News – January 15, 2020

(Columbus) Voters in the Columbus School District will be asked to approve a $30-million dollar referendum on the April 7 ballot. The school board adopted the resolution on Monday after a Community Facilities Advisory Committee proposed a final recommendation last month based on feedback received in a district-wide survey and multiple meetings by the committee. The funding would be used for: construction of additions and renovations at the elementary school and the high school; capital maintenance and infrastructure improvements at all district buildings; acquisition of land; and the purchase of furnishings, fixtures and equipment. Over the next few months, the district will be hosting informational sessions with Bray Architects and CD Smith Construction to discuss the concepts for the additions and renovations proposed at each of the district’s buildings.

(Waupun) Residential sewer utility customers in Waupun will see a rate increase go into effect in April that will cost the average customer $19 more per year. The common council last night approved the 32-percent jump to be phased in at seven-percent annually over a four-year period. The main factor driving the rate increase is EPA-mandated upgrades to the city’s wastewater utility plant to reduce phosphorus in the treatment facility by 2025. The $32-million dollar project will be paid with a low-interest, USDA loan and $9.5-million dollar grant. A rate analysis determined that existing sewer rates were not enough to support operations and maintenance needs or debt service. The upgraded facility is expected to be fully operational in 2023.

(Juneau) The Juneau Common Council last (Tuesday) night approved an increase in sewer rates. The city-owned utility experienced $50-thousand dollars in red ink over the last year. Mayor Dan Wegener says the six percent increase in both the monthly service charge and the total volume charge is needed to get the wastewater fund on solid ground. The most recent wastewater rate increase went into effect in 2017. Juneau is also looking at increases in its water and electric rates this year, which is a longer process because – unlike wastewater hikes – state approvals are required.

(Hartford) Instagram posts helped tie a driver to a November hit-and-run that injured a Hartford family outside Milwaukee’s Fiserv Forum. Twenty-one-year-old Christopher Covington faces four counts of Hit-and-Run, Causing Injury. Cops say the car that struck and injured the Eager family the night of November 9th was rented by Covington’s mother. Surveillance video shows that car hit the family, sending a five-year-old boy tumbling several feet into the air. The criminal complaint says investigators found an Instagram post by Covington, showing him driving the car the night of the collision. He was still not in custody at last word.

(Columbus) Authorities continue their search for the masked man who robbed the Cenex gas station in Columbus Monday night. The suspect forced his way into the Park Avenue business after it closed around 10:20pm, displayed a handgun and threatened the clerk, warning her not contact law enforcement. He fled south toward Kiwanis Park with an undisclosed amount of cash in a green bank bag. The suspect is described as a white male, wearing a dark blue full zip-up hoodie, dark-colored pants and a stocking cap. Anyone with information is asked to contact the Columbus Police Department or the anonymous Columbia County Crime Stoppers; you will find contact information with this news story at

(Beaver Dam) Beaver Dam Police Monday night fielded a call from a resident complaining of a vehicle with loud music and booming bass. The caller reported that a white SUV was traveling on North Spring Street with music blaring and said they even had video of the vehicle. Police were initially unable to locate the suspect but the complainant called back a half hour later and the vehicle was pulled over. The driver was warned for having loud bass.

(Beaver Dam) Today is the deadline to apply for grant funding offered through the Beaver Dam Community Hospitals Foundation.  Grant requests must be consistent with the mission of the foundation and are intended to support community projects and programs that promote health and wellness within the geographic area served by Marshfield Medical Center Beaver Dam.  Applications received after today’s deadline will be reviewed during the next grant cycle.