News & Notes: Dec. 10

Dec. 10, 2013

'Mister West Allis'

for 3 decades to retire

West Allis — Paul Ziehler, West Allis city administrative officer/clerk-treasurer, announced that he will retire in April after nearly 34 years in the city's top administrative spot.

Ziehler has worked with six mayors and many aldermen.

"Obviously it has been a big part of my life," he said.

Ziehler started his tenure in the city as director of the department of administration and finance in 1980.

His title changed and evolved over the years.

As a matter of course when there is a vacancy, the Common Council was to meet this week to evaluate the position of city administrator, but the council is expected to fill it after a formal vote on Tuesday.

Special election

to be held in 5th District

West Allis — A special election will be held to fill the last two years of the term of West Allis Alderman James Sengstock, who stepped down last month, the Common Council decided last week.

Sengstock represented the 5th aldermanic district for more than 41 years.

Those interested in running for the vacancy to be filled in the April 1, 2014, election must file a campaign registration statement, nomination papers, a declaration of candidacy and statement of economic interests by 5 p.m. Jan. 7 in the clerk's office in the West Allis City Hall, 7525 W. Greenfield Ave.

Two incumbents

to seek re-election

West Allis — Both Daniel Bailey and Gail Radonski have announced that they intend to run for re-election to the West Allis-West Milwaukee School Board.

The term of Kristi Bopnaparte also will expire in April.

Those wishing to run for the School Board can file nomination and other documents by 5 p.m. Jan. 7 at the superintendent's office, 1205 S. 70th St.

Angels for animals

drive to help shelters

Greenfield — With the holidays fast approaching, veterinarian Marla Lichtenberger, owner of The Milwaukee Emergency Center for Animals in Greenfield, is sponsoring an Angels for Animals Holiday Tree drive to raise money for area animal shelters.

The shelters include the Milwaukee Area Domestic Animal Control Commission, 3839 W. Burnham St., West Milwaukee.

Those who stop in at a participating animal shelter until Dec. 31 can buy an ornament for $20. All proceeds will go to the shelter.

Participating shelters also include the Wisconsin Humane Society, The Humane Animal Welfare Society (HAWS) in Waukesha and The Elmbrook Humane Society. Each organization features its own Angels for Animals Holiday Tree with ornaments crafted by shelter volunteers.

Local photographer's shot

chosen from 1,200 photos

Greenfield — Erika Hetzel of Greenfield snapped a winning photograph of a Cave Point County Park rock formation that is featured in the AnchorBank 2014 calendar, available for free at all AnchorBanks until the end of the year.

Each year, AnchorBank showcases the work of photographers all around Wisconsin through the company's annual calendar contest. This year, more than 1,200 photographers submitted photographs for consideration.

AnchorBank selected 12 winners and six runners-up to be featured in the calendar. This year's calendar features a vintage theme with black-and-white photos to celebrate the bank's upcoming 95th anniversary.

Hetzel's photograph is the featured photo for March.

$50 a year could buy

assurance, compliance

West Allis — West Allis is considering a plan that would result in the city being better able to fulfill its obligation to get more rainwater out of storm sewers while cushioning homeowners from bills running into the thousands of dollars for collapsed sewer laterals.

The proposed plan would call for homeowners to chip in $50 a year. If they need emergency sewer lateral work, they would pay $1,000 instead of the $12,000 or $15,000 laterals often cost. Sewer laterals carry waste water from homes to the sewer in the street.

The city would have enough left over from the annual payments to be able to rehabilitate sewer laterals in four basins that let in too much rainwater because the laterals are so old.

After the Milwaukee Metropolitan Sewerage District dumped a massive amount of diluted sewage into Lake Michigan and rivers, it was sued by the state of Wisconsin. To settle that lawsuit, the MMSD agreed to get a certain amount of rainwater out of the sewage system. Huge amounts of rainwater got into the system during a storm and caused it to overflow into the water bodies. West Allis and the other communities the MMSD serves agreed to the settlement terms, also.

Working on private laterals all the way up to homes would be new. Cities that offer such programs stop at private property lines, that officials know of.

City attorney Scott Post will provide a legal opinion on the proposal.

Citizens to be asked

to rate police encounters

West Allis — Those who have encounters with West Allis Police Department soon will be able to rate how they felt the interactions went as part of the National Police Research Platform's Police Community Interaction Survey, administered by the University of Illinois at Chicago.

The goal is to collect data that will help establish new benchmarks for excellence in policing and thus help improve the quality of police services. The West Allis department is one of about 100 agencies to participate in the national program.

Participating police departments will be able to use the survey data to identify where encounters were effective and where procedures or training should be changed.

As police reports are filed, a letter will be sent to those involved asking them to take a survey. The survey will be available in Spanish and English and taken either online, or by telephone.

The results provided to the Police Department will not include any identifying information.

Police encounters that involve traffic accidents and stops, as well as most non-violent crimes, will be part of survey. Encounters that result from domestic violence, sexual assault or juveniles will not.

More information is available from the National Police Research Platform, by calling (312) 996-0764 or emailing; or the West Allis Police Department, Captain Steven Beyer, at (414) 302-8018.

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