News – April 27, 2020

(Dodge County) The Wisconsin Department of Health on Sunday reported an increase of 224 positive cases with 5911 now confirmed. Six additional deaths were reported Sunday, bringing the total to 272. There have been 1397 people requiring hospitalization, which is roughly 24-percent of those who we know have had the virus. To date, over 59-thousand tests have been administered that came back negative for coronavirus. Dodge County is reporting six more positive cases 29 people infected while the number of negative results increased from 790 on Friday to 813 on Sunday. Dodge County has one death on record; a resident who died out of state. Washington County has experienced four deaths with 92 people testing positive. Fond du Lac County has three deaths on record with 69 positive tests. There has been one death in Columbia County and 27 positive cases. Jefferson County is at 39 positive cases. Green Lake County has one positive case.

(Madison) State Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald says Governor Tony Evers has “completely circumvented” the rule-making process with his extended “Safer at Home” order. The Juneau Republican says Evers has failed to adequately explain the benchmarks for restarting the economy. On WISN Sunday, Fitzgerald also said Senate Republicans want to question DHS Secretary-designee Andrea Palm because of concern about how she’s managing the state’s pandemic response.

(Dodge County) There are two major programs coming out of the federal government aimed at assisting small businesses. The first is the Economic Injury Disaster Loan which is money being lent or granted directly from the Federal Government’s Small Businesses Administration. The loan carries an interest rate of three-point-seven-five-percent (3.75) and there are no payments for the first four months. The other is the Payroll Protection Program which is set up through a business’s local bank. The PPP has a large forgivable component as store owners can use the money for rent, utilities and to sustain payroll. A local resource is available for businesses to help apply for these program. To learn more visit

(Juneau) Dodge County Aging and Disability Resource Center (ADRC) is reminding citizens that they are open and available to help during the COVID-19 pandemic. The ADRC is a nonprofit organization connecting older adults and adults with disabilities to information, assistance and advocacy. One such resource the ADRC offers is the Elder Benefit Specialist program (EBS) which serves adults 60-years or older who live in Dodge County. The benefit specialists are advocates that receive ongoing training from attorneys who specialize in Elder Law. More information is available with this news story on

(Portage) A child was seriously injured by a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the leg yesterday (Sunday) afternoon in Portage. Just after 12pm, the Portage Police Department along with deputies from the Columbia County Sheriff’s Office were dispatched to the 500 block of West Wisconsin. Patrol Lieutenant Robert Bagnall says upon arrival, officers found a parent applying wound care to the two-year-old child’s leg. He says the scene was immediately contained and the firearm as found near the child and was recovered as evidence. The child was initially taken to Divine Savior Hospital but was then transported by Med-Flight to UW Hospital in Madison. Names of those involved are being withheld. Bagnall says the incident is still under investigation.

(Pardeeville) A six-year-old was seriously injured in an ATV accident Saturday afternoon in the village of Pardeeville, along with the woman operating the vehicle. The 39-year-old apparently lost control at a high rate of speed and struck trees in the backyard of a private residence. Both the woman and the six-year-old were flown to UW Hospital Madison. The juvenile was the only one wearing a helmet. Speed and inexperience appear to be factors in the accident, which remains under investigation by the Columbia County Sheriff’s Office.

(Town of Eden) Alcohol is believed to be a factor in a single vehicle rollover that seriously injured an Eden man early Saturday morning. Fond du Lac County Sheriff’ deputies initially found the pickup upside down with no occupants on County Highway V at Greenway Road around 3am. A rescue team was assembled; the driver and lone occupant was located at a nearby residence. He flown to Theda Care Regional Medical Center in Neenah. The 34-year-old was arrested on suspicion of first offense OWI.

(Beaver Dam) The Beaver Dam Police and Fire Departments are no longer offering a popular community service. Several weeks ago the departments had brought back their “birthday squad” visits where members of the force visit children in the Beaver Dam area for their birthday. On Saturday, the Beaver Dam Police Department posted an update to their Facebook page saying that while on a visit earlier that day a birthday party was not complying with the governor’s “Safer at Home” order. As a result, the departments say they have discontinued all birthday visits. Being law enforcement agencies, they say they are expected to adhere to the governor’s order and add that they cannot be a part of gatherings that appear to be in violation. The agencies say that they are sorry for this decision, noting an old passage that says (quote) “one can ruin it for all.”

(Beaver Dam) A Beaver Dam-based contractor has announced the retirement of a longstanding figure within the company. WDS Construction said recently that Director of WDS Works Steve Westra has retired. Westra, a third-generation contractor, spent 55 years in the construction industry. WDS Construction Founder Ben Westra, Steven Westra’s son, says his father is genuine, charitable and served as a mentor to many at WDS and in the industry. During his time at WDS, Westra served as project manager or superintendent on multiple projects and helped his son Ben establish WDS Works, the benevolent arm of WDS Construction.

(Beaver Dam) Beaver Dam residents are being reminded that their semi-annual curbside bulk waste collection will not take place on the first garbage collection day in May. Advanced Disposal announced last month that all item pickup or collection is suspended until further noticed. They also said they will not collect any trash or recycling that is not containerized. DPW Supervisor Dan Mulhern says any bulk items left at the curb will be subject to a fine.

(Wisconsin) If you haven’t gotten your pandemic stimulus check yet, the IRS might need a little bit of information from you. IRS Spokesman Christopher Miller says there’s a form on their website that will ensure you get your check, even if you don’t usually file taxes. And if you want to get your money as quickly as possible, be sure to include a bank account number, so you can get a direct deposit, rather than a mailed check.