Tuesday, April 30, 2013

5-1-13 winnebago waterways

The public continues to provide input on the future of the Lake Winnebago system.   Public meetings are being held this week  in four area communities including Tuesday night at the UW Fond du lac.  Extension Agent Diana Hammer Tscheschlok says the Weigh in on the Winnebago Waterways project is gathering public input from Calumet, Fond du lac, Outagamie, Waushara and Winnebago counties.  Tscheschlok  says the input will be gathered and analyzed and made into reports that will be made available to the public.

5-1-13 private school tuition tax credit

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — A Republican-sponsored bill that would give tax credits to parents of students in private schools has been introduced in the Legislature.  The bill introduced on Tuesday comes as negotiations continue behind closed doors to find an alternative to Gov. Scott Walker's school voucher expansion plan.  The tuition tax credit bill is sponsored by Republican Rep. Dean Kaufert of Neenah and Sen. Glenn Grothman of West Bend. Grothman has said the bill could be a viable alternative to Walker's voucher proposal.  The bill would be phased in and eventually offer a $1,500 tax credit for elementary students and a $2,500 credit for those in high school.  Vouchers are worth $6,442 per student.
Walker's plan would expand vouchers to nine new cities beyond Milwaukee and Racine including Fond du lac.

5-1-13 assembly panel okays underage drinking bill

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — A Wisconsin Assembly committee has passed a bill that would allow pub or liquor store owners to sue anyone who buys alcohol illegally.  Under the legislation from Republican Rep. Andre Jacque, of DePere, people cited for underage drinking would have to pay retailers $1,000 in addition to fines for violating the law. Retailers must provide notice of the law and immediately report violations.
Jacque says he became concerned after a Green Bay police officer informed him of the area's low rate of compliance regarding checks for underage drinking. He says the bill would deter underage drinkers, citing success with a similar law in Alaska.  The measure passed on a 9-0 vote Tuesday. The full Assembly will take it up in May.

5-1-13 peshtigo death investigation

PESHTIGO, Wis. (AP) — Authorities say a Peshtigo woman who worked to protect victims of domestic violence was stabbed to death in her home.  State Department of Justice officials say the boyfriend of Patricia Waschbisch could be charged in her death later this week. The 48-year-old man was found in the Milwaukee suburb of Wauwatosa and could be returned to Marinette County Wednesday.  The body of the 45-year-old woman was found in her Peshtigo home Sunday night.  Waschbisch worked as the interim director of Rainbow House, a domestic violence shelter and advocacy group in Marinette.

5-1-13 domestic violence homicide-reaction

Victim advocates are reacting with shock and sadness over the death of a Peshtigo domestic violence shelter director in an apparent domestic violence homicide incident.  Police say Trish Waschbisch was killed by her boyfriend after she attempted to end their relationship.  Fond du lac Solutions Center Director Lindee Kimball was friends with the victim.  "The idea that you do this for a living and she was so helpful for so many other people, that it can actually happen to anyone,"  Kimball told AM 1170 WFDL's Between the Lines program.  Wisconsin Coalition Against Domestic Violence program coordinator Tony Gibart says he couldn’t believe it.  "She always struck me as a dedicated, passionate, intelligent advocate,"  Gibart said.  Kimball says its ironic that someone who helped domestic violence victims becomes a victim herself.  Kimball says domestic violence advocates in northeast Wisconsin are stepping  up offering their support to the Rainbow House Domestic Violence Shelter in Marinette.  "Whatever they need us to do, if they need someone to run up and help with the shelter, staff, the clients, we are all willing to go help."  Kimball says she last saw Wacshbisch a couple months ago in Oshkosh for a Domestic Violence Coalition committee meeting.  "When I think about Trisha, when I left that day she gave me a hug. and that's what I'll remember."

5-1-13 paul ryan-immigration

ELKHORN, Wis. (AP) — Republican Rep. Paul Ryan is using a series of town hall meetings in Wisconsin this week to tout his support of a bipartisan immigration reform package that will grant citizenship to large numbers of Hispanics now living illegally in the United States.  Ryan highlighted his backing of the immigration reform bill during his opening comments at a town hall meeting Tuesday in Elkhorn. Ryan includes the issue in his opening slide show that he's using at the town hall meetings this week.
His speaking out on the issue comes as Republicans are trying to broaden the base of their party and reach out to minority groups.  Ryan says a system has to be created to separate people who are coming to the country legally and those who aren't.

