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Children's Theatre presents "Little Red Riding Hood"

July 30, 2012 8:06 p.m. | Fans of "Little Red Riding Hood" can see a free performance of the timeless classic presented by the Children's Theatre of Wauwatosa this week at two local schools.

One performance will be held at 10:15 a.m. July 31 at Eisenhower School, 11600 W. Center St.

The other performance will be held at 7 p.m. Aug. 2 at Longfellow Middle School, 7600 W. North Ave.

The performances are being offered as part of the playground program sponsored by the Wauwatosa Recreation Department.

Win State Fair tickets on Facebook

July 29, 2012 9:08 a.m. |  Food, fun, rides, music and more await you at the Wisconsin State Fair starting Thursday. All you need is tickets.

And MyCommunityNOW is here to help.

You can win a pair of Wisconsin State Fair tickets by heading over to our Facebook page and filling out our State Fair tickets giveaway entry. Simply tell us what you're most looking forward to at the State Fair.

Entries will be taken until noon Friday. Winners will be selected in a random drawing and emailed that day. Winners can pick up the tickets at our offices or have them mailed to them.

So hurry up, head over and enter today.

Heidi Hernandez named Wauwatosa Catholic School principal

July 27, 2012 2:44 p.m. | Wauwatosa Catholic School has hired a new principal to guide its accreditation goals and growing enrollment.

Heidi Hernandez has taken over the helm of the 3-year-old kindergarten through eighth-grade school, which was created in September 2011 when St. Bernard and St. Pius X parishes combined their education programs.

Hernandez was an instructional supervisor in the Catholic schools through Nonpublic Educational Services, a Massachusetts-based company that provides tutoring services for more than 15,000 students around the world. She also brings experience as a literacy coach and teacher in the Milwaukee Public School System.

Hernandez has earned two master's degrees: one in curriculum and instruction from Marian University, Fond du Lac, and a second in administrative and instructional leadership from Alverno College.

A search committee chose Hernandez because she proved an "open-minded person of faith who is a good listener and whose love of children is evident," according to a news release announcing her hiring issued by the parishes today.

» Read Full Article

Cross-dressing thief faces 40 years for Tosa bank robbery

July 27, 2012 11:33 a.m. | A man dressed as a woman allegedly robbed Tri City Bank, 10859 W. Bluemound Road, on July 13, and he is now facing a felony charge that could bring a maximum penalty of $100,000 or 40 years imprisonment.

According to a criminal complaint:

Michael Ricardo Leviston, 57, from Hilbert, is accused of walking into the bank and handing a teller a note, then stating "I have a gun" and "Give me money."

As she started to remove money from a drawer, he allegedly told the teller that he was going to shoot her.

He walked out of the bank with a bag filled with $6,615.

» Read Full Article

Swimming water quality? There's an app for that

July 27, 2012 11:28 a.m. | An app released by Milwaukee Riverkeeper makes it easy to find a safe beach for swimming.

The Swim Guide uses water quality monitoring data from government authorities. Green marks indicate acceptable water quality, while red marks show where it is unsafe. It also enables users to get directions, view photos and report pollution immediately to Milwaukee Riverkeeper.

Milwaukee Riverkeeper wants to protect beachgoers from getting sick, and raise public awareness about pollution threatening our rights to swimmable waters.

The technology was developed by Lake Ontario Waterkeeper and is now managed by Milwaukee Riverkeeper and other member groups of the Waterkeeper Alliance, a network of 200 water protection groups worldwide.

The app can be downloaded at milwaukeeriverkeeper.org/content/swim-guide.

Ronald McDonald House plans to double its size

July 27, 2012 11:26 a.m. | The Ronald McDonald House on Thursday received approval from the Milwaukee County Board to purchase 3.5 acres of land that will allow for doubling the size of the facility that houses families of seriously ill or injured children.

The house, 8948 Watertown Plank Road, has been operating at full capacity for more than four years. A larger property will provide space to add 75 guest rooms and remodel and expand common facilities.

The land being purchased adjoins the four acres the house sits on, which is leased from the county.

Fallen tree knocks out power to home

July 26, 2012 5:20 p.m. | A tree fell in a yard knocking out power to a home and causing damage to the water line at Portland Avenue and Kavanaugh Place following the storms that came through Wauwatosa last night.

The tree didn't fall on the property itself, but the water line damage caused basement water damage, said Assistant Fire Chief James Case.

The Fire Department was dispatched to the property at 2:14 a.m.

Bel Air Cantina slated to open on North Avenue in Wauwatosa

July 25, 2012 9:18 a.m. | Bel Air Cantina may soon be celebrating Taco Tuesdays and serving up "Cali-Mexican" cuisine and flights of tequila in the building that last served as the Aqua Terra fish store, 6817 W. North Ave.

