News 4/6/2010

Election Coverage Tonight On WBEV- WXRO

4/6/10 – Unless you’re actually at the court house, our radio stations tonight will be the quickest way to learn the results of tonight’s election. While Dodge County updates the latest numbers of all county races on their website, there is no way to determine if all the votes in a precinct have been tabulated until the final results are posted, which County Clerk Karen Gibson says could be close to 11:30pm. Even in races with only one voting precinct, there is no way to determine online if the posted results are from the traditional optical scan voting booths or from the more modern touch screen devices. We will have reporters at the courthouse getting that information so we can report when 100% of the votes in each particular precinct have been counted. Our election coverage of the mayoral, aldermanic, judicial and school board races that affect Dodge County and the surrounding area begins at 8pm tonight on WXRO 95.3FM and also on WBEV AM1430 immediately following tonight’s Brewers game.

BDPD Sees Sharp Increase In Heroin Use

4/6/10 – Heroin and prescription drug use is up in Beaver Dam. That’s according to a recent report released by the Beaver Dam Police Department. Six members of the department are part of the Dodge County Drug Task Force, which made 143 total drug arrests in Beaver Dam last year, nine less than the previous year. While 57% of the total arrests were marijuana related, Police Detective Ryan Klavekoske says there has been a sharp, noticeable increase in the misuse and abuse of prescription drugs. While prescription drug abuse has been a problem for the past decade, in the past 18 to 24 months there has been a jump in heroin use, and heroin overdoses. The prescription drugs that are of most concern are opiate-based drugs like Percocet, Vicodin and Oxycontin and because heroin is a synthesized opiate Klavekoske says prescription drugs are often a direct gateway for today’s youth into heroin. Authorities urge the public not to make access to prescription drugs easy for children or criminals. They say you should dispose of unused medications as quickly as possible, and keep access to such drugs limited while they are in use. Because putting such drugs into the water system is now being frowned upon, Klavekoske urges people to dispose of their unused medications at collection drop off sites, which are held periodically throughout the year.

Admin Committee Signs Off On Search Firm Hiring

4/6/10 – The Beaver Dam Administrative Committee gave their seal of approval last night to the Police and Fire Commission in hiring a search firm to find the next police chief. The committee, however, did not allocate any funding for the search. Police Chief Dale Boldt announced his retirement last month, effective mid-May. PFC Chair Nancy Connley told the committee that a new chief is not expected to be in place until the end of summer. The cost of hiring a search firm is estimated at between $18,000 and $20,000. It is expected that the existing police budget will see around $16,000 in salary savings from the months between Boldt’s last day on the job and the first day for the new hire. In making his motion, Alderman John Litscher said the committee would be open to funding any shortfall in the department’s budget after the final numbers are in.

BD To See Bond Rating Upgrade

4/6/10 – Beaver Dam may be locking into a lower interest rate than once thought in borrowing $2.6 million for upcoming capital improvement projects, including the new police station. The city’s financial advisor Carol Wirth told city officials last night that Beaver Dam will be one of thousands of municipalities across the country that could have their bond rating upgraded by Moody’s Investment Services at mid-month. Because of the record number of upgrades across the country, Wirth says it’s too early to tell what affects the upgrade will have on the city financially.

Council Approves Road Improvement Assessments

4/6/10 – The Beaver Dam Common Council last night approved assessments for property owners living along the city’s biggest road improvement project of the year. Portions of Warren Street and South University Avenue will see complete reconstruction at a cost of $645,500. Engineering Coordinator Ritchie Piltz says the average assessment for this project is roughly $3400. Earlier in the evening the Operations Committee tabled discussion on a request by a Stone Street church to perform sidewalk installation work themselves. Committee Chair Laine Meyer says the church withdrew the request but next week the committee will discuss the establishment of a general policy in case the matter comes up again.

Petri Talks Health Care, Economy

4/6/10 – US Congressman Tom Petri says health care and the economy have been the most talked about issues raised by constituents. The Fond du Lac Republican is in the midst of a weeklong series of Town Hall Meetings. Petri says he stands with his party’s position to repeal and replace the health care bill. For years, he has championed changes in the federal student loan program, aimed at consolidating unneeded government departments, but he expressed regret that he had to vote against those changes when they were bundled into the health care bill.

Davis Trial Delayed

4/6/10 – A former Fox Lake Correctional Institution inmate, who allegedly attacked two guards with a claw-hammer, had his court trial delayed. Judge Andrew Bissonnette recused himself with the case that had been scheduled to begin on Wednesday due to a conflict. Last month, Terrance Davis waived his right to a jury trial in favor of a court trial. The 51-year-old pleaded “not guilty by mental defect” last June to charges of First Degree Intentional Homicide. Davis allegedly assaulted the guards in the prison’s furniture-making shop in November 2008. A 52-year-old officer sustained head injuries and a broken arm and a 38-year-old guard required surgery for a fractured skull. Davis has been in prison since he killed two Milwaukee police officers 24 years ago when the officer’s walked into a drug deal. He faces up to 80-years in prison if found guilty. A trail date will be set when a new judge is assigned to the case.

BD Man Charged With Fleeing

4/6/10 – A Beaver Dam man is charged with running from police at bar closing time this past January. Christopher Meinke is charged with a felony count of Fleeing. According to the criminal complaint, the 23-year-old was upset that his girlfriend was at a local bar and allegedly blew a stop sign on Madison Street, narrowly missing a squad car which had to swerve out of way. Meinke was said to be traveling at a high rate of speed when he lost that same police officer on South Lincoln Avenue. The officer discovered his car about 20 minutes later. He reportedly told police while later being questioned, (quote) “I admit to everything.” Meinke had a signature bond set at $1000 yesterday and a preliminary hearing is scheduled for next month. The charge carries a maximum three and a half year prison sentence upon conviction.