Saturday, January 15, 2022
Boris Johnson's office apologizes to Queen Elizabeth for party on eve of funeral
Mount Pleasant settles with property owners to purchase land near Foxconn, ending years of litigation
After years of litigation, the Village of Mount Pleasant has agreed to buy one of the last pieces of private property sought near the Foxconn Technology Group development.
Mount Pleasant will pay Rodney and Catherine Jensen $569,300 for 2.92 acres of property and $226,700 for relocation costs for the Jensens and the businesses they operated at the site. However, $100,000 will be held back by the village to settle a lawsuit the Jensens are involved in with Kenosha County and to pay for any cleanup costs for the property.
If the $100,000 is not enough to cover the litigation and cleanup, the additional costs will be paid for by the Jensens, the settlement agreement says. Any leftover money held back to pay to settle litigation and cleanup will be paid to the Jensens once they leave the property.
Also, according to the settlement agreement, the Jensen will pay $126,700 to Eminent Domain Services, LLC, attorneys they hired to represent them in lawsuits against the village, and settle any liens against the property.
When the village first approached the Jensens to purchase their property, the Foxconn project was proposed to be a Generation 10.5 LCD manufacuting facility but in 2019 it was scaled back to a Generation 6 facility, which is much smaller.
Foxconn originally planned to invest $10 billion and hire up to 13,000 workers in multiple cities around the state, but the project has changed dramatically to 1,454 jobs and and $672.8 million in investment.
The Jensens have until May 15 to vacate the property.
On Monday, the Mount Pleasant Village Board voted unanimously to accept the agreement.
“As it has since the beginning of the Foxconn project, the Village has endeavored to reach voluntary agreements with all property owners to acquire the property necessary for public infrastructure improvements. We are pleased to reach a mutually agreeable settlement with Rodney and Catherine Jensen," Chris Smith, an attorney for the village, said in a statement.
Read more: https://www.jsonline.com/story/money/2022/01/14/mount-pleasant-owner-agree-sale-property-near-foxconn-site/6515294001/
Two arrested for vandalizing headstones in Racine
Photo by: Racine PD
RACINE — The Racine Police Department said two people have been arrested for vandalizing headstones at a Racine cemetery.
Kaitlyn B. Armstrong, 20, and Brandon S. Pfiefer, 20, have both been arrested and charged with criminal damage to religious property - party to a crime.
Police say on July 31, 2021, they damaged several headstones and grave sites at Mound Cemetery, 1144 West Blvd. At the time of the incident, investigators collected fingerprints from the affected sites but found no matches.
However, in late 2021 Armstrong was cited and his fingerprints were taken, connecting him to the July crime. Officials said this and some other investigative leads led police to both him and Pfiefer.
Racine police are still interested in any additional information about the crime. If you know anything, call the Crime Stoppers at 262-636-9330 or the Racine Police Department Investigations Unit at 262-635-7756.
Racine SWAT team arrests Chicago homicide suspect
Photo by: Racine PD
RACINE — A suspect wanted for homicide was arrested in Racine early this week, according to the Racine Police Department.
According to a press release from the department, Chicago Police reached out to Racine saying that a 20-year-old man from Chicago who is wanted for a homicide was possibly hiding in Racine.
After investigating the situation for a couple of days, the Racine SWAT team arrested the man inside a home near Erie Street and 3 Mile Road.
Officials are still investigating the situation. Anyone with information is encouraged to contact Crime Stoppers by phone at (262) 636-9330, or through the Crime Stoppers app by using the p3 app.
Browns Lake ATV accident, Burlington man flown to hospital
|Racine County Sheriff's Office|
BURLINGTON, Wis. - A town of Burlington man was taken to the hospital with life-threatening injuries after an ATV accident on Browns Lake Friday afternoon, Jan. 14.
The Racine County Sheriff's Office said the accident happened roughly 200 yards west of Cedar Park Beach around 3:45 p.m. It was reported that the man, 63, was lying on the ice unresponsive and turning blue.
Sheriff's deputies arrived and began life-saving attempts. Burlington and Rochester emergency personnel also responded to provide treatment at the scene.
The man was taken to the hospital and then immediately flown to a regional trauma center by Flight for Life.