The Wauwatosa Economic Development Corp. unanimously voted Tuesday to give owners of Bel Air Cantina $150,000, which will be used toward acquiring the 5,700-square-foot building in East Tosa.

The WEDC has nearly $347,000 in federal Community Development Block Grant funds to allocate through spring in an effort to spur development and job creation. Bel Air Cantina - which was one of three applicants requesting funding - was named the panel's top priority because it would create at least 25 full-time equivalent jobs, fill a vacant building and only asked for 11 percent of the estimated $1.3 million project cost.

"We've wanted to do something in Wauwatosa for some time," owner Scott Johnson said. "This is a great building on a great strip."

Building up North Ave.

» Read Full Article

Group hosts discussion on Eschweiler demolition prospect

July 24, 2012 5:40 p.m. | A group interested in preserving the land and history of the County Grounds will hold a community discussion about the future of the historic Eschweiler Buildings on Wednesday at the Wauwatosa Public Library.

The County Grounds Coalition - environmental groups including Milwaukee Riverkeeper and The Park People of Milwaukee County and historical organizations such as the Wisconsin Trust for Historical Preservation that banded together in 2010 - have been unhappy with the residential portion of the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee's Innovation Park development.

Mandel Group's latest proposal to the city's Historic Preservation Commission called for eliminating all but the administration building and constructing new housing units around it. UWM is relying on the sale of the property to Mandel Group to make a payment to Milwaukee County for the entire Innovation Park property.

The coalition invites community members to talk at 6:30 p.m. about the value of the Eschweiler Buildings and explore ways to achieve a better outcome.

"Throughout the 18 months Mandel has been planning the residential portion of the development, there was never any indication they needed to demolish any of the buildings," said Barb Agnew, coalition member and chairwoman of the Friends of the Monarch Trail. "So when they came with the latest plan, I felt we should discuss any realistic and possible alternatives and solutions to save them."

Tosa to borrow $12.4 million for 2012 capital projects

July 24, 2012 1:13 p.m. | The city will borrow $12.4 million to pay for capital improvement projects that will be undertaken in 2012.

The money will pay for sewer projects, street paving, bridge repairs, building improvements and business district infrastructure. The debt will be paid back over 10 years, city Finance Director John Ruggini said.

The Common Council has authorized city staff to put the bond sales out to bid with the hopes of getting an interest rate of about 2.25 percent. Bids are expected to be opened Aug. 7, at which time the council will need to vote to finalize the process.

The city is taking on more infrastructure projects, necessitating an increase in borrowing in coming years. In the past there was a spending cap of $3.5 million, but that has been lifted.

Even after some of the major projects are completed, it's unlikely the need to borrow will return to earlier lows. A certain amount of money - reaching a plateau at about $8 million per year come 2022 - will be necessary to maintain the infrastructure.

» Read Full Article

West Allis man pepper-sprayed by security during birthday party at Hart Park

July 24, 2012 1:12 p.m. | A 35-year-old West Allis man was pepper-sprayed by security guards and arrested for disorderly conduct by police because he got unruly at a birthday party at Hart Park.

According to the Wauwatosa police report:

A private security firm had been hired to watch over a quinceanara, a 15th birthday celebration in the Hispanic community, to which 200 guests had been invited. It took place in the Muellner Building in Hart Park. The birthday girl's family members had given guards a few rules to enforce, such as not allowing kids to leave the building without a chaperon after 10 p.m.

A few minutes before 10 p.m., a couple of kids wanted to go outside. One guard said OK if they were back inside by the deadline, while another told them they couldn't leave and got physically aggressive with the kids, they said.

The kids were pulled into a room for questioning by guards when the West Allis man - the boyfriend of the birthday girl's mother - came to see what was going on. He said he felt responsible for the children at the party; however, he got loud and refused to leave after numerous requests by the guards. He was pepper-sprayed by a guard.

» Read Full Article

Tosa teen robbed, assaulted while walking to friend's house

July 24, 2012 12:41 p.m. | A 17-year-old Wauwatosa boy was robbed and assaulted while walking at 61st Street and Wisconsin Avenue early Saturday morning, police said.

According to the Wauwatosa police report:

The boy was walking to a friend's house at 12:41 a.m. Saturday when two men approached him. One man asked how much money he had. The boy pulled out a $1 bill and handed it over.

The second man punched the boy in the jaw, knocking him to the ground. The boy got up and ran up a steep hill, losing a shoe along the way. The robbers chased him, tripping him on the sidewalk. The boy said he made numerous attempts to get up but they kept pushing him down. At some point, he lost his shirt and second shoe.

Eventually the boy got free and ran to his friend's house.

» Read Full Article

Officer shoots charging pitbull during search of alleged drug house

July 24, 2012 12:04 p.m. | Two men are facing charges in circuit court and a dog was put down after being shot in the face during the search of an alleged drug house in the 10700 block of West Keefe Avenue on Thursday morning.