5-1-13 junk food stamps

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — A Wisconsin Assembly committee has approved a bill that would limit the amount of food stamp benefits that could be spent on junk food.  Republican Rep. Dean Kaufert, of Neenah, has amended his original bill to require people enrolled in the state nutrition assistance program, known as food stamps, to spend at least two-thirds of their monthly benefits on items such as milk, bread and vegetables. They could spend their remaining benefits on any authorized food.  Kaufert's original bill didn't specify an amount to be spent on whole foods.  Kaufert says he wants people to eat healthier, but Democrats on the committee say he's just trying to score political points. The measure passed 7-2 Tuesday on a party line vote. The full Assembly will take it up in May.

5-1-13 wisconsin budget-circus world

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — The Legislature's finance committee has decided not to let the state Historical Society take over day-to-day operations at Baraboo's Circus World Museum.  The society owns the museum but a private foundation has run it for 53 years. The museum's attendance and revenue has been dwindling over the last decade. The foundation asked the society for more financial help in January. Gov. Scott Walker responded by including a provision in his executive budget calling for the society to run the museum, laying out $2.4 million to fund 10 positions there.  But the budget committee on Tuesday rejected Walker's plan on a 16-0 vote. Committee members questioned spending additional state dollars on a circus given the state's more pressing issues. They say the foundation should develop a funding plan with the society.

4-30-13 attorney's license revoked

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — The state Supreme Court has revoked an attorney's law license for having sex with a teenage girl.  According to court documents, Joseph Engl of Sheboygan contacted a 15-year-old girl via email, picked her up in November 2011 and had sexual contact with her. He pleaded no contest in Manitowoc County to child enticement-sexual contact and sexual assault of a child under 16. He was sentenced to three years in prison.  The court issued an order Tuesday revoking his license, calling his conduct disturbing. According to the order, Engl agreed revocation was appropriate.  Engl was convicted in 2004 for using a computer to set up a sexual encounter with a detective posing as a 14-year-old girl. He was sentenced to probation and the Supreme Court publicly reprimanded him.

4-30-13 fatal fire-sheboygan

SHEBOYGAN, Wis. (AP) — An apartment fire in Sheboygan has turned deadly.  Fire officials say one person who lived on the lower level of the apartment building died in the fire Tuesday morning. The victim was found in the living room of the apartment.  Assistant Chief Vernon Koch says heavy smoke was coming through a window of the apartment when they arrived about 1:40 a.m. Firefighters rescued some residents from the second floor of the 16-unit complex.

4-30-13 peshtigo death investigation

PESHTIGO, Wis. (AP) — Police say a man sought in connection with a death investigation in Peshtigo has been taken into custody.  Authorities were looking for a 48-year-old Peshtigo man as a 'person of interest' in the investigation. He was taken into custody Sunday night.  The state Department of Justice says the man was in a relationship with the victim at the time of her death. The woman was identified Monday as 45-year-old Patricia Waschbisch of Peshtigo.  The Justice Department says investigators are treating her death as a homicide.  More information was expected to be released at a news conference Tuesday morning.

4-30-13 officers cleared in west allis man's death

WEST ALLIS, Wis. (AP) — A Wisconsin prosecutor has cleared West Allis police of any wrongdoing in the death of a man who died the day after police punched him and used a Taser on him.
Milwaukee County District Attorney John Chisholm determined police did not use excessive force when they tried to subdue 46-year-old Robert Maurina.  Hospital workers were trying to take a blood sample from Maurina for alcohol testing after a drunken driving arrest last November. After Maurina pulled his arm away, a police officer struck him in the abdomen, but he continued to resist. The officer then used a Taser on Maurina.  The next day, Maurina's brother found him dead in a basement restroom. The medical examiner ruled Maurina's death natural, due to heart disease.

