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Kenosha County’s equalized property value went up this year, ending a five-year downward trend.

The past decade has been one of wild swings in property values. The county’s equalized value in 2005 was $12.37 billion. It climbed to $15 billion in 2008, before plummeting to $12.24 billion in 2013.

The 3 percent gain this year puts the county’s value slightly above what it was in 2005, at $12.58 billion.

Now that city officials have determined a way to bail out its debt-ridden tax incremental financing districts, the city is working on a plan to help rid the Boys and Girls Club of Kenosha of its existing debt. The issue of helping out the Boys and Girls Club arose when city, county and school district officials were working out the plan to help the ailing TIF districts by borrowing from well-performing TIFs. According to sources, a similar plan is being considered for the Boys and Girls Club, which has about $3 million in outstanding debt.

 

 

The School Board rejected a Kenosha Unified School District plan to send educators to “cultural competency” training aimed at combating the achievement gap.

The Board voted 6 to 0, with Board President Tamarra Coleman abstaining, to reject a plan to spend $54,000 to send 21 people to a conference organized by the Pacific Education Group, which focuses on cultural competence in the classroom.

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by Roberto Ruiz

Wisconsin welcomes one of the most entertaining and interactive circus acts to town this week. Performing at the State Fairgrounds until the 21st, the UniverSoul circus is comprised of many exciting Latino acts including a high wire act, a globe of death, trick dogs, elephants, and men of steel.

Circuses have been around for ages, but this circus based out of Atlanta, Georgia has been a breath of fresh air as it tours around the country. No matter where they go, everyone raves about the audience interaction; you feel like you are part of the circus.

Juan Olate of the Olate family has been in the entertainment business in the United States for 16 years, and he loves every minute of his job. Juan works specifically with the trick dogs, and he considers each dog a member of his family. “I love to entertain crowds, I love to see their reactions, I really just love everything about performing,” said Olate when asked why he has performed for so long. He later went on to explain that performing runs in his family, backing that claim up by mentioning his uncle who, along with his dogs, won the popular talent show America’s Got Talent in 2012. Olate, who was born in Chile, mentioned that he is very excited for “Latino night” on Friday, September 19th.

Willy Meza is a daredevil of the highest order. He not only performs during the high wire act, but also is one of the motorcycle riders in the “Globe of Death.” Meza has been performing for 25 years and hails from Colombia.

Latino night will be a party. With additional Latino acts like Abel Driggs, a native of Cuba, showing off his skills on the Cuban Pole, and Jorge Barreda, a Colombian native, performing with Elephants, this even is  the definition of a can’t miss for the Latino community.

With a 4.6 out of 5 star rating on Ticketmaster and tickets selling for as little as $23, this is a must see event. The UniverSoul Circus will be performing in West Allis, WI, at the State Fairgrounds throughout the weekend.

WASHINGTON – President Obama nominated Wisconsin’s U.S. Senator Ron Johnson to be a representative in the 69th Session of the U.N. General Assembly.

The White House announced the nomination on Friday.

Sen. Johnson serves on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, where he is a ranking member on the European Affairs Subcommittee. Johnson also serves on the Committee on the Budget, the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, the Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs, and the Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship.

America observed 13th anniversary of the attack on September 11, 2001 by terrorists this past week. Over 3000 Americans died that day when the Twin Towers in New York City collapsed on that tragic day.

GREENFIELD – The driver of a car that was shot at early Wednesday morning in Greenfield has died, according to Police Chief Brad Wentlandt.

Greenfield police are looking for the person or people who opened fire on the car on 27th Street near the Interstate 43/894 interchange.The 26-year-old Palmyra man was shot in the head and died Wednesday afternoon at Froedtert Hospital.

Wentlandt said they believe the victim and the gunman knew each other and that this was not a random shooting.

The victim’s name is not being released until relatives are notified.

Acting on a search warrant, the Racine County Sheriff’s Department visited Kenosha to obtain evidence for its investigation into city government.

Racine authorities have launched an investigation into city government after it learned of allegations that some one within the government was tampering with emails or other public records. The complaint began locally with the Kenosha County Sheriff’s Department, but was bounced to Racine so as to avoid a conflict of interest, local authorities said.

Officials with the Racine Sheriff’s Department were in Kenosha Tuesday to “obtain pieces of equipment and more information” relating to its investigation, Lt. Steve Sikora said.

The search was executed at two municipal buildings, but the Racine Sheriff’s Department could not confirm which buildings were involved.

Acting Fire Chief Roger Pattie informed the Village Board at a meeting Wednesday the fire trucks could not be operated until their outdated tires are replaced. 

Then, when a short-term request to get some fire coverage from Salem was defeated by the Village Board, he resigned as fire chief, citing the board’s “lack of concern for its citizens.”

The 21 members of the class of 2014, who graduated tonight, raised the total of Leadership Kenosha alumni to 231 since its inception in 1998.