According to Wauwatosa police reports:

The Wauwatosa Police Department's Special Response Team, made up of more than a dozen officers, executed a search warrant at 5:11 a.m. July 19. A woman with three dogs at her feet answered the door.

One of the dogs, a pitbull, was barking and growling. It charged at an officer, which caused him to fear for his safety and shoot the dog when it got within four feet of him. The dog yelped and ran to a bedroom, where it stayed until a representative from the Milwaukee Area Domestic Animal Control Commission arrived.

The dog had a significant gunshot wound to the head and face, said David Flagler, executive director of MADACC, in an interview.

» Read Full Article

Wauwatosa Cemetery Chapel could become local historic site

July 23, 2012 2:36 p.m. | The Wauwatosa Cemetery Board would like to see the chapel on the property designated as a local historic site.

The board submitted a nomination application and a hearing was held earlier this month to consider the chapel's significance.

"(The commission) considered the history and current appearance of the building and voted unanimously to recommend local designation because of its role in Wauwatosa history and as a fine example of architecture," said Brian Faltinson, city Historic Preservation Commission chairman.

The chapel was built in 1852 as the First Baptist Church. In 1888 the congregation moved to a new building and Frederick Underwood - son of minister Enoch Underwood - purchased the church, according to nomination papers filed by the cemetery board. It became an armory until the Wisconsin Light Guard disbanded in 1914.

At that time, the church was moved to the cemetery and received renovations to make it a chapel with a Greek Revival-style portico. The chapel is an example of the changing funeral practices of the early 20th century, when people moved wake services from homes to a cemetery chapel.

» Read Full Article

Village Playhouse needs actors for 'Cat on a Hot Tin Roof'

July 23, 2012 10:34 a.m. | Talented actors are needed to bring Tennessee Williams' play "Cat on a Hot Tin Roof" to life with The Village Playhouse of Wauwatosa.

Auditions will be held at 7 p.m. today, July 23, and tomorrow, July 24, at Divine World Lutheran Church, 5505 W. Lloyd St., Milwaukee. Actors will read from a script.

The play tells the story of a southern family arguing over the patriarch's land and money on his birthday.

Performances will be held beginning Sept. 28 at Christ King Church, kicking of the playhouse's season. Upcoming shows are "The Best Christmas Pageant Ever" in December and "39 Steps" in April.

The playhouse is a nonprofit group run by volunteers. For information call (414) 447-0431.

Chili'n on the Avenue returns to East Tosa on Saturday

July 20, 2012 2:50 p.m. | The East Tosa Alliance wants to help people chill out and enjoy summer by offering food, music and a chili cook-off Saturday.

Chili'n on the Avenue returns for the third year, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, in an effort to showcase the commercial district, foster bonds between neighbors and raise money to promote shopping and dining along North Avenue.

To allow for the festival's growth, the stretch where it will be held has expanded this year, said Rachel Schickowski, event marketing chairwoman. Activities will span North Avenue from 68th Street to Lefeber Avenue.

There will be children's activities, vendors and a chili contest. Paul Cebar and Tomorrow Sound will headline the street festival with a performance at 3:30 p.m.

A number of cooks will prepare their chili recipes and judges will determine the tastiest creation. Members of the public can make up their own minds by buying small bowls and sampling for themselves.

Bel Air Cantina looks to open in East Tosa

July 20, 2012 2:30 p.m. | East Tosa may become the site of an oasis for Mexican food lovers.

Bel Air Cantina - the popular restaurant already has a location on Milwaukee's East Side - could be celebrating Taco Tuesdays and serving up "Cali-Mexican" cuisine and flights of tequila in the building that last served as the Aqua Terra fish store, 6817 W. North Ave.

The city, through its Wauwatosa Economic Development Corp., has nearly $347,000 in Community Development Block Grant funds to allocate through spring, 2013, in an effort to spur development and job creation. Bel Air Cantina is one of three applicants requesting funding, which will be discussed by the WEDC on Tuesday.

Bel Air Cantina is seeking $150,000 to help buy the building, which would then be completely remodeled inside and out. The project would cost a total of about $1.4 million for the business, according to a report by the city's Development Department.

Restaurant owners Leslie Montemurro and Scott Johnson also are behind other Milwaukee-area hotspots such as Balzac, Palomino, Hi-Hat Lounge and Fuel.

» Read Full Article

Portion of Swan Blvd. closed for 10 days, starting Monday

July 20, 2012 11:16 a.m. | A portion of Swan Boulevard will be closed for about 10 days beginning Monday to accommodate sewer and water main installation.

Traffic will be prohibited from using northbound Swan Boulevard between the Highway 45 entrance ramp and Menomonee River Parkway. Crews will work on the Meinecke Avenue Neighborhood flood mitigation project, installing pipes through the intersection of Swan and the parkway, Public Works Director Bill Porter said.