4-30-13 woman drives car into fairgrounds pond

A Fond du Lac woman escaped injury after driving her car into the Fond du Lac County Fairgrounds retention pond  Sunday.   Police say the 21 year old woman drove through the stop sign at 15th Street and Martin Avenue, went over the embankment and into the pond.  She was able to get out of the vehicle and walked away.   Police later tracked her down and cited her for failing to stop at a stop sign and inattentive driving.

Monday, April 29, 2013

4-30-13 sturgeon spawning

OSHKOSH, Wis. (AP) — Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources officials say sturgeon spawning on the Wolf River in eastern Wisconsin could begin later Monday or Tuesday.  Spawning had been delayed because of the cold spring, but Warden Supervisor April Dombrowski, of Oshkosh, said Monday in a news release that the warm weekend had heated the water and made conditions nearly ideal for spawning.
Dombrowski says sturgeon guards are being asked to report for their assigned shifts starting at 7 a.m. Tuesday. The volunteer guards keep watch as the fish make their annual spawning run up the river. Guards don't stop poachers, but they observe, collect information and call wardens if needed.

4-30-13 grass fire concerns

The Fond  du Lac County Sheriff’s Office says a weekend fire in St. Cloud that destroyed a shed is a reminder of how quickly a grass fire can spread out of control.  Fire in a burn barrell ignited the grass which quickly spread to a storage shed and destroyed the building and its contents.  Fond du lac County Sheriff’s Captain  Rck Olig says there were several grass fires reported over the  weekend.  Olig says its important to keep tabs on even a small controlled burn this time of year.  "The biggest thing is to make sure that they monitor it when they are out there burning,"  Olig said.  "If there is fire in a burn barrell and its a little windy and dry, if somebody was watching it and the grass started on fire they may have been able to prevent this building from going up."

4-30-13 highway 23 expansion

The public got a chance to learn more about a proposed $90 million Highway 23 expansion project at an information meeting Monday night.  Project manager Rob Wagner says plans call for widening Highway 23 to four lanes between Fond du Lac and Plymouth.  Construction is scheduled to begin in 2015 and completed by 2017.  Wagner says the project includes a jug-handle intersection at County Highway K and a diamond interchange at County UU.  Wagner says when its completed the expanded highway will improve traffic flow and safety.

4-30-13 wisconsin transportation budget

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — Wisconsin transportation officials have proposed delaying road work, reducing funding for rail service and cutting aid for local governments' road projects to balance a looming deficit in the state's transportation fund.  The fund consists mostly of gas tax revenue and vehicle registration fees. It covers highway improvements, aid for local road projects. It also funds the State Patrol and the Division of Motor Vehicles.  Projections released last week show the fund will end mid-2015 with a $63.5 million deficit driven by slipping gas tax revenue.  The DOT's plan calls for delaying work on Milwaukee's Zoo Interchange, scaling back funding for the Hiawatha rail route between Milwaukee and Chicago by $1.1 million and reducing aid for local governments' project and maintenance by nearly $7 million.

4-30-13 large wisconsin dairy co-op plans layoffs

BARABOO, Wis. (AP) — A large Wisconsin dairy cooperative plans to close a cheese plant, idle another plant indefinitely and lay off more than 100 employees. Baraboo-based Foremost Farms is closing an Alma Center plant that makes mozzarella cheese for foodservice markets. The co-op is idling a cheddar cheese plant in Waumandee.

4-29-13 lawmaker harrassment

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — A Wisconsin lawmaker is pushing for tougher laws to deter people who would intimidate or harm members of the Legislature and their families.  Under the legislation introduced by Rep. Garey Bies, a Republican from Sister Bay, acts such as striking, shoving, or kicking a lawmaker or a family member with no legitimate reason would face harsher penalties.  Harming a public official is already illegal in Wisconsin. Bies' proposal would cover a broader span of acts considered threats.  Lawmakers who have been victimized support the proposal. Some civil rights groups say it's redundant and could eventually infringe on freedom of speech.

