New September 28, 2011

Scott Fitzgerald On WBEV’s Community Comment Today

9/28/11 – Wisconsin Senate Leader Scott Fitzgerald will be our guest live on Community Comment Wednesday afternoon. The Juneau Republican will join us for the hour to discuss important legislative topics and answer questions from our listeners. Community Comment airs weekdays on WBEV 1430AM beginning at 12:35pm.

Mannel Calls Rogers Training Good Practice

9/28/11 – The Beaver Dam Fire Department conducted a drill at the six-story Rogers Apartment building on East Maple last night. Fire Chief Alan Mannel says it was a good opportunity to find out what works and what does not work. Mannel says the simulation was good practice for the departments Incident Commander in responding to a multiple-alarm fire. He says radio communications need to be streamlined and personnel experienced “growing pains” while everyone got used to the tactical channels that are used. In addition to Beaver Dam, firefighters from Waupun, Burnett, Juneau and Horicon participated. A mutual-aid program for emergency responders called MABAS, or Mutual Alarm Box Alarm System, is set to begin on November 1. MABAS is a nationwide program but it also brings together local departments for everything from small-scale local emergencies to large-scale catastrophic events. Mannel says last nights drill was good practice for its implementation.

BDUSD Awarded $1.2 Million Grant For Career Counselors

9/28/11 – The Beaver Dam School District has been awarded a grant worth $1.2-million over the next three years that will allow them to expand their counseling services, with a concentration on career development. That’s according to Superintendent Steve Vessey who says the US Department of Education grant is unique in that its primary function is to give them the ability to hire new staff. Vessey says they’ll be able to add one full time counselor for their elementary schools, one full-time career counselor at the high school and a part-time counselor at the Don Smith Learning Academy. Vessey says they plan to act fast in filling the positions.

Columbus Schools Facilities Study Underway

9/28/11 – Columbus Schools has begun a study of what kind of building and grounds facilities they will need for the future. Invitations to join the “Facilities Committee” would be going out to District taxpayers next week. The Committee will be reviewing data from the UW Population Lab, the District’s Financial Consultant and a professional Architectural Assessment. The Board selected Eppstein-Uhen from the firms submitting proposals for the gathering of Architectural Assessment data. The Committee will be meeting monthly beginning in November working towards providing the Board with recommendations in March of 2012.

BDPD Looking For Suspicious Man Photographing Kids

9/28/11 – The Beaver Dam Police Department is looking for a man who was reportedly taking pictures of children playing Monday afternoon. Authorities were contacted just after 5pm when a vehicle stopped in front of a residence on the 100 block of Willow and the driver took pictures of a young girl playing outside. The vehicle is described as a white car, black-and-tan on top, with a sunroof and a front bumper that is rusted off. Beaver Dam police sent out an “Attempt to Locate” bulletin to law enforcement agencies throughout the county. Anyone with information is asked to contact the Beaver Dam Police Department.

Waukesha Postal Carrier Charged With OWI

9/28/11 – A mail carrier in Waukesha is accused of driving drunk on the job. The 45-year-old man was arrested after a series of crashes on Saturday with his postal vehicle. The case was referred to the Waukesha city attorney’s office, as a citation for the man’s first O-W-I offense. Police

captain Ron Oremus said the vehicle struck several others both in front of the driver and behind him on a one-block stretch late Saturday morning. Oremus said the vehicle also had fresh damage from an apparent crash just outside of Waukesha. When he was arrested, Oremus said officers found an open bottle of brandy on the floor-board of the postal truck. He said the man’s blood alcohol level was point-18, more than twice the legal limit for intoxication.

Dodge County Reports Bird With West Nile

9/28/11 – Dodge County has its first reported case of West Nile Virus. Public Health Officer Jody Langfeldt says a dead crow tested positive for the mosquito-transmitted disease that could spread to other animals like horses and even humans with the bite of an infected mosquito. Langfeldt says the report is a reminder that people should still protect themselves against mosquito bites by wearing repellant especially at dusk and in heavily wooded areas until the first frost reduces mosquito populations. The state’s first reported human infection came in 2002 when 52 cases were reported. Last year, there were two human cases reported statwide. There have been no human reports of West Nile Virus in the county this year but a few years ago Dodge County did have the state’s first reported case. The Wisconsin Division of Public Health will continue surveillance for West Nile until the end of mosquito season. To report a sick or dead crow, blue jay or raven you can contact the Dead Bird Reporting Hotline 800-433-1610.

Woman Injured in Crash near Lomira

9/28/11 – A 32-year-old woman suffered minor injuries after crashing her car early Tuesday morning in the town of Lomira. According to the Dodge County Sheriff’s Department, the woman was driving on County Highway H just before 4am when she lost control of her vehicle after swerving to miss a deer, struck a culvert and vaulted over a driveway. The woman was taken to the hospital to have a possible broken arm checked out.

Walker Unaware of Spokesman’s Immunity In John Doe

9/28/11 – Governor Scott Walker said Tuesday that he didn’t know his chief spokesman was given immunity in a John Doe investigation until the media reported it. We learned last Friday that Cullen Werwie was given a deal to avoid possible prosecution. Walker said it would have been wrong for Werwie to tell the governor about the immunity in private – because it’s against the law to disclose statements made in John Doe probes. The Milwaukee County District Attorney’s office is conducting the probe to see if any of Walker’s aides illegally campaigned for him last year, when they served under Walker when he was the county executive. The Republican governor made his comments in Milwaukee, after holding his second statewide forum on job creation. Walker told reporters he lives to the highest ethical standards that he learned from his parents when he became an Eagle Scout. Walker’s father was a Baptist minister and quote, “I continue to have that kind of integrity.” Over the past few days, the governor has also questioned the media’s coverage of the John Doe proceeding – which has been going on for almost a year-and-a-half. Walker said people have commented on the probe who quote, “either don’t know what they’re talking about – or they’re violating the law” by speaking out of turn. The governor also said he has not personally been contacted by investigators in connection with the matter.

