Menomonee Falls teachers will have an extra class due to budget freeze, enrollment decline

April 29, 2013 6:35 a.m. | Teachers with the Menomonee Falls School District face an increase to their workload next year as a result of a state-proposed budget freeze and slight dip in enrollment that resulted in more than a dozen layoffs.

Instead of their usual five classes, Falls educators will teach six classes in the 2013-14 school year. This means fewer teachers will be required to teach students, according to the Menomonee Falls School District. Staffing decisions are based on student registration for classes, class size and performance.

"Teaching staff decisions are always challenging. We have good people working across the district," Superintendent Patricia Greco said. "The state budget freeze and a slight drop in enrollment are placing our district in a position to reduce our teaching staff."

There are 15 people who will be laid off at the end of the school year as a result of staff reductions, which totals 12.46 full-time equivalent positions.

Seniority is no longer the sole factor in staffing decisions.

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Police investigate bomb threat at Falls North Middle School

April 26, 2013 2:54 p.m. | Police on Thursday investigated a bomb threat at North Middle School in Menomonee Falls after graffiti was found in a school restroom indicating the threat of a bomb on "Friday."

The Menomonee Falls Police Department was immediately notified and the school was searched after the bomb threat written in graffiti was discovered Thursday afternoon. No further threats were found, according to a School District letter sent to parents. A canine search was also conducted before students were allowed to enter into the building today. Police were also stationed at the school throughout the day to ensure student and staff safety.

Schools in surrounding areas have experienced similar incidents in the last few days, according to the letter. The district's letter also urged parents to educate their children about the seriousness of this type of implied threat.

Germantown WKCE results show 71 percent of students proficient or advanced in math

April 25, 2013 2:26 p.m. | Out of CESA 1 member schools, Germantown students in math placed seventh out of 32 school districts, according to the 2012-2013 Wisconsin Knowledge and Concepts Examination results.

WKCE tests students in grades three through eighth and grade 10 in math, reading, language arts, science and social studies. Germantown students scored well above the state average in all categories.

The number of students who tested proficient or advanced in reading and math is lower than in years past. Scores used to show that more than 90 percent of students were proficient or advanced. Because the state has recently raised its assessment standards to a more rigorous scale, those numbers have dropped.

In total, 71.9 percent of tested students scored proficient or advanced in math, while 50.4 scored that in reading. The state average for students who scored proficient or advanced in math is 48.1. In reading, the state average was 36.2.

According to the Germantown School District, the goal is to once again have 90 percent of students testing advanced or proficient in these subjects as the district continues to build student interventions and curriculum realignment to the common core state standards.

Two Menomonee Falls residents arrested after separate gunshot incidents

April 23, 2013 2:18 p.m. | Menomonee Falls - Police officers who responded to two separate reports of gunshots less than 24 hours apart arrested two residents for illegally discharging a firearm on April 7 and 8.

According to Menomonee Falls police:

Officers responded to the N49 W20800 block of Lisbon Road after a caller reported that someone was firing a shotgun on the rear porch of a residence at about 4:30 p.m. April 7.

When a records check of the residence showed the homeowner had multiple prior arrests for possessing a gun while intoxicated, the Waukesha County Sheriff's Department and Brookfield Police assisted officers by setting up a perimeter around the residence before police made contact with the resident.

Police ended up arresting the homeowner, a 56-year-old woman, for discharging a firearm in a prohibited location after she admitted shooting a long gun in her backyard.

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Menomonee Falls schools to lay off 15 employees

April 23, 2013 12:55 p.m. | The Menomonee Falls School Board on Monday approved the layoff of 15 employees.

Final layoff notices, which have to be issued no later than May 15, are equivalent to 12.46 full time equivalent employees. As some are partial reductions to teaching positions, 15 people will be laid off.

Performance from the last and current school years is the main factor considered in determining which employees will be laid off, according to Menomonee Falls School District documents.

There is one teaching position held at the elementary level that will be filled should enrollment numbers be higher than anticipated.

Germantown postpones decision on 150-foot cellphone tower

April 17, 2013 11:36 a.m. | After more than two hours of discussion, the Germantown Village Board on Tuesday postponed the decision on a permit for a 150-foot cellphone tower on Wasaukee Road.

Instead of denying AT&T a conditional use permit for the tower and a wireless communication facility on a 25-acre parcel of land, the board directed AT&T to research whether it is feasible to both camouflage the tower and shorten it.

About a dozen residents addressed the board, voicing opposition to the cellphone tower saying it will be a visual eye sore and cause their property values to decrease. A handful of residents said reception is spotty in that area and the village needs to move into the future of cellphone and data usage, asking them to approve the permit.

Village Trustee Terri Kaminski made the motion to postpone the decision, saying if they vote on the 150-foot pole as presented it most likely would be denied. She wanted AT&T to have the ability to come back with options that would appease residents.

