Government

Thu
11
Jul
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Council Gets Update from Middleton Area Development Corporation

MIDDLETON–The Middleton Common Council received an update from the president of the Middleton Area Development Corporation (MADC) about the work the organization is doing in partnership with city officials and the Middleton Chamber of Commerce. MADC finances projects intended to boost economic growth including business projects like development of Middleton Center, the expansion of Electronic Theater Controls, Lucigen Corporation, Capital Brewery and Death’s Door Distillery and the Sand Bar at Keva Sports Center.

MADC president Kevin Mahaney explained to the council that the organization is a private loan fund administered by a local board made up of people with a variety of experience including bankers, business owners, and private investors. 

Fri
05
Jul
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Plan Commission Approves Bike and Ski Park Concept

MIDDLETON–The Middleton Plan Commission approved a concept plan for a proposed bicycle and cross-country skiing park next to the Pleasant View Golf Course. The park would include a new facility, multi-use paved and dirt trails, bicycle obstacles and features areas. 

"Erdman Park" is the placeholder name for the project that would develop trails and facilities on land to the northern edge of the Pleasant View Golf Course. Landowner Dan Erdman is donating eight acres to be annexed to the city in a private non-profit partnership with the Central Cross Country Skiing Association.  

The association plans to fundraise to build a small campus that would eventually become an Olympic Training Center. 

The city council allocated $420,000 to the park in the 2018 budget with funding from the park development fund. The city has spent $79,640 to date on fencing and design work.

Fri
05
Jul
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Meter Increase for Fire Protection in Effect as of July 1

MIDDLETON–A change in the way public fire protection fees are collected went into effect on July 1. The City of Middleton will now place a fee on water meters based on the size of the meter. The fee had previously been a part of property taxes. 

State imposed tax levy limits for cities in Wisconsin have caused municipalities to come up with new ways to collect the tax, which is regulated by the Wisconsin Public Service Commission (PSC), and required for all cities, villages and towns. The amount collected through property tax in Middleton was approximately $485,000 per year.

Statewide about 60 percent of municipalities still use the tax levy system, according to the PSC. Cities around Dane County have now switched to the water meter system for fire protection fees.

Fri
14
Jun
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Women Celebrate Kick-Off of Suffrage Centennial at Capitol

MADISON–With great joy and possibly even greater creativity, hundreds of white-clad women and girls, many wearing period clothing, hats, and sashes of the early 20th century, descended upon the state capitol on June 10. It was the Women’s Suffrage Centennial kick-off, celebrating Wisconsin as the first state to ratify the 19th Amendment, ultimately granting women the right to vote.   

Alternating between festive and somber, the capitol atmosphere felt electrified. Rebecca Alwin, 71, one of a group of women known as a “gaggle of grannies” with the “Raging Grannies,” singers for social justice and peace, had dressed in grandmotherly attire and serenaded a group of female legislators posing for photos.

“With the least provocation we do break into song,” Alwin, a Middleton native confessed. Serendipitously running into the legislators prompted a rousing chorus from The Vote Song: “If you can’t be bothered voting, think again!”

Wed
03
Apr
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Fuszard Upsets Teal, Incumbents Dominate Election

DANE COUNTY–City of Middleton voters in Common Council District 5 overwhelmingly turned out for Luke Fuszard. Fuszard beat incumbent Howard Teal, who held the seat for more than 20 years, 74.6 percent to 24.6 percent.

In an email to the Times-TribuneFuszard said, "First, I want to express my gratitude to Howard Teal for his years of service to Middleton. He is a good man with a good heart who cares deeply about this community. And thank you to all those who share in the vision of a city of Good Neighbors, Good Schools, and Good Government. Now the real work begins, and I look forward to collaborating with Mayor Brar, the rest of the Common Council, city staff, and most especially the residents of District Five to make this vision a reality."

The other contested race for Middleton Alder was in District 3 where Katy Nelson and Sarah Cords faced off. Nelson easily won the spot with 57.9 percent of the vote to Cords’ 41.4 percent.

Sun
27
Jan
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Dane County Public Health Offers Steps To Stay Safe During Cold Snap

MADISON–Dangerously low temperatures are forecasted for much of the state, and Public Health Madison & Dane County wants to remind residents to take steps to be safe and stay warm.
Wed
04
Apr
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Voting equipment malfunctions in the Village of Cross Plains

The results in the Cross Plains Village Board race on Tuesday night were delayed due to a technical problem.

Village administrator/clerk Caitlin Stene said the “M-Stick” onto which election results are loaded after the polls close failed, and the village had to obtain a new voting machine, and a new “M-Stick” from the county, before the local election results could be tallied and sent to the county clerk.

“In the process of closing the polls we experienced an error message, so we called the county,” Stene explained. “The way the process works, the results are loaded onto M-Sticks and somehow in the process of closing the polls that stick failed. The county came with new sticks and a new machine, and our election workers re-ran every ballot through the machine, then uploaded the results.”

Wed
21
Jun
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Should City Revisit Marijuana Fines?

Residents and members of a local chapter of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML) appeared before city council to ask that the city once again revisit an ordinance relating to fines for cannabis possession. In an effort initiated by county executive Joe Parisi in 2015 to get municipalities to align with the county’s reduced fines for cannabis possession the city reduced its fines last year, however, the speakers say that the city is still out of alignment with the county and other municipalities such as Monona, Fitchburg and Madison.  

Shelley Kennedy is on the board of directors of Madison NORML says she’s working with the Middleton resident who brought this forward the last time, Casey Grady. She says when Grady pushed for change the city took the reins and did not make the change they hoped for.  

Wed
05
Apr
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Write-in Candidates Topple Roehl and Kolar in the Town of Middleton

Two Town of Middleton write-in candidates Tuesday rode a wave of voter indignation over proposed zoning changes on their way to a pair of upset victories.

Cynthia Richson, a town plan commission member, defeated incumbent Town Chair Bill Kolar 707 to 651.

Richard Oberle defeated incumbent Tim Roehl by the sizeable margin of 761 to 585 for Seat No. 1 on the town board.

Richson called her win a win for the people.

“The people have finally been heard, respected and listened to...This is very exciting for the town,” she said moments after getting the voting results.

Kolar declined to comment Tuesday night on the election’s outcome.

As a lobbyist for the Dane County Towns Association, Roehl helped pass legislation last year that required an affirmative vote by town residents in order to opt out of county zoning.

Wed
05
Apr
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Brar Wins Mayoral Race

One candidate promised a “new vision.” The other pledged to continue the course charted by outgoing mayor Kurt Sonnentag and the majority of the current city council.

The voters have spoken, and the new vision has won.

District 2 alderman Gurdip Brar defeated District 7 alderman Hans Hilbert 51.8% to 48.1% on Tuesday in a tightly contested race to become the City of Middleton’s next mayor. Brar, a longtime critic of excessive spending, of what critics see as rubber stamping of staff initiatives, and of the status quo in general, said in a recent mayoral debate that the community was ready for a change.

Speaking from his home just moments after learning of his victory, Brar said he was “really pleased people put their faith in” him.

“I’m pleased,” he said. “The people of Middleton have spoken, and I’m going to do exactly what I said I would do during my campaign.”

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