Dead Sea Scrolls presenation at St. Lucas June 1

May 24, 2010

Coinciding with the final week of the Dead Sea Scrolls and the Bible exhibit at the Milwaukee Public Museum, Dr. Mark Braun from Wisconsin Lutheran College will give a free presentation about the Dead Sea Scrolls at St. Lucas School, 648 E. Dover St. Presented through the Bay View Neighborhood Association, a group of adults and seniors are traveling to see the exhibit and the discussion will follow their return.


Update: Dog park construction continues

May 18, 2010

Men with chainsaws and a bobcat continued to take down vegetation in Warnimont Park in Cudahy on May 18 in preparation for a dog park.

warnimont-005

A bobcat presses through trees in Warnimont Park on May 18. ~photo Michael Timm


Dog park construction commences

May 17, 2010

County workers cut down trees for the dog park fenceline May 17 in Warnimont Park. ~photo Michael Timm

County workers cut down trees for the dog park fenceline May 17 in Warnimont Park. ~photo Michael Timm

Milwaukee County began construction on a dog park in Warnimont Park in Cudahy on May 17, after surveying the weeks prior.

The Milwaukee County Board approved the construction of an off-leash dog exercise area at the south end of Cudahy in Warnimont Park Sept. 24, 2009.

On Sept. 15, 2009 the Milwaukee County Parks, Energy & Environment Committee voted unanimously to approve construction of the dog park, just south of the Kelly Senior Center and just north of the Lakeshore Tower Apartments.

An off-leash dog exercise area was earlier proposed several miles north in Bay View Park, but faced public opposition when area residents and parks advocates argued the lakeside site was not compatible with a fenced-in area. Lack of parking was also considered.

dog-park-map

Eighth District Milwaukee County Supervisor Patricia Jursik, who represents the area, sponsored the resolution to relocate this south-side dog park to the Cudahy site. Her resolution cited support for the site from the Friends of Sheridan Park, who represent Sheridan Park at Cudahy’s north end. Fourth District County Supervisor Marina Dimitrijevic became a cosponsor to Jursik’s resolution.

The dog park will encompass most of the area between the Kelly Senior Center, 6100 S. Lake Dr., and the Lakeshore Tower Apartments, 6260 S. Lake Dr., west of the bike trail that cuts through Warnimont Park, according to a map provided by Jursik’s office. The area is currently wooded, home to deer, and also includes an old fenced-in tennis court.

The county’s 2009 Recommended Capital Improvements Budget included an appropriation of $248,400 for the construction of two or three dog exercise areas. The Bay View Park site was to be 1.5 acres, include a 10-by-16-foot shelter, and was estimated to cost $49,000.


Community garden plots prepared

May 1, 2010

Dirt was delivered April 28 to be used in the to-be-constructed raised garden beds. Bay View Hide House Community Garden volunteers will assemble raised garden beds at a grass lot at Greeley Street and Deer Place on Saturday, May 1. A party for volunteers will follow.

The volunteer-powered garden, supported by the Bay View Neighborhood Association, Bay View Bash, the Hide House, General Capital Development, the Victory Garden Initiative, and other local businesses, was completely sold-out for its first year. 4×4 plots went for $15/year, 4×8 for $30/year, two 4x8s for $50/year, and four 4x8s plus one 4×4 for $100/year.

More info: bvhhgarden.wordpress.com.


Sven’s Café: a community crossroads marks six years

May 1, 2010

By Cara Slingerland

Sven’s Café owner Steve Goretzko. ~photo Adam Morris

Sven’s Café owner Steve Goretzko. ~photo Adam Morris

Sven’s Café owner Steve Goretzko prefers his coffee black, without embellishment. A direct, no-nonsense kind of guy, he said that’s also how he does business.

Coffee has been a part of Goretzko’s life since he was young. “My mother used to take me to Coffee Trader [on Downer Avenue] quite a lot. Then I met Harry [Demorest] from Northwestern Coffee Mills in the Third Ward while going to college. I liked the whole concept,” Goretzko said.

Goretzko was born in Germany. When he was 4, his family moved from Berlin to the United States, a block away from the original Black Bear Soda plant in Cudahy, but they visited Germany frequently. Goretzko recalls fond memories with his grandmother at central Berlin’s Café Kranzler.  »Read more


Have you heard about Alterra’s proposed Bay View (bakery & café) project?… What do you think?

