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Falls fire union agrees to pay employee share of WRS

Aug. 19, 2013 9:49 p.m. | The Menomonee Falls Fire Department union agreed to pay their share into the Wisconsin Retirement System, according to a new collective bargaining agreement approved by the Village Board on Monday.

The International Association of Fire Fighters Local 3879 on Aug. 12 ratified a three-year agreement that affects employee pay, retirement contributions and work day schedule. When Act 10 went into affect two years ago, police and fire departments did not face any changes to their collective bargaining powers. Despite this, the union decided to align with all other non-represented village employees by following the non-represented employee health insurance plan design, as well as pay the full cost of the employee share of the WRS, said Village Manager Mark Fitzgerald.

"That means they will be taking on by contract that which Act 10 essentially gave them rights to avoid so our Fire Department now will be very much like the other non-represented employees in the village," he said.

Village President Randy Newman commended the union for their willingness to bring equality to village staff.

The agreement also changes the Fire Department employees' hours. Beginning Jan. 1, 2014, they will move to a 24-hour work day schedule; however, Fitzgerald said it's not the typical shifts where employees work 24 hours, then have 48 hours off of work. Full time employees will work three, 24-hour shifts with 24-hour breaks in between them, followed by having four days off. They will receive an additional eight days off throughout the year that are placed into a "leap schedule," which limits their hours to 53 hours on average per week.

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Initial Reaction Podcast: Menomonee Falls baseball virtuoso Ty Weber and Big Ten Media Day

July 29, 2016 12:45 p.m. | The guys welcome in Ty Weber, who pitched Menomonee Falls to a second straight WIAA baseball championship with a superb state-tournament performance. Plus, JP and JR talk about revelations (or lack thereof) gleaned from Big Ten media day and offer some thoughts on the Milwaukee Brewers as they approach the trading deadline. Each week, Lake Country/Now sports director JR Radcliffe and Time Warner Cable Sports Channel's JP Cadorin chat about the Wisconsin sports scene, with an emphasis on Milwaukee-area preps. Find the podcast on Stitcher and iTunes.

Germantown 'craft winery' owner crafts 9,000 bottles by hand

July 27, 2016 3:55 p.m. | Village of Germantown —Apple Works Winery just wrapped up its first month of business in Germantown after opening its doors on July 1.

Kevin Behnke has owned the property located on W179 N12536 Fond du Lac Ave., between Highway G and Maple Road since 2002. The site of Apple Works was once an apple orchard of the same name, which opened in 1983.

"The area needs something like this because there is nothing else quite like this," Behnke said.

As an award-winning amateur winemaker at the time, Behnke bought the property because of the Apple Works name recognition in the community.

"I've been very pleased with the turnout so far — to be open and never advertise, that's great," Behnke said.

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Menomonee Falls Girl Scout aids in Central America's conservation efforts

July 26, 2016 3:00 p.m. | Village of Menomonee Falls —Caroline Adams, a 14-year-old Girl Scout from the Girl Scouts of Menomonee Falls, completed Outward Bound Costa Rica's Scuba & Sea Turtle Adventure Destination.

During the 14-day course, Adams volunteered in Panama to protect endangered sea turtles, explored the coral reefs and learned to scuba dive. Specifically, Adams helped the endangered leatherback sea turtle population in a multi-day service project on the Caribbean coast of Panama.

"Outward Bound Costa Rica's programs, like the one Caroline participated in, create environments that allow for personal and leadership development through challenges, group effort and cross-cultural understanding," said Jim Rowe, Executive Director of Outward Bound Costa Rica.

Adams and her group traveled to the remote island of Solarte where they scuba dived and learned about the local ecology and marine life. When she passed the NAUI Open Water Certification training, she became a certified scuba diver.

"I enjoyed bonding with the girls on my course and making new friends," Adams said.

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Two suspects apprehended in Menomonee Falls armed robbery

July 26, 2016 12:10 p.m. | Village of Menomonee Falls —An 18-year-old and 17 year-old male were taken into custody and charges of armed robbery are being pursued.

Two males, each armed with a handgun, confronted a woman in the parking lot after she shopped at Walgreens, N56 W15501 Silver Spring Drive, Menomonee Falls. The suspects demanded keys to her vehicle, and fled the scene driving east down Silver Spring Drive.

Although one suspect is a minor, Assistant Police Chief Mark Waters said both suspects will be charged as adults per state law.

More than two hours later, at 11:33 p.m., the Milwaukee Police Department located the vehicle on the northwest side of Milwaukee. After signaling the car to pull over, the vehicle did not comply, and a pursuit of the vehicle began.

