Government

Fri
16
Jan
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Middleton Becomes 'Dementia Friendly'

Mary Kay Baum is well educated, articulate and gregarious. But beneath the surface, she is struggling. The words she seeks are often elusive. Her train of thought wants to veer off course.

“It can get camouflaged by a good education or a large vocabulary – I often have to use a different word when I can’t find the one I want – but I’m working so much harder than most people do,” she explained. “If someone becomes impatient with me, it only makes it harder.”

Baum, 67, has mild cognitive problems that possibly stem from Alzheimer’s and vascular issues that run in her family.

She spent most of her life as a pillar of the community, serving on the Dane County Board of Supervisors, the Madison Metropolitan Board of Education, running for mayor in the City of Madison in 1987, and working as an ordained Lutheran pastor.

Wed
05
Nov
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Most citizens vote ‘yes’ on city storm water utility referendum

Shall the City of Middleton Storm Water Utility be permitted to charge customers of the Storm Water Utility an annual charge up to $15.00 per equivalent runoff unit for each property for maintenance of existing storm water management facilities without reducing the levy limit for the charges of the Storm Water Utility?  

YES: 65%
NO: 35%
Thu
16
Oct
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No photo ID this election? No problem

The back and forth political fight over voter ID took a surprising turn late last week when the U.S. Supreme Court ordered that the photo ID requirement will not be in effect for the November 4 General Election. 

The decision irked Republicans and caused Democrats to celebrate. Meanwhile, it caused municipal clerks across the state to change course after spending several weeks preparing for new photo ID requirements.

It came just hours after the Wisconsin Government Accountability Board (GAB) sent out a press release announcing its “Bring It to the Ballot” multimedia campaign, which was designed to educate Wisconsin residents about the voter photo ID law.

Starting over the weekend, the GAB planned to spend more than $400,000 on the statewide paid advertising campaign that would run in the three weeks leading up to the election. The campaign was to include TV, radio, online and some billboard ads.

Thu
16
Oct
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City budget proposal includes 6.87 percent tax rate increase

The Middleton City Council in its first budget meeting swiftly authorized a proposed annual budget for publication.  A summary of all budgets is published on page 21 of this edition. 

The city will hold a public hearing on November 6 to consider residents’ input before voting on a final budget, scheduled for November 18.   

The 2015 budget proposal calls for a mill rate increase of 6.87% over the 2014 mill rate.  The total General Fund operating budget comes to $23,363,977 with a tax levy of $16,252,869 and non-levy sources totaling $7,111,108.

“Both the Finance Committee and Common Council remarked about how smooth the 2015 budget deliberations have gone,” said city Finance Director John Lehman.  “This is definitely reflective of all department directors, managers and other’s hard work, team efforts and support throughout the process.  I am very appreciative as well.”

Sun
07
Sep
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Dead Body Found at City Airport

 

A man whose body was discovered at the City of Middleton’s municipal airport Friday appears to have died by suicide, according to the Dane County Medical Examiner’s Office.

According to Sgt. Jessica Quamme, Middleton officers were called to the Middleton Municipal Airport, 8300 Airport Road, on Friday, Sept. 5 at 5:43 p.m. to check the welfare of an adult male in one of the hangars.  

Officers made entry and found the male deceased. 

Fri
05
Sep
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CORRECTION

Correction to City Planning TIF article:

This week's print edition included an article about two TIF requests that were approved by the Middleton Plan Commission.  Incorrect information was reported about the project at Aspen Commons.  The project involves the construction of an office building, apartment and health club.  

The article reported Terrence Wall as the developer.  That is incorrect, LZ Ventures will be developing the apartment and health club phase of the project.  Vanta, formerly T. Wall Properties, will maintain ownership of the second phase which is an office building.  

Terrence Wall founded T. Wall Properties in 1989 but moved on from the company in 2012 to focus on other projects.  

 

Thu
28
Aug
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While the debate about an officer-involved shooting rages in Missouri, Middleton’s police chief says squad and body cameras can protect both citizens and police officers

While questions of race, lethal force and police accountability continue to rage in Ferguson, Missouri following the fatal shooting of Michael Brown, the Middleton Police Department is making clear that it has already taken extensive steps to document its officers’ interactions with the citizenry.

“If a controversial event occurs which involves one of our officers, we are in good shape to review the incident and share the results with the public at an appropriate time,” said Chief of Police Chuck Foulke in a statement sent to city leaders last week.

“I am a firm believer in squad video cameras and am optimistic that personal body cameras will soon become part of our everyday equipment,” said Foulke. “I strongly advocate being transparent in everything we do.”

Wed
30
Apr
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County Tries Again To Bolster Mining Oversight

County leaders aren’t giving up on their efforts to regulate local mining sites, despite towns’ tepid response to their earlier attempts.

Flanked by supporters and backed by the pristine natural landscape of the Pheasant Branch Conservancy and a dormant mine that abuts it, county executive Joe Parisi last week rolled out the latest plan to bolster oversight of mining operations that border residential and conservation areas.

Ordinance Amendment (OA) 26, the county’s stab at making mining companies follow regulatory rules similar to those already in place for other types of businesses, fizzled recently when area towns, under pressure from mining interests and the Dane County Towns Association, voted to block the increased regulations.

Wed
30
Apr
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Alder-elect Declines City Council's District 4 Seat, Prompts the Return of Jim Wexler

Perhaps April Fools day was a particularly apt day for this year’s Spring Election…

Longtime city alderman Jim Wexler has turned his horse around while riding off into the sunset and returned to his seat despite filing non-candidacy papers last year. Wexler was appointed back to the council following his successor’s surprising and cryptic announcement that he would not accept the Middleton Common Council’s District 4 seat, which he won running unopposed in the April 1 election.

Wexler, who had represented the city’s fourth district since 1988, announced late last year that he would not seek an unprecedented 14th term. While announcing his departure, he said he was pleased to see Chad Gehin, a political newcomer, lifelong City of Middleton resident, and local apartment manager, step forward to run for the seat.

Fri
21
Mar
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Did City of Middleton Violate Bidding Rules?

The Associated General Contractors of Wisconsin, Inc. on Wednesday obtained a temporary restraining order in Dane County Circuit Court barring the City of Middleton from proceeding with the construction of its new Public Works Facility and Outbuildings to be located at 4330 Parmenter Street in Middleton.  

Judge Rhonda L. Lanford issued the order after concluding that the City of Middleton improperly awarded the public contract for the construction of the new Public Works Facility to Newcomb Construction, Inc. of Madison.

On December 12, 2013, the City of Middleton issued a public notice that it was accepting bids for the construction of the new Public Works Facility and Outbuildings, which has an estimated cost of over $9 million.  Nine different contractors submitted bids for the Project, including six contractors who are members of the Associated General Contractors of Wisconsin.  

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