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State aid drops, again — school levies rise

July 22, 2010
Every July it seems to be the same story. The annual loss of state aid continues to plague the school districts in Lake Geneva and is the main cause for an expected rise in local property taxes again for next year. With an estimated loss of more than $1 million in state aid combined, the Badger High School tax rate is estimated to rise 6 cents for every $1,000 of assessed value. The expected loss in state aids in the Lake Geneva Area (Joint 1) Elementary School District could lead to a raise in the tax rate by as much as 45 cents for every $1,000 of assessed value on the upcoming tax bills. Last week, the local school boards approved their tax levy increases. The Badger levy is at $17.32 million, up 4.62 percent from 2009-10. The Elementary School District levy is up 11.41 percent, to $16.24 million. If those figures remain the same, the tax rate for Badger will be $4.07 for every $1,000 of assessed value. For the Joint No. 1 district, the rate is estimated to be $5.97 for every $1,000 of assessed value.

Alderman responds to paper's lawsuit

July 22, 2010
Lake Geneva Alderwoman Mary Jo Fesenmaier and her attorneys have denied the complaint made by the Lake Geneva Regional News alleging the elected official violated Wisconsin's open records laws. The Regional News filed its complaint against Fesenmaier late last month citing her failure to provide public records. The complaint focused on e-mails requested of city officials, including Fesenmaier, in February and March by the Regional News and its editor, Lisa Seiser. The response to the Regional News complaint states that, "the defendant (Fesenmaier) is not in possession of any records responsive to said public records requests and, therefore, no documents were produced ..."

Celebrating 60 years

Lake Geneva Youth Camp a testament to history

July 22, 2010
On some sunny and pleasant spring and fall days, Bill Pollard ventures out for a long walk. He leaves his home near Stone Manor and heads down South Lake Shore Drive toward his destination — the Lake Geneva Youth Camp and Conference Center. Then, he slowly meanders across the campus property. "I think about my dad and all the people who have been touched by this camp," Pollard said. "It's a very special place." Pollard's father, Charles, was one of five Chicago area businessmen who purchased the former farm property for $100,000 in 1948 and opened a Christian youth camp two years later.

Recent Lake Geneva News
Talking parking meters
City officials consider increases
July 15, 2010
Some elected city officials believe parking in downtown Lake Geneva is maybe too inexpensive.Aldermen Frank Marsala and Todd Krause said it’s typical to see at least $3 per hour parking in other tourist type of municipalities around the country. In Lake Geneva, parking currently is 50 cents per hour.“Personally, everywhere I go, it’s $3 per hour parking,” Krause said. “Here it seems awfully cheap and it’s something to look at in the future.”
A lasting impression
Mason donates entryway art
July 15, 2010
Joe Lisenby pulled his tape measure from his pocket and stretched it along the top of the nearly finished stone sign.He measured it again and then grabbed a piece of rounded concrete. With some help, he carefully placed it on top of nearly four tons of stones, brick and mortar already laid. Lisenby tapped his side down with his fist until it was perfect and then he repeated the process until the upper portion of Lake Geneva’s new entry sign was complete.Lisenby is a stone artist master who enjoys the natural, historical and traditional ways of laying stones. Along with his employees from Moonlight Masonry, Lisenby has created another work of art on the west end of Library Park.
Fatal shooting in Lake Como
July 15, 2010
Geneva — Between 6:15 and 6:20 a.m. Tuesday, a Lake Como man was out walking his dog in the area of Whittier and Dandelion roads when he said he heard a “pop.”Another woman who lives in that area said she heard “two pops.”“I thought it was someone lighting off firecrackers,” she said.
Mirbeau lawsuit narrows focus
Claims of interference include alderwomen, current mayor
July 08, 2010
For 39 pages, Mirbeau of Geneva Lake’s amended complaint filed last week in federal court read much like previous complaints.There are claims for violating the U.S. and Wisconsin Constitution, due process rights, open records, open meetings and retaliation.But, on Page 40, the eighth claim narrows the focus on five individuals and provides some details not previously provided in other complaints by Mirbeau or Geneva Ridge Joint Venture.
City clerk moving on
Dykstra takes job in Darien
July 08, 2010
Clerk Diana Dykstra had some difficulty focusing on her work last week at City Hall. Instead of a relatively uninterrupted pre-holiday week, Dykstra was inundated with numerous phone calls and visits from current and former city officials and employees wishing her well in her new endeavor.Last week, Dykstra accepted a position as Darien’s new administrator/clerk-treasurer. On June 30, she penned her resignation letter to City Administrator Dennis Jordan and Mayor Jim Connors. Her final day in Lake Geneva will be July 15. She will start in Darien on July 19.
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