Kevin Fischer is a veteran broadcaster, the recipient of over 150 major journalism awards from the Milwaukee Press Club, the Wisconsin Associated Press, the Northwest Broadcast News Association, the Wisconsin Bar Association, and others. He has been seen and heard on Milwaukee TV and radio stations for over three decades. A longtime aide to state Senate Republicans in the Wisconsin Legislature, Kevin can be seen offering his views on the news on the public affairs program, "InterCHANGE," on Milwaukee Public Television Channel 10, and heard filling in on Newstalk 1130 WISN. He lives with his wife, Jennifer, and their lovely baby daughter, Kyla Audrey, in Franklin.
Ponder this question.
Here are some of the top Franklin news stories from the recent past.
What do they have in common?
- Notorious sex offender Billy Lee Morford is allowed to move back and forth between Milwaukee and Franklin with the state failing to notify Franklin
- Franklin High School voting age students are gathered into a closed door Assembly the Friday before the vote on a $78.2 million referendum where the issue is discussed
- The Franklin School Board adopts a school tax levy increase of 5.9% after the Board announced it would be 5.6%. It’s learned later that the increase was not the 5.9% announced to the public, but a whopping 11.7%
- The Buckhorn Christmas tragedy
- Sex offender Steve Hanke moves into Franklin in violation of a city ordinance. For now, a Milwaukee County Judge has ruled Hanke can continue to live in Franklin close to a middle school
- Franklin city tax levies continue to go up well above the rate of inflation
- A citizen panel’s recommendation is ignored, and the Franklin School Board pushes a very unpopular set of referendum questions that include an expensive new high school
Think about the stories on that list.
What do they all have in common?
They’re all controversial.
They’re all very serious.
Here’s something else they all have in common.
To some degree, they are all more outrageous and scandalous than the brouhaha over “Boomgaard,” the name selected to identify the 27th Street Corridor.
Before I go any further:
DISCLAIMER FOR EVERY SINGLE BLOG KEVIN FISCHER WRITES ABOUT BOOMGAARD FROM 5/4/08 UNTIL HIS LOVELY AND MUCH YOUNGER WIFE, JENNIFER FINALLY DOES HIM IN: KEVIN FISCHER ENTHUSIASTICALLY SUPPORTS THE VISIONARY BIG PICTURE CONCEPT OF THE S. 27TH STREET CORRIDOR, BUT HAS PROBLEMS WITH THE NAME, “BOOMGAARD DISTRICT” AND HOW IT CAME TO BE (i.e. zero input from public).
I do not want to be misquoted or misinterpreted. I share the concern of citizens over the lack of transparency surrounding this issue.
Public relations services don’t come for free. (Although I would have never gone with Zizzo given the Marquette Gold fiasco). Even so, the cost is a concern.
So was the decision to follow the advice of the City Attorney and go into closed session to discuss “Boomgaard.” It should be noted the two aldermen who made the motion and seconded the motion to go into closed session were just defeated in the April elections.
However, discussions and meetings about the 27th Street Corridor have been going on for months, right out in the open. The problem is, nobody was paying close enough attention, until now.
Get a grip, Franklin.
Over the past 16 months, what’s been happening in our humble community?
Innocent lives were struck down in a horrific accident at Christmas, a nefarious sex predator was allowed to run loose in our city without public warning, another sex offender defiantly moved in against one of our laws and a judge ruled in his favor, those with taxing authority taxed and taxed and taxed us some more, Franklin’s school machine tried to soak us out of close to $80-million for a flawed referenda plan, the Franklin School Board lied to us about what the school tax levy increase would actually be….
And what ultimately moves us to get angry enough to get off our duffs and go to Franklin City Hall to complain?
A Dutch word for “orchard.”
I would dearly love to know where all these people were when their taxes were going through the roof, or when a judge was in court deciding whether to allow a sex offender to live near a school in their neighborhood.
Where is the outrage for those issues, Franklin?
Get mad if you must. If a bungled branding name puts you into orbit, so be it.
But for God’s sake, save some of that outrage for the much bigger problems that really, really matter.