer Middle School, which will reopen as the elementary school this fall, provided the opportunity to address the issue.

The expansion of the school parking lot means that there will now be adequate space for parents to park on the school property when picking up their children, rather than along Dean Road, Rinzel said. In addition to no longer being allowed to park on the north side of Dean Road along that stretch, vehicles also will be restricted from making left-hand turns when exiting the parking lot onto both Dean Road and 60th Street, which Rinzel said should prevent traffic back-ups in the parking lot.

Rinzel said the village worked with school district staff to come up with the plan and alert the bus companies to the change. The parking regulations will be in effect at all times, not just during school hours, he said.

Grace & Shelly's cupcake franchise opens in Bay

Whitefish Bay — Florida-based Grace & Shelly's Cupcakes is opening its first Wisconsin store located at 308 E. Silver Spring Drive in Whitefish Bay.

Co-owner Shelly Stayer, a Wisconsin native, moved to Naples, Fla., about four years ago, however, she still spends each summer in Wisconsin. Stayer and business partner Grace Bolen met and partnered over their passion for sweets, opening their first Grace & Shelly's Cupcakes together in the summer of 2011. Since then, the business has expanded throughout the Naples area, and they now have five Florida shops.

The Whitefish Bay shop will regularly offer dozens of specialty cupcakes and seasonal varieties, such as turtle cheesecake, brown sugar caramel, chocolate pretzel, raspberry lemonade, and gingerbread. In addition to featuring gourmet cupcakes at its newest location, Grace & Shelly's will also offer Wisconsin-made ice cream and gourmet popcorn.

Grace & Shelly's plans to hire about 10 to 15 employees for its Whitefish Bay store, including experienced bakers and frosting designers, and the store looks forward to the opportunity to expand in the future. The shop is open from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Mondays through Saturdays, and 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sundays. For information, visit graceandshellyscupcakes.com.

Nicolet hosts community meet and greet

GlendaleA community meet-and-greet with Nicolet School District's three new administrators — Superintendent Robert Kobylski, Principal Greg Kabara and Director of Curriculum and Instruction Brenda Turner — will be held from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. Aug. 28 at the high school, 6701 N. Jean Nicolet Road.

Refreshments are available at the event, which is sponsored by the Nicolet Parent-Teacher-Student Organization. There will be a short presentation at the beginning of the event, but visitors can come any time during the hour to converse with the new administrators in the school's commons area.

We Energies to bury

Thiensville infrastructure

Thiensville — We Energies will bury power lines and other electrical infrastructure in Thiensville, following a motion made Monday by the Village Board.

The village has granted We Energies easements on municipal property at 120, 128-134 and 136 N. Main St.

Village approves

2014-15 capital budget

Brown Deer — Brown Deer has set a $2 million borrowing plan for the completion of capital improvement projects in 2014 and 2015.

At the request of Village Manager Michael Hall, the Village Board on Monday approved the 2014-15 Capital Improvement Program budget, which includes a borrowing plan of about $2 million. The CIP plan identifies capital improvement projects totaling about $4.7 million for 2014 and 2015, as well as an additional $4.7 million in "enterprise" projects in the areas of sewer, stormwater and water.

Projects would be completed with available funding from various sources, including general obligation debt, grants, retained earnings, fund balance, user fees and the property tax levy.

Hall stressed that the projects and amounts presented simply represent a plan at this time, and all projects exceeding $15,000 would require board approval before proceeding. The CIP budget also will return to the board for future consideration as part of the complete 2014-15 budget.

Village seeks to redevelop

garage property

Brown Deer — Brown Deer will proceed with an option to purchase agreement with the owners of Brown Deer Garage, 8806 N. Deerwood Drive, in an effort to better market the property for redevelopment.

The Village Board on Monday approved the agreement, which essentially commits the village to paying the property owner $5,000 in exchange for gaining control over the marketing of the property for the next two years.

The agreement also sets the purchase price of the property at $390,000, just under its fair market value, said Community Services Director Nate Piotrowski, which the village would be obligated to pay the owners regardless of whether the property actually sells at that amount. If the property does not sell within two years, the current owners would keep the $5,000 and the property.

Piotrowski said the agreement puts the village in a position to negotiate with any potential buyer for the site. Whether the existing building is reused or not, the location offers the potential for a higher and better use, he said.

Examples of the type of development the village would consider for the site include a restaurant, Piotrowski said, or a coffee shop storefront combined with adjacent office space and possibly apartments in the upper level of the building, which he said could fit in well with the surrounding area.

