News 4/14/2010

Woman Raped In Beaver Dam Park

4/14/10 – A woman was raped at the Beaver Dam Athletic Field Sunday night. Police Chief Dale Boldt says the 22-year-old female was walking home when she decided to cut across the field located off DeClark Street. A male subject approached the woman and attempted to take her purse. She kept hold of the purse but was pulled into a dark area of the park where the assault took place. It happened between 9pm and 10pm Sunday night. The suspect was said to be wearing dark clothing and spoke with a Hispanic accent. Boldt urges the public to use extreme caution and to avoid vulnerable situation. Anyone with information is asked to contact the Beaver Dam Police Department or the anonymous We-Tip Hotline at 800-78-CRIME.

Waupun Teen Found

4/14/10 – A 13-year-old Waupun girl considered to be endangered has been found. The search for Natacia Lynn Owens was called off yesterday just before 5pm.

$10K Bond Set In Assault and Robbery

4/14/10 – Bond was set at $10,000 cash for a Beaver Dam man charged in connection with the weekend assault and robbery of an acquaintance. The victim reportedly allowed Michael Dufay into his apartment on the 1600 block of North Spring Street but he was later struck in the back of the head with a gun while playing a video game. The victim was then ordered to the floor while Dufay allegedly took $2200 in cash hidden in the kitchen. The 25-year-old was arrested after going to the police station Saturday afternoon to deny his involvement. He faces a maximum of 25 years in prison, if convicted. A preliminary hearing is set for April 22.

Sheriff Returns Surplus

4/14/10 – The Dodge County Sheriff’s Department finished 2009 with a budget surplus estimated at $361,000. Sheriff Todd Nehls says it’s the sixth time in the past seven years they’ve returned budgeted money that wasn’t spent. He credits the federal inmate program which generated almost nine-million-dollars in 2009 alone. Nehls told us on WBEV’s Community Comment that he should be allowed rollover money at the end of the year; otherwise he says it amounts to stealing because the taxpayers are paying twice. He says the taxpayers already paid to fund his budget for 2009, and then he gives the money back and he’s funding things in 2010 that the taxpayers are paying for again. Dodge County Administrator James Mielke says it been a longstanding policy that excess revenue needs to be returned to the general fund and in most departments cannot be rolled over. He says with some exceptions – like the Highway Department and Clearview – state statute prohibits funds from being carried over to the next budget. Mielke says a designated amount of the general fund balance is earmarked each year for the budget, so when all the departments return money to the general fund, it builds up the balance which can be used to offset the levy.

Bader To Sit On Fall River School Board

4/14/10 – Steve Bader has been selected to join the Fall River School Board. The April 6 election ended in a 150 to 150 vote tie between former Board member David Brozek and first time candidate Steve Bader. Brozek asked for a recount. A special recount meeting Tuesday ended up with the same tie count. Selection of Bader was made the morning after the election when his name was drawn out of a basket. With the recount ending up with the same numbers, the selection stands. Bader will serve on the Board with incumbent LeRoy Dieckhoff who received the most votes for two open Board seats.

Dodge County Census Return Stats

4/14/10 – The City of Fox Lake has the lowest area return rate for the 2010 census up to this point. That’s according to figures put together by the federal government. The city’s return rate is 72-percent. Beaver Dam has the second lowest at 77-percent while Mayville’s rate is the highest

of area cities at 83-percent. Waupun, Watertown, Horicon and Juneau all came in at 79-percent. Dodge County as a whole is in the middle of the pack with having returned 79-percent of their census forms while Jefferson is at 78-percent and Columbia is at 77-percent. Fond du Lac County is at 80-percent and Washington County comes in at 83-percent. If you have yet to return your census, expect to get a knock on your door soon as it’s required by law to fill the form out.

Feingold in Dodge County Monday

4/14/10 – US Senator Russ Feingold will be in Dodge County on Monday. The Democrat is scheduled to hold a listening session in the Beaver Dam High School auditorium at 9am. Since being elected in 1992, Feingold has held one listening session per year in each of the states 72 counties. Dodge County is stop number 47 this year. According to media accounts, the sessions this year have been dominated by discussion on health care reform and the economy.

Meanwhile, Feingold has just over four-and-a-quarter million dollars available for his re-election campaign this fall. His campaign says that the Wisconsin Democrat raised one-point-three million in the first three months of this year – and he got a little from a lot of donors, since the average gift was 51-dollars. Feingold will face the winner of what could be a very crowded Republican primary field. Madison real estate developer Terrence Wall and Watertown businessman Dave Westlake have been running for awhile. Former Governor and Bush health secretary Tommy Thompson is thinking about getting in – and so is former state Commerce Secretary Richard Leinenkugel.

Jury Trial Scheduled In Mayville Assault

4/14/10 – A September jury trial was scheduled Tuesday for a Mayville man charged with Second Degree Sexual Assault for allegedly fondling a 15-year-old girl. Weston S. Leiberg is accused of groping the teen at a bowling alley in December. The complaint says the 30-year-old approached two girls and reportedly told one of them she was (quote) “gorgeous” then grabbed her. Police say Leiberg later said he was drunk and didn’t remember what happened.

Wisconsin Gets Failing Grade in Taxpayer Transparency

4/14/10 – Wisconsin has been criticized for not making it easy to show taxpayers how the state government is spending their money. The Wisconsin Public Interest Research Group gave the state an “F” in a national ranking of on-line access to government spending data. The group said 32 states have public data-bases with details as strong as check-books – something Wisconsin does not have. Staff attorney Johanna Lathrop said the best data-bases are easily searchable – and they have detailed information about government contracts, tax breaks, and grants to businesses. Recently, the Appleton Post-Crescent found that only 14 of 98 state agencies complied with a 2006 law to put details of their contracts on the Internet. The Government Accountability Board blamed a lack of resources, and a lack of penalties for not following the law. Last month, Senate Republican Rob Cowles said there was finger-pointing among politicians and bureaucrats – and he wanted an audit to explain what needs to be done.

Clean Energy Bill Advances

4/14/10 – A watered-down version of Wisconsin’s clean energy bill came out yesterday (Tu). A quarter of the state’s electricity would still have to be made by renewable sources by 2025. But to reduce the expected cost increases for utilities and their customers, gains in energy efficiency could count toward the goal. Up to one-fifth of the state’s mandate could come through energy savings. The bill also has more funding for small renewable energy projects in the Badger State, emphasizing digesters that convert farm manure into electricity. And the package scraps the idea of making vehicles use low-carbon bio-fuels. It had been reported a few weeks ago the measure would no longer have fuel standards similar to California’s tough limits. Even some majority Democrats balked at that idea – including the party’s main candidate for governor, Tom Barrett. The package was taken from recommendations offered by Governor Jim Doyle’s Task Force on Global Warming a couple years ago. Keith Reopelle of the group Clean