Government

Mon
15
Jul
MTT News Desk's picture

Former Senator Turns Sights To Africa

One sweltering summer day in 1982, a young Middleton resident picked up a clipboard, walked out his front door and embarked on a political career.

He climbed into his Chevy Nova, the busted trunk of which was secured by a swath of tape, and drove out to Black Earth. There he went door-to-door, telling people why he wanted to serve in the state legislature.

Thirty-one years later, Russ Feingold – sitting in his backyard on another hot summer day – is preparing to set out again. This time, however, he’s embarking on his new job – one with the State Department. Feingold has been appointed and confirmed as special representative for the Great Lakes region of Africa. His goal is to bring peace to the war-torn region commonly associated with the terror of Idi Amin, Rwandan genocide and bloodshed in eastern Congo.

Wed
10
Jul
MTT News Desk's picture

City Council Approves Ordinance Requiring Contractors To Provide Benefits To Domestic Partners

Most contractors who want to do business with the City of Middleton will have to provide health insurance to the same-sex domestic partners of their employees, following a recent vote by the common council.

The city’s own health insurance plan already covered domestic partners.  According to assistant city administrator John Lehman, the city wanted to ensure that “contractors doing business with the city also offer the same coverage to their employees since they are acting on [Middleton’s] behalf.”

The ordinance indicates the requirements “are for the protection and welfare of the public in the performance of all public contracts.”

Ald. JoAnna Richard (Dist. 3) said she was pleased with the change.

Wed
12
Jun
MTT News Desk's picture

Middleton EMS Director Responds To Town's Consideration Of Move To Private Ambulance Company

As the Town of Middleton investigates possibly replacing City of Middleton Emergency Medical Service with Ryan Brothers Ambulance Co. next year, Middleton EMS Director Steve Wunsch says the town should compare apples to apples.

“911 service is all we do,” Wunsch said. “We dedicate units 24-7 to respond to 911 calls and that’s expensive.”

Middleton EMS staffs ambulances with two paramedics at all times and paramedics require more than 1,000 hours of training, he added.

Middleton EMS is part of the Dane County 911 System that continually keeps track of public safety units, so the closet unit, not otherwise engaged, is dispatched to the next call.

“All municipalities are tied into an intergovernmental agreement and 911 sends the closest unit regardless of jurisdictional boundary lines, based on the severity of the call,” Wunsch said. “You’re cutting yourself off from a tightly coordinated system if you go with a private [provider].”

Wed
12
Jun
MTT News Desk's picture

Alder Shortage Cancels Council

 

Wondering why there’s no coverage of the Middleton City Council in this edition? It’s because last week’s council meeting was called off due to the lack of a legally-required quorum. The agenda items, none of which were time sensitive, will be taken up at the council’s next regularly scheduled meeting.

The city council will also hold a special meeting at 6 p.m. Tuesday in order to appoint Ald. Jim Wexler’s (Dist. 4) replacement to the Middleton Finance Committee. Wexler stepped down from the committee last month after losing his chairmanship to Ald. Mark Sullivan (Dist. 8).

 

Tue
04
Jun
MTT News Desk's picture

City, Developer Approve Pre-Annexation Agreement

With the City of Middleton hoping to claim a swath of land from the Town of Middleton for a new development, the town recently started investigating the possibility of incorporating in an effort to protect its borders.

In response, the city moved swiftly to approve a pre-annexation agreement that serves as an early but key step toward realizing the proposed 162-acre Pleasant View Ridge subdivision. The pre-annexation agreement with Erdman Real Estate Holdings, Llc., was approved at a special meeting of the city council on May 14.

Erdman Holdings recently unveiled Pleasant View Ridge, a project that would include 104 single-family lots.

One unique aspect of the Pleasant View Ridge proposal is that it calls for a combination of individual and community septic services, which are typically used by towns, rather than the urban services most developers annex into cities to obtain.

