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Meijer pulls plans for Franklin store

Jan. 28, 2013 4:44 p.m. | Franklin - A Meijer official today informed Mayor Tom Taylor that the company is no longer pursuing a 190,000-square-foot store at the southwest corner of Highway 100 and Loomis Road.

Taylor told NOW Newspapers that Mike Flickinger, director of real estate for Meijer, called to inform him of the decision. He noted that the decision centered on the company's difficulty in getting approval from the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to build on or near the site's wetlands.

The Wisconsin Department of Transportation also had some difficulty with the entrance and exit traffic flow plan of the site, though that concern reportedly had been cleared in recent months.

"Meijer is a quality store and they tried to come up to the standards that we as a city had established for architecture, landscaping and the location of the docks," Taylor said.

He noted that the potential flooding and traffic issues were problematic throughout the process.

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Oak Creek food distributor faces $85K in fines after employee injury

10:14 a.m. | Oak Creek — A local frozen bread manufacturer faces up to $85,800 in fines after one of its employees was injured on the job.

A 30-year-old temporary employee required extensive surgery after suffering burns and lacerations of tendons and ligaments in her right hand after she used a cutting and sealing machine at Joseph Campione Inc., the U.S. Department of Labor Occupational Safety and Health Administration reported in a news release.

Joseph Campione Inc. supplies products to Costco Wholesale Corp., IGA, Piggly Wiggly and others.

OSHA inspectors found that the Oak Creek food distributor ignored safety requirements to protect workers from moving machine parts. The agency issued one willful and four serious safety violations to the company on July 22, citing the company for failing to protect workers from machinery hazards.

"Thousands of workers are injured each year because manufacturers fail to recognize machine hazards. No worker's shift should end with a hospital stay," Christine Zortman, OSHA's area director in Milwaukee, stated in the news release.

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Tanker truck crash in Hales Corners, closes Highway 100

9:28 a.m. | Hales Corners — A tanker truck crashed Tuesday morning, spilling diesel fuel over the intersection Highway 100 and W. Janesville Road.

The crash happened at about 7:00 a.m., it's been reported that traffic will be affected for about two hours.

'Milwaukee lion' spotted in Glendale

July 27, 2015 9:33 p.m. | Glendale — After a week on the northwest side of Milwaukee, the much-talked-about 'Milwaukee lion' may have made an appearance in Glendale Sunday night.

The 'lion-like' creature described by more than a dozen eyewitnesses over the last week was most recently spotted on 30th Street and Fairmount Avenue on Saturday night. Milwaukee police officers have been searching the area around Lincoln Creek in search of the big cat.

The lion may be traveling northeast, if a call from Glendale police is accurate.

Glendale police received a report of a lion sighting at 11:26 p.m. Sunday in the 5700 block of Crestwood Boulevard, about a mile north of Lincoln Creek. The caller said he saw a tan muscular animal with a long tail walking in the area, and then it took off running north toward Marne Avenue.

Glendale police responded to the call, but officers were unable to locate the animal.

Star of 'Dance Moms' to make Oak Creek appearance

July 27, 2015 2:48 p.m. | Oak Creek — JoJo Siwa, one of the young stars of Lifetime's television series "Dance Moms," will make an appearance in Oak Creek on Saturday, Aug. 8.

Siwa will host two meet-and-greet sessions at The Academy of Performing Arts in Oak Creek, 9160 S. Pennsylvania Ave. The sessions will be held at 10 a.m. and 11 a.m.

Registration is limited. Tickets can be purchased at

Sikh Temple announces memorial events to honor victims of shooting

July 24, 2015 2:38 p.m. | Oak Creek — The Sikh Temple of Wisconsin will soon host a series of events to honor victims of the mass shooting on Aug. 5, 2012.

The events will also honor the victims of a similar tragedy that occurred this year on June 17 in Charleston, South Carolina.

The public is welcome to participate in all events.

