News 6/22/2010

BD Reaches Tentative Agreement with AFSCME

6/22/10 – in Beaver Dam have reached a tentative three-year agreement with AFSCME, the union that covers a majority of city workers. Finance Director John Somers says there will be a two-two split for the current year, meaning union employees will receive a two percent increase for the first six-months followed by a two percent increase beginning July 1. There will be no increase in 2011 and a 1 and three-quarter percent increase in 2012. AFSCME covers nearly every city employee except police and fire personnel and record keepers. The council will vote on the contract at their meeting July 19.

City Smoking Ban Approved

6/22/10 – The Beaver Dam Common Council last night adopted a local smoking ban, which closely mirrors the state statute. The ordinance has gone through multiple changes since it was first discussed in committee in April. The city had planned to go above-and-beyond the statewide ban which takes effect July 5. Original wording has been removed that would have prohibited smoking outdoors in places like taverns with patios where food is served or around volleyball courts, as well as in city park. City Attorney Mary Ann Schacht says the state has informed municipalities that they cannot adopt a smoking ban that is more stringent that the state statute. Passage of the city ordinance will allow the city to keep any money collected from fines. Before the vote, Schacht said fine collection is only one component of the ordinance, which was designed to send a message that the city of Beaver Dam does not condone smoking. For that reason, Alderman Laine Meyer changed his vote. Two alderpersons voted against the ordinance, nine were in support and there was one abstention.

Edwards Sentenced In Wisconsin

6/22/10 – Edward Edwards was sentenced to two life terms in Jefferson County Monday for killing a teenage couple 30-years ago. The 77-year-old pled guilty earlier this month to killing Tim Hack and Kelly Drew after they left a wedding reception near Sullivan in 1980. The sentence handed down this morning comes about week and half after he pled guilty to killing another couple near his hometown of Akron, Ohio in 1977. He was given two life terms in that state last week. Edwards also told the Associated Press last week that he killed a fifth person, a 24-year-old man he considered a foster son. He said he confessed because he wanted the death penalty, something Ohio now has and Wisconsin doesn’t. After the ruling Drew’s only sister issued a statement to the media saying about Edwards, “You took my only sister. You are a coward who ran away, and you’re still running away to Ohio. You’re despicable. I wanted you to die instantly. But now, I hope you suffer the way our family has.” Edwards will not serve the jail time in Wisconsin until his Ohio sentence is complete. He’s not eligible for parole in Ohio until age 97.

Outhouse Bomber Gets Prison

6/22/10 – A former Beaver Dam man behind a series of random shootings and explosions was sentenced Monday to three-and-a-half years in prison. Stephen Peterson pleaded “no contest” back in January to charges of First Degree Reckless Endangerment, Causing Damage With Explosives, and Possessing Explosives For An Unlawful Purpose. The 20-year-old had three other charges dismissed but read into the record. Peterson, who now lives in Fitchburg, acted alone when he fired a rifle into two mobile homes in April of 2008, and it was that incident that earned him the prison time. Peterson was also charged — along with 21-year-old’s Kyle Livingston and Michael Peters – with the bombings of a mailbox in Burnett and a port-a-potty at Lost Lake Park in April of last year. The trio was apprehended with the use of in-store video surveillance after purchasing the explosive components at a Beaver Dam retailer. Investigators say they used pipe bombs and, in the case of the porta-potty, also used liquefied gas. Livingston was previously sentenced to one year in jail while Peters was given a seven-month jail sentence. As part of Judge John’s Storck’ sentence, Peterson is prohibited from possessing weapons, explosives or body armor. Peterson was also sentenced to five years of extended supervision

followed by five years of probation, in addition to 200 hours of community service. Former Beaver Dam Alderman Clancy Knaup was arrested for disorderly conduct in May of 2008 for taking guns, ammunition and body armor from Peterson, who was a tenant of his at the time. Knaup said he was looking out for the safety of his other tenants.

Hron Seeks Re-Election

6/22/10 – Clerk of Courts Lynn Hron is seeking re-election. Hron says under her leadership, millions of dollars in past due fines and forfeitures has been collected through the intercept of tax refunds. She also says since first elected, her office has successfully incorporated technology which has made access to court records more easily available to the public and the media. Hron was first elected eight years ago and served two, two year terms before election to a four-year term. She has been an employee of the Clerk of Courts office since 1981.