News – July 1, 2021

(Madison) The Republican-authored state budget is headed to the governor after the state Senate Wednesday night approved the two-year spending plan that passed the Assembly on Tuesday. The $87-point-5-billion-dollar document includes tax cuts totaling three billion dollars over two years. State Senator John Jagler says (quote) “responsible budgeting helped the state generate a historically large surplus.” The Watertown Republican adds that the “goal was to make strategic investments in key areas while still securing our financial future.”

(Madison) Legislation meant to address excessive use of force by police passed the state Senate yesterday. If signed by the governor, it would create a statewide use-of-force standard and require police officers to report or intervene when they see a violation of that standard. The bill was amended last week by Assembly Republicans to delay implementation until 2022 and delete a requirement that officers must intervene if they “reasonably should have observed” excessive force by another.

(Iron Ridge) An Iron Ridge man was sentenced Wednesday to two years in prison for threatening multiple officials. It all started when Bobby Buechel threatened to assault his former wife’s boyfriend. That triggered an arrest warrant angering the 43-year-old, who launched a profanity-filled tirade against his probation agent, the judge who then issued the warrant and the officer who investigated the threats. A jury convicted him on two misdemeanors, which rarely results in a prison sentence, but Buechel had previously threatened a different judge along with several deputies and was known to show up at the homes of public officials. The DA says (quote) “hopefully [this sentence] will make clear that enough is enough.”

(Calamus) A Waupun man who ran from Dodge County deputies was sentenced Wednesday to two years in prison and one year of extended supervision. Timothy Savannah was stopped for speeding through a construction zone in August on Highway 151. The deputy could smell marijuana and noticed that Savannah had bloodshot eyes. When asked to step out, the 29-year-old sped away.

(Madison) A little more than half of all eligible people in Wisconsin have at least one dose of the coronavirus vaccine. That comes to just over two-point-nine million people. The Department of Health Services says almost as many — 46 percent in Wisconsin — are fully vaccinated. In Dodge County, the number of people with at least one dose is at 40.1-percent while 37.9-percent have completed the vaccination series. In Columbia County, those numbers are at 53.7-percent and 50.4-percent, respectively.

(Madison) The Dane County Humane Society is helping to make history this week. Amy Good, the Humane Society’s Director of Development, says they’re helping out El Paso, Texas. About 100 animals are expected to arrive at the airport in Madison Thursday morning via Wisconsin Aviation. DCHS is collaborating with other U.S. shelters to relocate about 350 animals from El Paso to locations in Wisconsin, California and New Jersey.

(Ripon) A Ripon woman is breaking her own record with her Smurfs memorabilia collection. Gerda Scheuers originally set the Guinness World Record with 6,320 Smurf-related collectibles.  But now she’s doubled that, to almost 11,455 items. Scheuers says she’s collected Smurfs memorabilia since she was seven- or eight-years-old, and it has become a decades-long hobby.