News – April 9, 2022

(Watertown) One person died in an apartment fire in Watertown yesterday (Friday) morning. The fire department was dispatched to Watertown East Apartments at 1153 Boughton Street around 3:49am. Upon arrival, crews found smoke coming from one of the building’s apartment units. Fire Chief Kraig Biefeld says there were reports of a possible victim so his department made entry and started searching, knocking down the blaze as they went. He says firefighters did determine some occupants were able to self-evacuate. Biefeld says a person was located inside an apartment and was transported to the Watertown hospital where they later succumbed to their injuries. The fire was contained to the just the single unit. During the incident, eight units were evacuated and gas was turned off until the fire was extinguished. Two neighboring apartments had to have minor smoke removal. All other occupants were able to return to their units. There were no other injuries reported. The damage is estimated to be over $30,000. Biefeld says the State Fire Marshall has been called to help investigate the fire with support from the Watertown Police Department and Fire Investigator. He says the cause of the blaze is not known at this time. The chief notes that there were no working smoke detectors present in the apartment. (Columbus) A gas leak in Columbus was resolved yesterday (Friday) afternoon. Columbia County Emergency Management officials say the natural gas line was struck by construction crews near the intersection of Farnham and Poet Streets around 8:45am Friday morning. They say the leak was stopped by WE Energies employees, it took roughly two hours. Evacuated residents were able to return to their homes and businesses but roughly 62 buildings near the intersection were without power until later in the day Friday. A shelter-in-place order was given for Columbus Schools but it was cleared by early afternoon. There were no injuries reported. (Beaver Dam) A Beaver Dam man accused of shooting another person in the foot entered a not guilty plea during his arraignment hearing this week. Lynell Lacy allegedly held a gun to the victims head and demanded any money he had in February. He then shot the victim in the foot all over a perceived encounter with Lacy’s girlfriend. The 28-year-old then left the scene and was located on Kellom Road where he was taken into custody. If convicted, Lacy faces up to 43-and-a-half years behind bars. (Beaver Dam) A Madison man accused of running from Dodge County authorities is heading to trial after waiving his right to a preliminary hearing this week. During a subsequent arraignment hearing, Ayoub Hryzy entered a not guilty plea. Hryzy allegedly run from sheriff’s office deputies last month after failing to stop at a stop sign near the town of Beaver Dam. The vehicle was reportedly stolen out of the city of Monona. Hryzy allegedly told authorities that a friend let him use the vehicle. If convicted, the 21-year-old faces 13 years in prison. (Jefferson County) All poultry shows, exhibitions, and swap meets in Wisconsin are canceled through the end of May. It’s an effort to prevent the spread of highly-pathogenic avian influenza. Wisconsin agriculture officials have already suspended poultry exhibitions in Jefferson County, after bird flu was confirmed at a commercial chicken farm. Minnesota, Iowa, and Illinois are just some of the other states that have implemented similar restrictions on poultry events. The Department of Agriculture, Trade, and Consumer Protection urges people who handle chickens to keep their flocks indoors whenever possible to prevent contact with wild birds. – WRN (Beaver Dam) Beaver Dam is contracting with MSA Professional Services in an effort to help improve water quality in the community. MSA will be providing administrative services and submitting applications to the Safe Drinking Water Loan Program and the Clean Water Fund Program. The project would include the replacement of water mains and sanitary sewers throughout the city. (Beaver Dam) The ribbon was recently cut for a new addition at Powersports Company in Beaver Dam. The new 12,000-square-foot space, at the business on N8309 Kellom Road, was added to the backside of the building. The addition is for securing customer’s vehicles as they come in for service. By pulling the unites inside they are kept clean, secure, and out of the elements. The addition also adds more capacity to store larger parts to help minimize turnaround time from drop off to pick up. Powersports Company was established in Beaver Dam in 1975, previously known as Hupf’s Honda Hut and was renamed Powersports Company in 2013. They represent five main product lines including Kubota, Polaris, Honda, SCAG, and Stihl. (Wisconsin) Alliant Energy has named several new executive officers to assist with their clean energy transition. Barbara Tormaschy has been promoted to senior vice president and will oversee sustainability and regulatory strategy. Michael Luhrs will join the company as the senior vice president of customer experience and strategy. Tormaschy will be responsible for leading environmental, social and governance programs, as well as the company’s sustainability, regulatory strategy, and solutions teams. Luhrs will be responsible for the refinement and execution of the company’s customer experience strategy. (Milwaukee) A lot of people responding to a survey say they want electric scooters to return to downtown Milwaukee. The Milwaukee Department of Public Works is out with a survey that shows more than 70-percent of people say they like the scooters, and more than half say they’ve rented one at least once. Milwaukee ended its scooter-rental pilot program last year, but has not yet indicated whether the scooters will be back this year. The biggest complaint among poll respondents is people riding scooters on the sidewalk. – WRN (Milwaukee) Milwaukee is being commended, for sheltering its homeless population. The City and County of Milwaukee County, along with business leaders and community partners announced Thursday that Milwaukee has been recognized by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development with the lowest unsheltered homeless population of any community per capita in the nation. Last year’s county of seventeen unsheltered individuals represented over a 70 percent reduction from the previous year. Milwaukee County initiated its Housing First program in 2015, and has seen a 92-percent reduction in the unsheltered population. – WRN