May 1, 2010

Interviews & Photos by Michael Timm (conducted April 26, 2010)

Michael Jarozewski

“I hadn’t heard of it…Where the Maritime Bank was? I never heard about that going on. There’s not enough exposure about that going on, on the south side. Big corporations just take over anything they want.”

-Michael Jarozewski, 11th & Lincoln

Jodie Hansen

“Yeah…I think we have enough coffee shops. I mean, I really like Alterra but I’m not sure that this would be the best location for it because we already have two right on the same corners.”

-Jodie Hansen, Howell Avenue

Jerry Love

They should build over the parking lot a structure, right here; tear down this here building right here [former Pandora/Magnum]; and then make it a café in back and a bakery in front, right where this building right here is supposed to come down, in the back of this Maritime Savings Bank, this here [front of Maritime along Lincoln], a pharmacy right here.”

-Jerry Love, Lincoln & Howell

Brennan Stehling

“Actually, I attended the session [April 12]…I actually am a regular here at the Wild Flour, and I plan on staying a regular. I think it’s great that they’re going to move in because I’ve seen what they did at the lakefront and at Humboldt, where I live near. It’s just drawn activity to the neighborhood, so it only seems to help the neighborhood. Some people are bothered by the financial scenario, but I think they’ll be able to pay back the loan no problem, so I think it’s generally a positive.”

-Brennan Stehling, Commerce Street (works in an office in Bay View’s King Building)

Vinko Smolcic

“No, I’ve not heard about it…Oh, over there on the corner? Yeah, I think that could be put to a bakery over there. Yeah.”

-Vinko Smolcic, West Allis


Dover students with their self-portraits

May 1, 2010

Photos by Ken Mobile

Students at Dover Street School created self-portraits as part of a school art project, “Hall of Portraits.” First and fourth graders were chosen to make their portraits into Shrinky Dink ornaments. These ornaments were hung outside on one of Sven’s Café’s Christmas trees in December 2009.  »Read more


DPI pressures could cause MPS schools to go “art-less”

May 1, 2010

By Terry Falk, 8th District School Board Director

Over 30 years ago Milwaukee Public Schools created several art-orientated specialty schools. These are wonderful schools instilling the best in public education.

But quickly MPS began dismantling many art programs at other schools throughout the system. Do you want art for your child? Go sign up for one of the art specialty schools. As a teacher at Juneau High School, I saw my school, with a marching band, orchestra, and several choirs, winding up with virtually no music in just a few years.

Every child deserves to have art and music. As a school board director, I’ve supported extending art and music to every school in this system. Unfortunately, we may again see cuts in art and music programs.

Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction is placing additional pressures on MPS to provide 90-minute blocks each day in our elementary schools for both reading and math. After three hours of instruction in these areas, schools are scrambling to find time for other academic areas. The arts may get squeezed out in the process.

MPS made a mistake by having too many reading and math programs, especially given the mobility of students moving from one school to another. Focusing on one or two proven programs in each area is a step in the right direction. We need students to read, write, and compute better, but dedicated blocks for these subject areas are not necessarily the best answer.

Instead we should infuse all subject areas with these basic skills. Numerous studies have shown a high correlation between arts programs and reading, writing, and math skills. But DPI is pushing for the simple answer.

In addition, the state is giving less money to school systems, and school boards are limited by state law to the amount they can raise taxes. Thus principals must look at their proposed school budgets for next year, trying to figure out where to make cuts. On the chopping block at many schools are art teachers.

Hopefully we can weather this storm. We can improve the basic skills and preserve a rich, creative curriculum for all our children.

Terry Falk is the Milwaukee Public Schools director for the Eighth District, which includes Bay View. He can be reached at (414) 510-9173 or falktf@milwaukee.k12.wi.us.


Federal stimulus dollars at work in Milwaukee County

May 1, 2010

By Marina Dimitrijevic, District 4 County Supervisor

In 2009 our federal government made a great effort to stimulate our economy by adopting the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, aka “the stimulus bill” or ARRA. The stimulus has been critical for local governments and has truly helped Milwaukee County residents in many ways.

