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Menomonee Falls police urge residents to lock doors, windows in light of two burglaries

Jan. 02, 2013 1:14 p.m. | Menomonee Falls police are warning residents and business owners to watch for suspicious activities after two homes were broken into Sunday and Monday.

According to a news release from the Menomonee Falls Police Department:

In the evening on Sunday, on the W15700 block of Countryside Drive, a home was entered through an unlocked garage service door and a laptop was taken. The suspects also attempted to enter several other homes on Countryside Drive and Colony Road, but were deterred after the doors were found to be locked, according to the Menomonee Falls Police Department.

A second home was broken into on Monday evening on the N5522 block of Ridgewood Drive. Suspects entered into the condo through an unlocked bedroom window. Jewelry, cash and gift cards were taken. No one was home at the time of the burglaries.

Police urge residents to lock all windows and doors, especially when they are not at home.

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Menomonee Falls opts not to offer new Chapter 220 seats, fewer open enrollment seats in 2015-16

3:07 p.m. | Menomonee Falls — There will be fewer new open enrollment and no Chapter 220 seats in the School District of Menomonee Falls next school year.

The Menomonee Falls School Board on Jan. 26 unanimously voted in favor of a district staff recommendation to not offer any Chapter 220 seats and to offer only an additional handful of open enrollment seats than it has in prior years.

A total of 25 spots, split between kindergarten and first and second grade, are proposed for 2015-16, down from 52 this year, according to Director of Pupil Services Kathy Zarling. New students with disabilities will also not be accepted into the district as part of the approval in an effort to make sure teachers are not spread too thin.

Out of the 226 existing open enrollment students throughout the district, 47 students have disabilities, including 23 at the elementary level.

Germantown School District approves less open enrollment, Chapter 220 seats for 2015-16

2:43 p.m. | Germantown — There will be a few less Chapter 220 and Open Enrollment seats in Germantown schools next year, as the district plans for another boost in resident enrollment in 2015-16.

The board in a 5-2 vote on Jan. 26 approved a total of 25 combined open enrollment and Chapter 220 seats, spread between grades three through 12. That is a slight decrease from 34 seats offered last year, which also included spots for incoming second-grade students.

All six available Chapter 220 seats are being offered at the third-grade level, which Secretary to the Superintendent Jayne Borst explained is the earliest grade level available next year to eligible students.

"It's always been our desire (to offer opportunities) in the lowest grades as possible for their benefit so they get the longest educational opportunity with us," Borst explained. "We have noticed the earlier we get the kids, the more in pace they are with the students in Germantown, so we just like to start them as early as possible."

Additional growth anticipated in kindergarten through second grade in 2015-16, combined with existing overcrowding issues in district elementary schools, contributed to the district staff recommendation not to offer seats in grades lower than third this year.

Answers and winners of the Suburban Selfies contest revealed!

1:45 p.m. | We here at Community Newspapers and Lake Country Publications would like to extend a big thank you to everyone who participated in our second annual Suburban Selfies contest. To those who clambered over the snowpiles and toughed out the icy winter winds to get in prime selfie snapping position, we salute you.

And what better thanks could we give than a free dinner?

These three won the east contest (Milwaukee suburbs):

Holly LaVesser of New Berlin takes home the grand prize of a $200 gift card to Bartolotta restaurants.

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nw_gt_communitysurvey_0205

12:15 p.m. | Germantown — A place to swim, an area for dogs to roam free and added diversity of family-friendly dining options. If these are things you would like to see happen in Germantown, you are not alone. And your time to speak up is now, as the village has put out a community survey seeking input from residents on priorities that relate to future direction, development and recreational facilities.

"The goal is for village staff and the various commissions and boards to collect feedback from businesses and residents to see what sort of direction they would like to see in a variety of areas throughout the village," explained Park and Recreation Director Justin Casperson. "It's a chance for the village to get involved with the overall planning process in the village."

Postcards were sent out last month directing property and business owners to the village web site to participate. In addition to basic demographic questions, the online survey gets specific about a number of existing amenities and developments in various parts of the village, and asks participants to rank future projects, like a dog park and swimming pool.

Feedback from the survey is all confidential and will be integrated into updates being made to the smart growth and comprehensive outdoor recreation plans of the village, which are in the process of being updated this year.

More than 1,100 responses had been received as of press deadline, a number which Village Administrator Dave Schornack said he would like to see continue to grow as the deadline of Sunday, Feb. 15 approaches.

