News – February 22nd, 2010

Horicon Man Arraigned For $100K Embezzlement

2/22/10 – A Horicon Man is accused of embezzling over $100,000 from the Neosho tire store he managed. During an arraignment hearing Friday, Michael N. Wagner entered a “not guilty” plea to a felony charge of Theft in a Business Setting and 17 counts of Forgery. The 43-year-old is accused of taking cash and writing checks to himself for personal reasons throughout the course of his ten year employment and Rinderle Tires. Wagner says the owner of the store told him that if Wagner ever needed personal money “just handle it and pay me back.” The owner denied that such a conversation ever took place. Wagner faces up to 112 years in prison if convicted. Wagner has court activity on the calendar next month.

Fitzgerald on Fish Fry Fracas

2/22/10 – Plans to host a DOT-funded fish fry during a public hearing last week has drawn harsh criticism. The Department of Transportation held the hearing last Thursday to discuss plans for a Madison interchange project and officials said offering the free meal and free child care at the meeting would boost attendance. State DOT workers were the first to criticize the move, questioning the spending at the same time they had to take a furlough day. Assembly Minority Leader Jeff Fitzgerald criticized the decision on WBEV’s Community Comment Friday saying in the current economy it absolutely sends the wrong signal. The Republican from Horicon called it the epitome of the state government doing something that flies in the face of what people expect. The money would have come from the state’s gas tax but the complaints made their way to the media and DOT officials soon after said the plan was “a mistake.” An anonymous donor eventually stepped in to pay for the cost of the fish fry and child care.