State looks at buying buildings for Highway 14October 14, 2010Walworth — When Waal's Department store was open, parents would take their children in September to buy back-to-school clothes and supplies there.
Eleven years ago, the former department store was purchased by John and Roberta Hunt, who now run the Antique Store on the corner.
Roberta Hunt, an owner of the Antique Mall, said customers still talk to her about the former department store. However, today more people are questioning the building's future.
October 14, 2010Fontana — Sharon O'Brien is feeling disenfranchised.
The Fontana resident has been attending board meetings in her search for stricter regulations to the village's zoning and land use laws, but she believes elected officials are ignoring her pleas.
O'Brien wants to see village officials aggressively pursue rewriting ordinances to preserve the area and prevent unwanted development, especially on the shoreline.
Recent Geneva Lake West
To raise revenues, village looks at advertisingOctober 07, 2010Walworth — The cash-strapped village is searching for alternative ways to fund, for which the board has been criticized.During the September meeting, the Village Board discussed having advertisements in the outfields of Toynton and Devil’s Lane Park. “We are trying to raise funds for the parks because our budget is constantly being cut,” Park Committee Chairwoman Madeline Zindrick said.
Village awaiting opinion on lakefront ownershipWhowell describes CDA’s handling of issue inept, disgracefulOctober 07, 2010Fontana — The drama surrounding the lakefront ownership issue may soon reach its climax. In August, the CDA authorized spending up to $5,000 to have Madison-based attorney Hank Gempeler research titles and other documents to determine whether the Lake Street businesses have riparian rights to Geneva Lake.For years, questions have been raised on whether the owners of Chuck’s Lake Shore Inn and Gordy’s have the riparian rights to Geneva Lake. Chuck’s is owned by Carol and Jamie Whowell and Tom Whowell is one of the owners of Gordy’s.
Saving the TIDVillage makes plea to stateOctober 07, 2010Fontana — A sudden change in how the Department of Revenue values tax increment districts has left village officials baffled.And, depending on real estate growth, it also could place the TIF district in debt until 2020. However, the TID should close with a positive balance.Village officials are protesting the DOR’s decision to change how it values TIF districts. The change dropped the value of Fontana’s district by $26 million overnight.
Someone steals ATM from Lucke’s CantinaSeptember 30, 2010Williams Bay — Police are investigating a burglary at Lucke’s Cantina after someone broke into the restaurant last week and stole an ATM full of cash.The theif or thieves also broke into a safe that contained cash and took jackets that were left overnight by employees.Village police officer Dan Lauderdale said this type of crime is unusual for Williams Bay.
pyramidingSeptember 30, 2010Fontana — Pyramiding is a term many people in Walworth County aren’t familiar with. However, in Fontana that will soon change. Pyramiding is increasing the access to a public body of water through private real estate transactions. In the Geneva Lake area that could mean riparian rights would be transferred across the street. Other effects of pyramiding includes increasing the number of boats, piers and buoys on the lake.During Monday night’s Plan Commission meeting, Village Attorney Dale Thorpe presented an ordinance that would prohibit pyramiding. In the next month, village officials will tweak Thorpe’s proposal, and there will be a public hearing in October.
Construction on new Town Hall beginsSeptember 23, 2010Walworth Township — Town officials are ready to break ground on a new Town Hall facility after months of planning. On Monday afternoon, town officials, representatives from Walworth State Bank, contractors and top executives from Kikkoman Foods came to the site of the new Town Hall to celebrate all that planning coming to fruition. During the April 13 annual meeting, Town residents voted 89-3 to spend up to $740,000 to build a new Town Hall on Brick Church Road.
Animal neglect case ends with 47 citationsWoman to pay $1,000 in finesSeptember 23, 2010Williams Bay — When police found 47 cats living in a small village home earlier this year, they told the owner she wouldn’t face charges if she turned over the cats and cooperated with police.But Katie Grashel refused to provide all the information to police, which was revealed during a Saturday municipal court trial in Williams Bay.Police cited Grashel with 47 sanitation violations, one for each cat in the house. She was fined $1,000 plus court costs.
Voters deny lakefront
referendumSeptember 16, 2010Fontana — Village residents overwhelmingly voted against a $2.8 million referendum to make improvements to the lakefront. More than 70 percent of the people who cast ballots in Tuesday’s referendum election were against it. Of the 505 people who voted, only 135 supported it.“The voters have spoken,” Village President Arvid “Pete” Petersen said. “It is pretty much the end of the issue.”
Bay district rejects request to boost school tax capSeptember 16, 2010Williams Bay — Voters turned back a request by the School Board to increase the school district’s revenue cap over the next three years.The referendum asked voters to approve spending cap increases by $498,000 for the 2010-11 school year, $498,000 for 2011-12 and $890,000 for 2012-13 and thereafter.Complete unofficial returns showed the Williams Bay district electors refused with 698 voting no, and 411 voting yes.
Bay voters to decide schools’ futureOpponents say district needs plan before asking for tax increaseSeptember 09, 2010Williams Bay — Sept. 14 is decision day for the Williams Bay School District.Voters will decide whether to approve an increase in their school district’s revenue cap, or require the School Board to go back, crunch the numbers, do some planning and perhaps make some cuts.During recent public meetings on the referendum proposal that would raise the district’s cap over the next three years, Williams Bay Superintendent Fred Vorlop has argued that without permission from the voters to increase the state-imposed cap, programs and teachers will have to be cut. The leverage created by the 2003 revenue cap increase is running out and the district is running deficits, Vorlop said.