News – December 7, 2011

2 Injured in Dodge County Accident

12/7/11 – Two people from Neosho were seriously injured in a rollover accident in southern Dodge County last night. It happened on Highway 67 near County Highway M-M just before 11 p-m. The Dodge County Sherriff’s Department says 22-year-old Joshua Kempken lost control of his vehicle and it went into a ditch, struck a culvert and then went airborne. The car overturned and came to rest upside down. Kempken was taken to the Oconomowoc Hospital. A passenger in the vehicle, 17-year-old Courtney Janny, was trapped in the vehicle and had to be extricated. She was flown by Flight for Life to Children’s Hospital in Milwaukee. Neither of them was wearing a seatbelt. The crash is still under investigation.

Ceremony to Commemorate Pearl Harbor Anniversary

12/7/11 – It was 70 years ago today when Japan pulled off its surprise attack on the U-S fleet at Pearl Harbor. And the attack which started World War Two left a number of Japanese-Americans from Wisconsin in the middle. 89-year-old Tom Suyama of Milwaukee said he volunteered for the Civil Defense Corps to try and serve his country. But because his parents were Japanese, he and others like him were originally rejected for the military. Suyama told the Journal Sentinel they were treated like spies and saboteurs. Former President Franklin D. Roosevelt ordered American citizens of Japanese descent to internment camps. Suyama, who was 19 at the time, was sent to an armed camp in Idaho where he made cabinets and drove an ambulance. Eventually, Japanese-Americans were allowed to join the Army. And Suyama was sent to Europe, where he was among the U-S troops who liberated a Nazi concentration camp. He said it was ironic that members of one concentration camp were freeing those in another such camp. Suyama said he wanted to join the Army to prove he was a loyal American. He recently was given the Congressional Medal of Honor for his efforts – and he joined other Japanese-American survivors at a medal ceremony in October in Washington. Today, Lieutenant Governor Rebecca Kleefisch and state Veterans Affairs Secretary John Scocos will hold a ceremony to commemorate the anniversary of Pearl Harbor. That event is set for late this morning at the State Veterans Home at King in Waupaca County.

Traveling Pearl Harbor Exhibit Coming To Beaver Dam

12/7/11 – The Dodge County Historical Society will be hosting a Pearl Harbor exhibit next month. Historical Society President Glen Link says the traveling exhibit from the National World War II Museum is entitled “Infamy” and includes photographs and stories detailing that fateful day when the Japanese attacked the US naval base in Hawaii. More than 2400 Americans were killed at Pearl Harbor and over 1100 were wounded. The day after the bombing, President Franklin Roosevelt declared December 7 “a date which will live in infamy.” The exhibit opens Wednesday, January 18 and will be on display for six weeks. The Doge County Historical Society is located at 105 Park Avenue in Beaver Dam, right next door to the new police station, and is open Wednesday through Saturday from 1pm to 4pm.

Beaver Dam PFC Agrees To Uniform Policy Change

12/7/11 – Bike patrol won’t be the only Beaver Dam police officers wearing shorts next summer. The Police and Fire Commission last night agreed to several changes to the uniform policy including shorts and polo’s from Memorial Day to Labor Day. Sgt. Matt Riel headed an ad-hoc uniform committee and recommended the changes saying (quote) “patrol officers working summer days smell pretty bad by the time their shift is over.” Officers will also be able to unpin the tin badge and name tag and sew on a patch. The embroidered badge will be an exact replica of the metal badge, which officers will continue to wear in court and during public appearances. In addition, Beaver Dam officers will start wearing bullet-proof vests that look exactly like a standard dress shirt. The polo’s and bullet proof vest-shirts will also have a reflective “police” patch on the

back. Officers pay for their uniforms with an annual clothing allowance and the policy changes will not cost the city any additional money.

Former Mayville Mayor Mulling State Senate Bid

12/7/11 – Former Mayville Mayor Rick Gudex is mulling a run for the State Senate. Gudex could challenge Senator Jessica King in the Eighteenth District if he decides to run, something he says he will take a good look at over the next month. In addition to his mayoral experience, Gudex is the current president of the Fond du Lac City Council and has served on the Village Board in Eden. He says that experience has prepared him for the next step. King unseated State Senator Randy Hopper during a recall election last August.

WI Healthier than a Year Ago

12/7/11 – Wisconsin appears to be a healthier state than a year ago, while the nation as a whole did not get any better. That’s according to the annual rankings by the United Health Foundation. Wisconsin is 13th among the 50 states in its overall health, up from 18th a last year. But the Badger State used to do better. It was ranked seventh when the first ratings came out in 1990 – and they were 11th in 2009. In the new survey, Wisconsin gets high scores for a large high school graduation rate, a high percentage of people with health insurance, a low rate of infectious diseases, and a relatively low child poverty rate. But Wisconsin’s obesity rate is still high at 27-percent – and for the first time, every state had at least 20-percent of its residents become obese. Officials said one big plus was that Wisconsin reduced its smoking rate. Nineteen-percent of Badger State adults smoke, down from 24-percent in the 2001 survey. Bruce Weiss of United Health Care says Wisconsin remains in an enviable position with its overall health – but there are still areas that need to be addressed. The way obesity rates are rising, Weiss says it could negate recent health improvements in other areas.