Eventually, the vehicle stopped and multiple subjects fled the car on foot.

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Menomonee Falls claims baseball title as team

July 26, 2016 9:31 a.m. | Ty Weber's efforts toward earning the Menomonee Falls baseball team its second straight WIAA state title were immeasurable, amazing and historic.

You have to go back to Oak Creek legend Tony Butler in the years 2003-2005 when he almost single-handedly lifted the Knights to three straight crowns with his bat and his arm or to West Bend East's Ryan Rohlinger with his three home runs and clutch pitching effort in the Suns' 2002 championship effort or to Brookfield Central's Justin Schweikert's two home runs and nine RBIs in the Lancers' 2000 title run.

Six hits in two games, five total RBIs and a complete-game shutout in the title game are all worthy of an NCAA D1 recruit and MLB draft choice (he recently turned down a very healthy financial and education package from the Reds to stay at Illinois where he has a scholarship).

It made an impression on people.

"I just watched as Ty Weber dared to be as great as we knew he could be," said Homestead coach Ernie Millard. "If there was a better state tourney performance, I'd like to see it."

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Major phase in Menomonee Falls' White Stone Station completed

July 25, 2016 3:30 p.m. | A large phase of the White Stone Station redevelopment project in the Falls was completed as of July 21. The 92,000 square foot building, known as the mid-box is finished, and the three of the four tenants in that retail space will include Ulta Beauty, HomeGoods and Ross.

Falls village manager/administrator, Mark Fitzgerald said this portion of the redevelopment was critical to the corridor.

"All of it layers into a full-service approach for the apartments and the Wisconsin Athletic Club," Fitzgerald said. "That mid-box is very critical, and we're very pleased to get that as part of this development, and it's nice to see it completed. We think it's very interesting architecture. It's a modern-looking retail establishment, so we're quite pleased with it."

The original area where White Stone exists was abandoned manufacturing facilities. Later, it was an RV facility along the freeway and eventually it became a maintenance facility for We Energies.

A redevelopment plan for the entire corridor was planned by the Village in 2007. The completion of the mid-box area will balance the anchor attraction of Costco, Fitzgerald said.

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Putting in the effort: Menomonee Falls baseball team wins second state title

July 25, 2016 2:35 p.m. | "You get out of it what you put into it."

Menomonee Falls assistant baseball coach Dave Weber made that statement as he was celebrating the Indians' remarkable second straight WIAA state title July 22 at Kapco Park in Mequon.

His son, Ty, had just completed one of the most impressive days of anyone in the history of the 51-year-old state summer tournament.

He went 6-for-8 at the plate over two games, driving in the only runs in the Indians' 2-0 victory over Greater Metro Conference rival Marquette in the final, pitching a complete-game, four-hit shutout along the way.

Dave was immensely pleased that his 6-4, 220-pound Illinois-bound son had overcome the pressure and lived up to all the hype that surrounded him when he came into high school four years ago.

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Roble pitches Menomonee Falls baseball team into state title game

July 25, 2016 2:02 p.m. | Menomonee Falls baseball coach Pat Hansen, with his 421 career wins, is not normally known as a gambling man.

So while many outsiders might see his choice to go with junior Logan Roble in the WIAA state semifinals against New Holstein on July 22 as opposed to all-state ace Ty Weber as a major risk, he did not.

"The way Logan's been pitching lately, it was an easy decision," said Hansen, after Roble threw a complete game, four-hit, 6-0 shutout against the Huskies at Kapco Park in Mequon.

With the victory, the Indians (25-10) took a major step down the road that ended in their second consecutive WIAA state title later that night with a 2-0 win over Greater Metro rival Marquette.

The Hilltoppers beat Greater Metro Conference champion Oak Creek, 8-3, in the early semifinal.

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Menomonee Falls man pleads guilty to homicide after killing bicyclist

July 25, 2016 12:05 p.m. | Menomonee Falls resident Adam Neuhaus pleaded guilty Wednesday, July 20, to two felonies, including homicide by negligent operation/vehicle.

Neuhaus struck and killed 50-year-old Keith Habenicht, who was riding his bike on Appleton Avenue in Germantown on Aug. 23, 2015, before leaving the scene of the crime.

According to the criminal complaint, Habernicht was found unresponsive with a traumatic head injury after a resident called 911. Video footage from a local business revealed a vehicle struck Habenicht's bicycle at approximately 8:15 p.m. Based on the footage, an officer stated he did not see the vehicle stop, attempt to stop or render any type of aid to the victim.