Friday, July 31

·A 48-hour recitation of Shri Guru Granth Sahib Ji — the Sikh holy scriptures — will begin at 11:30 a.m. at the temple, 7512 S. Howell Ave. Langar — a community meal — will be offered throughout the "Akhand Path" prayer service.

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Kayla's Playground groundbreaking

July 24, 2015 8:43 a.m. | "Today we break ground and disrupt and weaken the soil only to be followed by hundreds of volunteers who will walk on this very ground to create a strong foundation to build Kayla's Playground," Michelle Runte, founder of Kayla's Krew said. "A community once again coming together to strengthen and to build our community in this beautiful setting of Franklin Woods Nature Center; we couldn't ask for a better silver lining."

St. Alphonsus Parish to host 'Feast on the Blacktop'

July 23, 2015 12:23 p.m. | Greendale — St. Alphonsus Parish will host a special "Feast on the Blacktop" celebration on Sunday, Aug. 2.

Members of the community are invited to enjoy food, games and live music from noon until 9 p.m. at the church, 6060 W. Loomis Road.

Music performances will include Vern Tretow, Mt. Olive and 76 Juliet. Square dancing will also be offered.

The church will also collect nonperishable items for its food pantry.

For more information, call the parish at (414) 421-2442.

Public hearing for new TIF district

July 23, 2015 11:06 a.m. | Hales Corners — A public hearing for the establishment of a new TIF district for the area east of Highway 100 is scheduled to take place at the August 17 plan commission meeting.

Village Administrator Mike Weber said that the village is still exploring potential developers for the commercial area east of Highway 100 and south of West Grange Avenue. This area has been subject to new development talks ever since the Kmart left the area.

Franklin parks commissioner calls out common council

July 22, 2015 12:23 p.m. | Franklin — Dave Pautz of the Franklin Parks Commission used the citizens comments period of the July 21 Franklin common council meeting to voice his displeasures with the common council.

Pautz was upset when he found out that the appointment of Alderwoman Susan Mayer to the parks commission had been tabled at the previous common council meeting, as well as the tabling of three other mayoral appointments. Pautz went further to accuse several aldermen of collaborating before meetings, which is illegal.

While Pautz was accusing four aldermen of collaborating, he was interrupted by Alderman Dan Mayer. Mayer asked Pautz to name the four Aldermen he thought were conspiring together, and made the point that this was just Pautz's opinion.

Mayer apologized shortly after for interrupting.

Pautz encouraged citizens to go online and listen to the audio recordings of the common council meetings.

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The Suburban 16 Power Rankings: Watt, Niebrugge, and others on the next level

July 22, 2015 11:30 a.m. | (Editor's note: After a late addition putting Anthony Pettis in the top 15, the "Suburban 15" was expanded to the "Suburban 16")

The meteoric rise just continues.

Pewaukee graduate J.J. Watt, once a scholarship tight end at Central Michigan and then a walk-on at the University of Wisconsin, was voted the No. 1 player in the National Football League by the league's players in a poll conducted by the NFL Network.

Higher than Aaron Rodgers (No. 2) and Tom Brady (No. 3). Higher than anyone could have imagined even when he became the 11th overall selection in the 2011 NFL Draft. Even with his second career NFL Defensive Player of the Year Award last year, it's still staggering to think that when the players in the NFL consider who the league's best player is, they turn to Watt.

Sure, all rankings have to be taken with a grain of salt, but especially with the accomplishments of Watt and Jordan Niebrugge, a Homestead graduate who shot an amateur-record round of 67 at the British Open and then tied for sixth in the tourney, there have been some exciting accomplishments racked up by local products. Considering athletes who competed in high school in the Now Newspapers or Lake Country Publications coverage area (and remain active), here's my Suburban 16, where I attempt to rank players based on exposure, impact and post-prep accomplishments.

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Village of Greendale takes ownership of land proposed for veterans memorial

July 21, 2015 9:03 p.m. | Greendale — The northeast corner of Southway and Broad Street — the site of a proposed veterans memorial — is now in the hands of the village.

