News

Wed
22
Nov

CoVantage foundation raising funds for SAM25

CoVantage Cares Foundation has announced they will kick off a two-week fundraising campaign beginning on Nov. 28, which has become known nationally as “Giving Tuesday.”

Funds generated will be matched with up to $75,000 in contributions from the foundation, a public charity established by CoVantage Credit Union. Local nonprofit organizations to receive funding from this year’s campaign were selected by CoVantage staff and are located throughout several communities served by CoVantage Credit Union. In Shawano, the charity selected was Shawano Area Matthew 25.

CoVantage Cares Foundation was established as a way to provide financial support to organizations that serve individuals, especially those experiencing significant financial challenge, and organizations that work to enhance quality of life in communities served by CoVantage Credit Union.

Wed
22
Nov

Official Christmas tree arrives at White House


The Associated Press First lady Melania Trump, third from right, with her son Barron Trump, third from left, is presented by the Chapman family of Silent Night Evergreens, the Wisconsin-grown Christmas Tree at the North Portico of the White House on Monday. The tree will be displayed in the White House Blue Room.

Melania Trump, and son Barron, continued a time-honored first lady tradition on Monday: receiving the official White House Christmas tree.

A military band quartet played holiday tunes as a horse-drawn wagon carried the 19½-foot Balsam fir from Wisconsin up the White House driveway.

The first lady, wearing a holiday red turtleneck and a coat draped over her shoulders, and Barron, in a dark suit coat, white shirt and dark slacks, emerged from the North Portico. They circled the tree and walked over to Jim and Diane Chapman, who presented it. The Chapmans own a Christmas tree farm in Wisconsin and won an annual contest sponsored by the National Christmas Tree Association.

“This is a beautiful tree. Thank you so much. We will decorate it very nicely,” the first lady told the Chapmans and other members of their family. “I hope you can come and visit with us.”

Wed
22
Nov

Low turnout for downtown plan meeting

Turnout was disappointing for the city’s first public input meeting last week on a downtown redevelopment plan, but those that did show offered some good feedback, according to city officials.

Assistant City Administrator Eddie Sheppard said 12 to 15 people showed up for the open house held on Thursday.

“It was a little disappointing,” he said.

On the plus side, however, “it allowed us to work in smaller groups,” Sheppard said. “There was some dialogue.”

The meeting was hosted by the Downtown Redevelopment Citizen’s Steering Committee, which has been tasked with creating a new vision, marketing plan and implementation strategy for Shawano’s downtown.

Participants at Thursday’s meeting worked with downtown maps and went through exercises that looked at such things as transportation, pedestrian traffic, downtown assets, and things that need to be improved.

“We got some good feedback,” Sheppard said.

Wed
22
Nov

Public Record

Shawano Police Department

Nov. 20

Police logged 20 incidents, including the following:

OAR — A 46-year-old Keshena man was cited for operating after revocation on state Highway 47-55.

Bail Jumping — A 23-year-old Green Bay woman was arrested for bail jumping in the 700 block of South Cleveland Street.

Vandalism — A tombstone was reported vandalized at Sacred Heart Cemetery, 1111 E. Green Bay St.

Warrant — A 37-year-old Shawano woman was arrested for an outstanding Shawano County warrant at Fifth and Franklin streets.

Disturbance — Police responded to a disturbance in the 500 block of East Division Street.

Nov. 19

Police logged 18 incidents, including the following:

OWI — A 35-year-old Shawano woman was arrested for operating while intoxicated and operating after revocation at Andrews and Center streets.

Disturbance — A disturbance was reported in the 200 block of South Sawyer Street.

Tue
21
Nov

Public Record

Shawano Police Department

Nov. 19

Police logged 18 incidents, including the following:

OWI — A 35-year-old Shawano woman was arrested for operating while intoxicated and operating after revocation at Andrews and Center streets.

Disturbance — A disturbance was reported in the 200 block of South Sawyer Street.

Fire — Police and fire fighters responded to a chimney fire in the 1200 block of East Zingler Avenue.

Vandalism — A vehicle was reported vandalized in the 700 block of South Maiden Lane.

Nov. 18

Police logged 18 incidents, including the following:

Burglary/Auto Theft — A vehicle and four guns were reported stolen after a break-in to a garage in the 300 block of Prospect Circle.

