Community

Thu
14
Nov
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Noise Complaints Continue, Residents Say Airport Officials Aren’t Addressing Concerns

MIDDLETON–Residents affected by airplane noise continue to see Middleton Municipal Airport officials as unresponsive to their noise complaints, according to comments made last week at a Middleton Airport Commission meeting.

Cynthia Richson, a commission member and board chair of the Town of Middleton, said plane noise recently woke her three times between 2-3:30 a.m. 

“They may be (Med Flights) saving lives but there’s a lot of sleep deprivation caused by planes flying west of the airport,” she said.

The airport has a noise abatement program which directs pilots to avoid developed areas, but planes on instrument approach can fly as low as 400 feet above the ground.

“I’m in the noise abatement area and it isn’t working,” said a Meadowrue Circle resident.

Thu
31
Oct
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Welton Found Guilty

MADISON–A Middleton man was found guilty on Oct. 24 of three counts of child sexual assault in connection with touching two girls, in instances eight years apart, at Harbor Athletic Club swimming pools.

Kevin Welton, 59, faces maximum penalties of 60 years in prison per count at his Jan. 27 sentencing before Dane County Circuit Judge Susan Crawford. She continued Welton’s release on conditions.

After a two-day trial, jurors needed about two hours to convict Welton on the two counts of First-Degree Sexual Assault of a Child Under 13 and one count of Attempted First-Degree Sexual Assault of a Child Under 13.

Middleton police investigated a report in 2010 in which Welton was alleged to have made sexual contact with a seven-year-old girl at an indoor pool at Harbor Athletic. The case was dropped after police determined a crime hadn’t been committed, Assistant District Attorney Erin Karshen said in closing remarks to jurors.

Thu
31
Oct
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BECWA Meeting Focuses on Flooding, Water Mitigation

CROSS PLAINS–On Oct. 22, over 50 people attended the Black Earth Creek Watershed Association (BECWA) fall meeting, held at the Cross Plains Fire Station. It brought interested parties together from government, nonprofits and citizens, to share and discuss findings regarding the August 2018 flood impact upon communities, farming and trout in the watershed.

BECWA President Greg Hyer began, “For over 30 years, BECWA has been a community-based watershed advocate and educator,” working with farmers, landowners, developers and communities to protect watershed wildlife, fish and water. “The past focus has been on the quality of water,” he said, “now it’s quantity.”

August 2018 to Present: Increased Water

The increased volume of water the area has experienced in the past year has significantly impacted many, garnered the attention of most and is leading to communities-wide discussions on how best to proceed in tackling excess precipitation.

Sun
27
Oct
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Middleton Man Presenter at State Self-Determination Conference

WISCONSIN DELLS–When Middleton resident Gavin Katovich recently attended the 2019 Wisconsin Self-Determination Conference (WSDC) he said, “I would prefer people to understand my ability more, it drives me crazy when they don’t get it.” 

Katovich, 20, has lived his life experiencing Tourette Syndrome, a nervous system disorder characterized by involuntary and repetitive tics and sounds.

His father, Kevin Katovich explained, “Basically, Gavin has no control over what he’s saying, but you may think he does because he’s got really good verbal skills.” 

Katovich also suffers from dyspraxia, a developmental coordination disorder, which impacts his physical abilities. 

Sun
27
Oct
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Airport Chairman Expressed Safety Concerns in Email to City

 

MIDDLETON–The chairman of the Middleton Airport Commission, an experienced pilot, said in an email last May, that he wouldn’t train at the city’s airport due to the mix of piston and faster moving turbine driven aircraft.

In an email to City Planning and Zoning Administrator Mark Opitz, John Hallick raised safety concerns involving the Middleton airport which he characterized as “one of the densest airport environments around.”

After flying with Airport Manager Richard Morey for about four hours, Hallick wrote that he told Morey that he “wouldn’t train at C29 (Morey Field). He understood why.”

“We have students and on-field pilots locked into mindless orbits around the field. Some of the aircraft are tail draggers for back country. They like to fly the grass strip. Sometimes they even land off the designated landing areas on the side of the runway (which I don’t think is legal.) 

