“News – August 15, 2009”

Farm Fire Injures One


8/15/09 – One person was injured in a late morning fire yesterday just outside of Randolph.  The Randolph fire department responded to the fire at the Glenn Smits Dairy Farm located at W381 Highway A just after 11 a.m.  A med-flight helicopter arrived soon after and transported a man away who was burned while attempted to remove some hay that had caught on fire inside a shed on the farm.  Officials on scene say a number of farm implements in the shed were destroyed by the fire.  Yesterday’s heat also wore down firefighters from Randolph, Fox Lake, Cambria and Friesland as at least a dozen were treated at the scene.  Firefighters were on scene until 5 p.m.  Authorities have yet to release the name of the man injured.


Three People Injured in Two-Vehicle Accident


8/15/09 – Three people were injured in a two vehicle accident in the Town of Rubicon late last night.  The Dodge County Sheriff’s Department says a passenger in one of the cars, 19-year-old Ashley Lazich was taken to the hospital, as was the driver of the other car 43-year-old Paul Bruckert.  As authorities arrived on scene three other people fled on foot from the accident.  That included the 17-year-old driver of the first car, who was found hiding in a field.  He’s been cited for hit and run causing injury, failure to stop at a stop sign, and unreasonable and imprudent speed.  The accident occurred on South Goodland Road just after 11 p.m.


Driver Stopped by Homeowner after Hitting His Mailbox


8/15/09 – A homeowner took the law into his own hands last night.  After watching a vehicle driven by 39-year-old Paul Retzlaff strike his mailbox around 10 p.m. last night and then drive away, Jeremy Terbeest was able to get the vehicle stopped and called authorities.  Retzlaff was cited for operating under the influence first offense and hit and run property and was taken to jail.


Man Arrested After Car Strikes Tree


8/15/09 – A 59-year-old man was arrested after crashing his car on Hickory Bay Road in the Town of Fox Lake.  Lloyd Spoehr lost control of his vehicle and crashed into a tree.  Fox Lake Fire and EMS responded and took him the Beaver Dam hospital.  He was taken into custody for his second OWI before being released to hospital staff for treatment.  The accident happened just after 9:30 last night.


Tickets to Be Easier to Read in Columbus


8/15/09 – Acting Columbus Police Chief Dennis Weiner told the Council this week that the Department had been awarded a $4 thousand dollar DOT grant that will be used to install printers in the City’s squad cars. Weiner said computer hardware and software will be installed in CPD squad cars eliminating hand writing and re-entry of basic ticket information. The technology — called TRAC — will save police officers and clerical staff a lot of time in the ticket issuing procedure.


Property Values Down for Only 2nd Time Ever


8/15/09 – Wisconsin’s total property values dropped last year for only the second time in the last half-century.  The state Revenue Department said yesterday that total land values dropped one-half of one-percent.  The last statewide decline happened in 1986, when total values fell two-percent.  Milwaukee had the biggest drop this time among the state’s major cities, with just over-three-percent.  Pierce and Saint Croix counties – which have had massive population growth from Minnesota’s nearby Twin Cities – each had more than a five-percent decline in land values.  Existing homes in the Badger State lost nine-tenths-of-one-percent of their value last year.  But the national decline was over seven-percent, and state Revenue Secretary Roger Ervin said it proved that Wisconsin’s home market was relatively stable.  Even so, the drop in values obviously won’t help home sellers.  And local governments won’t appreciate it, either, when they have to raise their tax rates this fall to collect the same or more in tax revenues from a declining property base.  Meanwhile, land values for commercial property rose three-percent in 2008.  New construction was the reason.


Car and Truck Sales Down in July


8/15/09 – Sales of new cars and light trucks in Wisconsin rose almost eight-and-a-half percent over the last month.  But the Automobile Dealers Association of Mega Milwaukee said July sales were still down from the same month a year ago.  The group said just over 13-thousand new vehicles were registered in the Badger State last month – up from 12-thousand in June, but down from 17-thousand in July of 2008.  The federal government’s “Cash for Clunkers” discounts helped.  But association president Jim Tolkan said the program really ran for just three days in July, due to computer processing problems on Washington’s end.  He said a large number of “Cash for Clunkers” sales will be reflected in the August sales figures.


Unexploded Military Ordnance Found in River Falls Home


8/15/09 – People living in a River Falls neighborhood were rousted from their homes when some old military ordnance was found.  The Marathon County bomb squad was dispatched to assess the situation Friday afternoon, then dispose of the explosives that were found in a house.  The evacuation was voluntary, with some of the people going to a nearby library until the threat was resolved.  When police were called to the location, they decided the ordnance could be a threat to public safety if it was detonated.  The evacuees were allowed to return home after a couple of hours.


MPS Board Member: Government Plan to Take Over District “Racist”


8/15/09 – One school board member calls the plan to take over Milwaukee public schools “racist.”  Milwaukee’s mayor and the governor have said they want the city to take over the system immediately.  That idea got an angry response from board president Michael Bonds.  He called it a personal insult, saying he thinks the idea is racist.  Mayor Tom Barrett’s office responds that the idea of taking over the troubled district was considered long before Bonds became president.  The mayor thinks the takeover would make schools more accountable.  Bonds has promised he will fight it.


Know What You’re Taking Before Driving


8/15/09 – A new study shows many older drivers don’t realize the impact medications may have on their abilities behind the wheel.  The report from the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety found nearly 78 percent of respondents over the age of 55 are on at least one form of medication — and roughly two-thirds of them don’t know if those drugs could impact their ability to drive.  Pam Moen of AAA Wisconsin says that can result in dangerous situations due to the effect of those drugs.  Moen says the results show people need to find out more about the drugs they’re taking.  She says people need to talk with their medical provider about any prescriptions, along with any potential interactions that could make them unsafe to drive.


Two Women Brawl for Man


8/15/09 – A fight between two women on Madison’s Allied Drive escalated into a full-scale brawl Thursday night.  They were fighting over a man, according to witnesses.  Police were called to a “fight in progress” at about 9:20 p.m.  More than a dozen people were throwing punches at its peak, with another 50 to 100 people watching the brawl.  Juanita Bryant and Annette White were arrested, tentatively charged with battery and disorderly conduct.  Police say a juvenile faces the same charges and some of the other fights got tickets.  One person was injured badly enough to need stitches.


Fight Resulted from Disagreement about Band “Styx”


8/15/09 – Not everyone is a fan of the rock group “Styx” as Fond du Lac police found out early Tuesday morning. Police were called to an apartment on North Peters Avenue where a 20-year-old man was trying to have a 20-year-old friend from North Fond du Lac removed. He explained that the North Fondy man and another man had gotten into a fight because one of them hates the group “Styx” and the other likes them. Officers cited the renter and the combatant for underage drinking. The other combatant had left before authorities arrived.  Styx is set to perform at the Dodge County Fair next week. (KFIZ)