Sat
18
Nov

Retirees cut out of city’s new health insurance plan

The city expects to save some money next year by moving to a new insurance plan, but former Shawano employees who expected their coverage to continue will be cut off by 2019.

The city had been part of the state-run Employee Trust Fund, but backed out of it because of a looming $175,000 increase in premium costs.

After some shopping around, the city decided to go with McClone Insurance, a partner of the League of Wisconsin Municipalities, saving about $40,000 in premiums.

While that’s a savings to the city, it’s a blow to former employees who retired with expectations their insurance would continue to be covered by the city plan.

That was true when the city was part of the state plan, but not as part of the League of Wisconsin Municipalities.

Under the state plan, retirees were included in a separate pool, so their health insurance claims didn’t impact the city’s overall costs.

Sat
18
Nov

County Board changes meeting times starting in April

After years of fruitless debate on the County Board floor, county supervisors this week agreed to change the start time for board meetings beginning in April, with expectations it could broaden the pool of potential County Board candidates.

All board meetings will begin at 3 p.m. starting with the County Board’s reorganizational meeting in April.

The current structure of 9 a.m. meetings during the winter months alternating with a 6 p.m. start time the rest of the year has been in place since 2004. Prior to that time, nearly all meetings were at 9 a.m.

The schedule has been an annual point of contention when County Board rules were up for approval every year.

Those pushing for a change have argued that the current schedule has discouraged younger citizens and those with full-time jobs from running for county office.

Most current County Board supervisors are either retired or self-employed.

Sat
18
Nov

Shawano rail crossing getting upgrade


Leader Photo by Lee Pulaski Traffic crawls along Green Bay Street at the railroad tracks Friday. Plans for road reconstruction in 2019 include upgrading the intersection with gates and new signal lights.

Reconstructing state Highway 22 through the city of Shawano in 2019 will require the installation of gates and new signal lights at the railroad crossing on Green Bay Street, the Office of the Commissioner of Railroads ordered this week.

On a request from the Department of Transportation, the OCR investigated the stopping distances required for motorists approaching the crossing between Hamlin and Ellis streets and found the current warning signals to be inadequate.

Six trains use the crossing per day between 6 a.m. and 6 p.m., according to the OCR order, but only six per week, according to the DOT’s request to investigate the adequacy of the crossing’s warning devices. The maximum train speed is 40 mph but rail traffic typically averages only 5 to 30 mph.

The speed limit on Green Bay Street is 25 mph.

Sat
18
Nov

Public Record

Shawano Police Department

Nov. 16

Police logged 25 incidents, including the following:

Theft — Police investigated five reports of vehicle break-ins in the 400 block of West Fifth Street, 400 block of West Lieg Avenue, 300 block of Fairview Way, 1100 block of South Lafayette Street and 1000 block of South Lincoln Street.

Truancy — Police logged three truancy complaints from Shawano Community High School, 220 County Road B.

Shoplifting — A 39-year-old man was cited for shoplifting at Charlie’s County Market, 521 S. Main St.

Disorderly — Police responded to a disorderly conduct complaint at El Tequila Restaurant, 1240 E. Green Bay St.

OWI — Police issued a citation for operating while intoxicated at Richmond and Waukechon streets.

Shawano County Sheriff’s Department

Nov. 16

Deputies logged 31 incidents, including the following:

Fri
17
Nov

Wheel tax fails, tax rate increase remains


Leader photo by Tim Ryan Jerry Strickland encourages the Shawano Common Council to cut spending rather than adopt a 60-cent per $1,000 increase in the tax rate at a budget hearing Wednesday at City Hall, 127 S. Sawyer St.

Shawano city officials ditched a proposed wheel tax Wednesday after hearing from an angry contingent of citizens opposed to it, but a spike in the city’s tax rate remained in place at the end of an exhaustive evening of debate.

The city’s share of the tax rate will jump from $9.29 per $1,000 of assessed value to $9.89 per $1,000.

After a lengthy Common Council debate, city officials adopted the proposed increase in the tax levy of 5.8 percent, pushing the levy from $4.7 million to $5 million.

The vote was 4-2, with council members Bob Kurkiewicz and Lisa Hoffman voting no.

Hoffman conceded during the council discussion that there wasn’t any realistic place to cut the city’s general operating budget, but was bowing to the demands of residents who attended the meeting.

“We run with lean staff and our departments run lean as well,” she said. “I think people need to be aware of that.”

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