Sunday, April 28, 2013

4-29-13 fire destroys shed

Nobody was injured in a fire that destroyed a shed on a Fond du lac County farm.   The incident happened Sunday on Deerview Drive in St. Cloud.   Sheriff’s sergeant Paul Rottscholl says the resident,  Michael O'Laughlin, was burning garbage in a burning barrel when the fire somehow got out of the barrel starting the grass on fire that led up to a 40 X 50 shed/corn crib/chicken coop/hunting shack combination starting on fire.  The building was destroyed along with a 1950's vintage Ford tractor.   Mount Calvary firefighters were assisted at the scene by St. Cloud, Eden, Twn of Calumet, Campbellsport, and Greenbush volunteer firefighters.

4-29-13 fatal rollover crash

One person was killed in a single vehicle rollover crash  in Fond du Lac County over the weekend.  Rescue personnel were called to the scene on Highway WH near Highway W in the town of Marshfield shortly before midnight Saturday.  Sheriff’s sergeant Jim Borgen says the driver failed to negotiate a curve, the vehicle left the road and rolled over several times.   The victim has been identified as Christopher Dugall.  Investigators say speed and alcohol appear to be factors.   The Mount Calvary ambulance and fire department assisted at the scene.

Friday, April 26, 2013

4-29-13 sheboygan tuberculosis case

SHEBOYGAN, Wis. (AP) — Health officials say a Sheboygan South High School student has an active case of tuberculosis and has been isolated and treated.  Sheboygan County Health and Human Services supervisor Jean Beinemann says about two dozen students are being tested because they were in close contact with the infected person.  Beinemann says Sheboygan County residents in general are at low risk of contracting the disease. The Sheboygan Area School District sent letters home to parents of students who were at greatest risk.  Beinemann says the TB case was discovered when one of the student's family members visited a clinic and was identified with tuberculosis.

4-29-13 fatal fire-holcomb

HOLCOMBE, Wis. (AP) — Two people have died, a third is missing and five others are injured in a mobile home fire in Chippewa County.  Sheriff's officials say the bodies of two people have been recovered from the fire north of Holcombe and a third person is unaccounted for.  The survivors include four adults and a 2-year-old child. They were taken by helicopter to various hospitals. Undersheriff Eugene Gutsch (gooch) says the fire appears to have started in a wood frame addition to the trailer home.  The trailer home is on Highway M, northeast of Holcombe. Sheriff's deputies have closed a portion of Highway M.

4-29-13 high cliff state park expansion proposal

APPLETON, Wis. (AP) — A state agency is proposing to add more than 1,800 acres to High Cliff State Park, a plan that would more than double the size of the Calumet County recreational area. The Department of Natural Resources has drafted a plan to expand and upgrade the park. But the state would have to buy the parcels of land from more than 100 landowners, at an estimated cost of about $9 million.  The public is invited to hear about the plan and comment on the park's future at a May 7 meeting at the Sherwood Community Center.  The park expansion could take years, but upgrading the infrastructure and facilities could begin as early as this year.  High Cliff attracts more than 400,000 visitors each year.

4-27-13 convicted sex offender release in waupun

On Saturday  April 27,2013 after 3pm Officers of the Waupun Police Department will be notifying people in a 3 block radius of 511 Bronson Street about Jesse J Madison. He is not on Probation, he is a lifetime registrant of the  Wisconsin  Sexual Offender Registry and will have lifetime GPS. If you have any questions feel free to contact me at 324-7911. If he was on probation we would have a city wide notification.

4-27-13 fire damages fdl area apartment building

On Friday, April 26, 2013, at 1:16 p.m. the City of Fond du Lac Fire Department was dispatched to 544 Van Dyne Road for a report of an apartment building on fire. Upon arrival, fire crews found an exterior fire from a two-story apartment building.  Fire was contained to exterior, but not before it damaged the siding and building material underlayment.  The fire started in the landscape mulch along the building and spread to the exterior siding.  Fire crews were able to contain the fire to the area of origin with the help of the quick thinking building maintenance personnel who utilize fire extinguishers to help keep the fire in check. The cause of the fire has been determined to be a discarded cigarette in the landscape mulch. 

