News – January 11, 2022

(Beaver Dam) Two local organizations have started a campaign to curb human trafficking. Tuesday is Human Trafficking Awareness Day and all of January is National Slavery and Trafficking Prevention Month. In recognition, 5-Stones Dodge County and PAVE have begun their See Something Say Something campaign. Its mission is getting those who see potential signs of human trafficking to reach out. As part of the campaign, four billboards have been installed throughout the Dodge County area that includes a hotline number for those in need to call. Human trafficking support lines can also be found with this news story at

(Wisconsin) The Wisconsin Department of Transportation is putting a spotlight on human trafficking. The DOT is one of hundreds of partners that has joined the national initiative titled Transportation Leaders Against Human Trafficking. It aims to bring the travel industry together to combat this crime across the country. Wisconsin DOT Secretary Craig Thompson says human trafficking is a hidden crime that needs to come out of the shadows. He says traffickers are using the state’s highway system to transport victims and perpetuate this issue.

(Madison) A Beaver Dam politician and a state senator Monday introduced legislation that bars local governments from bypassing state law to increase taxes. The bill from Representative Mark Born and Senator Duey Stroebel would require any local government receiving revenue from a transportation utility to reduce its property tax levy by the same amount. Local governments are subject to limits under state law on how much tax can be imposed on residents, however, certain municipalities have created a new “transportation utility fee” as a way to circumvent levy limits to impose new taxes on residents.

(Dodge County) Dodge County health officials confirmed an additional COVID death Monday. That brings the total death count to 280 with 245 confirmed with 35 probable deaths. Health officials recorded 185 new cases since Friday with eight hospitalizations. The seven-day daily average of new cases per one-thousand people has spiked drastically in recent days. Yesterday (Monday) it was 136.3, Friday 109.9, and last Thursday it was 91.5. Twenty-five cases and above is what health officials classify as the “tipping point.”

(Wisconsin) Wisconsin school districts are being asked to step up their efforts to slow the spread of COVID. A letter to school administrators from the Department of Health Services urges them to require masks for everyone, follow the CDC’s new quarantine guidelines, and offer school vaccination and booster clinics. The request comes as Wisconsin is experiencing an unprecedented surge in COVID cases. State health officials yesterday reported the 7-day average of new confirmed cases at 9,063 – a one hundred and fifty percent increase over two weeks. – WRN

(Beaver Dam) The Beaver Dam Area Community Theatre has named a new managing director. David Smith is a Beaver Dam-native who got his theatrical start at a young age as part of the very first Tell-A-Tale productions. He is a University of Minnesota theatre alumnus, working with companies in Wisconsin, Minnesota, and California. Smith replaces David Saniter who left the post in November after 13 years with the community theatre.