Sun
27
Oct
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MHS Students Segregated for Star Test

MIDDLETON–A Middleton High School (MHS) employee was placed on leave last week after allegations that students had been segregated by race to take the standardized Star Literacy and Math Test, which is administered Oct. 14-24.

Middleton Cross Palins Area School District (MCPASD) Director of Communications Perry Hibner said, “STAR testing takes place between Oct. 14-25. MHS was trying to get some of the students who have poor attendance during advisory when STAR-testing can be administered to come to all-school resource on Wednesday afternoon from 2:15 to 3:40 to take the testing. That was the intent.”

Initially only 10-15 students were scheduled to take the test during this time, but a larger number was added. Students were informed of the change through the district’s online scheduling program. Not all students went to the library.

Hibner went on to say that all of the students asked to come to all-school resource were black, Latino and mixed race. 

Sat
19
Oct
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Tips for Combatting Flu this Season

DANE COUNTY–Flu season is now in full swing, and the Public Health of Madison and Dane County (PHMDC) urges anyone six months or older to get a flu shot to help prevent the spread of the prolific virus.

Sarah Mattes, communications supervisor for PHMDC, said flu season typically begins in October and continues through spring. She said now it the best time to get the shot, but anytime throughout the season can prevent the spread of illness. “It takes about two weeks to get full protection after the flu vaccine is given, so getting the vaccine in fall is best,” she explained.

She added that it is particularly important for those in high risk groups to get the vaccine. This includes young children, pregnant women, those over 65, people with medical conditions like asthma and heart disease and medical care providers.

Sat
19
Oct
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MAGN Group Wants Questions Answered

Editor’s Note: The following story is the second in a two part series regarding the formation of an opposition group to the possible expansion of the Middleton Municipal Airport. The group has filed two open records requests, the first in June and a second in September. The records requested last month have not yet been released by the City of Middleton.

MIDDLETON–While some City of Middleton officials say they haven’t committed to a longer runway at Middleton Municipal-Morey Field, expansion opponents wonder if the master plan is currently being developed in order to pave the way for it.

In a January 2019 email from Mark Opitz, city planning and zoning administrator, to Greg Stern, of Mead & Hunt, which is drafting the master plan, Opitz wrote, “As I understand the scope of your services, the outcome of the master plan is to justify the improvements to the airport.”

Sat
19
Oct
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St. Luke’s Lutheran Church Celebrating 125 Years

MIDDLETON–Back in 1894, St. Luke’s Lutheran Church paid $25/month in rent to house its congregation at a small, wooden building that was a Presbyterian Church. Rev. Ernest F. Scherbel was the first pastor of the church and during his tenure, the group ended up purchasing the structure located at Old Sauk and Pleasant View Roads.

Longtime church member Bill Sclinsog said, “They bought the wooden church for $500 and were there until 1900.” 

Then known as the St. Luke’s Evangelische Lutherische Gemeinde Church, it’s 26 charter members had no way of knowing that 125 years later the congregation would still be going strong. In 1924 it had grown and built a new, red brick church on the location that the current church stands, 7337 Hubbard Ave. The current church built in 1994 on the same location. 

Wed
16
Oct
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Saeman Wins National Teaching Award

WASHINGTON DC–Sauk Trails Elementary teacher Rebecca Saeman is a recipient of a Presidential Teaching Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching (PAEMST), the White House announced on Oct. 15. Four awards are given to teachers in each state and US territory.

Saeman is a mathematics and reading intervention teacher. She worked as a math specialist at Park and Northside starting in 2008, where she worked until 2010. She then worked at both Northside and Sauk Trail. Since 2012, she has been solely at Sauk Trail. She was also a finalist for the award in 2018.

Teachers are nominated for the award by their state’s department of education. The award is given to K-12 teachers along with $10,000 from the National Science Foundation. 

Established in 1983, PAEMST is the highest award given by the US Government to K-12 teachers of mathematics and science, including computer science. Since its inception, more than 4,400 awards have been distributed. 

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