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Menomonee Falls district doesn't change stance on the use of Common Core in reaction to Walker's off

8:47 a.m. | Menomonee Falls — What is in the best interest of the state as a whole is earning support from local school district officials as changes may be in store for Common Core standards in Wisconsin.

In Menomonee Falls, district officials in a recent letter directed to state legislators said they would like to see flexibility innovate and more efficiently align resources. But opting out of Common Core State Standards is not something likely to happen any time soon.

"We (focus) our work on the college career readiness standards aligned to ACT," said Supeintendent Pat Greco. "We choose College Career Readiness because ACT is the major transition point for our students to postsecondary education and success after high school."

The ACT College and Career Readiness Standards (CCRS) align with Common Core, which Gov. Scott Walker in his recent state of the state address said he wants to see be more flexible for districts in the future.

"I call on the members of the State Legislature to pass legislation making it crystal clear that no school district in the state is required to use Common Core standards," Walker said in his address. "Going forward, I want to eliminate any requirement to use Common Core."

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Falls boys rally for first win over Hamilton in three years, 35-29

Jan. 27, 2015 10:20 p.m. | Character, as everybody knows, comes about after bad things happen to people.

Do you respond positively or negatively?

And the Menomonee Falls boys boys basketball team has had a decade's worth of bad things and character-building events happen to them this season.

They've lost eight games by 10 points or less, including a gut-buster to Brookfield Central last Friday when the Lancers went the length of the court in just 1.6 seconds to hit the game-winning 3-pointer.

"Just awful," said senior Indian forward Jake Stauffacher of last Friday's defeat.

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Kindergarten enrollment night set for Feb. 4

Jan. 27, 2015 3:17 p.m. | Menomonee Falls — The School District of Menomonee Falls will hold its four-year-old and five-year-old kindergarten enrollment night at Ben Franklin Elementary School on Wednesday, Feb. 4.

Parents of prospective students are encouraged to sign their children up for school from 5 to 8 p.m. at the school, address.

Presentations on the 4K program will be given at 5 and 6 p.m. A presentation on the 5K program will be given at 7 p.m.

Items for parents to bring for enrollment are on the district website at www.sdmfschools.org.

Children must be four-years-old by Sept. 1 of this year to participate in 4K. They must be five-years-old by Sept. 1 to participate in 5K.

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MMSD approves expansion of Menomonee Falls sewer service area

Jan. 26, 2015 2:26 p.m. | The Milwaukee Metropolitan Sewerage District on Monday approved an 86-acre expansion of the Menomonee Falls sanitary sewer service area to accommodate future residential development.

The parcel is southwest of the intersection of Town Hall Road and Custer Lane, immediately south of Community Memorial Hospital.

Most of the property is recommended for low-density residential neighborhoods under a village comprehensive plan.

Crowds turn out to discuss long-term plans for downtown Germantown

Jan. 26, 2015 10:34 a.m. | Germantown — Steady snowfall and chilly temperatures did not keep dozens of Germantown residents away from Village Hall on the evening of Monday, Jan. 26, as the plan commission welcomed input on plans for the future of the village's downtown area.

Parking overflowed into the library parking lot as a steady flow of residents cycled through the board room, which was packed to the brim with those who wanted to weigh in on a topic that has been discussed at length in recent months.

Prompted by hours of discussion at the commission level, Germantown officials asked for input from village residents on long-term planning for an area they would like to see come together as an entertainment district in the village.

Scope, timing and impact to the neighborhood and village as a whole have been among the priorities the commission has identified thus far, as they are now in the process of reviewing conceptual plans put together by commissioner and trustee David Baum. In general, Baum's plans have been well received, as they incorporate additional access points to the area, including a new road and extra parking options.

However, noise and traffic impacts of a plan for the area remain a primary concern for many residents in attendance, including property owner Richard Thomas.

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Without Showalter, Germantown boys rally for win over Whitefish Bay

Jan. 23, 2015 10:36 p.m. |  

After his team rallied from an eight-point first quarter deficit to pull out a 67-53 North Shore Conference boys basketball decision over a feisty host Whitefish Bay squad, interim Germantown coach Mark Adams first words out of his mouth were:

"I was just glad I could call him and give him the right message (about a victory)," he chuckled.

"Him" being veteran Warhawk coach Steve Showalter, who was laid up all this week while fighting some setbacks in his recovery from some recent arthroscopic knee surgery.

Showalter has fought this same battle against blood clots before and so carefully took the week off as Adams and other assistants ran practice and prepared the Warhawks for the Blue Dukes.

