WUWM News

It may be rare for people seriously affected by substance abuse to get a chance to start over. However, Milwaukee County’s Family Drug Treatment Court is helping families do just that – and has been for several years.

Drug court, veterans court, mental health court… these are just a few examples of the types of specialty, or problem-solving courts, that seek to address specific problems in the justice system on an individual level.

Susan Bence

This Sunday, May 20, is the first World Bee Day, and also is World Migratory Bird Day. A couple of groups in the Milwaukee area that are concerned about the health of bees and birds will use the day to shine a light on their importance.

On December 17, 2017 the General Assembly of the United Nations unanimously declared May 20 World Bee Day:

Maayan Silver

Getting out of prison and facing the world can be tough. Community, religious and government organizations try to fill in the gaps by offering help with job training and housing, or transportation and mental health counseling. But still, some people fall through the cracks.

Maayan Silver

Everyone has an inner artist.  

That's if you ask those working with Express Yourself Milwaukee, an organization that has been bringing arts to low-income and at-risk kids for the past 15 years.

Historic Photo Collection / Milwaukee Public Library

The devastating fire that destroyed Trinity Evangelical Lutheran Church got us thinking about the many historic churches that call Milwaukee home -- from the Basilica of St. Josaphat on the city's south side to Old Saint Mary downtown.

What role did these churches play in the lives of early Milwaukeeans? How have these 100-year-old buildings withstood the test of time? What can these structures tell us about the city's history?

Maayan Silver

Hundreds of people lined up hours before the doors opened to enter IKEA's new store in Oak Creek Wednesday morning. There was a DJ, a band, and door prizes.

WUWM's Maayan Silver was there too. She wanted to know what drew customers to the store's grand opening and how IKEA might impact the local retail scene.

Here's what people in line had to say:

Teran Powell

Update:

The Milwaukee Fire Department is estimating $13 million in structural damages to downtown Milwaukee's Trinity Evangelical Lutheran Church. An additonal $4 million worth of the church's contents were also destroyed Tuesday.

Deputy Fire Chief Dave Votsis said Wednesday heating tools placed on nearby scaffolding may have ingnited the roof.

City of Oak Creek

It took 10 years and over $7 million to create Lake Vista Park in Oak Creek. The project is far more than a facelift of the 98-acre parcel overlooking Lake Michigan. Back in the 1920s and 1930s, a chemical plant operated there, leaving behind arsenic and other contaminants.

The City of Oak Creek has gradually transformed the lakefront property, featuring tall grasses and native plants. But first crews had to carefully cap most of the site with two-feet of clay.

The results are in for Wisconsin's two special election primaries. Republican state Rep. Andre Jacque of De Pere will advance to the special general election June 12 to face Democrat Caleb Frostman for a Senate seat in the Green Bay area. In a race for a state Assembly district north of Madison, Republican John Plumer of Lodi will take on Democrat Ann Groves Lloyd. 

Michelle Maternowski

Governor Scott Walker has started another conversation about a potential shake-up of Milwaukee Public Schools. There's been three proposed MPS "takeovers" over the last 20 years.

During an interview on Channel 12's UpFront with Mike Gousha, Walker was asked about the MPS's challenges, such as budget constraints and teachers’ dissatisfaction. The governor replied that it may be necessary to split up the district or take other significant measures.

Maayan Silver

Foxconn is promising thousands of jobs in construction, and once the massive factory in Mount Pleasant is complete, in information technology and manufacturing.

Others are wondering whether people who need the jobs most will get them, like those on Milwaukee's north and south sides.

Tech colleges and workforce development organizations point to community organizations as the grassroots touchpoint to reach minority workers.

Marti Mikkelson

The race for the Republican nomination for U.S. Senate took a turn over the weekend. 

For weeks, the contest has been dominated by political newcomer Kevin Nicholson. The former Marine – and former Democrat – has been outpolling and outspending Leah Vukmir, a state senator from Wauwatosa.

But on Saturday, Vukmir secured the endorsement of the Republican Party of Wisconsin at its annual convention in downtown Milwaukee. The two will face each other in a primary in August. The winner takes on Democratic incumbent Tammy Baldwin in November.

Susan Bence

Have you ever heard of fairy shrimp? Until recently, I hadn’t. Mequon Nature Preserve, located at the southern edge of Ozaukee County, is home to the teeny, tiny crustacean.

Picture the kind of shrimp some people love to eat, just way smaller – an inch long, tops. Jason Nickels, the preserve's education and research director, explains: “They’re anywhere from a pink, to a brown, to a green – I think it depends on what they’re feeding on."

Maayan Silver

When Milwaukee County voters go to the polls this fall, they might see a question about pot. A proposed referendum would gauge how voters stand on the topics of marijuana legalization, taxation, and regulation.

The Milwaukee County Board's Judiciary, Safety and General Services Committee approved adding the following advisory referendum to the November ballot on Thursday:

JERAMEY JANNENE / FLICKR

Rental assistance recipients could soon be considered a protected class in Milwaukee County. A new proposal relating to fair housing would ban landlords from refusing to rent to people in housing assistance programs. 

The plan is expected to go before a county board committee later this month.

Current federal law does not require landlords to accept housing choice vouchers, therefore they can legally refuse to rent to voucher holders.

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