Southbound traffic on Swan Boulevard may be closed for a short duration as the contractor stages the construction. Vehicles accessing Hoyt and Hansen parks will be able to turn in both directions during the closure.

Mount Mary, Medical College offer dual-degree program in public health

July 20, 2012 11:04 a.m. | Two local colleges are teaming up to over a dual-degree program that would allow students to receive Bachelor and Master of Public Health degrees within five years.

Mount Mary College will allow students in their junior year to apply to the Medical College of Wisconsin's Master of Public Health program beginning spring 2013. If accepted, students will enroll in up to five master's courses during their senior year. The agreement between the two schools waives the Graduate Record Exam and application fees.

The dual-degree program was created to prepare graduates for professions in a rapidly changing health care environment, while letting motivated students complete their educations faster, according to a news release announcing the partnership.

Blood donors to get free State Fair ticket

July 20, 2012 10:54 a.m. | The BloodCenter of Wisconsin sees a slump in donations each summer. To pump up the supply, the Wauwatosa-based facility is offering a free ticket to Wisconsin State Fair to every person who donates blood now through Aug. 11.

In Wauwatosa, people can give blood at the donor center at 8733 Watertown Plank Road. Make an appointment by calling (877) 232-4376 and mention the word "summer" or enter summer in the comment box of the confirmation page when registering online at bcw.edu.

The BloodCenter must see at least 800 donors each day to meet the needs of the hospitals it serves. During the summer months, donations drop because of summer travel and fewer school and community blood drives.

Donors should bring a photo ID that includes their birth date to show donors are 17 or older, or 16 with parental permission.

Tosa officials agree safety, not politics, should be focus in managing large events

July 18, 2012 11:53 a.m. | A rally in support of Gov. Scott Walker held at Hart Park early this year has since caused a lot of debate within the city about how it was handled.

More than six months after it was held, the discussion continues. However, the city should be focusing its concern on communication and safety, not politics, Wauwatosa officials said Tuesday.

"It's not about free speech," Police Chief Barry Weber said. "I keep a copy of the Constitution on my desk. I don't care who it gets rented to, my only issue is overtime costs."

The Police Department incurred several thousand dollars in expenses to have officers on hand. That's money that was not required to be reimbursed by event organizers.

Since then the Common Council has changed it permit ordinance so the police can review special events and determine what kind of police presence will be needed and what that would cost. Applicants would be charged up front for the police service, as has been the case for parades and walk/runs that have occurred on city streets.

» Read Full Article

Robber gets pharmicist to stay late, but scam fails

July 18, 2012 10:33 a.m. | A man attempted to rob a Wauwatosa pharmacy of prescription painkillers Sunday afternoon.

According to a Wauwatosa Police Department report:

A man perused magazines, then asked for a pharmacist for an allergy medicine recommendation at Swan Serve U Pharmacy, 9130 North Ave. He said he left his money at his home nearby and asked if the pharmacist would stay at the store for a few minutes beyond the 3 p.m. closing time so he could return with the money.

When the customer returned at 3:15 p.m., he handed the pharmacist a note claiming he had a gun and demanding oxycodone.

The pharmacist didn't see a weapon so he yelled at the man to get out. The robber took a magazine and allergy medicine and took off.

Wauwatosa power line hearing moved to November

July 18, 2012 10:14 a.m. | A public hearing on where to place a power line in Wauwatosa has been postponed by the state Public Service Commission.

Tosa residents and intervening parties, including the city and a local group called People Friendly Power, will likely get their chance to speak to the commission about the Western Milwaukee County Electric Reliability Project in late November, rather than mid-September.

The change gives the city more time to look into alternative routes and question American Transmission Company on the routes ATC has proposed, City Attorney Alan Kesner said Tuesday.

"The sense of urgency that we felt three weeks ago has diminished to some extent," Kesner said.

The postponement came as a result of unfinished land negotiations between We Energies and Milwaukee County.

Accomplice armed with tire iron aids shoplifter's escape

July 18, 2012 10:12 a.m. | A grocery store security guard who was trying to stop a shoplifter was threatened by an accomplice armed with a tire iron last week.

According to a Wauwatosa Police Department report:

A woman recognized for taking baby formula from area stores showed up at Pick 'n Save, 6950 W. State St., on July 9. She had concealed items but had dropped them before leaving. Security warned her not to return and police weren't called.

The following day, the same woman entered the store at 8:34 a.m. This time she was interested in energy drinks. The guard tried to detain her in the vestibule, having to physically restrain her at one point.

She called out to a man in the parking lot, who pulled his vehicle up to the entrance. He got out of the car and approached with a tire iron raised in an attack position.

» Read Full Article

College plans cause worry

July 11, 2012 10:54 a.m. | Wisconsin Lutheran College wants to rezone 15 homes it bought in Wauwatosa so it can change one to use as office space and allow more students to move into the others.