The graduates participated in a 9-month leadership development program, guided by experienced local leaders, while working in teams with sponsoring non-profit organizations on projects the teams developed to meet specific needs of their sponsors.

On Saturday, May 31, 2014, Milwaukee Brewer Gold Glove winner Carlos Gomez will attend the Carlos Gomez Hispanic Scholarship Fund in collaboration with Wisconsin LULAC Council 333, at the offices of Mexican Fiesta.

Wisconsin LULAC Council 333 has created the Carlos Gomez Hispanic Scholarship Fund aimed at helping Wisconsin Hispanic students to pursue a college degree.  Gomez will be presenting six Hispanic Youth with the first Carlos Gomez Scholarship of $1,000 dollars each to help these Hispanic students to pursue their college degree.  To lead off the Carlos Gomez Scholarship fund Gomez has contributed $5,000 with $1,000 being matched by the Wisconsin Hispanic Scholarship Foundation.

An 11-year-old girl and four others were wounded this week in three separate shootings in Milwaukee.

The girl and 29-year-old man were wounded in an alley in the 4000 block of N. 25th St., according to a Milwaukee Police Department news release.

The injuries of the victims are not life-threatening, and the shooting stemmed from an argument between the man and the shooter.

The victims, who are not related, were taken to hospitals and police are looking for a suspect in the shooting, according to a police news release.

Niagara Bottling, LLC, announced plans today to open a 377,000-square-foot plant to be erected in LakeView Corporate Park.

Niagara plans to employ 40 people there initially phase, with the number potentially growing to 75 at what will become the 20th U.S. location for the California-based company, the second largest bottled-water manufacturer in the country.

The facility will be up and running by early 2015, according to a joint statement issued by Niagara, Pleasant Prairie, the Kenosha Area Business Alliance, Kenosha County and the Milwaukee 7 Regional Economic Development organization.

More than 100 friends and family members gathered for a vigil to remember Dulonden Ratiliffe Wednesday night at the site where he was shot and killed in the 300 block of Main Street in downtown Racine. Ratliff, 21, of Kenosha died Saturday in an incident in which a gun went off and a bullet struck him in the head. Christopher S. Brown, 33, of Racine has been charged with first-degree reckless homicide in connection with the shooting.

MILWAUKEE — City employees would have the option of taking off on March 31st annually as a holiday observing the birthday of American labor and civil rights champion Cesar Chavez under proposed legislation to by the Common Council’s Finance and Personnel Committee.

Milwaukee’s proposed ordinance is authored by Alderman Tony Zielinski and co-sponsored by Alderman José G. Pérez, Alderman Bob Donovan, Alderman Nik Kovac and Alderman Robert W. Puente.

Alderman Zielinski said he believes the Chavez birthday holiday measure is an excellent way to honor the legacy “of a man who is a true hero to all working Americans.”

Rep. Bill Kramer faces potential sexual assault charges from an alleged incident not associated with the allegations of sexual harassment made against him a month ago.

Two days after the Waukesha Republican decided not to run for re-election, a prosecutor said that the Muskego Police Department on Wednesday referred to him sexual assault charges against the Waukesha Republican.

Waukesha County District Attorney Brad Schimel said the possible charges are being independently reviewed by one of the prosecutors in his office.

Milwaukee – Potawatomi Bingo Casino will change the name and logo of its Menomonee Valley entertainment complex to Potawatomi Hotel & Casino. The change will take place this summer and recognizes the addition of lodging into its array of entertainment and hospitality offerings.

This marks the first time the property has changed its name in more than two decades. It began in 1991 as Potawatomi Bingo and changed to Potawatomi Bingo Casino in 1993 when it expanded its gaming offerings.

“Changing the property’s name to Potawatomi Hotel & Casino marks an exciting new chapter in the storied evolution of our business,” said Mike Goodrich, general manager. “In 23 years, the Potawatomi name has become known for premier entertainment here in Milwaukee. As an established brand, we felt it was important to retain a name that people know and recognize.”

Potawatomi Bingo Casino broke ground on its $150 million, 381-room hotel on July 12, 2012. The 18-story hotel features floor-to-ceiling windows with stunning views of Milwaukee, a full-service casual restaurant, lobby bar, exercise area and more than 10,000 feet of additional meeting space. The hotel will officially open this fall.

“We are looking forward to opening our beautiful new hotel to our guests and providing them with a level of guest service that sets a new standard in Milwaukee.” said Goodrich.

Milwaukee County Executive Chris Abele moved to veto a “living wage” ordinance requiring an $11.32 minimum hourly pay for county workers and employees of certain county contractors.

Abele then urged the County Board to sustain the veto, noting a warning from the county comptroller saying the wage ordinance could jeopardize the county’s Family Care program, the program employes 2,400 low-wage workers.

The care program provides in-home services to frail elderly and disabled people.

“Not only is that an unsustainable spending plan, it will also threaten our ability to maintain core services, including many of the safety-net services that benefit low-income workers,” Abele wrote.