News – April 23, 2020

(Beaver Dam) Two Beaver Dam police officers were recognized yesterday (Friday) for their work in the successful prosecution of a homicide case. Lieutenant Terrance Gebhardt and Officer Megan Scott won the Officer o the Year for their efforts to prosecute Ulisses Medina Espinosa, who was sentenced to life in prison for the murder of his ex-wife. Dodge County District Attorney Kurt Klomberg says his office could have served the victim’s family in the way they were able to without the direct partnership they had with Scott and Gebhardt.

(Beaver Dam) Agencies across Wisconsin will be collecting unused or expired drugs today (Saturday) for Drug Take Back Day. Dane County Sheriff’s spokeswoman Elise Schaffer says it’s a matter of safety for people and the environment. Schaffer says that simply tossing the drugs in the trash or down the drain will allow those chemicals to pollute the groundwater, where traces of medications are already being found. Police department’s in Beaver Dam, Juneau, Horicon, Columbus, Waupun, Mayville and Randolph are participating. You can find a drop off location near you at Dose Of Reality WI dot Gov. – WRN

(Washington County) More details, about a series of pile-ups on Interstate 41 in southeast Wisconsin during a snow-storm on Wednesday. One hundred vehicles were involved in 20 separate crashes. One person was killed, she was a 37 year-old woman from Tennessee. Six other people went to the hospital. The Slinger school district helped rescue stranded drivers by taking them to safety in school buses. The Washington County sheriff says the size and scope of the situation made the response very difficult.

(Madison) John Jagler was sworn in as Senator for the 13th Senate District of Wisconsin yesterday (Friday). The Watertown-native previously served as the representative for the 37th Assembly District since 2014 and was elected to the senate in a special election. Jagler says he is grateful for his family and friends who supported him through the race. He says he is also grateful for the people of the thirteenth senate district for putting their trust in him, adding that he will not forget that he has to earn that trust. Jagler succeeds Congressman Scott Fitzgerald who was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in November. The swearing in ceremony took place in the senate chambers and was attended by the Jagler’s family and a small group of close friends. The oath of office was administered by Wisconsin Supreme Court Chief Justice Patience Roggensack.

(Madison) Governor Tony Evers has vetoed another pair of bills that would have restricted how health officials can handle the fight against COVID-19. The two bills would have prevented health officers from requiring people to get vaccinated against COVID-19 and also would have prevented them from closing places of worship due to the pandemic. Governor Evers says that he remains committed to following the science in the fight against the pandemic and giving health officials all the tools they need. Republicans say that health officials are stifling freedom of religion and the right to choose their own medical treatments. – WRN

(Beaver Dam) In response to the governor’s veto, State Representative Mark Born says Evers is continuing his pattern of ignoring the will of the people and using a unilateral, go-it-alone, big government approach. The Beaver Dam Republican says these bills were common-sense and prohibited the government from mandating the vaccine and closing houses of worship.

(Wisconsin) Wisconsin’s Deputy Health Services Secretary Julie Willems Van Dijk says herd immunity is possible by July 4th, as long as people keep stepping forward to get vaccinated. As of Friday, just over 41-and-a-half-percent of Wisconsin’s total population had gotten at least one shot, and 30.4-percent is fully vaccinated. Willems Van Dijk said about one-and-a-half million more people need to be fully vaccinated to reach 80-percent of the total population, the target for herd immunity.

(Dodge County) Wisconsin health officials reported 13 COVID deaths yesterday bringing that total to 6,738. Dodge County has 162 deaths and 11,720 cases. Statewide, active cases total 9,099, a one-day decrease of 40. Health officials in Dodge County are actively monitoring 97 cases. Twenty-four-point-nine-percent (24.9%) of Dodge County residents are fully vaccinated while 33.1-percent have had at least one dose.

(Wisconsin) Public health officials urge everyone who’s eligible for a COVID-19 vaccine to get one, so we can achieve herd immunity. But Wisconsin’s senior U-S Senator questions whether that’s necessary. Republican Ron Johnson was on WIBA’s “Vicki McKenna Show” on Thursday. Experts believe about 85 percent of the population will need to be vaccinated to achieve herd immunity. Recent polls have found around 45 percent of Republicans don’t plan to get vaccinated. – WRN

(Beaver Dam) Today kickoffs a six month series of events that should satisfy those craving fair food. The Dodge County Fairgrounds is hosting the Fair Food Festival which will feature sweet treats, fried fair food and an assortment of food carts. A variety of new vendors will be showcased during each months event. The menu today’s showcase will feature foods from at least eight vendors who will provide a slate of finger foods, sweet treats and fair food favorites. Admission and parking are both free. Your food purchases will help support the non-profit Dodge County Fair Association as well as the participating vendors, who may have endured hardships in 2020. Attendees are welcome to enjoy a socially distanced meal at one of the picnic tables provided or bring their own lawn chairs. The event will begin at 11am and run until 8pm. Future fair food festival dates include May 8, June 5, July 17, September 4 and October 2. The Dodge County Fair is scheduled to return with a variety of family friendly events and midway rides on August 18 through the 22.