Dozens of neighbors worried about continued expansion by the college into the residential community came to the Plan Commission on Monday to voice their concerns. They fear that rezoning will just open the door to replacing the buildings with larger dormitories or classroom buildings in the future.

Homeowners said they have battled the college for nearly 30 years. It purchased less than 10 acres of land in Milwaukee initially and has been expanding to the east into Wauwatosa since then, residents said. In 2000, the college requested a rezoning that led to a mediation effort between the college and city. It resulted in a 10-year college boundary agreement that has since expired on the east side of the campus, adjacent to the rear yards of the properties on the west side of Pleasant View Street.

"This is something that's really going to have a big impact on our neighborhood and our property values," resident Tom Genack said.

Residents talked about the increased crime, parking problems and poorly maintained properties that have resulted as the college has bought up homes during the last decade.

» Read Full Article

Iced bottle of Jagermeister found in car of men chased down by Tosa police

July 11, 2012 9:56 a.m. | A Wisconsin Rapids man was arrested for drunken driving and violating probation after he was found in a vehicle with his former partner in crime and tried to flee police last week.

According to the Wauwatosa police reports:

The 22-year-old man failed to stop for a sign at Menomonee River Parkway and North Avenue so he was pulled over at 2:05 p.m. July 5. As soon as he stopped his car, he and the 51-year-old passenger, also from Wisconsin Rapids, got out of the car.

The driver made a run for it into the woods along the parkway. Dispatchers received numerous calls from residents reporting a man running through their yards, and in one case he damaged a screen porch in the 2300 block of North 102nd Street.

Officers caught up to the man on 101st Street and smelled alcohol on his breath. His blood-alcohol content was 0.13.

» Read Full Article

Big inning propels Marquette past Tosa West

July 11, 2012 9:33 a.m. | A season that marked a major turnaround for the Wauwatosa West baseball team came to an abrupt end Tuesday night at Breitlow Field.

The Trojans fell to Marquette, 6-3, in the opening round of the WIAA summer baseball regionals. The loss was especially tough for the upstart Trojans, given the fact that they held a 3-1 lead heading into the sixth inning.

Tosa West junior Austin Jones led the Trojans’ fast start, pitching four scoreless innings before being tagged for one run in the fifth inning. In the sixth, costly errors on a missed tag at first and a dropped foul ball gave the Hilltoppers a chance to strike.

With two runners on, Marquette’s Joe Bartoletti drilled a double into left-center, tying the game at 3-3. Alex Herman followed with another double to bring Bartoletti home, giving Marquette a one-run lead that it would never relinquish.

A passed ball and an RBI-single from Parker Sniatynski capped a five-run sixth inning that gave Marquette the decisive 6-3 edge.

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79-year-old arrested for exposing himself in mall

July 11, 2012 8:24 a.m. | An elderly Brookfield man was arrested for exposing and fondling himself in a Mayfair mall bathroom last week.

According to the Wauwatosa police report:

Security staff received numerous reports of a man exposing himself in the bathroom about 11:30 a.m. July 6. An officer found the 79-year-old man standing in front of a urinal.

When the officer acted as if he was a mall patron using the restroom, the man turned to him and began to shake his penis with his hand. Then he looked at the officer and smiled.

At that point, the officer identified himself and told the man to zip up. He was arrested for lewd and lascivious behavior.

» Read Full Article

Arrested man flees ER, found in Tosa backyard

July 10, 2012 9:16 p.m. | A patient tried to escape police custody while at Froedtert Hospital, leading to a search of surrounding residential neighborhoods last week.

According to the Wauwatosa police report:

A 31-year-old Oak Creek man who was wanted on multiple warrants and had a history of weapons violations and being assaultive to police had been brought to Froedtert Hospital for medical clearance following an arrest by West Milwaukee police July 3.

About 7:30 p.m., the prisoner took off from the emergency room and ran through the alley on Robertson Street near Gridley Avenue. Wauwatosa police were called to assist the Milwaukee County Sheriff's Office with the manhunt.

The police dog pulled its handler through the gate to a backyard in the 8300 block of West Portland Avenue. The prisoner - who was given two warnings to come out or the dog would be released - surrendered.

Kozlowski helps Hamilton onward

July 10, 2012 8:17 p.m. | Tyler Kozlowski never let Wauwatosa East get in the game -- or even out of the infield.

The Sussex Hamilton senior pitcher allowed two infield singles and one unearned run over seven superb innings, and Sussex Hamilton handled Wauwatosa East in the first round of the WIAA Division 1 playoffs at Hamilton on Tuesday, 7-1.

Kozlowski finished with eight strikeouts -- at least one in every inning -- and retired the final seven batters he faced.