"This is the future - whether it's streaming movies or your kids in high school, virtual schools, a crisis where you have to reach your child - all these outlets are via cellphone," Kaminski said. "I would support this because this is life of the future and I don't think any of us in Germantown really want to be left behind."

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Cell phone search tips officer to driver's drug use

April 15, 2013 3:50 p.m. | A man who was pulled over for driving with suspended license plates was taken into custody for drugged driving after the officer was tipped off to the driver's condition by a drug-related Internet search on his passenger's cellphone on April 9.

According to the Menomonee Falls police report:

According to the officer's report, he pulled over a 2001 Chrysler Sebring on Appleton and Cleveland avenues at 1:13 p.m. April 9 after he noticed the car had suspended license plates. While the officer was approaching the passenger side of the vehicle he observed the passenger, a 28-year-old woman, was searching "side effects of snorting heroin" on her cellphone. When the woman realized the officer was standing next to her door she quickly concealed the phone.

The officer also observed, in open view, a one-inch by one-inch section of aluminum foil near the gear shifter, which is a common way powdered heroin is packaged and sold.

Both the driver, a 26-year-old West Allis man, and the passenger, a 28-year-old Fond du Lac woman, displayed signs of recent drug use, including droopy eyelids, drowsiness and raspy speech, according to the report. A search of the vehicle also led to the discovery of several razor blades and two empty handgun casings.

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Rep. Pridemore hosts state budget listening session

April 15, 2013 12:14 p.m. | Rep. Don Pridemore (R-Erin) is hosting a listening session in Menomonee Falls centered on Gov. Scott Walker's proposed budget.

The session is slated for 7 p.m. April 18 at the Menomonee Falls Public Library, N8436 Pilgrim Road. The purpose of the listening session is so Pridemore can take comment from constituents on the proposed budget.

View flooding photos of suburban Milwaukee

April 12, 2013 9:36 a.m. | We've just updated our flooding photos from suburban Milwaukee gallery with images taken in Thiensville, Glendale and Shorewood.

Flooding can be seen in a lot of places, especially along the Milwaukee River, Menomonee River and Root River. Check out scenes from along those rivers and other flooding photos from suburban Milwaukee.

Young Bay girls slip by North Shore track field for indoor league title

April 09, 2013 9:02 p.m. | Whitefish Bay junior 400-meter track runner Grace Murray is a little unused to the protocols of her new sport. This is her first year out for track and like almost the entirity of her team, she is an underclassmen.

So, she wasn't sure what she had accomplished by holding off a determined charge from a Grafton competitor to bring the 1,600 relay team home to victory in the last race of the North Shore Conference indoor meet Tuesday night at Homestead.

Only when it was announced that the Blue Dukes had won the meet by just four points over the defending champion Blackhawks (113-109) did it become a little more clear to her.

"This was just my second time anchoring a relay," she said, "and right before the race one of my coaches said 'We're looking for leadership on this team. You need to step up and be someone.'"

"I found out I liked doing this (having the responsibility of anchoring a relay)."

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Delays expected when Silver Spring project in Menomonee Falls starts

April 09, 2013 10:24 a.m. | Road closings and construction on County Highway VV, or Silver Spring Drive, in Menomonee Falls is expected to cause delays for months starting April 22.

The Waukesha County Department of Public Works and the state Department of Transportation are adding lanes to make Highway VV a four-lane roadway over a 1.5-mile stretch from west of the Fox River to Jackson Drive. Work also will be done on the bridges over the Fox River on both Highway VV and County Highway Y, also Lannon Road.

The roads will be closed and detours posted until work on the bridges is completed in September. The project should be finished by mid-November, according to the Waukesha County Department of Public Works.

Michels Corp. of Brownsville is the project's prime contractor, and Patrick Engineering of Waukesha will manage and inspect construction for DOT.

Germantown police investigating burglary at hair salon

April 09, 2013 9:32 a.m. |

Police are seeking the suspect(s) who stole about $300 from a cash register during a break-in at a Germantown hair salon on March 15.
According to the police report:
Officers responding to a report of an attempted burglary at Marko’s Pizza met with the owner of Tangle Hair Studio, W156 N9662 Pilgrim Road, who told police her business was broken into at about 7:50 a.m. March 15. The two businesses are located in the same strip mall on Pilgrim Road.
The hair salon owner told police she noticed her security camera wires were unplugged and hanging down from a broken ceiling tile when she opened her business that morning. She also told police all the cash, about $300, was missing from her cash register.
A police search of the premises revealed the unknown suspect(s) entered the business by using a tool to open the door latches on two locked rear doors. The suspect(s) unplugged one of the security cameras in the ceiling, and two other security cameras were left on but were turned away from the cash register and front door area. 
The suspect(s) also entered a closet where the computer was stored and stole the hard drive which contained the video from the security cameras.
No fingerprints were recovered from the cameras or doors and the investigation is ongoing.