The village likely would need to work with the Department of Natural Resources to ensure that no additional environmental remediation, beyond what has been completed in the past, would be required for the site. Staff would need to return to the Village Board and Community Development Authority for the necessary approvals before any offer would be accepted, Piotrowski said.

Brown Deer plans to take

new budgeting approach

Brown Deer — Village staff and officials will be honing in on the top priorities for Brown Deer as the village prepares to shift its approach to budgeting.

In a presentation to the Village Board on Monday, Village Manager Michael Hall explained that the commonly used incremental budgeting approach is better replaced by priority-based budgeting during times of flat or declining revenue.

The philosophy of priority-based budgeting, according to Hall's presentation, is that resources should be allocated according to how effectively a program or service achieves the goals and objectives of the community. The shift to this approach will require the board to identify its most important strategic priorities, rank programs or services with how well they align with those priorities and then allocate funding accordingly.

The transition will take time, Hall noted, and it is likely that the village's 2014 budget planning will focus strictly on the aspects of identifying available resources and priorities. Some of the priorities mentioned by board members on Monday included focusing on the economic development and marketing of the village, and addressing blighted properties and property maintenance, including possible development of a code enforcement department.

Hall also outlined some of his 2014 budget-related goals for the village, including being more transparent, efficient and creative, and presented six main village priorities, taking into consideration the village's comprehensive plan, as follows: community and neighborhood livability, culture and recreation, economic health, high-performing government, safe community and transportation.

Priorities will be further discussed and determined by the board in the future, with the priority-based budgeting steps to be implemented gradually.

Board considers creating

rummage sale ordinance

Brown Deer — Brown Deer is planning to create an ordinance regulating rummage and yard sales, to help address the issue of groups and residents from other communities holding sales within the village.

Trustee Terry Boschert brought the issue to the Village Board on Monday after recently observing a rummage sale being held in Brown Deer by an organization based in another community.

Village Attorney John Fuchs said he did not recommend requiring licenses or registration fees for rummage sales, but suggested an ordinance that would be complaint-based and would specify regulations for the frequency and hours of rummage sales, for example.

Police Chief Steven Rinzel said the village does encounter problems with rummagers who have continual sales on their properties, and described the regulations currently in place to deal with the issue as being incredibly time consuming, which could be resolved with an ordinance.

Fuchs said he would provide examples of similar ordinances in place in other communities and work with the board to draft a suitable ordinance for the village.

Nominations being accepted for award

Brown Deer — Nominations are now being accepted for the 2014 Touching Lives award, presented by Horizon Home Care & Hospice, a nonprofit licensed, full service home care agency and hospice provider. The award honors those individuals who've made a lasting impact on improving the lives of others through their efforts.

Visit horizonhch.com/events/touchinglives.asp for a nomination form or contact Kelly Andrew at kelly.andrew@hhch.net or call (414) 586-6268. Nominations are due by Sept. 6.

Horizon Home Care

expands Ozaukee unit

Mequon — Horizon Home Care & Hospice's renovated and expanded in-patient hospice unit at Columbia St. Mary's Hospital Ozaukee reopened Aug. 8.

The expansion was made possible through a $1 million gift from the Lawlis Family Fund through the Greater Milwaukee Foundation. The renovated unit reopened as the Lawlis Family Hospice.

The renovation included expanding the size of each of the unit's 14 patient rooms by nearly 40 square feet, adding natural light to family/gathering spaces and creating nature views and outdoor space with the addition of a patio overlooking the nearby prairie. New amenities include a luxury shower room, refrigerators in each patient room and WIFI access. Overall the project added 400 square feet to the three year-old hospice unit, bringing the total space to 13,400 square feet. Construction was managed by C.G. Schmidt.

Thiensville's estimated

population dips slightly

Thiensville — The Thiensville Village Board on Monday approved the Wisconsin Department of Administration's estimated population figure of 3,223 for 2013.

The number represents a slight decrease from prior years. In the official 2010 Census, 3,235 people were recorded as having lived in the village.

A year ago, the village attempted unsuccessfully to challenge the DOA. The state agency reported 3,228 people lived in Thiensville, but village officials asked for the number to be reconsidered since there were a number of families moving into the community.

Village to discuss handling

library's financial reporting

Thiensville — The Thiensville Village Board is expected to discuss a proposal to oversee financial reporting at the Frank L. Weyenberg Library at an upcoming Committee of the Whole meeting.

The village has recently been approached about handling the administrative task on behalf of the Library Board overseeing the Mequon-based Weyenberg facility, which serves Mequon and Thiensville residents.

Board members had varied viewpoints during a brief discussion at a meeting Monday. Many had concerns a community the size of Thiensville, with limited staffing, would be able to handle the task.

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