"Tyler's been our No. 1 all year," said Hamilton coach Mike Schramek, whose team will now battle host Brookfield East (15-14) in Friday's regional final. "He obviously keeps us competitive and he really knows how to command his pitches, when to throw what pitches, where to throw location-wise. It's a luxury to have someone that legitimately has three pitches they can throw, which keeps the opposing team off balance."

Hamilton (16-13) did commit four errors, including one that allowed Tosa East's lone run to come around in the fourth. But by then, the Chargers had a 5-0 lead, starting with three runs in the opening frame, then sent eight batters to the plate in the fourth and claimed two more tallies. Mark Lunowa went 3 for 4 for the Chargers with two runs scored and two RBIs.

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Driver hits flagman while making turn in construction zone

July 10, 2012 6:46 p.m. | A road construction worker was injured after a driver struck him at Mayfair Road and Burleigh Street last week.

According to the Wauwatosa police report:

A 46-year-old Brookfield man intended to turn left from Mayfair onto Burleigh at 1:44 p.m. July 6. The driver was looking at the traffic signals that showed a green arrow. However, he didn't notice the flagman holding up a stop sign in the roadway until he was just about to hit him.

The driver had entered a lane that had been closed off with construction barrels and traffic cones and didn't seem aware that he couldn't continue in that lane. He was cited for failure to yield the right of way to construction workers on a highway (Mayfair Road is also known as Highway 100).

The construction worker said he tried to get out of the roadway when he saw the car driving at him, but he was struck in the leg and knocked to the ground. He was taken to Froedtert Hospital to have pain to his pelvis and legs checked out and treated.

Residents worry Wisconsin Lutheran intruding into neighborhood

July 10, 2012 11:26 a.m. | Wisconsin Lutheran College wants to rezone 15 homes it bought in Wauwatosa so it can change one for use as office space and allow more students to move into the others.

Dozens of neighbors worried about continued expansion by the college into the residential community came to the Plan Commission on Monday to voice their concerns. They worried that rezoning would just open the door to replacing the buildings with larger dormitories or classroom buildings in the future.

Homeowners said they have battled the college for nearly 30 years. It purchased less than 10 acres of land in Milwaukee initially and has been expanding to the east into Wauwatosa since then, residents said.

"This is something that's really going to have a big impact on our neighborhood and our property values," resident Tom Genack said.

Commissioner Jody Lowe moved that the college's request be held for a month so the college can bring forward information about its plans for future growth and, specifically, about the parcels on Bluemound Road, Maywood Avenue, Bel Air Court and Wisconsin Avenue. The college owns additional homes in the neighborhood that aren't up for rezoning at this time.

» Read Full Article

Jim Plaisted replaces Kathy Ehley as BID director

July 10, 2012 10:44 a.m. | Jim Plaisted has been hired as the new executive director of the Wauwatosa Village Business Improvement District, replacing Kathy Ehley, who was elected the city's mayor in April.

Plaisted, a Wauwatosa resident, will be coming from positions managing business districts in Shorewood and Milwaukee's East Side.

"He has overseen successful marketing, special events and business reinvestment to transform commercial corridors into active, appealing areas," according to an announcement issued by the BID Board today.

BID Board President Chris Leffler said Plaisted's knowledge will be important in implementing special projects under the recently adopted Village Master Plan such as remodeling the Harmonee Bridge, redesigning and improving pedestrian paths at rail crossings within the Village limits and dealing with streetscaping, signage and bicycle amenities.

The BID was established in 1994 to increase traffic and activity within Wauwatosa's historic Village.

Court reprimands Wauwatosa lawyer

July 10, 2012 9:53 a.m. | His first run-in with the lawyer ethics police, for writing a worthless check for less than $1,000, got Reed Martin a private slap on the wrist back in 2003.

He's taking the lick  publicly this time, as the Supreme Court on Tuesday issued a reprimand for two violations related to Martin skipping a February 2008 hearing on his juvenile client's claim of ineffective assistance, and subsequent lies about being on vacation at the time.

According to the court's ruling, prosecutors became concerned about Martin's behavior and decided to reduce his client's two prior convictions to a single lesser charge. Martin came to the courthouse for a rescheduled hearing in March on the ineffective assistance claim, but upon learning of the reduced charge, never entered Circuit Judge Dennis Cimpl's courtroom to explain his prior failures to appear. Cimpl filed a complaint with the Office of Lawyer Regulation.

Martin (Wisconsin, '95) later wrote to the OLR that he missed the original hearing because his family left for a vacation the night before. But records later showed that he had purchased gasoline in Wauwatosa on the day of the hearing.

Martin pleaded no contest to two violations of professional misconduct, but argued for a second private reprimand, since he had faxed the court the night before the original hearing, saying he was going on vacation, and offering several  other dates to reschedule the hearing. He also said he had simply been mistaken when he first told the OLR that he had left town the night before the hearing.

