News 5/23/2010

Thermometer Expected To Top 90

5/23/10 – Temperatures could hit the 90s in southern Wisconsin today and tomorrow, but the pools are closed and Wisconsin Dells outdoor water park attractions don’t open for another week. The weather experts say it’s nothing to worry about as there is a 40 percent chance the Upper Midwest will have a lower average temperature than normal this summer.

Walker Secures GOP Nomination

5/23/10 – Milwaukee County Executive Scott Walker overwhelmingly secured his party’s nomination for governor. Delegates to the annual Republican state convention in Milwaukee gave Walker more than 91 percent of the vote. That gives Walker access to money, volunteers, voter and donor lists and additional party resources to mount his campaign. He and former congressman Mark Neumann will still appear on the primary ballot in September. Walker got loud applause, ringing bells and a lot of sign waving as he spoke to the crowd at the Frontier Airlines Center last night. The winner of the Republican primary will likely face Democrat Tom Barrett in November.

Fitzgerald on Future Of Party

5/23/10 – Leading Republican lawmakers say they will focus on reducing government spending and helping business if they regain control of the Legislature. Party leaders were discussing the potential takeover at the annual GOP convention in Milwaukee Saturday. Senate Minority Leader Scott Fitzgerald of Juneau says the Democrats promoted an anti-jobs, anti-employer, and anti-family agenda while they controlled things and the political pendulum is swinging their way. The party needs four Assembly seats and two Senate seats to hold a majority.

Wisconsinites Sickened By Alfalfa

5/23/10 – Two people in Wisconsin are among 22 nationwide who got sick after eating raw alfalfa sprouts. California-based Caldwell Fresh Foods announced a recall yesterday. The alfalfa product was sold in 18 states in the West, Midwest and South. The news release announcing the recall didn’t say where the sprouts were sold in this state — or, where the people who got sick live.

Oshkosh Corp Secures Four Contracts

5/23/10 – The Oshkosh Corporation announced four more contracts with the U-S Army today. The company will get almost 235-million-dollars to make protection kits for 43-hundred all-terrain vehicles, which Oshkosh manufactured for U-S troops to use in Afghanistan. Workers will make an additional 38-hundred kits to protect the vehicles from rocket-propelled grenades. And they’ll make over 500 more add-on armor kits. The new work is expected to be completed by April of next year. In total, Oshkosh has received orders for 75-hundred protection kits and 13-hundred armor kits. The company has netted over five-billion-dollars in contracts in the past year to build more than eight-thousand of the all-terrain vehicles, which are designed to be an improvement over the former Humvees used by American troops in Iraq.

State Revenue Collections Up

5/23/10 – The state of Wisconsin is getting some fairly optimistic news about revenue. Tax collections were up a reported 14 percent in April. The Department of Revenue says a little over 1-point-1 billion dollars was collected, compared to 978 million last year. State officials not that April is an important month for revenue since that’s the month personal income taxes are filed. Despite the strong collection figures, Wisconsin state revenue for this fiscal year is still down one percent when compared to 2009.

Reward Offered in Calumet County B&E’s

5/23/10 – Calumet County investigators are offering a $500 reward for information leading to the arrest of the person or persons who have been breaking in to garages and outbuildings on several farms. Authorities say thieves have broken into almost two dozen locations in the last three weeks. Law enforcement thinks the same people are responsible in all the crimes. They are looking for more leads as they try to stop the string of crimes.

Milwaukee Students Rank Low

5/23/10 – A study comparing reading skills among four and eighth-graders in 18 urban school systems puts Milwaukee’s performance near the bottom. The Trial Urban District Assessment shows Milwaukee public schools fourth graders did better than only Detroit, Cleveland and Philadelphia. Eighth graders managed to edge past Detroit, Fresno and Washington, D.C. A spokesperson for Milwaukee Achiever Literacy Services calls those results “discouraging.”

Nursing Home CEO Sentenced

5/23/10 – The former CEO of a Milwaukee nursing home has been given two years in prison for not paying her taxes. Federal prosecutors say Karen Mason pleaded guilty to take more than a million dollars over a four-year period and not reporting that money as taxable income. Mason was previously known as Karen Mueller. She reportedly used the money taken from the Havenwood Nursing and Rehabilitation Center for jewelry, home furnishings, cars, entertainment and travel — including 30 thousand dollars on a wedding and honeymoon for one of her children. Mason admitted underpaying her taxes by 360 thousand dollars.

Madison Tackles Algae Issue

5/23/10 – The city of Madison plans to start a test project next month which is aimed at cutting down on the algae which can cover portions of Lake Monona and Lake Mendota. That algae endangers swimmers and closes beaches each summer. Geotextile fabric barriers are to be placed near swimming areas in an effort to keep the algae out. BB Clarke beach and Bernies beach have been closed more than 60 days over the last five years due to the growth of blue-green algae. It can be harmful to both people and pets. The city’s engineering division is working on moving the algae scum away from those beaches. The project is expected to cost about 60 thousand dollars.