News – February 19, 2019

(Beaver Dam) Following action by the Beaver Dam Common Council last night, dogs can now be walked through any city park. Dogs must be on a leash and are not allowed in shelters, playgrounds or athletic fields and have to keep moving, meaning you can’t stop in the park with your dog and have a picnic. Canines must also be wearing a rabies vaccination tag and their owners must clean-up their droppings.

(Beaver Dam) The Beaver Dam Common Council will decide next month if the city will purchase Big Skunk Island after the question passed out of committee with a neutral vote. The Beaver Dam Lake Development Corporation is offering the one-and-a-half-acre island, that is closed to the public, for one dollar because they want the island to remain publicly-owned. Recent calls to open to the island for public use would result in liability insurance becoming cost prohibitive for the lake group; the city by contrast has “recreational immunity.” If the city council approves the purchase next month, the lake group is asking for an easement as part of the offer that allows them to control a shed used for lake maintenance.

(Beaver Dam) The Beaver Dam Common Council last (Monday) night tabled an ordinance change that would prohibit gravel driveway extensions in front yards. In 2010, the council approved an ordinance that outlaw’s people from parking on their lawn, unless they convert a portion of their lawn to a driveway extension with concrete, asphalt or gravel. The new law would prohibit the gravel driveway extensions in the front of the house and would make those with pre-existing gravel driveway extensions convert the gravel back to green space. Those already with asphalt and concrete driveway extensions would not have to do anything. An ad hoc committee is being assembled to addresses concerns raised on the council floor.

(Beaver Dam) The intersection of Warren and Webster streets in Beaver Dam is now a four-way stop. The Beaver Dam Common Council last (Monday) night unanimously approved the change which comes in advance of a street reconstruction project on Warren and Roosevelt streets that gets underway in the spring. Alderman Ken Anderson championed the four-way stop in his ward calling it a safety issue because the street has been used as a “high-speed short-cut.”

(Madison) State Representative Mark Born and Dodge County District Attorney Kurt Klomberg called on Governor Tony Evers to include criminal justice initiatives in his upcoming budget. Lawmakers throughout the state outlined their wants for the state budget yesterday (Monday). Included in their priorities were measures to ensure quicker access to a fair trial, funding to provide additional assistant district attorney positions across the state and increase pay for state public defenders.

(Kekoskee) No injuries were reported in a fire that completely destroyed a home in Kekoskee yesterday (Monday) afternoon. Kekoskee Assistant Fire Chief Don Hilgendorf says crews responded at 11:15am to W3618 Dyke Road and took over two hours to extinguish the blaze. Hilgendorf says the fire is still under investigation and that a fire inspector will be on scene today (Tuesday).

(Wisconsin Dells) The body of a second person has been recovered, where a semi went over a guardrail on I-90/94 and into Mirror Lake in Sauk County on Sunday. The semi driver is identified as 39-year-old Timothy Green of Elizabethtown, Kentucky. A woman’s body was recovered by the he Sauk County Dive Team at around 12:45pm yesterday afternoon (Monday). The State Patrol said an autopsy is scheduled for today (Tuesday) to positively identify that victim.

(Madison) The first flu-related death of the season in the state has been reported. The Wisconsin Department of Health Services confirms that the victim was from southeastern Wisconsin but did not release the age of the victim or the hometown.

(Beaver Dam) A Beaver Dam woman was sentenced yesterday (Monday) to 224 days in jail and four years probation for injuring two people in an August drunken crash. Ellen Walker Kratz’s vehicle crossed the centerline and collided with a northbound vehicle on State Highway 33 in the town of Beaver Dam. The deputy noticed that Kratz had glassy and blood shot eyes, slurred speech, an odor of intoxicants and had difficulties standing. Kratz said (quote) “holy crud” when her preliminary breath test returned a reading of point-two-three-seven (.267).