Thank you to the Obama administration and our congressional delegation for providing us this much-needed resource. In addition, it was the County Board of Supervisors who had to legislate acceptance of these funds. Foolishly, our county executive made a political decision against accepting millions of dollars to improve our infrastructure and we almost missed out on a great opportunity to stimulate our local economy.

We have put these funds to great use in Milwaukee County. Some great examples include $25 million to purchase 45 new buses and fund a major fare box upgrade for our Milwaukee County Transit System, $2.5 million for airport runway improvements, $2.8 million for child support enforcement, $2.7 million in public safety, $700,000 for homelessness prevention, $465,000 for veterans housing on 35th and Wisconsin, and $8 million to improve many county-trunk highways and bridges.

Lastly, as the author of Milwaukee County’s Greenprint legislation, I was especially pleased to see the stimulus funds help us further achieve our energy goals. For example we received $200,000 to purchase alternative fuel vehicles, which will enhance our outdated fleet. Two new, state-of-the-art solar hot water systems will be installed in Wilson and Washington Park Senior Centers as part of a $732,000 allocation. Milwaukee County bonded about $30 million for our capital improvements and with the stimulus will save $3 million over the life of these bonds. As you can see, Milwaukee County has been stimulated. I hope that the private market will begin to recover and employment will be re-invigorated as well.

Marina Dimitrijevic is supervisor of Milwaukee County’s Fourth District, which includes Bay View and Milwaukee’s near south side. She can be reached at marina.dimitrijevic@milwcnty.com or (414) 278-4232.


Mass transit sesquicentennial

May 1, 2010

By Chris Larson, District 14 County Supervisor

On May 30, 1860, River & Lake Shore City Railway Company operated the first horse-drawn streetcar in Milwaukee along a single track on N. Water Street from Erie to E. Juneau Street-at five cents a ride. In May 2010, Milwaukee County kicks off six months celebrating mass transit as Milwaukee’s economic backbone for 150 years.

On Friday, May 7, rides on Route 15 will be free all day in honor of the first transit route, which operated a portion of the current route. Northwestern Mutual is sponsoring the rides, which last from when the bus pulls out in the morning until the last ride after 1am.

Across the county, we will celebrate Milwaukee’s oldest line by highlighting 15 landmark stops on Route 15. The “15 on the 15” will be done in coordination with MCTS, neighborhood groups, and several other supervisors to celebrate this vital route in our transit system. Last year, Route 15 provided 7,858 rides each weekday to people through the heart of Bay View on a daily basis.

“The 15 on the 15”

  1. Bayshore Town Center
  2. Whitefish Bay Silver Spring shopping district
  3. Estabrook Park
  4. University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
  5. Milwaukee’s Central Library
  6. Milwaukee City Hall
  7. Historic Third Ward
  8. Walker’s Point neighborhood
  9. Allen Bradley clock tower
  10. Kinnickinnic business district
  11. Church of the Immaculate Conception
  12. Bay View neighborhood
  13. Bucyrus International’s Heritage Building
  14. Cudahy Historical Society Train Depot and Immigrant Park
  15. Grant Park

We will be highlighting the great shops of Bay View as well as areas from Grant Park to Bayshore with many stops in between. We will have the full list of the 15 stops available at our office as well as at cafes around Bay View. There will also be a celebration at the Downtown Transit Center, 909 E. Michigan St., at 1pm on May 7.

Our transit system gets people to and from work; provides rides to people home from bars; gets people to and from shopping locations; and moves students and young professionals who may not want the hassle and stress of parking, car insurance, permits, tickets, etc. Our buses now offer bike racks, monthly passes, and will next year go even more “green” with paperless smart cards and cleaner buses. If you haven’t ridden the bus lately, May 7 is a great chance to try it for free.

Chris Larson is supervisor of Milwaukee County’s 14th District, which encompasses southern parts of Bay View, the airport, and other parts of Milwaukee’s southeast side. He can be reached at chris.larson@milwcnty.com or (414) 278-4252.


Investing in our green economy

May 1, 2010

By Jon Richards, 19th District State Representative

Going green is not only good for the environment, but also for the bottom line. Going green can create new jobs in the clean energy sector-an industry with enormous growth potential. While many of Wisconsin’s manufacturers are focused on creating jobs and staying competitive in this tough market, allowing employers to save money on the cost of energy keeps Wisconsin businesses more competitive and more profitable.