An initial investigation revealed the ATV's operator lost control and rolled over. Careless operation and alcohol are believed to be contributing factors. The Racine County Sheriff’s Office and Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources are continuing the investigation.
Open Blog - Weekend
Friday, January 14, 2022
UK PM Boris Johnson faces calls to quit after lockdown party apology - BBC News
Federal Prosecutors File Charges In Connection To The Murder Of LAPD Officer
U.S. Supreme Court Blocks Vaccine-Or-Test Rule For Businesses -- What Does This Mean For You?
WWII veteran celebrates 100th birthday in Racine
RACINE, Wis. - Peter Christofferson celebrated his 100th birthday on Thursday, Jan. 13, and the Park View Senior Apartments in Racine held a party to celebrate the World War II veteran.
Christofferson's family said, aside from his U.S. Navy service, he has volunteered and given a lot during his life. He won the Melvin Jones Fellowship Award from Lions Club International for humanitarian services.
So what does Christofferson believe helped him get to 100 years old?
"Take the good with the bad, because sometimes the road gets a little rough, but it smooths out again afterward," he said. "Laugh a lot, laughter is good medicine."
The celebration did not end Thursday. His family is holding another party for him on Saturday.
Absentee ballot drop boxes can't be used in Wisconsin any longer, a Waukesha County judge rules
MADISON – A Waukesha County judge ruled Thursday that absentee ballot drop boxes can't be used in Wisconsin, potentially upending aspects of the spring elections and the fall's high-profile contests for governor and U.S. Senate.
After hearing three hours of arguments, Waukesha County Circuit Court Judge Michael Bohren determined state law allows absentee ballots to be returned in person or by mail — but not in a ballot drop box.
"It's all good and nice, but there's no authority to do it," Bohren said of the use of drop boxes.
He said he would finalize an injunction in 10 days ordering the state Elections Commission to withdraw long-standing advice to municipal clerks around the state that says they can use absentee ballot drop boxes.
Read more: https://www.jsonline.com/story/news/politics/2022/01/13/judge-bars-use-absentee-ballot-drop-boxes-wisconsin/6512589001/
Applications open to be part of Racine St. Patrick's Day parade
|Photo by: Racine St. Patrick's Day|
RACINE — It might just be the middle of January, but the months fly by and before you know it, it will be March. Given that, now is the perfect time to apply to be part of one of downtown Racine's biggest events, the St. Patrick's Day Parade on March 19 at noon.
Nearly 2,000 people line the streets to watch this family friendly parade go down the street. That means it's a good way to get eyes on your business too.
You can apply to be part of the parade by clicking this link or pick up an application at the Downtown Racine office at 425 Main Street.
The parade begins at the corner of State and Main streets. It goes down Main Street, turns onto Sixth Street, and end near City Hall.
All Racine Alternative Learning Programs move remote due to staff shortage
|Photo by: TMJ4|
RACINE, Wisc. — The Racine Unified School District (RUSD) announced all Racine Alternative Learning Programs will move to remote on Friday due to a staff shortage.
Students should log on to Google Classroom at the normal school start time and teachers will provide remote instruction.
RUSD anticipates Racine Alternative Learning Programs to return to in-person learning on Tuesday, Jan. 18.
RUSD said lunch will be available for pick-up at the Administrative Service Campus at 3109 Mt. Pleasant St. From 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. each day that schools are remote.
For further details, click here.
Thursday, January 13, 2022
State Supreme Court denies Speaker Vos' attempt to block deposition
|Photo by: TMJ4|
MADISON, Wis. (AP) — The Wisconsin Supreme Court has denied a request from Assembly Speaker Robin Vos to block a Dane County judge’s order directing him to sit for a deposition with attorneys for a liberal watchdog group seeking records related to the GOP-ordered investigation into the 2020 election.
The depositions were ordered last week by Circuit Judge Valerie Bailey-Rihn, who expressed confusion over how so few documents were produced from the first three months of former state Supreme Court Justice Michael Gableman’s ongoing probe. Bailey-Rihn ordered the Rochester Republican to sit for depositions Wednesday.