Photo ID Hearing Draws Silent Protestors

9/28/11 – Protestors and minority Democrats showed their displeasure Tuesday, when a legislative committee held a hastily-called hearing on the new photo I-D law for voting. Majority Republicans got the Joint Committee for the Review of Administrative Rules together with just one day’s notice. The G-O-P wanted to take a closer look at two provisions approved by the Government Accountability Board. One would let college students apply stickers to their campus I-D’s to show that they’re current. The other change would make it easier to circulate and sign recall petitions online. Democrats blasted the G-O-P for the short notice of the hearing.

Protestors jammed the hearing room at the State Capitol. They could not speak directly to the panel, and they protested that fact by taping their mouths shut.

Badger-Care Plus-Basic Dropping Delinquent Recipients

9/28/11 – If you’re on the state government’s bare-bones health plan, you better pay your premiums on time – or you’ll be cut off immediately with no chance to re-enroll. Senate Democrat Jim Holperin of Conover says recipients of Badger-Care-Plus-Basic have complained they were kicked out, even though they were just a couple days late on their payments. Holperin tells the Wisconsin Radio Network that people have asked him for help, but he couldn’t do anything. State health services’ spokeswoman Beth Kaplan said the cut-off policy was necessary because the program’s in a financial bind. It stopped taking new people in March because expenses had exceeded revenues from premiums. Democrats created the Basic plan last year for low-income childless adults who were on a waiting list for the more extensive Badger-Care Plus. Its supporters promised that recipients would pay the entire cost, with the help of a federal grant – and state taxpayers would not have to shell out a dime. But in May of this year, the Legislative Audit Bureau said the plan racked up a 140-thousand-dollar deficit in its first six months. In March, the Walker administration cut off enrollment at 57-hundred – and they raised the monthly premiums to 200-dollars. But the audit said the higher fee was still not enough to cover all the costs. And Kaplan said the deficit rose to nearly two-million-dollars. She said the health agency is now trying to decide whether Badger-Care-Plus-Basic can be sustainable.

Milwaukee May Extend Library Hours

9/28/11 – Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett says one of the best ways to combat poverty is through education. Barrett wants the city’s libraries to remain open for longer hours. Last year the city budget reduced those operating hours at several libraries. The budget revealed by the mayor today would restore the longer hours, giving the public greater access to reading materials. It could also cost a dozen firefighters their jobs as that department is restructured. Property taxes and fees would go up. Members of the Common Council will hold hearings on the mayor’s budget plan throughout October.

Growing Season Winding Down

9/28/11 – The growing season is winding down in much of Wisconsin, after a killing frost in the northwest earlier this month. The corn crop is still maturing. Officials said 38-percent of the Badger State’s corn is mature, down from the normal of 43-percent for this time of year. 57-percent of the corn-for-feed has been chopped, 19-percent more than a week ago as farmers rush to get the crop in before it gets too dry. High-moisture corn is starting to be harvested, and two-percent of it is in – and 76-percent of the corn is rated good-to-excellent, two-percent more than the week before. Three-fourths of the soybean crop is also good-to-excellent. The potato harvest is going well, but rain is holding things up in Portage County. Average-to-excellent potato yields are being reported, and the quality is said to be good.

Billboard Cheesehead Obscured

9/28/11 – A doctors’ group says the image of a foam cheesehead has been obscured on its anti-cheese billboard in Green Bay. The Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine paid for the billboard which featured the Grim Reaper wearing a foam cheese wedge on his head. The message on the billboard was warning of the health dangers of all the fat, cholesterol and sodium in cheese. The Milwaukee-area maker of foam hats and other novelties complained. It said it didn’t want to be a part of any campaign against cheese. That company makes the cheeseheads worn by many Packer fans. Fomation threatened to sue. The physicians’ group says it stands by the message, but the company renting it the billboard has caved into the lawsuit threat.

Beaver Dam Leaf Pick-Up Begins Monday

9/28/11 – Leaf pick-up in Beaver Dam begins on Monday (10/3). Director of Facilities David Stoiser says leaves — along with lawn grass rakings resulting from leaf gathering, garden vines and stalks – may be placed in the terrace areas of the street edge in loose piles for collection by the Department of Public Works. Collection will continue through late November. Stoiser says yard waste cannot be placed in the street or gutter, or in any containers. Leaves, rakings and garden debris cannot be mixed with other forms of waste like brush or shrubbery cuttings. Stoiser says fruits, nuts and vegetables are not acceptable and should be disposed of as garbage. Beaver Dam’s Yard Waste Drop-Off site is located at 640 South Center Street. No waste of any kind will be allowed from outside the city.

Petri’s Medicare Forums In Beaver Dam Friday

9/28/11 – U.S. Congressman Tom Petri will be in the area this week to host five Medicare forums. The 6th District Republican will be on hand when the Wisconsin Board of Aging and Long Term Care provides an overview of Medicare, including Parts A, B, and D, and a discussion about Advantage plans and military care. There will be an opportunity to ask questions after the presentation. A press release says the presentation for Medicare Part D, the prescription drug benefit, will be particularly relevant to seniors as Part D has an open season starting October 15, during which beneficiaries can switch to different prescription providers. The five sessions will begin on Thursday in Manitowoc and Sheboygan before moving on to Beaver Dam on Friday. That session will be held at the Senior Center on East Third Street beginning at 8:30 a-m. Later on Friday Petri will go to Fond du Lac and Oshkosh to finish off his tour.