Wisconsin businesses want to invest in energy efficiency. Last month I attended an event with AT&T Wisconsin where they announced the deployment of their first Compressed Natural Gas vehicles in Wisconsin. I was proud to stand with AT&T and support their effort to invest in cleaner domestic alternative fuel vehicles. The deployment of these 42 vans that service the Milwaukee area will cut down on the amount of carbon dioxide emissions and ultimately make the air we breathe healthier and reduce our reliance on foreign sources of energy.

In order to help more businesses like AT&T invest in cleaner, renewable energy, I worked to pass legislation that gives Wisconsin employers the tools they need to jumpstart these efforts. The legislation created a one-stop shop for Wisconsin manufacturers that are seeking to take advantage of state and federal green energy assistance programs and resources.

In addition to this legislation, I worked to advance the Clean Energy Jobs Act. Four years ago, Wisconsin became one of the first states to enact renewable portfolio standards, reducing our dependence on foreign fuels and creating jobs. As a result, we have seen rapid expansion in renewable energy production and major growth in clean energy jobs. The Clean Energy Jobs Act failed to pass the legislature this year; however, I will continue to fight to bring this idea to fruition.

Every year, Wisconsin sends $16 billion out of our state to power our homes and businesses and fuel our vehicles. The Clean Energy Jobs Act will help reduce our dependence on foreign fuels and make sure that Wisconsin does not miss out on the opportunity to have a piece of the emerging clean energy job market.

Last month we celebrated the 40th anniversary of Earth Day. Now is a good time to reflect on how far we have come in the fight to protect our environment. I will continue to work toward developing new and innovative ways of assisting businesses to create jobs and help keep our environment clean for generations to come.

Jon Richards is the state representative for Wisconsin’s 19th state Assembly District, which includes Bay View, the Third Ward, eastern downtown, and the East Side. His website is jonrichards.org. He can be reached at (888) 534-0019 or rep.richards@legis.wi.gov.


The Voter Protection Act

May 1, 2010

By Chris Sinicki, 20th District State Representative

April 22 was the last major floor period of this two-year state Legislative session. On this final day, the state Senate decided to finish their business before the Assembly even started their session. That means that all bills not yet passed in the Senate are now “dead,” until they can be reintroduced in January 2011. The Wisconsin Voter Protection Act (VPA) was one such bill, and will not pass in the 2009-10 Legislature.

The VPA is centered on a few main components. The bill would modernize our voter registration system by using secure data-sharing technology. This provision has been tarred and feathered in talk radio’s echo chamber in an irresponsible and misleading way. The fact is, improved uses of technology directed by the VPA would bolster voter protections, streamline inefficient methods of voter registration, and make sure our list of eligible voters is as accurate as possible.

The VPA would allow the forwarding of Department of Transportation (DOT) information to the Government Accountability Board (GAB), which would cross-reference the voter registration list to prevent the registration of ineligible voters. Adding these additional cross-checks will make the ballot box more secure. The bill further protects elections by specifically prohibiting polling places from being located anywhere that would give an advantage to a political party. And, municipal clerks’ offices must still staff polling places.

These cross-checks would enhance the security of voter files. The VPA would also allow voters to use 21st-century technology with online registration. All of these provisions would allow increased access to registration and voting for eligible citizens, while protecting the security of the process.

The VPA would streamline absentee voting, including the adoption of required federal standards for our military personnel. Absentee registration would take place via an opt-in process whereby a voter must request to be placed on the permanent absentee ballot list. The U.S. Post Office would be prohibited from forwarding absentee ballots or delivering them to an old address if someone has filed change-of-address or forwarding request cards. Finally, the VPA proposes to increase penalties for voter fraud and voter suppression.

There’s been a great deal of unnecessary political rhetoric and, I think, fear-mongering about this bill. From my reading of it, ballot security and protecting citizens’ rights are really what it is about.

Chris Sinicki is the state representative for Wisconsin’s 20th state Assembly District, which includes southern Bay View, St. Francis, Cudahy, the airport, and other parts of the south side. Her website is chrissinicki.net and she can be reached at (888) 534-0020 or rep.sinicki@legis.wi.gov.


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