4-26-13 fdl judge's rr overpass ruling affirmed

A Wisconsin appeals court has affirmed a Fond du lac County Circuit Court Judge ruling involving Wisconsin Central Railroad and overpass project.  Judge Robert Wirtz denied Wisconsin Central’s motion for an injunction on the Department of Transportation’s taking of soil samples from railroad property for a bridge over  the Lakeshore Drive tracks in North Fond du Lac.  The 2nd District Appeals Court ruled the railroad consented to the limited sampling, a necessary component of the design phase of the overpass project. 

4-26-13 convicted sex offender captured

A suspect that has been at large in the Towns of Kewaskum and Farmington since April 20 has been apprehended.  38 year old Larry Arnold was taken into custody Thursday by the Washington County Sheriff’s Department.  At 8:30 a.m. Thursday, the Sheriff’s Office was called regarding a burglary in the 2400 block of E. Moraine Dr. in the Town of Farmington. A caretaker for the homeowner was checking the home when he observed a door had been kicked in.  When the Deputy arrived at the residence, Arnold fled on foot.  Eventually authorities located him hiding under an old piece of metal in a heavily wooded area and took him into custody without resistance.  Arnold is suspected of breaking into a Town of Kewaskum residence earlier this week and eluding police since Saturday.  The ordeal began when a vehicle belonging to Arnold’s roommate and that Arnold had permission to drive was found abandoned on a snowmobile trail in the northern unit of the Kettle Moraine State Forest.  Arnold will face charges stemming from the two residential burglaries and the outstanding warrants from Wood County.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

4-26-13 gas prices spike

Gasoline prices in Wisconsin have spiked in the past couple of weeks.  State Triple A spokesperson Pam Moen says the average price for a gallon of unleaded regular in Wisconsin is now higher than the national average.  "Statewide today in Wisconsin we're averaging $3.67.  Compare that to the national average of about $3.51,"  Moen said.  ""What we have seen in the last week is Wisconsin prices jump about 12 cents.  Moen says flooding rain in parts of the midwest is being blamed for the price spike at the pump.  She says there are concerns that weather and flooding may disrupt production and supplies.  She says gas prices were about 30 cents higher last year at this time.

4-26-13 wisconsin housing sales up

Continued good news on Wisconsin’s housing front.  Wisconsin existing home sales increased three percent in March, the 21st straight month of sales growth.  Median prices grew 9.7 percent to $134,900 in March compared to the same period last year according to statistics released by the Wisconsin Realtors Association.  "Well, I think it says we're out of the housing recession.  At least I hope we can say that,"  WRA president Mike Theo told AM 1170 WFDL's Between the Lines program.  Sales during the first quarter were up 10.8 percent and median prices rose five percent compared to the first quarter of 2012.

4-26-13 man charged with theft from dodge county church

An Ixonia man accused of stealing thousands of dollars from an Ashippun church has made his initial Dodge County Circuit Court appearance.  62 year old James Schlieve is charged with 10 counts of theft of a business setting and four counts of misappropriating identifying information to obtain money.  Schlieve is accused of taking 162 thousand dollars from an endowment fund he helped manage for Zion Lutheran Church in Ashippun.  Schlieve allegedly used the money for daily expenses.  If convicted, he faces up to 124 years in prison.

4-26-13 fdl man gets prison for burglary spree

One of three brothers charged in connection with a theft spree in Fond du Lac County a couple of years ago is going to prison.   Fond du lac Circuit Court Judge Peter Grimm has sentenced Jacob Peters to three years in prison and three years extended supervision.  Peters was also ordered to pay more than $12,000 in restitution.   The Fond du Lac County Sheriff’s Office says Peters and his two brothers stole ATVs, snowblowers and other implements from area businesses including Fred’s Fastrak in Peebles.

4-26-13 victims rights week

The theme of this year’s National Crime Victims’ Rights Week is “New Challenges. New Solutions.”    Fond du lac County District Attorney Eric Toney says the week long observance honors the evolution of the criminal justice system from treating victims like bystanders to keeping them informed and able to be heard as their cases proceed through the court process.  "I think its important to remember that when we're moving cases along in the court system that victims are heard as far as how they have been impacted by the crime and what they would like to see happen,"  Toney said.  Toney says Wisconsin is considered a leader in the victim’s rights movement and are legal mandates passed as a constitutional amendment in 1993.  Toney says In addition to keeping crime victims informed , the victim witness coordinator often provides moral support in the courtroom.  As part of the observances this week in Fond du Lac, a candlelight vigil was held outside the city county government center to honor crime victims.