Colleen Mrotek named 2013 Miss Southern Wisconsin in photo gallery

April 08, 2013 11:18 a.m. | Colleen Mrotek of Bay View, Miss St. Francis 2012, was named Miss Southern Wisconsin 2013 on April 7.

The Miss Southern Wisconsin 2013 pageant is an official preliminary event for Miss Wisconsin pageant and was held at the at the Marian Center for Nonprofits.

View Mrotek and the other pageant participants in our photo gallery.

South Milwaukee's Cecilia Margraff crowned Miss St. Francis 2013

April 07, 2013 8:02 p.m. | South Milwaukee native Cecilia Margraff was crowned Miss St. Francis 2013 last night by reigning Miss St. Francis Colleen Mrotek at Saint Thomas More High School in Milwaukee.

The event is in its 49th year and is an official preliminary competition for Miss Wisconsin. Margraff will receive a $2,000 scholarship to the school of her choice.

The Miss Wisconsin pageant is June 16-22 in Oshkosh.

Miss St. Francis 2013 photo gallery

Hamilton's Mackenzie Latt leads NOW All-Suburban Girls Basketball Team

April 05, 2013 12:55 p.m. | Junior Mackenzie Latt from Sussex-Hamilton was voted the NOW All-Suburban Girls Basketball Player of the Year after helping her team to a second consecutive conference championship.

New Berlin Eisenhower's Gary Schmidt was voted as Coach of the Year for taking his squad to the Division 2 state title game.

Read more about them and the other members of the team on the special page highlighting the 2012-13 NOW All-Suburban Girls Basketball Team.

Falls incumbents ousted from trustee seats

April 02, 2013 10:40 p.m. | Newcomers Jeremy Walz and Bonnie Lemmer defeated longtime Menomonee Falls Village Board trustees and incumbents Michael McDonald and Jeff Steliga in Tuesday's election.

It was a close race for Walz and McDonald, as Walz won by 359 votes, garnering a total of 3,215 or 53 percent of the vote. McDonald had 2,856 votes. Lemmer received 3,203 votes, or 53 percent compared with Steliga's 2,825 votes, or 47 percent.

Village trustees serve three-year terms and receive $5,500 annually.

The unofficial vote total:

Jeremy Walz 3,215

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Medved elected to Germantown School Board

April 02, 2013 10:20 p.m. | Newcomer Brian Medved will replace Diana Kline on the Germantown School Board, having beat fellow newcomer Jill North.

Medved received 2,726 votes, or 61 percent. North received 39 percent of the vote, or 1,739 votes. Medved is a business owner, assistant scout master and Little League coach.

School Board members serve three-year terms and receive $4,000 annually.

The vote total, according to unofficial results Tuesday:

Brian Medved 2,726

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Falls police arrest two men suspected in multiple gas thefts

April 01, 2013 3:36 p.m. | Police have arrested two men in connection with a rash of gas drive-offs that occurred in Menomonee Falls between March 19 and March 24.

About $500 worth of gas was stolen during the thefts, with all but one incident occurring at Speedway, N87 W17245 Main St.

According to the police:

The first theft took place at Speedway on March 19, when the driver of a 1990s black Toyota Tercel with no license plates left without paying for $54 of gas. The suspect was described as a 6-foot-tall male in his late teens or early 20s wearing a green hooded shirt.

The second incident at Speedway occurred at 11:10 a.m. March 20, when the driver of a black Honda Accord with temporary license plates left without paying for $55 of gas. The suspect was described as a male in his late teens or 20s and weighing about 160 pounds.

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Man caught fiddling with pipe arrested on drug possession charges

April 01, 2013 3:05 p.m. | A complaint about a man possibly committing a lewd act on himself in a Menomonee Falls grocery store parking lot led to the arrest of a 24-year-old Brown Deer man on drug possession charges on March 19.

According to the Menomonee Falls police report:

A loss prevention employee at Woodman's, W142 N8145 Highway 145, told police he went out into the parking lot after a customer complained that a man was masturbating or possibly performing some kind of lewd act in a parked car at about 4 p.m. March 19.

As the employee walked past the subject's vehicle, he observed a male in the front driver's seat of the vehicle with his hands "in his crotch area." The employee told police he saw the subject's hands moving when he walked past the car but did not see any exposed skin near the man's genital area. He then walked past the vehicle a second time and observed the man was actually placing a green, leafy substance into a pipe he was holding between his legs.

When the employee knocked on the driver's side window of the car the man attempted to drive away, but then stopped after he was told to pull over. The employee took custody of the pipe and its contents and brought the man into the store to wait for police.

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