News – January 25, 2020

(Juneau) The Dodge County Board this week approved internal borrowing to cover the costs to reconstruct the Highway Department’s storage building in Reeseville. The project’s price tag is expected to be just over $3.5-million dollars. Maas Brothers Construction out of Watertown will be paid $1.5-million dollars for general construction. Commissioner Brian Field says the Reeseville shop, which was built 1945, is too small and they need additional space for storage. Demolition and construction is slated to begin the end of March. Field says the goal is to be moved in to the new facility around October.

(Columbus) The Columbus City Council approved plans this week to move ahead with the proposed reconstruction of Hibbard street.  The resolution designates bike and pedestrian accommodations for Hibbard street which is required for the city to be considered for a $686-thousand dollar state DOT Local Roads Improvement Program (LRIP) grant.  The resolution was approved on a five-to-one vote with Alderman Ian Gray voting against.

(Madison) Wisconsin’s unemployment rate is up slightly. New figures show that Wisconsin’s unemployment rate has ticked up a tenth of a percent to 3 point 4 percent in December. The Bureau of Labor Statistics says the unemployment rate has grown steadily since last June when it was at its lowest at 2 point 9 percent. Wisconsin added 9000 more private sector jobs, meaning more people are reentering the workforce.

(Eau Claire) A fourth Republican candidate has declared in western Wisconsin’s 3rd Congressional District. Jessi Ebben, an Eau Claire public relations professional, says if elected she’ll “support President Trump’s pro-America agenda, and work to get things done for Wisconsin.” Ebben’s announcement will put her in a primary with John Garske, an US Army veteran and owner of a business helping vets transition to private sector jobs; Kevin Ruscher, who bills himself on his Facebook page as “an anti-Trump Republican,” and Brandon Cook, who wrote on his Facebook page he’s running “as a common sense Conservative Republican.” The winner will face Democratic incumbent Ron Kind in November.

(Milwaukee) Milwaukee city leaders are looking to push back bar close while the Democratic National Convention is in town. Right now, Bar Close in Milwaukee is at 2 am. Peggy Williams Smith, the head of Visit Milwaukee, is proposing that get pushed back to maybe 4 am. She says that’s a change a number of other states have made when hosting the D N C. This would require a change in state law.

(Dodge County) Vehicle sales in the region last year were down when compared to 2018. According to statistics released by the Waterloo-based industry tracking firm Reg-Trak, Dodge County had just over 35-hundred vehicle sales in 2019, down four-percent from the previous year. Car sales in Dodge County were down just under ten-percent to 508 while truck sales were down three-percent to just over three-thousand. In Columbia County, 26-hundred vehicles rolled off dealer lots through the end of the December, a decrease of nearly two-percent from the 27-hundred sold in the previous 12-month cycle. Car sales in Columbia County were down 13-percent to 377 while truck sales were up a half-percent to over 22-hundred. Jefferson County vehicle sales were above 28-hundred, an increase of six-percent over the two-year period. Car sales in Jefferson County were down 15-percent to just under 500 while truck sales were up 12-percent to around 23-hundred. In the nine-county south central Wisconsin region as a hole, there were nearly 47-thousand vehicle sales last year, for a slight increase of point-one-two-percent. Car sales were down 14-percent to 94-hundred while truck sales were up four-and-a-half-percent to 37-thousand.

(Platteville) A group of exchange students at UW-Platteville are being quarantined. Those students are from China and some passed through Wuhan where a deadly coronavirus outbreak is said to have originated. Officials say this is precautionary, and that they’re monitoring each other for sickness over the next several days. The CDC and the state health department are also keeping an eye on things.

(Beaver Dam) An annual winter event returns to Beaver Dam tomorrow (Saturday).  Cabin Fever Fest is being held at Crystal Lake Park, highlighting local amenities like sledding and winter disc golf along with outdoor games and a beach bonfire. Boy Scout Troop 724 spent the night camping at Crystal Lake and will be offering Dutch Over Cooking Demonstrations. The Antique Power Club will offer wagon rides throughout the park. The event will also feature a fish throwing contest, a penguin egg hunt, crafts, food and s’mores. There are also several activities away from Crystal Lake Park tied to the event that includes ice skating at Tahoe Park, a scavenger hunt at the library and an open gym at Get Fit Health Club. You will find more information and links with this news story at

All snowmobile trails in all zones in Dodge County are closed as of 6am Saturday, January 25. The Wild Goose State Trail is also be closed to ATV/UTV traffic. Dodge County Parks Supervisor Jason Roy says his department will continue to monitor the weather and he encourages riders to check the Trail Status Hotline message for any updates or changes to the trails. That number is (920) 386‐3705.