The state’s high court issued a 4-3 decision Tuesday after Bailey-Rihn denied an attempt by Vos and his staff attorney, Steve Fawcett, to delay the depositions.
Adorable twin tamrain monkeys born at Racine Zoo
|Photo by: Racine Zoo|
RACINE — Adorable twin tamarin monkeys were been born at the Racine Zoo on De. 22, 2021.
These are the fifth and sixth offspring of Amelie and Pitino. Overall, they are the 13th and 14th tamarins born at the zoo since breeding started in the 2010s.
If you visit the zoo, you will find the two baby tamarins clinging to their mother and father's backs as they jump from branch to branch.
You an visit the tamarin family at the Vanishing Kingdom building at the Racine Zoo. Plus, go to the zoo's Facebook page for a chance to vote on their names.
Police: Caledonia burglary suspect wanted
The Caledonia Police Department is looking for a burglary suspect believed to have broken into two businesses on Tuesday, Dec. 28.
Open Blog - Thursday
Wednesday, January 12, 2022
Supreme Court clears way for liberal group to depose Assembly Speaker Robin Vos
MADISON – The Wisconsin Supreme Court slammed down Assembly Speaker Robin Vos' attempt to avoid a deposition late Tuesday, setting the stage for him to take questions under oath Wednesday over whether he has followed the state's open records law.
It was the third court defeat for the Rochester Republican in a little over 24 hours as he sought to avoid answering questions from the liberal group American Oversight. The group has been seeking records of a partisan review of the 2020 election ordered by Vos.
The high court in a 4-3 ruling threw out Vos' last-minute request to cancel his deposition just hours after he made it. The majority consisted of the court's three liberals and Justice Brian Hagedorn, who was elected in 2019 with the support of Republicans.
It's the latest instance of Hagedorn splitting with the court's conservatives on politically charged issues.
Vos is slated to take questions just hours before he is scheduled to begin headlining a two-day fundraiser in Key West, Florida, for the Republican Assembly Campaign Committee. The $6,000-per-person event includes a tour of Ernest Hemingway's home and a catamaran sailing trip.
Vos faced his first setback last week, when Dane County Circuit Judge Valerie Bailey-Rihn ruled that he and staff attorney Steve Fawcett would have to sit for depositions about how they responded to records requests and a court order.
Vos asked the District 3 Court of Appeals to keep him from having to sit for the deposition. On Monday, the appeals court unanimously declined to do that, saying Vos hadn't shown any harm he would suffer by answering questions.
Read more: https://www.jsonline.com/story/news/politics/2022/01/11/robin-vos-must-sit-deposition-open-records-dispute/9173105002/
Milwaukee car stolen, trashed; suspects say 'catch us if you can'
MILWAUKEE - A woman's car, stolen from Milwaukee's south side, was found with its windows busted, outside scraped and interior destroyed.
Camille Tracy said, while she is happy to have her car back, it is not what she expected.
"It was heartbreaking almost," Tracy said. "It was definitely surreal. I ran out the front door, I looked down the street and just to see if I parked somewhere I didn’t remember."
Tracy bought the Kia Forte just months ago. Police found it the day after it was stolen from the area of 30th and Cleveland.
"Walking up to my car, it was hard to see that there was only one window left in it and it was disgusting inside," said Tracy. "All of my seats had cigarette holes burned into them. There was a big urine smell. There was blood, everything. It was horrible."
Camille Tracy's 2021 Kia Forte, prior to theft
Two graphic notes written in permanent marker were left with the car – one on the window, the other on a t-shirt inside talking about the "Kia Boys" and taunting police: "Catch us if you can."
"It was frustrating because it was like basically, we know you’re not going to catch me, so we’re just going to keep doing it," said Tracy.
Already in 2022, more than 260 cars have been stolen in Milwaukee. There were more than 10,000 vehicle thefts in 2021, Kia and Hyundai vehicles accounting for close to 70% of that total.
"I put my hard-earned money into my car, and it’s disheartening," Tracy said.
Upset but determined, Tracy hopes the criminal will be caught. No arrests have been made in the case thus far.
"I don’t want anyone else to have to look out their window and see that their car is gone," said Tracy.
Tracy not only called the police, but she also called Kia – asking the manufacturer to do something about the thefts.