Petri Among Those Visited by Occupy Wall Street Protestors

12/7/11 – Wisconsin protestors in the Occupy Wall Street movement made unannounced visits yesterday to four congressional offices – and they got to meet with three of state’s lawmakers. It was part of a larger week-long event by Occupy groups called “Take Back the Capitol.” Organizers said about 150 people connected with labor and the Occupy movement rode from Wisconsin to Washington to meet with Republicans. And Senator Ron Johnson spent time with them, along with House members Sean Duffy of Weston and Tom Petri (pee-try) of Fond du Lac. Maria Morales of Racine wanted to meet with her congressman, House Budget Chairman Paul Ryan. But she and the others were told they had to schedule a meeting in advance. Morales said she recently lost a job due to funding reductions – and she wanted to talk to Ryan about extending unemployment benefits. Petri met with about 15 protestors for a half-hour. His spokesman Niel Wright said the group had plenty of disagreements – but he said there were people who had good reasons to be upset about the economy, and Petri wanted to hear them out.

Pro-Walker Teacher Threatened

12/7/11 – A Wisconsin teacher who is featured in Governor Scott Walker’s new television ad says she has been receiving threats since it started airing just before Thanksgiving. Kristi LaCroix tells a Milwaukee television station she’s not sure if she’d do it again. In the ad, LaCroix says she’s not big on recalls and says the effort, quoting here, “feels a little like sour grapes.” LaCroix says she has received negative e-mails, voice mail messages at school and messages on her Facebook page. One of those messages suggested she get protection.

Groups Cleared Of Recall Wrongdoing

12/7/11 – Two groups have been cleared of wrongdoing in their efforts to round up voters for this summer’s state Senate recall elections. The Milwaukee County district attorney’s office spent four months investigating Wisconsin Right-to-Life and the labor coalition Wisconsin Jobs Now. Special prosecutor Ken Landgraf said both groups had acted in good faith, and there was no merit to prosecuting the allegations. The Right-to-Life group had been accused of offering gas-and-gift cards to those who signed up at least 15 pro-family voters for the summer recall elections. But investigators found that no one received the gift cards – and nobody had asked for them. In the other case, Wisconsin Jobs Now was targeted for giving free food and free bus rides to the Milwaukee City Hall, so voters could cast absentee ballots in the recall contest against Republican Senator Alberta Darling. But the main witness in the case, a staff member for the conservative group Media Trackers, testified in a John Doe hearing that was never told he had to vote to get the free food. As a result, Landgraf said both cases have been closed as of yesterday. State Capitol Access Policy Hearings 12/7/11 – Officials have said a lot about the new public access policy at the State Capitol – but one thing they’ve not said is how they’ll enforce it. The first of three public meetings on the new policy was held this morning at the statehouse. And Capitol Police Chief Charles Tubbs said authorities would evaluate violations and consider actions then. In the chief’s words, “I’m not going to show that hand today.” Assembly Democrat Chris Taylor of Madison said she had concerns over how the law will be enforced. Administration officials say the policy is meant to clarify state law, and allow for the greatest public access and safety possible. Among other things, it requires permits in advance for demonstrations and activities by four-or-more people – except in unforeseen circumstances. Taylor said the four-person minimum is new, and it might violate the constitutional right to free speech. The policy also allows groups to be billed for extra police and clean-up costs. And it bans the taping of signs in places where they’re not intended – including the marble walls at the Capitol. Two more public meetings are planned on the new access policy before it takes full effect December 16th.

Waterford Woman Charged With FLCI Smuggling

12/7/11 – A Waterford woman faces felony charges for allegedly trying to smuggle tobacco into the Fox Lake Correctional Institution. Kimberly Bauman is charged with Delivering Illegal Articles to an Inmate, which carries a maximum three-and-a-half year prison sentence, if she is convicted. Authorities say the 29-year-old was caught passing a quart-size baggie half-full of tobacco to an inmate during an embrace at the institution in October. A signature bond was set at $1000 yesterday and a preliminary hearing is on the calendar next month.

Leaf Pick-Up Complete In Beaver Dam

12/7/11 – Public Works crews in Beaver Dam have completed leaf pick-up for the year. Director of Facilities David Stoiser says the annual citywide leaf collection wrapped-up on Friday. While leaves will no longer be collected at the curbside, Stoiser says residents who wish to dispose of remaining leaves can use the yard waste site at the city garage on South Center Street, which is open weekdays from 7am until 3:30pm.

Mega Millions Over $100M

12/7/11 – The Mega Millions’ jackpot has reached 100-million-dollars for only the third time since July first. Nobody won the top prize of 87-million last night. No one from Wisconsin won the quarter-million-dollar second prize, but a ticket sold in Milwaukee won 10-thousand by matching four-of-the-five regular numbers plus the Mega Ball. Last night’s numbers were 7, 21, 29, 35, and 49. The Mega Ball was 39, and the Megaplier was four. The current jackpot has been building since November first. Friday night’s cash option is just over 73-million dollars for a single winner who takes the whole prize now instead of in annual installments.