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Should police, fire chiefs have to live in Tosa?

July 09, 2012 1:58 p.m. | Every couple of years the issue of whether to require certain city employees to live in Wauwatosa comes up - and it's that time again.

The residency requirement "presents challenges in recruiting and retaining top employees," city Human Resources Director Beth Aldana wrote in a memo to the Employee Relations Committee.

She will ask the committee today for the OK to come up with a revised ordinance that would allow more flexibility for positions in which response times are critical.

People holding the following positions must live in Wauwatosa: city administrator, city attorney, public works director, finance director, police chief and fire chief.

There are many more positions that require residency, however waivers can be granted if response time would be similar or if dropping the restriction would attract the best candidate for the position. Those jobs are the public works operations, fleet/electric, water and parks and forestry superintendents; city engineer; city assessor; city clerk; chief building inspector; library director; and health department director.

» Read Full Article

Milwaukee County Parks volunteers' commitment to ecology honored

July 09, 2012 1:50 p.m. | Milwaukee County Parks has been recognized for its work in restoring natural areas with the help of volunteers and community partners.

The department received the 2012 Virginia M. Kline Award for Excellence in Community-Based Restoration, in recognition of the use of creative partnerships to maintain and improve the ecology of the 10,000 acres of natural areas within the Milwaukee County Parks System.

More than 14,000 volunteer hours were spent from 2009 through 2011 to restore and maintain public natural areas.

The idea behind community-based restoration is that it "brings the human community together and creates a more satisfactory relationship between humans and the larger biotic community," according to an announcement about the award.

The award will be presented Oct. 11 at the University of Wisconsin-Madison Arboretum as part of the Leopold Restoration Awards issued by the Friends of the Arboretum and the Aldo Leopold Foundation.

Tosa came through extreme heat comparatively well

July 09, 2012 1:48 p.m. | Wauwatosa fared well during the recent dangerously hot multiday stretch.

"People are being really smart about this," Assistant Fire Chief James Case said. "They're staying hydrated and staying indoors with air conditioning when possible."

The Fire Department hasn't seen a spike in heat-related illnesses, he said.

Department leaders also watched out for their own crews, cutting down on "non-essential activities" like fire inspections that could wear them out.

If a fire were to break out in these dry conditions, assistance from other communities would be called in early, Case said.

» Read Full Article

Independence Day photo gallery updated

July 04, 2012 11:36 a.m. | We've just updated our suburban Independence Day photo gallery with colorful shots from today's events in Oak Creek and yesterday's parade in Menomonee Falls.

We'll continue to update the gallery throughout the day with more images from the metropolitan area.

Go to photo gallery.

Wauwatosa Meetings: July 5-12

July 03, 2012 12:06 p.m. | Design Review Boards: 7 p.m. July 5, City Hall, 7725 W. North Ave.

Plan Commission: 7 p.m. July 9, City Hall

Community Development Authority: noon July 10, City Hall

Common Council committees: 7:30 p.m. July 10, City Hall

Shelters see uptick in parvovirus in dogs, puppies

July 03, 2012 11:28 a.m. | More than 30 dogs and puppies have died in the past few weeks from a highly contagious and deadly virus, prompting the Milwaukee Area Domestic Animal Control Commission and the Wisconsin Humane Society to urge pet owners to get young pups vaccinated for parvovirus.

The virus is passed in stool and can last in the environment for more than a year under the right conditions, said veterinarian Jane Pohlman with the Wisconsin Humane Society.

Parvo usually affects pups younger than 6 months, but it can also affect unvaccinated older dogs, she added.

There is no outbreak in either area shelter but there has been a rise in the number of parvo-positive puppies being brought to the shelters.

Symptoms of the parvovirus include vomiting, diarrhea (which may be bloody), lethargy, pain, dehydration and sepsis, and the outcome can be death. Because parvo is a viral disease, there is no cure.

Health-related phone surveys coming your way

July 03, 2012 11:26 a.m. | Wauwatosa residents may receive phone calls requesting they participate in a community health survey this summer.

The survey is a combined effort among the city's Health Department, area hospitals and the Center for Urban Population Health Research, which collects data every three years to determine changes and trends, Wauwatosa Health Director Nancy Kreuser said.

The results will help local government, healthcare and volunteer organizations make decisions about the services they offer.

Surveys will take less than 20 minutes, and questions will focus on issues such as access to healthcare, tobacco and alcohol use, diet, physical activity, cancer prevention, heart health, injury prevention, immunizations, communicable diseases, mental health and chronic disease.

Responses will be anonymous. JKV Research, an independent research firm that specializes in community surveys, will make the calls.

West Allis Hale slugger named NOW Softball Player of the Year

July 03, 2012 11:04 a.m. | West Allis Hale junior Rachel Seefeldt has been named the NOW All-Suburban Softball Player of the Year after slugging her way to 12 home runs and 40 RBIs for the Huskies this season.

