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News & Notes: July 2

July 2, 2012

Richlen resignation opens School Board seat

Greenfield - David Richlen has resigned from the Greenfield School Board because his family is moving to Franklin.

The family, which is expecting a third child in November, decided that their house in Greenfield is too small, Richlen explained. They want to move to Franklin to be closer to grandparents.

"I enjoyed being on the board," Richlen said.

His term expires in April, 2013, when an election will be held to fill a new three-year term.

Because the School Board may appoint someone to serve until then, the board is asking for anyone wanting to be considered for appointment to submit a written letter of interest and resume with qualifications to Cathy Walsh, School Board clerk, School District of Greenfield Board of Education and Administration Center, 4850 S. 60th St., Greenfield WI 53220.

Applications may be mailed or dropped off no later than 4 p.m. July 16.

West Allis takes more precautions for fireworks

West Allis - Given the current stretch of dry weather, the West Allis Fire Department planned extra precautions for this year's Fourth of July fireworks, said Lt. Jay Scharfenberg, public information officer.

The entire launch area at the State Fair Park, where the fireworks were set off, was wetted down, he said.

Board doesn't adopt social media restriction

Greenfield - The Greenfield School Board last week decided against a policy that suggested staffers cannot post inflammatory or detrimental messages about the schools on social media.

"We shouldn't be going there," board member Cathy Walsh said.

The policy attempted to regulate employees' personal, private use of social media, Walsh said, adding that the policy might be hard to enforce anyway.

"I would have a hard time saying who decides what's inflammatory," she said.

The policy was suggested so school officials could do something about inflammatory postings that can bring disruptions to the schools, Superintendent Conrad Farner said.

"It's one more way to minimize disruption to the learning environment," he said.

Instead, the district will give written warnings alerting staff members that their use of social media is not acceptable.

Parents give $19,236 for Smart Boards

Greenfield - The Maple Grove Elementary School Student-Parent-Teacher Organization brought its contribution toward Smart Boards to $19,236 with Monday's donation of $11,257.

Smart Boards are computer-connected interactive boards that are used like blackboards.

The group held many fundraisers.

"It's really good to see this kind of involvement. Thank you very much," Greenfield School Board member Pam Sierzchulski said to a director of the group last week.

"It certainly will be a help to our students," board member Don Carlson said.

Board member backs putting information online

Greenfield - Make the actions of the Greenfield School Board more transparent by putting background information for agenda items on the district's website, board member Cathy Walsh suggested last week.

"It would help people decide if they want to attend the meetings," Walsh said.

She noted that many districts and municipalities already provide background documents and some also stream their meetings on the Internet.

"These kinds of things really help the public understand what's going on," Walsh said.

In her 18 years on the board, one of the major complaints she has heard is that people feel that decisions have been slid past them and that they have been left out, Walsh said.

"The more information we provide, the less criticism," she said.

Walsh brought up the possibility during a discussion of the city's website provider contract, so it was not on the meeting agenda. But Walsh said she would push for a full School Board discussion.

Fashion Bugs slated to close

Fashion Bug, a women's clothing chain, will soon close in West Allis, Greenfield and elsewhere, the Associated Press has reported.

Charming Shoppes, which owns the 600 Fashion Bug stores nationwide, has been purchased by the Ascena Retail Group, which said it would close the stores by early 2013. Ascena is keeping other parts of Charming Shoppes.

Fashion Bug stores are located at 10282 W. National Ave., West Allis, and at 4260 S. 76th St., Greenfield.

Town Hall meeting set on county budget plan

West Allis - A town hall meeting on Milwaukee County's proposed 2013 budget will be held from 10 to 11:30 a.m. Aug. 14 at the City Hall, 7525 W. Greenfield Ave.

Accommodations will be made for those with disabilities who call (414) 278-3932 (voice) or (414) 278-3977 (TTY).

Local dancers national champions

West Allis - The junior elite group of the Dance Repertoire, 2028 S. 114th St., won first place in the Legacy National Dance Championships held June 17 to 20 in the Wisconsin Dells.

The group performed a musical theater piece, "Luck Be A Lady."

Studio owner Debbie Berry won the Best Choreographer Award for her choreography of that dance.

Dance Repertoire was one of only two dance studios in Wisconsin to compete at this competition, which featured more than 20 top studios from around the country.

Wild Bill's Saloon closes after 22 years

West Allis - After 22 years in West Allis, Wild Bill's Saloon, the bar that has been the quintessential "corner bar," with the sound of dice hitting the bar and the jukebox blasting, closed Friday.

The same bar that many wouldn't step foot in was home to many who didn't see a need to ever go anywhere else, said proprietor Bill Savage, known affectionately as Wild Bill to some and by less amicable monikers to others.

Known throughout West Allis for his tell-it-like-it-is attitude, his opposition to the smoking ban, and his championing of conservative causes, Savage said he had a clientele from both sides of the aisle.

"I had a great time, met some really great folks and have no regrets; it's just time to close this chapter of my life." Savage said.

He works in Madison and his junior high son is just getting into sports and Savage said he wants to have time to coach him.

He hopes to sell the bar at 1454 S. 92nd St., which would then reopen under another name.

Edgewood Elementary named School of Merit

Greenfield - Edgewood Elementary School, 4711 S. 47th St., was selected by the Wisconsin Positive Behavior Intervention Supports Network as a School of Merit for its implementation of PBIS.

Positive Behavioral Intervention and Supports is a systemic approach to proactive, schoolwide discipline. The Wisconsin PBIS Network is an initiative funded by the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction. PBIS is currently in approximately 40 percent of Wisconsin schools.

Edgewood Elementary was one of 114 schools statewide to be recognized as a School of Merit for the 2011-12 school year.

Project proposals asked for possible 2013 funding

West Allis - The West Allis Department of Development is accepting applications for Community Development Block Grant funding for next year.

The application and instructions are available on the city's website at www.westalliswi.gov.

A project must either benefit low- and moderate-income persons or help eliminate slums or blighting influences or meet an urgent need. Projects must also address a priority need designated in the city's Five-Year Consolidated Plan. Those priorities are a) redevelop abandoned industrial sites; b) improve amenities for low- and moderate-income residents and increase business opportunities in a neighborhood commercial district and the Downtown Business District; c) facilitate retention and expansion of jobs that provide family-supporting wages; d) promote school-to-work transition and/or vocational training programs; and e) maintain quality social service programs benefiting low and moderate income and elderly persons.

Requests should be returned to the department by 4 p.m. July 13. More information is available from Patrick Schloss, (414) 302-8468, or Kristi Johnson, (414) 302-8463.

Helmet giveaway declared successful

West Allis - More than 60 families participated in the West Allis Health Department's annual Bike Helmet Give-Away June 6 and the department is calling the day a success.

Bicycle helmets were properly fitted for 98 children, who were instructed to wear their new helmets when riding on anything with wheels such as in-line or roller skates, skateboards, scooters and even small tricycles. Parents also were shown how the helmet should be placed to assure protection.

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