Neuhaus appeared before Washington County Judge Todd Martens on Wednesday to issue his plea, and he will be sentenced Sept. 19.

Homicide by negligent operation/vehicle is a Class G Felony, and upon conviction, Neuhaus may be fined not more than $25,000, or imprisoned not more than 10 years, or both. The second felony count, hit-and-run injury, is a Class U Felony, and upon conviction, Neuhaus may be fined not more than $10,000 or imprisoned for not more than nine months or both.

Behind marvelous day by Ty Weber, Menomonee Falls baseball repeats as state champion

July 22, 2016 10:09 p.m. | "You get out of it what you put into it."

Menomonee Falls assistant baseball coach Dave Weber made that statement as he was celebrating the Indians' remarkable second straight WIAA state title that was won Friday night at Kapco Park in Mequon.

His son, Ty, had just completed one of the most impressive days of anyone in the history of the 51-year old state summer tournament.

He went 6 for 8 at the plate over two games, driving in the only runs in the Indians' 2-0 victory over Greater Metro Conference rival Marquette in the final, pitching a complete game, four-hit shutout along the way.

Dave was immensely pleased that his 6-4, 220-pound Illinois-bound son had overcome the pressure and lived up to all the hype that had surrounded him when he came into high school four years ago.

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Live coverage: 2016 WIAA State Summer Baseball Tournament

July 22, 2016 6:00 p.m. | UPDATE: Menomonee Falls and Marquette won their semifinal games and are playing in the state title game.

A WIAA state summer baseball title is up for grabs at Kapco Park today.

The field has been whittled to four teams: Marquette, Oak Creek, New Holstein and Menomonee Falls. 

Marquette (26-6) and Oak Creek (31-2) square off in the first semifinal game, set for 9:05 a.m.

New Holstein (20-10) and Menomonee Falls (23-10) will battle in the other semifinal approximately 30 minutes after the opener is complete. 

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Roble pitches Menomonee Falls baseball team into state final, 6-0

July 22, 2016 2:36 p.m. | Menomonee Falls baseball coach Pat Hansen, with his 421 career wins, is not normally known as a gambling man.

So, while many outsiders might see his choice to go with junior Logan Roble in the WIAA state semifinals against New Holstein today as opposed to all-state ace Ty Weber as a major risk, he did not.

"The way Logan's been pitching lately, it was an easy decision," said Hansen, after Roble threw a complete game, four-hit, 6-0 shutout against the Huskies today at Kapco Park in Mequon.

With the victory the Indians (24-10) will now have a chance to defend their 2015 WIAA state championship against Marquette (27-6) at 6:05 p.m. back at Kapco.

The Hilltoppers beat Greater Metro Conference champion Oak Creek, 8-3, in the early semifinal.

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Falls woman dreams of starting her own dessert bus

July 21, 2016 2:58 p.m. | Village of Menomonee Falls —Menomonee Falls' Lora Murray is a tax accountant by day, but dreams about starting a dessert bus by night. Murray finished second at the Hottest Kitchen Entrepreneur Challenge in the start-up category on Wednesday, July 20.

"I was told I placed second, losing by a few points," Murray said. "It was so close. This was the hardest thing I had ever done, but was also the most rewarding. I was already a winner to even make it to the top three in the state in the start-up category."

Murray was sponsored by the Spice House, and she competed in a pool of more than 80 other candidates. Her concept is called Sinful Whoopie, a local dessert bus featuring a variety of whoopie pie flavors. Specifically, her theme is centered on the seven deadly sins.

Rumchata frosting paired with red velvet cake with a hint of Berry Weiss beer is lust, while a whoopie pie made with fresh Door County cherries is pride.

She said the idea reflects her "quirky sense of humor," but the cake recipe itself is one she learned from her mother as a child.

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Social media story on the storms rolling through Milwaukee area

July 21, 2016 1:16 p.m. | A social media story of the storms that moved through the Milwaukee area during the morning of July 21.

Donges Bay Road reconstruction enters final phase

July 21, 2016 1:15 p.m. | Village of Germantown —The Wisconsin Department of Transportation will enter the final phase of construction on Donges Bay Road and WIS 145 (Fond du Lac Avenue) on Monday, July 25 in Germantown.

To complete this final phase, WIS 145 will close to southbound traffic, and Donges Bay Road will remain closed. To get through the intersection, the only direction open will be WIS 145 northbound.

The construction is scheduled for completion in late fall.

More information about the project can be found online at http://projects.511wi.gov/wis145/.

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