4-26-13 drought over for most of wi

MILWAUKEE (AP) — Most of Wisconsin is drought-free thanks to recent rain and snow. The latest weekly update from the U.S. Drought Monitor shows less than 13 percent of the state in drought, although another 14 percent is still considered abnormally dry. More than 60 percent of the state was in drought at the start of the year.  But the rain also is creating planting delays for some farmers. Kevin Malchine grows corn, soybeans and wheat on about 2,100 acres in southern Wisconsin. Some of his land in a watershed is covered in several feet of water after about 10 inches of rain in the past two weeks.  Malchine said Thursday he's not worried yet, however, because with some warm weather, he can still get his corn in by mid-May.

4-26-13 budget committee votes to eliminate dnr positions

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — The Legislature's budget committee has voted to eliminate more than 30 positions in the state Department of Natural Resources. West Bend Republican Senator Grothman said the jobs have been open for at least a year. Committee Democrats argued Grothman's proposal didn't include information about the positions.

4-26-13 walker-uw sytem money may go elsewhere in state budget

MILWAUKEE (AP) — Governor Scott Walker says money initially proposed to boost the University of Wisconsin System's budget may be used to pay for a tuition freeze or funding for public schools. Walker had proposed a $181 million spending increase over the next two years. The Senate Majority Leader doesn't think UW should get the money.

4-26-13 appeals court urges wi supreme court to rule on collective bargaining issue

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — A state appeals court is urging the Wisconsin Supreme Court to take a case brought by two unions challenging the constitutionality of Gov. Scott Walker's law effectively ending collective bargaining for most public workers.  The 4th District Court of Appeals on Thursday urged the Supreme Court to take the case and "put these legal issues to rest."  The case was brought by unions representing Madison school teachers and city of Milwaukee workers. A Dane County circuit judge last year overturned the law as unconstitutional, but it was unclear if the ruling applied outside of Madison and Milwaukee.  The appeals court says "it is hard to imagine a dispute with greater statewide effect or with a greater need for a final resolution."

4-25-13 downtown fdl restaurant closing

A popular downtown Fond du lac dining establishment is closing its doors.  After 20 years in business Theo’s Supper Club is closing May 11th.  Owner Ted Buetow is also the chef and proprieter of Trinity Restaurant  located in a church building on East Division Street.

4-25-13 information meeting on hwy 23 expansion

The Wisconsin Department of Transportation (WisDOT) northeast region is announcing a public information meeting has been scheduled for the WIS 23 Expansion Project (Fond du Lac to Plymouth) in Fond du Lac and Sheboygan Counties. The meeting is set for Monday, April 29 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the UW – Fond du Lac LGI Room, 400 University Drive, Fond du Lac, WI, 54935. A short presentation will be made at 6:15 p.m. This meeting is being held to present refined design concepts for intersections, overpasses, and interchanges and update the project schedule. It will include displays showing project impacts to parks and recreation areas, farmland, residences, and businesses. They will also show the project’s urban area near Fond du Lac that includes a proposed jug-handle intersection at County K and a diamond interchange at County UU. Individuals that cannot attend the hearing and have comments or want additional information should contact Mr. Rob Wagner at (920) 492-5983 or by e-mail at robert.wagner@dot.wi.gov. The university is wheelchair accessible. Citizens who are hearing-impaired and require an interpreter may request one by contacting the project manager Rob Wagner at least three working days prior to the meeting.

4-25-13 ag secretary-dairy farmers

MILWAUKEE (AP) — Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack says the federal government is renewing its pact to help thousands of dairy farms implement conservation methods. The dairy industry has committed to reducing its greenhouse gas emissions by 25 percent by 2020. The U.S. Department of Agriculture has spent $257 million to help the industry reduce emissions.