The village board unanimously approved to acquire the land from the Greendale School District during its July 21 meeting.

The Greendale School Board was criticized by memorial supporters earlier this year for not approving the project, which was proposed to be located on school district property.

In response, the school board allowed residents to vote for a potential land transfer on April 28.

Nearly 87.5 percent of residents in attendance voted in favor of giving the parcel to the village.

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Kayla playground project leaps forward in Franklin

July 21, 2015 8:18 p.m. | Franklin — The Kayla's Krew Playground project took another step forward on Tuesday, July 7, when the list of bids for the playground's materials was approved by the common council.

By a unanimous 5-0 vote, the total amount of around $150,000 was awarded to the bidders of The Home Depot, Darquest Industries and NEW Plastic.(Alderwoman Kristin Wilhelm was excused from the meeting because she wasn't feeling well.)

Ready to begin

At the meeting, Mayor Steve Olson thanked the council for passing the motion to approve the bids, allowing construction on the playground to begin as scheduled in September.

"The council did the right thing at this meeting," Olson said.

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West Edgerton Avenue reconstruction project plan moves forward

July 21, 2015 7:38 p.m. | Hales Corners — The first stages for the reconstruction project of West Egerton Avenue are now in place.

An agreement to give the engineering services part of the project to Graef-USA Inc. was approved by the Hales Corners board of trustees at their meeting on July 13.

The agreement is that Graef will provide all necessary engineering services for the project, which include a topographical survey, preliminary and final designs and bidding, for $173,000. The resurfacing/reconstruction project is on West Edgerton Avenue and will span 300 feet from of South 108th Street to West Forest Home Avenue.

Hales Corners DPW Director Mike Martin said that he expects a contract to be signed with Graef in a few weeks and for engineering work and surveying to start shortly after.

"The date depends on their back log of work. I expect them to start preliminary work in the next couple of weeks," Martin said. "They know how important this project is to us so they will hopefully bump us up on their list."

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Slash in state aid money could force Franklin School district to increase tax levy

July 21, 2015 7:13 p.m. | Franklin — Property taxpayers in Franklin would pay an estimated additional $32.18 in school taxes for 2016 per $100,000 of assessed property value.

If approved, the tax rate would increase about 33 cents, from $13.21 to $13.54, per $1,000 of equalized values. That means a home worth $100,000 will pay $1,354 in school taxes, and a home worth $200,000 would pay $2,708 in school taxes.

The tax increase comes after the Franklin School Board unanimously approved the 2015-2016 budget draft on July 15, which includes a projected tax levy increase of about 2.4 percent to make up for the loss of state aid.

The tax levy will be considered by electors on Aug. 26, when there will also be a public hearing for residents to voice their concerns.

A 4.52 percent increase in the Franklin school district's equalized value last year makes the district appear "richer" in the state formula, which would result in less state aid. The school district is estimated to lose about $1.2 million in general aid from the state, about a 7.5 percent decrease from last year, according to the July 1 estimates released by the DPI.

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Oak Creek's Turchin bests Ramirez in sectional thriller

July 21, 2015 3:18 p.m. | Oak Creek's Doran Turchin and Greendale's Ty Ramirez are rivals, friends and competitors.

"We've been playing each other since we were little kids, but we always seemed to be on opposite teams," Turchin said. "Sometimes he got me, and sometimes I got him."

For the pair of seniors in an epic WIAA sectional semifinal baseball game in Greendale on July 20, Turchin got the last word in the 2-1 Knight victory.

But it was not without difficulty. Ramirez was red-hot on the mound this day, striking out nine with four walks and one hit batter. Three of the strikeouts were inflicted on the University of Illinois recruit Turchin, most of them on Ramirez's deadly curveball.

Ramirez also gave up only three hits, but two of them were in the seventh and the biggest one of all was by Turchin.

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