She is joined on the squad by teammate Sarah Mueller and players from 10 other suburban teams.

Germantown co-coaches Kurt Raguse and Amy Barbiaux were named the coaches of the year.

NOW 2012 All-Suburban Softball Team

Tosan wakes up to find burglar at his door

July 03, 2012 10:35 a.m. | A 29-year-old West Allis man faces two burglary charges, one with a dangerous weapon, after he allegedly sold items that were taken last week.

According to the Wauwatosa police report:

A resident woke up to the sound of his bedroom door handle jiggling and the floor in the hallway creaking at an apartment in the 12200 block of West Bluemound Road at 6:45 a.m. June 27.

He looked into the hall and saw a man with his back toward him going through closets. The resident asked what the burglar was doing and yelled at him to "get out."

The man allegedly pulled a folding knife out of his pants and walked toward the resident in a threatening manner. The resident quickly jumped back into his room and locked the door. When police arrived, he climbed out his bedroom window.

» Read Full Article

Groups come together to promote clean water practices

July 03, 2012 10:10 a.m. | Two Wisconsin water groups have united to launch the marketing campaign, "Respect Our Waters," in an effort to educate southeastern Wisconsin residents about the actions they can take to help improve the quality of local rivers and Lake Michigan.

The Southeastern Wisconsin Watersheds Trust, also known as Sweet Water, and Root-Pike Watershed Initiative Network are spearheading a television advertising campaign featuring a puppet, Sparkles the Water Spaniel, to emphasize bad and good human behavior. Funding comes from grants from 28 municipalities and the state Department of Natural Resources.

In four spots, Sparkles talks about the importance of picking up yard debris, cleaning up dog droppings, using lawn fertilizer and chemicals responsibly, and preventing oil and fluids from leaking from cars.

The groups are urging area residents to pick up pet waste, leave grass clippings on the lawn, use lawn fertilizer and chemicals sparingly, inspect vehicles to make sure they're not leaking fluids and test soil to make sure the yard really needs the extra nutrients before applying fertilizer. The goal is to keep items from washing into storm sewers and flowing into waterways.

In addition, planting rain gardens and trees; directing downspouts into rain barrels, the yard or garden instead of the sewer or driveway; and using a carwash or washing cars on the lawn will help prevent pollution, the groups say.

Motel parking lot fracas leads to arrests for battery, disorderly conduct

July 03, 2012 8:41 a.m. | A 40-year-old Pewaukee man was arrested for battery after he slapped a woman in the parking lot of the Days Inn, 11811 W. Bluemound Road, at 12:54 a.m. Sunday.

He and his girlfriend, a 38-year-old Milwaukee woman, had checked out of the hotel and were getting into their separate cars.

A group of people were playing a bean bag game in the parking lot and blocking their cars. The girlfriend and a woman playing the game started exchanging words and the man jumped out of his car to defend his girlfriend.

He slapped the woman, and her father and husband came to her defense. A fight broke out and 911 was called.

As the girlfriend pulled away, she swerved her vehicle into a stack of tailgate supplies and ran them over. The girlfriend was arrested for disorderly conduct.

Community Watch

» Children's Theatre presents "Little Red Riding Hood" 7/30

» Win State Fair tickets on Facebook 7/29

» Heidi Hernandez named Wauwatosa Catholic School principal 7/27

» Cross-dressing thief faces 40 years for Tosa bank robbery 7/27

» Swimming water quality? There's an app for that 7/27

» Ronald McDonald House plans to double its size 7/27

» Fallen tree knocks out power to home 7/26

» Bel Air Cantina slated to open on North Avenue in Wauwatosa 7/25

» Group hosts discussion on Eschweiler demolition prospect 7/24

» Tosa to borrow $12.4 million for 2012 capital projects 7/24

» West Allis man pepper-sprayed by security during birthday party at Hart Park 7/24

» Tosa teen robbed, assaulted while walking to friend's house 7/24

» Officer shoots charging pitbull during search of alleged drug house 7/24

» Wauwatosa Cemetery Chapel could become local historic site 7/23

» Village Playhouse needs actors for 'Cat on a Hot Tin Roof' 7/23

» Chili'n on the Avenue returns to East Tosa on Saturday 7/20

» Bel Air Cantina looks to open in East Tosa Updated:  7/20

» Portion of Swan Blvd. closed for 10 days, starting Monday 7/20

» Mount Mary, Medical College offer dual-degree program in public health 7/20

» Blood donors to get free State Fair ticket 7/20

» Tosa officials agree safety, not politics, should be focus in managing large events 7/18

» Robber gets pharmicist to stay late, but scam fails 7/18

» Wauwatosa power line hearing moved to November 7/18

» Accomplice armed with tire iron aids shoplifter's escape 7/18

» College plans cause worry 7/11

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