4-25-13 lakeside park dredging

A major dredging project at Fond du Lac’s Lakeside Park is scheduled to begin late this fall and completed by next year at this time. Fond du Lac Public Works Director Jordan Skiff says the lagoon will be deepened from just a few feet deep…to closer to eight feet. Skiff says continued planning and preparation work will take place over the summer. The Fond du lac Advisory Park Board was apprised of the situation at their meeting this week.

4-25-13 tuition surplus update

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — Democratic legislative leaders sent a letter to the University of Wisconsin Board of Regents today asking to freeze tuition for two years. Republicans have questioned how the board could justify raising tuition in light of massive reserves. A system spokesman says it's difficult to comment because the budget is still in flux.

4-25-13 state building commission approves fdl national guard armory renovation project

The State of Wisconsin Building Commission has approved several projects across the state including a couple locally. The Commission approved renovations to the Department of Military Affairs’ Armory locations in 15 communities including Fond du Lac and Watertown. The Commission also approved the construction of two projects that were enumerated in the 2011-13 budget that Governor Walker signed into law: Pheasant Hatchery Facility in Poynette and a Visitor Support and Administrative Building at the Flambeau River State Forest. "Today, the Building Commission approved projects that effect all areas of the state," said Governor Scott Walker. "I will continue working with Commission members to identify key projects that effectively and efficiently utilize taxpayer funds."

4-25-13 venture capital plan

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — A group of state lawmakers are putting forward a $25 million plan to help startups in Wisconsin. The fund would invest in agriculture, technology, energy and other industries. Lawmakers and business owners said Wisconsin has lagged behind other states in creating private sector jobs.

4-25-13 unemployment rates down across the state

Unemployment rates dropped in most Wisconsin cities and counties in March. The state Department of Workforce Development reported Wednesday that rates decreased in 31 of the largest cities. They went down in 70 of the 72 counties as well. In the city of Fond du lac the unemployment rate fell from nine to 8.4 percent. The Fond du lac County jobless rate is down from 7.9 to 7.2 percent. The Dodge County unemployment rate stands at 8.2 percent down from 8.9 percent. Unemployment was highest in Racine for the month at 13.3 percent. Caledonia had the lowest rate at 3.9 percent. Menominee County's unemployment rate ranks highest at 14.6 percent. Dane County was the lowest at 5.1 percent. The statewide unemployment rate for March was 7.1 percent.

4-25-13 fdl city council will take applications to fill vacant seat

The Fond du lac city council will take applications to fill a vacant seat on the council. The application deadline is May 10th and the council will conduct interviews the week of May 12th before making an appointment. Council president Sam Meyer says the vacany was created by the resignation of councilmember Jim Sabel due to health reasons. Meanwhile, Meyer says beginning in June regular council meetings will be moved up an hour to 6pm on the second and fourth Wednesday’s of the month

4-25-13 group asks fdl council to allow bmx bikes at skateboard park

A Fond du lac Moraine Park Technical College student and BMX enthusiast is leading an effort to allow BMX bikes in the skate park at Adelaide Park. Ryan Rochwite submitted a petition with over 500 signatures at Wednesday night’s city council meeting asking for an ordinance change to allow BMX bikes in the skate park. "I want the city council to allow us to share the skatepark," Rochwite said. Assistant Police Chief Steve Klein says he’s concerned about the proposal…citing safety risks and physical confrontations between skateboarders and bikers in the past. "Our experience from the past is that they don't seem to get along. I don't know if that's because the intent of the skateboard park was to be a skateboard park? You have skateboard enthusiasts that still use the park," Klein said. "They get concerned when they have bicycles riding within the skateboard park." But Rochwite says BMX riders and skateboarders can co-exist at the park. "Since they co-exist in 30,000 skateparks in America I don't see why this one would be an issue." Rochwite adds that he has been to the skatepark "since day one" and says a lot of the disagreements have occured between skateboarders and frisbee golfers. Councilmember LeeAnn Lorrigan says she likes the idea. "There is a lot of support and in just seeing the youth taking the initiative to step up, take leadership, take an active role, I just don't want to dismiss that," Lorrigan said. The city council voted to refer the matter to the Advisory Park Board to come back with a recommendation