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Senior night a grand success for Menomonee Falls wrestling

Jan. 22, 2015 10:58 p.m. | Veteran Menomonee Falls wrestling coach Jim McMahon is a self-admitted sentimental sort.

"I cry at anything," he said with a chuckle Thursday night after the Indians' 60-6, senior night Greater Metro Conference dual meet win over Brookfield Central.

And what got him the most choked up about Thursday night?

It was paging through the booklet that accompanied the senior night ceremonies. Falls, including managers and assorted other helpers, was sending on their way an impressive total of 17 seniors.

Each senior got a nice photo and a page of information about themselves and their future plans. The final question on that page was "What will you miss most about Falls wrestling?"

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Germantown businesses receive funding for workforce development

Jan. 20, 2015 3:25 p.m. | State Representative Dan Knodl (R) announced today that two businesses from the Assembly District No. 24 have received funding to develop in-demand skills for workers through round three of Governor Scott Walker's Wisconsin Fast Forward (WFF) initiative.

According to a release from the Department of Workforce Development, they intend to award Cambridge Major Laboratories, Inc. a $400,000 grant to train 183 incumbent workers and 99 new hires through a new, industry-specific training program that embeds career development with continuous improvement and learning.

DWD also intends to award KLH Industries, Inc. a $27,721 grant to train 8 incumbent workers and 2 new hires on 3 new high-precision machines for aerospace and defense industry parts production. The training will be provided on-site by private providers and equipment vendors.

"Cambridge Major Laboratories, Inc. and KLH Industries, Inc. are both great businesses," Knodl said. "It is great to see that the Department of Workforce Development (DWD) has recognized their ability to train and further prepare workers for modern day as well as future manufacturing demands."

Germantown Fire Department seeks to enlist additional paid-on-call staff

Jan. 20, 2015 11:22 a.m. | Germantown — "We need you."

That is the message Germantown Fire Chief Gary Weiss is sending out to members of the community as he seeks to grow the paid-on-call staff at the fire department.

"Paid-on-call staff is the backbone of a department," said Weiss, who has been actively working to improve the department since taking it over last May. "It's so important to have a healthy paid-on-call staff because that initial response is so important, especially in a medical emergency."

Both firefighters and emergency medical technicians are needed to supplement an existing POC staff of about 30. Of those, Weiss said about 20 are active and respond regularly to calls. Training will be provided to interested parties, and shifts for POC members rotate on a bi-weekly basis to assist the full-time and part-time members of the department when responding to calls.

A larger POC staff is needed regardless of the outcome of a possible fire department referendum later this year, Weiss added.

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Costco earns approval from Menomonee Falls village officials

Jan. 20, 2015 11:00 a.m. | Menomonee Falls — Plans for a 149,000-square-foot members-only shopping center along Highway 41/45 in Menomonee Falls will proceed.

On Jan. 19, the Menomonee Falls Village Board unanimously approved a conditional-use permit allowing the construction of a Costco store and gas station along the highway, just south of Best Buy and Steinhafels.

The approval includes conditions that include landscaped screening to help with concerns about lighting and noise that have been brought up by neighboring residents and business owners.

As part of the approval, the commission previously denied a request for a lighting exception to allow 36.5-foot light poles, which is a company standard for Cosco. Instead, there will be more poles at a lower height of 25 feet, which is the highest allowable in the village.

Now that approvals are through, Costco Development Manager Ted Johnson has said the new Costco store will open as early as this fall, becoming the third in the area and employing about 150 people.

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Plea deal in Ponzi scheme calls for prison time

Jan. 19, 2015 9:02 p.m. | In 2013, Michael Enea agreed to sell his Menomonee Falls home to help pay restitution to victims of a Ponzi scheme he operated, and now the federal government is willing to give him a place to live: behind bars.

A plea deal calls for Enea, 59, to plead guilty to wire fraud for running a $2.1 million Ponzi scheme that cost at least 10 investors more than $750,000, records filed in U.S. District Court last week show. He also is agreeing to plead to filing a false income tax return for writing off payments to the scheme's investors without reporting the income he received from them.

The deal calls for the prosecutors to recommend a sentence within the range recommended by federal sentencing guidelines — likely to be between 41 months and 51 months.

"Most assuredly there will be some sort of incarceration," Franklyn Gimbel, Enea's lawyer, said Monday.

Matthew Jacobs, assistant U.S. attorney, agreed the size of the scheme and the number of victims justified a prison time. "These were real people who lost real money and we do expect this guy to go to prison," Jacobs said.

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