Sun
02
Jun
MTT News Desk's picture

Town Considers Leaving Middleton EMS

Calling it “doing our due diligence,” the Middleton Town Board has asked staff to explore alternatives to contracting with Middleton Emergency Medical Service, including Ryan Brothers Ambulance.

While the town has contracted with Middleton EMS for decades the increasing cost, lack of timely information and Ryan Brothers new Middleton location prompted the board to seek options, said Town Chairman Milo Breunig.

“I won’t call it shopping around,” Breunig said last week. “It’s like looking at our engineering services; we just want to make sure the residents are getting the most of their money.”

Two years ago, the Middleton EMS contract “took a huge hike” to about $182,000 annually billed in quarterly installments, said Breunig.

Meanwhile, information on the number of service calls involving town residents has been “hard to get,” he said.

Sun
02
Jun
MTT News Desk's picture

City Council Undecided On Domestic Partner Benefits

An ordinance that would require city contractors to provide domestic partner benefits provoked a heated discussion by the Middleton Common Council last week.

Disagreement over the proposed rule’s necessity sparked debate over an issue that carries both social and fiscal significance.

Ald. Mark Sullivan (Dist. 8) questioned the long-term monetary impact this ordinance would have upon the city. Sullivan asked that the matter be referred to the public works and finance committees in order to “analyze the ordinance’s impact” and assess what implications the change might produce downstream.

When advocating for the ordinance, ald. JoAnna Richard (Dist. 3) expressed frustration with Sullivan’s recommendation, saying “the change does not incur additional costs.” Richard said the ordinance would simply enable domestic partners to jump onto already existing benefit plans.

Wed
08
May
MTT News Desk's picture

Alder Walks Out Of Meeting

Ald. Jim Wexler (Dist. 4) walked out of Tuesday night’s Middleton Finance Committee meeting after losing his chairmanship, choosing not to return for the Middleton Common Council meeting that followed. It was the first time he missed a regular meeting of the common council in more than two decades.

The finance committee voted to make District 8 Ald. Mark Sullivan, a Certified Public Accountant, its new chairman.

Wexler said he was dismayed by the committee’s “lack of integrity,” calling District 5 Ald. Howard Teal, who nominated Sullivan, a “bully” for his handling of the process.

Wexler said Teal worked behind the scenes to oust him from the seat at the head of the finance committee in retaliation for Wexler’s support of Ald. Susan West (Dist. 6), who was voted president of the common council in April. West replaced Teal, who had served as council president for five years.

Thu
02
May
MTT News Desk's picture

Developer Unveils 'New Ruralist' Proposal

The Middleton City Council last week got its first glimpse of a development proposal that would transform 162 acres of rural land between U.S. Highway 14 and Pleasant View Golf Course into an assortment of residential neighborhoods situated around a working farm.

Erdman Holdings, Inc. submitted early-stage conceptual plans for the project, which is being called Pleasant View Ridge. The developer indicated it needs feedback from city leaders before returning with a more refined proposal.

Planning documents show Pleasant View Ridge containing 104 home sites on lots both large and small.

About half of the homes would be on parcels of about 6,500 square feet and would utilize community septic.  The larger home sites, occupying about 20,000 square feet, would use individual septic systems. 

Proponents of community and individual septic systems (as opposed to urban utilities) say are environmentally friendly because they help recharge groundwater.

Wed
24
Apr
MTT News Desk's picture

City Council Changes Course On Terrace Avenue Redevelopment Project

Plans to redevelop Terrace Avenue and North High Point Road were turned on their head last week when the Middleton Common Council abruptly decided to proceed with phase two of the project before it tackles phase one.

The new plan is markedly different than any of the three options recommended by the Middleton Plan Commission seven says earlier.

Phase two involves rebuilding Terrace Avenue between Parmenter Street and North High Point Road.

The project, which would be funded using Tax Increment Financing and cost an estimated $2.8 million, includes new sewer and water utilities and a new streetscape using decorative bricks to match pedestrian friendly areas elsewhere in the downtown. Construction is slated to begin in 2014.

Pages

Subscribe to RSS - Government